Organisers of Lionel Messi’s wedding have hired 300 agents to “clean up the streets” as they promote the urban beautification of Rosario.
The five-time Ballon d’Or-winner is tying the knot with long-time sweetheart Antonela Roccuzzo in what promises to be the event of year in Argentina.
Only 260 select people have been invited to the ceremony — with Barcelona and Argentina team-mates past and present among the honoured guests.
However, AFP claim that, in order to make the event as photogenic as possible, the organisers have brought in 300 security agents to remove any unwanted locals.
And that will mean the temporary displacement of street workers and the homeless, of which there are many in one of Argentina’s most dangerous and poverty-stricken cities.
Rosario, which is where Messi, 30, and Antonela, 29, are both from, is not regarded as one of the best-kept places in the South American country.
But, in the build-up to the event, there has been a mass clean-up of the dirt and rubbish on the streets and visually-enhancing bushes have been planted to add more decoration.
The luxurious casino chosen to host the ceremony is surrounded by extreme poverty-stricken areas, where car-window cleaners stand at traffic lights and general street sellers are commonplace.
However, they have been forcibly removed by police ahead of the event.
Stands selling local street food have also been moved on for the duration of Messi’s stay.
A local window cleaner, who was named only as Sergio, told AFP: “It appears there will be no one working during those three days.
“I don’t know what will happen. We all have children and families.”
A secure route from the airport to the hotel has been set up by local authorities.
Rosario has around 1.2million inhabitants and is rife with drug trafficking and considered one of the most dangerous cities on the South American continent.
Meanwhile, just one week ago, the casino which is hosting the ceremony, was hit with a tax evading charge by the Argentinian government.
But, this is in no way linked to Messi’s union with Antonela.