LONDON: French footballer Paul Pogba, a devout Muslim, removed a bottle of Heineken beer placed in front of him for sponsorship reasons at a press conference for the Euros.
It comes a day after Portuguese superstar Cristiano Ronaldo made the same gesture with bottles of Coca-Cola.
Pogba hid the sponsor’s beer bottle underneath a table as he spoke to the press following his team’s 1-0 victory over Germany on Tuesday evening, in which he played a key role.
The 28-year-old midfielder has not yet explained why he removed the bottle, but it is likely based on his religious beliefs, which forbid alcohol.
He did not remove a bottle of water and two bottles of Coca-Cola that were on the table. Heineken has yet to issue a response to Pogba’s decision.
Pogba told the Manchester Evening News that his newfound faith “means everything,” adding: “That’s what makes me thankful for everything.”
He said: “It made me change, realize things in life. I guess, maybe, it makes me more peaceful inside.
“I was questioning myself in a lot of things, then I started doing my own research. I prayed once with my friends and I felt something different. I felt really good.”