The Ultimate Celebrity Soccer Team
Soccer is the world’s sport, and people from all walks of life can relate to the game. Some celebrities have not been shy about glorifying their early playing days, so we’ve decided to dig deeper to assemble the ultimate team of actors, musicians, and creative types.
The result is a formidable, if unconventional, starting XI.
Player Coach (GK): Will Ferrell
Ferrell has found his athletic groove later in life. In 2015 he played all nine positions during MLB spring training, and his leadership abilities were on full display during the entirety of Semi-Pro (2008). Ferrell will call the shots from goal and set the tone for this team.
Left back: Jessica Biel
Biel grew up playing soccer and completed flip throws during high school matches, so expect her to pick her moments to get forward and deliver crosses (or throws) into the box. She’s stayed in good form over the years, picking up ballet, yoga, and martial arts to act in some physically demanding roles.
Center back: Sean Connery
The original James Bond, it’s hard to imagine someone better at fending off attackers. Both his fearlessness and cerebral approach will suit him well in the back four. Connery claims to have been offered a contract to train with Manchester United at 23, but instead decided to continue acting full time.
Center back: Gordon Ramsay
Ramsay will pair with Connery as a natural leader from the back. The Scottish chef’s restaurants have earned 16 Michelin stars, and he credits his early footballing with giving him the motivation to succeed as a chef. Ramsay trained for a few months with a youth squad of the Scottish Premiership Rangers before an injury derailed his career.
Right back: Nelly
This is a wild card pick, but I’ve seen enough footage of Nelly to believe in his crossover potential. For a decade he was simply playing at another level in the MLB and NBA celebrity all-star games, and as a youngster he was the MVP of a St. Louis Amateur Baseball Association All Star game. His physicality and quickness will translate well to the pitch, and a locker room rendition of "Heart of a Champion" could only do wonders to motivate this team.
Defensive midfield: Bob Marley
Marley was quoted as saying that “football is freedom.” He was famous for complementing his music with the beautiful game, both of which bring people together perhaps better than anything. As a holding midfielder Marley will dictate the flow of the game.
Defensive midfield: Julio Iglesias
Iglesias found music after sustaining a life-altering injury in a car accident, one that ended his soccer career as a goalkeeper for Real Madrid Castilla. Although a compelling case could be made to start him in goal, Iglesias will pair well with Marley in the midfield.
Right attacking midfield: Johnny Marr
Give Marr time and space, and he will create. The British singer and guitarist first had dreams of playing football, earning a tryout with Manchester City as a teenager. Marr’s chemistry with Morrissey should translate to some good link up play in the attacking third.
Center attacking midfield: Keira Knightley
Knightley’s skills were on full display in “Bend It Like Beckham.” As an 18 year old playing for the Hounslow Harriers she terrorized opposing defenders, so one can only imagine the level of play during her prime years.
Left attacking midfield: Antonio Banderas
Amidst the drama, action, and pageantry of “The Legend of Zorro,” one thing stands out above the rest: Antonio Banderas has lightning quick feet. Coupled with his fearlessness, Banderas will provide this squad with a vital attacking spark.
Shakira has her footprints all over the game. She can consult with her husband Gerard Pique on how to best break down a defense, and her song “Waka Waka” is perhaps the most memorable official song of any World Cup. With a low center of gravity and tremendous hip action, she will hold the ball well and strike with purpose.