As the whistle blows denoting the kick-off of the FIFA World Cup 2018, hundreds and thousands of diehard football fans are pouring into Russia, the host country of the 2018 Football World Cup, to witness the live and raw action of the game. Being hardcore football fans, we often tend to have an urge to get to know our star players better. We feel the need to know about their personal lives, their hobbies, their likes and dislikes, etc.
Motorcycles and football
Motorcycles and football don’t often go hand-in-hand. In fact, if you tune into the social media entertainment pages related to these topics, more often than not you might come across a few posts where the motorcycling community tries to belittle the football community, and vice-versa. But let us face the reality. A number of our star players don’t think likewise. In fact, there are a number of football players who love to ride their motorcycles and are often found sitting on the saddle grabbing the handlebars. They prefer riding on rough terrains over being seated behind the steering wheel of a car. In this article, we will read about the love for motorcycles of some of the most famous football players around the globe.
Topping the list, we have our very own former English Captain and former Manchester United star, David Beckham. Beckham’s love for motorcycles is a widely known fact. He has been often spotted riding his custom choppers in and around the Hollywood Hills. Although he owns a number of customised Harley Davidson motorcycles, he has a special liking for Triumphs. He was also part of an adventure tour in the Amazon where BBC had shot a 90-minute long documentary. David was seen riding a Triumph Bonneville T100 into the depths of the Amazon, along with some of his friends in the 2015 documentary named ‘Beckham into the unknown’. The Bonny was customised and it featured a custom painted tank along with a handcrafted leather seat. The motorcycle was powered by a 900cc engine and was described as “part desert sled, part Scrambler, part classic Bonneville”. The 42-year-old football star often keeps posting photographs of himself riding his motorcycles, on his social media platforms.
Swedish football sensation Zlatan Ibrahimovic is also a huge fan of motorcycles. He was the first individual who got his hands on the Softail Harley Davidson VRSCF V-Rod in Scandinavia. He placed an order for a customised all-black VRSCF V-Rod. The 2008 Harley Davidson V-Rod housed a 1,250 cc 60 degree V-twin 4 stroke engine which was capable of producing 123 horsepower. The engine was clubbed with a 5-speed gearbox and was driven by belt. It was one of the newest additions in the Softail family of Harley Davidson.
Wayne ‘Wazza’ Rooney
The former English skipper, Wayne Rooney, also known as Wazza, is also known for his love for motorcycles. The former Manchester United forward had recently signed for Everton in 2017. Back in 2012, Wayne Rooney collaborated with Danish custom auto-builders Lauge Jensen and created a customised chopper. However, this motorcycle was built in aid of a charity. The chopper had a custom paint job which included WR10’s jersey on the petrol tank duly autographed by Wazza. The rear fender also had a custom airbrushed image of Rooney’s iconic celebration from the 2011 match against Manchester City. The front fender also had an airbrushed WR10 written on it. The motorcycle also sported a special shift stick that had 22 encrusted diamonds. The chopper was capable of doing 0-60 mph in 4 seconds and could clock top speeds of up to 155 mph. The motorcycle was auctioned for a hefty amount which was donated to KidsAid, a Danish kids charity.
Do you remember the 2006 FIFA World Cup final match? France Vs. Italy. It was the historic match where the then French captain Zinedine Zidane had head-butted an Italian player in the chest. The player who was hit by Zidane is ex-Italian football star Marco Materazzi. Materazzi also has immense love for motorcycles. Harley Davidsons, to be precise. He has been spotted a number of times riding his customised American chopper.
Back in 2009, the former Tottenham Hotspur goalie Carlo Cudicini made his way to the headlines after he met with an accident while riding his BMW R1200GS in Walthamstow. He ended up having a broken wrist and a broken pelvis. Nevertheless, he recovered from his injuries and returned to playing professionally for Spurs and LA Galaxy. However, this incident establishes the fact that football players are not only about Harley Davidsons. The R1200GS is an adventure tourer motorcycle from the production line of BMW. The motorcycle is powered by a twin cylinder 1,170 cc engine which is capable of juicing out 125 PS of power @ 7,750 rpm and a peak torque of 125 Newton metre @ 6,500 rpm.
Besides being a former Gunner (Arsenal F. C.) and a star player for England, Ian Wright is a very familiar face as he had made his way into the television world after his retirement from professional football. TV shows like ‘Friday Night’s All Wright’ made him quite popular. But other than being a professional footballer and a famous TV star, Wright has always been a hardcore passionate motorcyclist as well. This became prominent when he turned his lifelong dream of riding a motorcycle across the United States of America into a reality. Wright rode his Harley Davidson Fatboy from coast to coast across America to shoot a series called ‘Wright Across America’ for Men & Motors. Other than Harleys, Wright is also very fond of riding his Triumph which he claims almost makes him feel the thrill of scoring a last-gasp winner. Wright’s love for motorcycles was also passed on to his son and former Manchester City, Chelsea, and Queens Park Rangers star, Shaun Wright-Phillips, popularly known as SWP.
The Italian striker and ex-Manchester City star, Mario Balotelli, also known as Super Mario is an avid motorcycle fanatic. Super Mario had just bought a brand new Harley Davidson and all other necessary add-ons including expensive leather suits, helmet, etc. when his then club manager Roberto Mancini barred him from riding the motorcycle. Active players are often barred from riding any kind of two-wheelers due to compliance of insurance rules. However, his coach’s decision could not wear off his riding spirit. Soon enough, he was spotted riding a pocket bike on a grass track.
Mentioned above is the list of 7 famous footballers who take a great liking for motorcycles. Are you planning to buy a motorcycle of your choice and start riding? Do you want to follow your passion for motorcycles just like Beckham, Wright, or Wazza? Do not worry if you do not have enough money. You can always think of owning a motorcycle of your choice by applying for a loan. There are a number of third-party websites which help you compare between different loans that you are eligible for. You can compare and choose the loan that suits you the best. Apply for a two-wheeler loan, buy a motorcycle, and follow your dreams just like your favourite footballers did.