Monday, March 16, 2015

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

# In 1995 Zinedine Zidane almost joined Blackburn Rovers. However, the club chose Tim Sherwood instead, with chairman Jack Walker saying: “Who needs Zinedine Zidane? We’ve got Tim Sherwood.”

# Hull City defender Maynor Figueroa has three toes on his left foot.

# Swedish defender Jan Olsson was the unlucky player that Dutch legend Johan Cruyff made a fool of with the very first and now famous “Cruyff Turn” in the 1974 World Cup Finals held in West Germany.

# Zlatan Ibrahimovic had a checkered past growing up. The son of a tough Croatian mother and hard-drinking Bosnian father, he grew up in the Malmo ghetto of Rosengard. One of the current mega stars of football was a thief when he was a youngster. In fact he stole a lot - bikes, sweets, cars, anything and everything!

# Sir Stanley Matthews never received a booking in his 33-year long career.

# According to Mexico City police, crime rates in Mexico reduce when Javier Hernandez plays football. Additionally, and almost unbelievably, they suggest that more women go into labour than usual when the Manchester United striker plays.

# Fernando d’Ercoli, while playing for Pianta against Arpaxin 1989, got so mad after getting a red card that he snatched the card from the referee’s hand and ate it.

# Similarly in 1984, Mike Bagley of Bristol took the referee’s notebook and ripped out the page with his name on after he had been booked, and ate it.

# No doubt about it, the worst disciplinary record goes to Ricky Goddard of North Warnborough, a small village in North East Hapmshire. By 1992, he had been suspended for five out of his nine years as a footballer. On one occasion, he was banned for six months when he sneaked into the ref's changing-room at half time and urinated over all his clothes.

# Jack Charlton and Bobbie Charlton's uncle was the Newcastle United and England legend Jackie Milburn

# In 2008 Borussia Dortmund striker Robert Lewandoski had agreed to sign for Blackburn but an Icelandic ash cloud cancelled all airline flights, meaning the paperwork couldn't be completed before the deadline.

# While playing for Barcelona Danish legend Michael Laudrup participated in the 5–0 victory over bitter rivals Real Madrid during the 1993–94 season. The following season while playing for Real Madrid he aided in the revenge beating that Madrid gave Barça, the final score also being 5–0.

# Liverpool's Simon Mignolet started his career as a forward, and tried his hand at being a goalkeeper after he was dropped.

# On the other hand, Fernando Torres started his career as a goalkeeper, and later switched to become a striker.

# In 1978 Sheffield United boss Harry Haslam spotted a 17-year-old Diego Maradona on a scouting trip to Argentina and was so impressed that he struck a £200,000 deal there and then. But when Argentinos Juniors demanded more cash the Blades board refused to cough up, and bought Maradona's countryman Alejandro Sabella instead.

# Ryan Giggs' estranged father Danny Wilson is a former British professional rugby league player of the 1970's and 1980's. A Wales international stand-off, he played his club rugby for Widnes, Swinton, Runcorn Highfield and Springfield Borough.

# Dimitar Berbatov’s childhood hero was Alan Shearer, and the former Tottenham & Manchester United striker used to sleep in a Newcastle shirt when he was kid.

# In 1996, George Weah paid for his team-mates kits and expenses so Liberia could enter the African Nations Cup

# Arthur Conan Doyle, the writer most noted for his fictional stories about the detective Sherlock Holmes, played as a goalkeeper for amateur side Portsmouth Association Football Club, under the pseudonym A. C. Smith. (This club, disbanded in 1896, has no connection with the present-day Portsmouth Football Club, which was founded in 1898).

# In 1999, Chelsea signed Chris Sutton from Blackburn for £10 million. The striker scored just one league goal and left a season later.

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