According to reports in France, first by news outlet LCI, the World Cup mascot Ettie had its mascot stolen from Parc des Princes in the early morning hours of last Friday, June 21.
L’Equipe reports the mascot costume has subsequently been recovered and police are investigating.
The reports state that a group of five somehow entered the Paris stadium between 4 and 5 a.m. local time, proceeding to walk around and even play a game on the Parc des Princes pitch before leaving the stadium carrying two large bags that contained the mascot costume. After missing for the weekend, the costume was reportedly returned to a lawyer’s office in Paris on Tuesday in anonymous fashion.
Thankfully, since the costume has been returned, Ettie will be able to make an appearance while the United States takes on host nation France at Parc des Princes in a highly anticipated quarterfinal match on Friday.
The L’Equipe report says that very little was been discernible on the Parc des Princes security camera footage, and police have appealed to the public for assistance. FIFA describes Ettie as “a young chicken with a passion for life and football.” Ettie is the daughter of Footix, the rooster mascot of the 1998 World Cup also held in France.