Soccer superstar Lionel Messi‘s Argentine hometown is preparing to host footballing and showbiz celebrities when he marries childhood sweetheart Antonella Roccuzzo this month in Latin America’s wedding of the decade.
Colombian popstar Shakira, wife of Messi’s Barcelona teammate Gerard Pique, has said she hopes to attend the wedding.
Media such as local Rosario newspaper La Capital also expect other current and former Barcelona stars such as Luis Suarez, Neymar, Cesc Fabregas and Xavi Hernandez to be among the invitees.
The Barcelona forward’s agents confirmed in a statement that the couple will wed in Rosario on June 30, a week after Messi’s 30th birthday.
The guest list, venue and party details are the subject of a swirl of rumours.
Sources in the city’s cathedral contacted by AFP denied reports that Messi and Roccuzzo would have a religious wedding ceremony there.
The couple still have friends and family in the northern city, where Messi discovered his love of football — and of his brunette future bride.
It is also where their two children were baptized — Thiago, 4 and one-year-old Mateo, both born in Barcelona.
Some media predicted 600 guests, but La Capital said no more than 250 were expected, including 21 Barcelona players.
National newspaper Clarin said Argentine singer Karina, wife of Manchester City striker Sergio Aguero, will be a guest and also hired to sing at the wedding.
A source in the city hall told AFP it was considering security measures for the crowd of major football stars visiting.