Kolkata: On the last day of their Kolkata sojourn, Lionel Messi gave the media and fans a miss confining himself to his hotel room, but the others, including the duo of Nicolas Burdisso and Jonas Gutierrez, went on a shopping spree.
In fact, the Argentine journalists, too, had no clue about Messi, as fans gathered outside the star hotel in which he was lodged.
The media and a few supporters waited at the hotel lobby when Argentine players came out of for their evening practice at the Yuba Bharati Krirangan, hoping to get a glimpse of Messi.
Somebody shouted from behind as Messi quickly made his way into the bus.
New Castle midfielder Gutierrez bought a silver ring from a curio shop inside the hotel while a few others were seen coming from outside carrying shopping bags.
Gutierrez along with Burdisso were quite impressed with the scarfs and Indian idols of Lord Ganesha and Shiva and told the store in-charge to keep them ready.
"They scanned through various idols, handicrafts, mats and multi-coloured scarfs. They told me to keep the things ready and they will take it when they return from the evening practice," store manager Ramesh Ahuja said.
He however said Messi did not come for any shopping. Earlier, about six Argentine officials visited the Mother House, the headquarters of the missionaries of charity.
The officials left for Dhaka around 10 am. Argentina take on Nigeria in the second FIFA international friendly, in Dhaka on September 6.
The players and the remaining support staff will leave for Dhaka tomorrow morning.
In their first friendly, Messi led the side to a 1-0 win over Venezuela, which marked coach Alejandro Sabella`s first outing as national coach.
First Published: Sunday, September 04, 2011, 21:15