FIFA World Cup

Christ the Redeemer Flies as a Socceroo and a Hot Air Balloon

AP
Sean SwabyUK Staff WriterJune 11, 2014

Rio's iconic Christ the Redeemer statue has naturally been featured throughout anything and everything related to the World Cup. 

Bizarrely, we've seen the historic landmark donning a Mario Balotelli shirt. Now, we've seen it mysteriously floating down under wearing a Socceroos kit. 

In an effort to boost the hopes of an Australian nation unfortunately pitted in the Group B gauntlet with defending World Cup winners Spain, 2010 runners-up Netherlands and South American dark horse Chile, a betting company decided to make Christ the Redeemer fly in Aussie colours. 

The 151-foot balloon has a simple message over Melbourne: #KeepTheFaith

AP

AP

Of course, turning the statue of Jesus into a rallying cry for sport isn't always going to go over incredibly well. 

Per Yahoo Australia (h/t Dirty Tackle), chair of the Australian Churches Gambling Taskforce, Reverend Tim Costello, thought the effort was taken too far. 

One of the great statues in Rio is Jesus, and Brazil is a Catholic nation that takes its faith seriously and its footballing fanatically. 

You don't exploit those things that are sacred to people simply for your own advertising reach and I think that soccer as a world game should be sensitive to that and certainly express their disdain for these types of advertisements. 

[Dirty Tackle]

Where can I comment?

Stay on your game

Latest news, insights, and forecasts on your teams across leagues.

Choose Teams
Get it on the App StoreGet it on Google Play

Real-time news for your teams right on your mobile device.

Download
Copyright © 2017 Bleacher Report, Inc. Turner Broadcasting System, Inc. All Rights Reserved. BleacherReport.com is part of Bleacher Report – Turner Sports Network, part of the Turner Sports and Entertainment Network. Certain photos copyright © 2017 Getty Images. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of Getty Images is strictly prohibited. AdChoices