In a spectacularly bizarre incident this week, Braga faced the possibility of having to postpone their Europa League fixture with Marseille after their boots went missing.
The Portuguese side, upon reaching the Stade Velodrome on Thursday night, arrived to find their boots absent. After being left at the ground overnight, the studded footwear was nowhere to be seen upon the squad’s return.
Reports in Portugal, as per the BBC, even suggested the boots had been stolen on Wednesday. There were growing concerns that Braga wouldn’t be able to play the fixture, with the hilarious scenario leaving the team stripped bare of any match-appropriate shoes.
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Moreover, the players find themselves bound to strict sponsorship contracts that made it even more difficult for the club to hunt down replacements. For the very best athletes, the absence of a tick or puma on their boots can see them thrown into the courtroom and handed a hearty fine.
However, regardless of the circumstances behind the mysterious disappearance, Braga managed to find replacements in time. To the relief of the travelling supporters, their beloved team ran out for the warm-up in studs and not trainers.
Despite the makeshift footwear, the Portuguese side could not avoid defeat as Marseille's Georges-Kevin N'Koudou scored the only goal of the game to end Braga's 100% record in Group F.
As for the boots, whether they will be tracked down is yet to be seen but there is little doubt Braga’s kit man will be keeping a closer eye on the squads’ boots before their next European clash.
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