Mohamed Salah has become one of the biggest soccer stars in the world, so naturally a statue was crafted in his likeness in his homeland of Egypt. With Salah leading the way, Egypt made its first World Cup in 28 years in 2018. However, once the statue was unveiled, it was clear that something was wrong.
Very, very wrong.
🇪🇬 @MoSalah had a statue unveiled of him in Sharm el-Sheikh…— SPORF (@Sporf) November 5, 2018
⚽ …in his trademark celebration pose.
😱 The worst one yet? pic.twitter.com/V26COENExk
If this isn't as bad as the Ronaldo atrocity, it's close. It's like the sculptor did the head first and realized there wasn't enough material, which is an honest mistake. In the words of John Mulaney, "We've all made a 'Happy Birthday' sign."
To the artist, however, it's not what you'd call an acceptable mistake.
"I welcome all criticisms this statue received; this is natural because an artist is subjected to a number of tastes but I am personally not happy with the statue's final product," said sculptor Mai Abdel Allah, per CNN.
That's fair, and it's good that Abdel Allah is self-aware, because the statue received plenty of criticism -- not all of it constructive.
I initially thought the Mo Salah statue was Leo Sayer, but I think it's to commemorate Art Garfunkel who is 77 today 🙂. pic.twitter.com/X2sYewX9Mp— Brynt (@JohnBrynt) November 5, 2018
That Mo Salah statue reminds me of Marv from Home Alone pic.twitter.com/Dch0iPAMSO— Liam (@Lbrennan07) November 4, 2018
Why does the Mo Salah statue look like Todd Flanders?!😂😂 pic.twitter.com/rGgGnrSzk1— ❤️OllyMurs_LFC_YNWA❤️ (@MursAndSalah) November 5, 2018
Stranger than the Cristiano Ronaldo bust?— ESPN FC (@ESPNFC) November 5, 2018
Say hello to mini Mohamed Salah: https://t.co/YkazI3V7EQ pic.twitter.com/cYccmHQHo2
I’d be pissed if that were me. Looks like Dobby from Harry Potter. pic.twitter.com/HawAMnRdf0— H. Jeraj (@hjeraj) November 5, 2018
November 5, 2018
Impressively, the statue simultaneously has a childlike freedom to it while also looking like the weight of the world is crushing it. It seems like Abdel Allah wants to take another crack at it, and it's hard to blame her. This one doesn't look like it came out as planned. With that being said, after the Ronaldo debacle, maybe the takeaway should be that sculpting soccer stars is really difficult.