Those who were wondering why inflatable sharks are raiding the city of Manchester can chalk it up to team spirit.
Benjamin Mendy, a French professional footballer for the city's Premier League club, is notorious for his mischievous nature on social media. On Twitter, he refers to City as #SharkTeam.
“We’re the big shark," the 23-year-old told The Telegraph in an interview. "And when teams swim up alongside us we gobble them up.”
And his credentials prove it.
According to The Telegraph, Mendy made 27 crosses in three league games, which is more than what the city's star left backs from last season accomplished.
But when the dynamic star athlete ruptured his ACL recently, he took to Twitter to show fans that this shark will endure in a viral tweet.
Wait for it 😂🦈 https://t.co/tmp0e84PX0— Benjamin Mendy (@Benjamin Mendy)1507983346.0
The good sport always had his mischievous side. His playful spirit has gotten him into trouble numerous times as a budding athlete.
When he joined the French football club Le Havre at 13-years-old, Mendy was warned to dispense with the antics or get dropped.
“I was always messing around,” Mendy said in the interview. “In my first season at Le Havre they said, ‘Sort it out or you’re on your bike’. It was a big wake up call.”
Adopting a modified behavior didn't exactly stain his energetic temperament. It's what's kept him as an asset. “The thing is, I have no limits to the energy I can give,” he said. “Even if it’s the 97th minute, I’m going to be there, running down the sides, getting that last cross in. If we are serious, with a team like this, there are no limits really.”
Mendy is still notorious as a prankster off the field. He ribbed right backer Kyle Walker on Twitter after perusing through a series of photographic action shots.
Someone please find the sniper in the stands !! Hahaha 😭😂 @kylewalker2 u ok boi ?! 😂💙💙💙 https://t.co/0BNIUbrTNI— Benjamin Mendy (@Benjamin Mendy)1504965352.0
“Every time I get in my car I sit and sift through pictures and I saw that one of Kyle looking like he’d been taken down by a sniper against Liverpool,” Mendy says. “So I stuck it on Twitter but then Kyle got me back.
Now that Mendy's injury prevents him from playing until possibly April, the club showed its support for their cheeky teammate.
The team are warming up in these today! 🦈 What do you think, @benmendy23?! #SharkTeam #mancity https://t.co/PoA9JBIa7f— Manchester City (@Manchester City)1507987540.0
@benmendy23 💪💙 @benmendy23 #mancity https://t.co/moO2uc2Ifu— Manchester City (@Manchester City)1507988223.0
And now Mendy's fans are swimming with the sharks.
@ManCity @benmendy23 We have ours #SharkTeam #mendy #mcfc https://t.co/8FRmv742Af— Sarah (@Sarah)1507988850.0
Its with a heavy heart, I’m afraid to report it’s started @DeanAinsworth #SharkTeam https://t.co/0kqLMPXW4x— Just be coz (@Just be coz)1507986774.0
Inflatable sharks are now popping up in the stands.
I spy sharks #SharkTeam @benmendy23 https://t.co/8EokkNlscC— Daniel Washford (@Daniel Washford)1507987389.0
#SharkTeam 🦈💙 @benmendy23 https://t.co/Fa8EAJsXZz— Ella Arnold (@Ella Arnold)1507988015.0
Come on city!!! #SharkTeam @ManCity @benmendy23 @1894Group_MCFC https://t.co/QqFYjnMFAN— Adam Wareing (@Adam Wareing)1507987977.0
So if you find yourself wandering around Manchester and spot an inflatable predator near you, have no fear; they've merely come up for air to give props to a star athlete.
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