Political praise, military escort, Moomin mugs & Mörkö whisky

Finland is going Leijonat crazy as the country continues to celebrate the men's national team World Championship victory.

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Social Democrat party leader Antti Rinne holds up congratulations declaration for ice hockey team, 27th May 2019 / Credit: Government of Finland

If it seems like the whole of Finland is filled with enthusiasm for the men’s ice hockey team winning their third World Championship title, you might not be too far off the mark.

Congratulations have been flooding in from all quarters, as fans celebrate the Lions’ 3-1 victory over Canada. A victory made all-the-more sweet by the fact that the Finnish team went into the tournament as untested underdogs.

Letter of congratulations from coalition party leaders to ice hockey team, 27th May 2019 / Credit: Government of Finland

Political praise 

Leaders from five political parties – Social Democrats, Centre, Greens, Left Alliance and Swedish People’s Party – have started the fourth week of negotiations on forming a new government.

On Monday however, there was one topic which nobody disagreed on – congratulating the men’s national ice hockey team on their win against Canada.

The five party leaders signed a declaration wishing “warm congratulations” to the whole team and coaches.

President Sauli Niinistö and first lady Jenni Haukio also sent their own letter of praise to the team on Sunday night right after the final whistle in Bratislava.

Finnish Air Force Hawk jet / Credit: Ilmavoimat

Military escort for returning Lions 

The Lions flew back from Bratislava on a Finnair flight on Monday afternoon and were met by a military escort when they entered Finnish air space.

Often, the Air Force sends one of their F-18 Hornets, but this time they sent two Hawk aircraft instead.

Moomin mugs are popular souvenirs

Stores have been running out of Moomin mugs featuring the Mörkö character – because it’s the nickname for Finnish captain Marko Anttila who scored two goals in the final on Sunday night. The Moomin web store has reportedly sold out of the mugs, as has Stockmann in Helsinki. And the #mörkö hashtag has been trending on Finnish social media throughout the day.

Whisky barrel for Lions win 

One distillery in Helsinki has commissioned a special barrel of whisky to mark the famous World Championship win. The Helsinki Distilling Company has put a casket of whisky with 3 parts rye and 1 part barley to represent Finland’s 3-1 score line.

Helsinki Distilling Company Mörkö 3-1 barrel / Credit: Helsinki Distilling Company