This is what autumnal Friday nights were made for, right? Sitting at home, drinking hot chocolate and reading some random bloke’s blog on mildly amusing footballer’s names. Thanks again for the feedback on the last two pieces; I don’t claim to be some great wordsmith – just a novice who isn’t sure whether that hyphen is the right choice. There are some cracking names for centre backs, so let’s crack on with it.
This 6ft 4in giant was highly regarded at one point although, at 22, there’s still plenty of time to fulfil that potential. In January 2012, the Cameroonian left Esperance Tunis to sign for French side Sochaux and some promising performances led to heavy links with Arsenal. Having slipped down the pecking order in Montbeliard, the defender was part of a bunch that was sent to Lausanne-Sport in Switzerland.
Mark de Man
Also a midfielder, the 30-year-old just had to be categorised as a defender with that name. Capped 5 times for Belgium, his career started at Anderlecht alongside Hoof de Ball and Cover de Near-post. Surprisingly, only de Man ‘made it’ and he soon signed for Holland’s Roda JC, before returning to his homeland with Beerschot in 2009. In a cruel twist of fate, his marking isn’t actually that good but his attributes were good enough to forge a professional career. After some time on Leuven, de Man now plays in the Belgian Third Division________
I think we all have our favourite Zimbabwean footballer – it’s a crowded market – but please consider Danger Fourpence. Not only is his first name hazardous, his surname is the approximate transfer fee for his blockbuster move to from CAPS United to Kiglon Bird FC. Whilst budding daredevils claim that “Danger is my middle name”, Bond villain Fourpence outdoes them with minimal effort. To be fair, his country throws up many incredible names, with fellow footballers including Givemore Manuella, Method Mwanjali and Heavens Chinyama (really!). He’s not the first Zimbabwean to show up on my list (Laughter Chilembe) and he won’t be the last….
Commonly known as Argel, the centre back is understandably embarrassed of his surname. After starting his career with Internacional, he gained his only cap for Brazil in a friendly against Honduras before playing in Japan. Unlike many other players on my list, he’s played for reputable clubs such as Santos, Porto, Palmeiras and Cruzeiro. However, a return to Portugal inadvertently gave him international headlines after Eurosport’s memorable ‘Fucks off to Benfica’ headline. Now aged 39, Argel is coach at Criciuma. In just four years, he has managed over a dozen clubs – apparently he fucks up a lot!
A name which sends shivers down the spines of Celtic fans. Thankfully, for the sake of comedy, Rafael was indeed Scheidt and became the highest profile flop of the Glaswegian club’s John Barnes-Kenny Dalglish disaster. Capped three times (in meaningless friendlies) for Brazil, the defender forged a good reputation with Gremio. Barnes was impressed with the ‘Greatest Hits’ video compiled by Rafael’s agent and proceeded to spend £4.8m on him. Struggling to settle and plagued by injuries, Scheidt turned out to be an awful defender and only made three appearances for Celtic. After a humiliating performance against Irish side Bray Wanderers, new boss Martin O’Neill allegedly told Scheidt that “I like footballers who aren’t like you. I like footballers who play well”. Ouch. He didn’t last much longer.
Danny Shittu – Not as Shit as Scheidt, the Nigerian is a veteran of English football and currently plays for Millwall.
Nortei Nortey – Not the messiah, this 19-year-old was recently released by Chelsea after misdemeanours a string of knee injuries. Danny Dyer is a fan, but he’s still without a club.
Sokratis Papastathopoulos – A new £8m signing for the current ‘hipsters club’ Borussia Dortmund, this talented Greek cost a pretty penne. He bears Sokratis on the back of his shirt.
Exodus Geohaghon – 6ft 5in centre back currently at Worcester City. As his name suggests, he was released as part of Darlington’s firesale in 2012.
Have-a-Look Dube – ….I told you there’d be more Zimbabwean love! This subliminal message has so far failed to convince European giants to check him out.
Ugo Ehiogu – Former England international whose name is fantastic to say. With over 200 appearances for Aston Villa, his name is ALMOST a palindrome!
Centre backs, as well as strikers, look like my favourite collection of names. Have a nice week and come back soon for the next batch!