Monday, March 09, 2015

Some Interesting, Unusual and Bizarre Facts about Football Players - Part One

# In 2013 the word "Inmessionante" was added to the Spanish Dictionary which references Lionel Messi. It was chosen because of its similarity to the Spanish word for “impressive.”
It is an adjective which is explained in the Spanish dictionary with two points:

1. Perfect way to play football, an unlimited capacity for self improvement.
2. Describes the best player of all time.

# Johan Cruyff's niece Estelle married Ruud Gullit in 2000, but she walked out on him in 2012 due to his continuous womanising. Estelle was his 3rd wife and Ruud has six children - two from each of his marriages.

Ryan Giggs never received a red card during his 24 season playing career with Manchester United. He was only once sent off when playing for Wales, on 5 September 2001 in a World Cup qualifier against Norway.

# Mark Hughes once played two games in a single day; In the morning he played for Wales against Czechoslovakia in Prague, drove across the border, and then turned out for Bayern Munich in the afternoon.

# Lille and France International footballer Rio-Antonio Mavuba was born in international waters. Mavuba, son of former Zaire international Ricky Mavuba Ndokia Ndombe - who featured at the 1974 World Cup finals - was born on a boat, off the coast of Angola, on 16 March 1984. His birth certificate does not have a nation listed, it just says “Born at Sea.”

# Former Tottenham Hotspur player and now television pundit and actor David Ginola has an unfortunate tale to tell. His name is an anagram for 'Vagina Dildo.'

# The younger brother of Joey Barton, Michael, is a convicted murderer. He and his cousin murdered their male victim, in an unprovoked racially motivated attack with an ice axe in 2005. Both were given life sentences with Michael Barton given a minimum term of 17 years and eight months.

# Ronaldinho first gained media attention in 1993, when aged 13 his youth team won a game 23-0. Ronaldinho scored all 23 goals in that victory.

# Charles Itandje of Cameroon is the only professional footballer to be sacked for laughing!
That’s what happened to the goalkeeper whilst at Liverpool in 2010. The reason his punishment was so harsh was because he was caught chuckling about something during a memorial service for the victims of Hillsborough.

# Manuel Neuer stars in the German version of the 2013 Disney/Pixar film 'Monsters University’. He provides the voice for the character Frank McCay

# Cristiano Ronaldo dos Santos Aveiro got the name "Ronaldo" after then-U.S. president Ronald Reagan, a favourite actor of his father's.

As a child, Jakub "Kuba" Błaszczykowski, the Borussia Dortmund and Polish international winger witnessed a tragedy, which had a major influence on his life. When he was ten years old his father stabbed his mother to death. After his father went to prison, Błaszczykowski and his brother were raised by their grandmother. Every goal he scores, he dedicates to his mother and can be seen looking up in the sky during goal celebrations.

# There have been many goalkeepers over the years who have fancied themselves as strikers.
Former Manchester United goalkeeper Peter Schmeichel was renowned for going up for corners late into a game and scored 13 times in his career.

# West Ham and Cameroon international Alex Song has 27 siblings – 17 sisters and 10 brothers. His father, who died when Song was two, had five wives.

# Croatian footballer Luka Modrić and former Australian footballer Mark Viduka are cousins.

# Ronaldo Luís Nazário de Lima commonly known as the Brazilian Ronaldo, never won the UEFA Champions League despite playing for 5 teams that did. Zlatan Ibrahimovic has also never won the UEFA Champions League, despite playing for some of the world's biggest European clubs.

# Liverpool goalkeeper Simon Mignolet speaks 5 languages and has a degree in politics.

*Part Two will follow soon.

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