Kochi, July 10: Kerala is a football mad state. The sport unites people above political, social, economical differences and the Copa America final is another occasion when Keralites are celebrating the magic of football.
Brazil are facing Argentina in the Copa America final at the iconic Maracana Stadium in Rio de Janeiro on Sunday (5.30 AM IST). Here's a look into how Malayalees from across the spectrum are supporting their favourite team.
1. The Brazil Fans
VD Satheesan (Opposition leader): I am waiting for a Brazil win. It is rare and fortunate opportunity.
V Sivan Kutty (Minister of Education): I am a Brazil fan since childhood. I am sure that Brazil are going to win Copa America.
Anju Bobby George (Olympian long jumper): I like Argentina and Lionel Messi but Brazil should win the Cup.
Lal Jose (Film director): I like Messi but Brazil should win the Copa America.
Salim Kumar (National award-winning actor): Brazil's Copa America win is a certainty. Neymar will be a legend after this tournament.
2. The Argentina Fans
MM Mani (CPM leader, former Minister): I am with Argentina. There are people who criticise them but nothing will affect Argentina.
M Mukundan (Writer): Lionel Messi's speed amazes me. He hardly loses the ball despite charging in at that speed. What ball control!
Aishwaraya Lakshmi (Actor, heroine in Malayalam movie Argentina Fans): Even before acting in that movie I have been a die-hard fan of Argentina.
Kunchako Boban (Actor): Argentina should win. Lionel Messi should score the goal.
IM Vijayan (Former Indian football captain): Argentina should win through a Messi goal. It will be a heaven for Argentina fans.
(They were talking to Malayala Manorama).
Argentina have won the Copa America 14 times and Brazil, the defending champions, have won the trophy 9 times. However, both Neymar and Messi have not been part of the winning team in the past.
So, Kerala is waiting for the Copa America winner!