'How I captured Myanmar monks watching United!'

Our U-N-I-T-E-D campaign continues with a remarkable tale from an Italian photographer on his travels in Asia, back in 2015, where he stumbled across a group of monks watching the mighty Reds in action.

Scroll down for his amazing images and insights...
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Football has a special way of uniting people around the world, of all backgrounds and ethnicities, yet it is still surprising to see a group of Buddhist monks gathered in a bar to watch United.

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That is the scene Alessandro Cinque stumbled across when the photographer from Florence travelled to Myanmar in Asia, specifically to capture 30 surviving female members of a local tribe.

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While walking around the village of Nyaung Shwe, he stumbled across the unlikely atmosphere of live football and ventured inside, armed with his trusty camera in hand.

Alessandro Cinque says

“I realised it was full of young Buddhist monks who were between six and 20 years old all watching United, so I decided to sit with them. I was the only westerner there but that wasn't a problem."

Alessandro Cinque says

“To tell the truth I wasn't too surprised. Football has a huge following in Myanmar and for those communities it is a doorway to the western world. It’s what links the different cultures.”

Alessandro Cinque says

“In the case of Manchester United, it’s the passion that unites them all. They don't have access to television in their monasteries so the monks gather in the bar to watch games and discuss life.”

Alessandro Cinque says

“I took photos to portray the desire for normality of the monks, the passion for football that unites the world and youngsters from different cultures.”

Alessandro Cinque says

“There was no religion in that bar and none of the strict routines of the monasteries, just the friendship and light-heartedness that sport brings.”

Visit www.AlessandroCinque.com for more information on the photographer.

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