There’s no denying that football is a stressful business. With higher fees and wages than ever, pressure to perform is huge, and I’m sure footballers feel the need to use their downtime to chill out, whatever their definition of ‘chill out’ is. Contrary to popular belief, footballers do work a solid working week, and don’t go and kick a ball around for an hour before spending the day doing whatever they please with their huge wages! We’ve searched the globe for some of the coolest, funniest and pure craziest hobbies and pastimes of professional footballers, and we’ve listed some of them below.
- Gabriel Obertan – Gardening – The lightning fast winger famously used his down time during injury to get on top of his gardening. Manchester United academy director Brian McClair has been quoted as saying “New signing Gabriel Obertan is injured at the moment and can’t train and it seems he has developed a keen interest in gardening. He’s been seen helping an elderly member of the Academy staff by strimming his lawn, pruning his roses and watering his hanging baskets.” Obertan is now at Newcastle.
- Daniel Agger – Tatto Artist – The big Danish Defender is famous for his armful of tattoos, as a lot of footballers are now, but not many can share Daniel’s unique skill of being a qualified tattoo artist with the ability to ink himself or anyone else!
- Jody Craddock – Artist – Jody shares his talent and passion for art with a few footballers including Stephen Bywater, but Craddock is probably the best footballer-cum-artist out there, who shows his incredible skills with a range of prints available from his own website. Craddock says he got into art during school and has been practicing since as a way to unwind.
- Golf – It’s the ultimate footballers hobby, really. Famously, Andriy Shevchenko and Carlos Tevez are certainly famous for their love of golf. Tevez has even appeared on a golf tour as a caddy for fellow Argentinian Andres Romero.
- Fishing – A pastime famously enjoyed by the brilliant (if somewhat controversial) Chelsea defender and former England Captain John Terry.
- Judo – Boudewijn Zenden – Before he became a footballer, Boudewijn or ‘Bolo’ Zenden picked up a black belt in Judo at the tender age of just 14.
- Bingo – Cristiano Ronaldo (and Others) – Bingo and Online Bingo are a great way for footballers to chill out after their hard days at the training ground. Cristiano Ronaldo is a huge advocate, and loves the exciting game, he even said it helped him pick up English when he moved to the UK.
Whether it’s Inking their friends or relaxing at home on Party Bingo, professional footballers definitely have some hobbies you might not have necessarily expected!