Ilia Topuria, the Georgia talisman who loves Spain: Who will he support in the round of 16?

The Group Stage of Euro 2024 has ended and now it is the turn of the Round of 16 with matches as exciting as Belgium-France, Germany-Denmark or Switzerland-Italy. However, uOne of the matches that generates the most expectation is, without a doubt, Spain vs. Georgia, a confrontation between one of the favorites of the contest and one of the surprises of this Euro Cup, and the reason is not just football. This match will break Ilia Topuria’s heart in two: Who will she support in the round of 16?

It’s like having two children

“I feel super Spanish, I also feel Georgian, it’s like having two children. You can’t choose between the two when you ask me. You love them both equally… You can’t“were the statements of the current UFC Featherweight World Champion, who will experience this confrontation in a very special way that will put his heart in check.

Topuria was born in Germany to Georgian parents and moved to Georgia at the age of 7. He arrived in Spain at the age of 15 and began to practice martial arts. He is proud to be Spanish and Georgian. In Alicante, at the Climent Club, he began to practice wrestling with his brother Aleksandre Topuria: “I acquired my level of maturity in Spain, I found my profession there, my passion. My family lives in Spain, my son lives there, my house, my friends, everything is there,” he said about his other nationality.

In fact, his patriotism led him to send a ‘warning’ to all those who criticize him for displaying two flags indiscriminately in each of his victories: “I have an immense love for Spain and for Georgia. I cannot choose and anyone who says anything in front of of those two flags before me will pay for his words and for his deeds.

A love for Spain that was also demonstrated on October 12. El Matador published an emotional message to commemorate the National Holiday: “The country that welcomed me, where I have matured as a professional and as a person, where I live with my family, where I have my home”he recalled.

A talisman for the Georgian national team

Now, “El Matador” is forced, very reluctantly, to choose between his two flags. In fact, Topuria became a talisman for the Georgian team in the Euro 2024 qualifying match between Georgia and Luxembourg that marked their place in the play-offs.

On March 21, he jumped into the Boris Paichadze Dinamo Arena to take the kickoff and show off his UFC championship belt in front of almost 55,000 people. ‘El Matador’ was a true lucky charm for the Georgian team, which qualified for the final of the Euro Cup play-off after beating Luxembourg by two goals and, at the conclusion of the match, celebrated with the players the go to the last round of the playoff in the locker room.

After the great feat, the UFC featherweight world champion celebrated it with fervor on social networks: “I had no doubts about our victory! We are also going to go to the group stage” he wrote before ensuring that he would defend both teams in the Euro Cup.

In fact the fighter was pleased that Spain and Georgia did not share a group, because Luis de la Fuente’s team were placed in B with Croatia, Italy and Albania, while the Georgian team was in F along with Portugal, Turkey and the Czech Republic.

Now fate has wanted their paths to cross in the round of 16 and Topuria must choose between one of the flags hanging from her neck. Who will you be rooting for in the round of 16?