Portugal invites bereft France football fan to visit


Lisbon (AFP) – Portuguese tourism officials on Tuesday invited the France supporter who was consoled by a young Portugal fan following the hosts’ narrow Euro 2016 defeat in images that have taken the internet by storm.

Video footage of the heartwarming moment when the boy offered kind words, a shoulder to cry on and a hug to the tearful France fan in a Paris fan zone has gone viral.

Now Portugal’s tourist board has invited both the French supporter and his young guardian angel — the son of Portuguese parents living in France — to visit the country that produced Cristiano Ronaldo.

“Tourism Portugal has launched an appeal to find the France supporter and invite him to visit Portugal,” the board said in a statement.

The actions of the boy, named Mathis, “communicated the intense emotions of the final and demonstrated the way to be friendly, tolerant and authentically Portuguese,” added the tourist board.

Officials said they wanted the mystery France fan to “get to know Portugal and experience the authentic Portuguese welcome”.

An extra-time goal by Eder saw Portugal beat hosts France 1-0 in Sunday’s Euro 2016 final.

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