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World Cup soccer player ties shoes for boy on crutches in touching photo

June 18, 2014 at 12:39 PM ET

Mark Bresciano, a midfielder for Australia, bends down to help tie the shoe laces of a boy on crutches ahead of a World Cup match against Chile in a touching photo that has warmed hearts across the world.
George Salpigtidis / Newspix via Getty Images
Mark Bresciano, a midfielder for Australia, bends down to help tie the shoelaces of a boy on crutches ahead of a World Cup match against Chile.

During the moments before his team's World Cup match against Chile, Australian midfielder Mark Bresciano made sure everyone, including the young boy on crutches standing next to him, was laced up and ready to go. 

In the pregame introductions before Australia's eventual 3-1 loss on June 13, Bresciano, 34, noticed that the shoelaces had come undone for one of the boys who serve as mascots for the team. Bresciano squatted down and tied the cleats for the boy, who was on crutches. The touching gesture, captured by photographer George Salpigtidis, went viral as an enduring image of the World Cup. 

“It is always nice to have kids share that walk out because it is so special for them,” Bresciano told Brisbane's Courier-Mail. "The boy was a little slow walking out and I noticed his shoelace undone so I did what any parent would do, any player for that matter, I just helped him out and tied it back up. I had no idea the photo had been sent around the world but I’m just glad the boy had a good time.”

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