Fans, friends and family await the players' arrival (Pictures GTYL)
Tamil Eelam's footballers, TEFA 2012, were welcomed back this weekend, by proud families, friends and screaming fans.
Arriving back in Toronto, London and Switzerland, the players were surprised with bouquets, Eelam flags and even a specially designed TEFA logo cake.
(Video of TEFA's British players arriving home. Courtesy of GTYL)
Talking to Tamil Guardian at London's Heathrow airport, defender Lakshman Vairavamoorthy, said he was "completely shocked and really happy" at seeing the number of fans who welcomed them at the airport.
Thanking the Tamil Eelam fans back in Kurdistan who had supported the team through out the tournament despite the considerable risk on returning to Sri Lanka, Lakshman said, "if it wasn't for them we wouldn't have had the strength to play these games".
TEFA 2012 defender Lakshman Vairavamoorthy speaks to Tamil Guardian
Describing Tamil Eelam's participation in the VIVA 2012 World Cup as a "great achievement", goal-scorer, Rosh Sri, told Tamil Guardian:
"It was a great feeling to be out there... to be representing something so big, to be playing against top quality teams, and obviously to be representing the flag".
TEFA 2012 goal-scorer Rosh Sri speaks to Tamil Guardian
TEFA organisers at the Global Tamil Youth League (GTYL) said they were overwhelmed by the messages of congratulations and praise from around the world, with many inspired young footballers already contacting them to ask how to try for Tamil Eelam's next team.
Tamil Eelam's first goal scorer, Menan Nagulendran welcomed back by his parents.
TEFA 2012 Manager, Ragesh Nambiar, congratulated by a fan