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Did Harvey Elliott Really Copy Paulo Dybala’s Mask Celebration? Here’s the Truth

Did Harvey Elliott Really Copy Paulo Dybala’s Mask Celebration? Here’s the Truth

The Premier League is coming to a close and while the top four is mostly confirmed, the race up top is still on and Liverpool are trying their best to stay as close to the front of the pack as to pounce, in case of a “slip”.

Their match against Tottenham Hotspur was crucial to close the gap and they managed to do it in style. The game was done and dusted by the hour mark when Harvey Elliott’s wonder-strike evaded Vicario to smash into the net.

The 21-year-old cut inside in a classic left-footer fashion and after riding a couple of challenges whipped his left boot. It was a goal the moment it left his laces and he knew it. His celebration after the goal was as cool as the goal itself. He celebrated by pulling out the “mask” with his thumb and index fingers. It looked very familiar to the fans but was it what they originally thought it to be? 

The celebration has gone out of vogue now but back in the late 2010s, it meant only one thing. Paulo Dybala. Dybala was lighting up Serie A and being linked with all the famous clubs worldwide. His celebration was as iconic and unique as his left foot. Elliott’s goal also had the same qualities of a Dybala strike, power, precision, and swerve. 

While most fans were impressed with it, some have struggled to find the Chertsey lad’s connection with Dybala. Apart from the fact that both are southpaws, there is not much link between them. So what’s the catch? Thankfully Elliott has himself cleared out the air after the match.

Talking to Sky Sports, Elliott said, “It was for my friend, really,” Elliott said on Sky Sports. “I’ve been promising it for god knows how many months since I last scored, and today I finally got to do it.”

The celebration was originally inspired by Russell Crowe’s Gladiator. The Roma talisman took inspiration from the movie during a break and it became synonymous with him.

Paulo Dybala of Juventus FC celebrate after scoring a goal during the Serie A match between Juventus Fc and Ac Milan. Torino, Italy. 10th November 2019. Italian Serie A- Juventus Fc vs Ac Milan.

Dybala had said, “I went on holiday and was watching Gladiator on TV and that’s when I decided that, my next goal, to celebrate as a Gladiator.” Since then, Dybala has popularized this celebration to such a degree that it has been called the “Dybala mask”.

Although at first glance, Elliott’s celebration does look very much like Paulo Dybala’s “Mask”, there are some very obvious ‘tweaks’. In Elliott’s variant, he uses both his index finger and middle finger overlapped on each other under the eye, giving it a different look. This is to add a bit of individuality to the move and to avoid any sort of trademark breaches. 

While it is not confirmed whether it is trademarked or not, Elliott wouldn’t want to take risks. Nowadays, all the players are using unique celebrations to impress their fans. From Rashford’s “It’s all in the head”, to Cole Palmer’s “cold palmer”, gone are the days of knee-slides or dedicating goals to fans. Harvey Elliott’s ‘mask’ celebration has gotten the fans talking as well. Now it remains to be seen whether this becomes Elliott’s ‘trademark’ or not.