Footballers have used a variety of methods in the past to entice their wives and girlfriends, and the Daily Star Sport examines how some of the game’s stars wooed their partners.
In the past, a number of football’s biggest stars have pulled their wives and girlfriends in a variety of unconventional ways.
No football love story is the same, whether it’s Cristiano Ronaldo’s shop approach or Kevin de Bruyne using Twitter direct messages to convince his now-wife to date him. The Daily Star Sport examines how six players met their partners and won them over before embarking on their romantic journeys together.
Among them are music video shoots, a Sheffield nightclub and one World Cup finalist asking his wife out “20 or 30 times” before she said yes.
Kevin de Bruyne
Manchester City midfielder De Bruyne has been married to Michele Lacroix for five years, having married in 2017.
The couple started dating after De Bruyne entered Lacroix’s Twitter DMs while he was in Germany. In 2019, he told the Players’ Tribune, “It all started with a tweet.”
“Because I was still on loan at Werder Bremen at the time, I only had a few thousand followers. So I tweeted about a match or something, and this pretty girl favorited it.”
One of his friends suggested he message her, but he was hesitant, so his friend sent the message on his behalf instead, and the rest is history.
Ivan Rakitic met his future wife, Raquel Mauri, in the hotel bar where she worked after joining Sevilla in 2011. He asked her out “20 to 30 times” before she agreed to a date.
When speaking to the Players’ Tribune in 2021, he also revealed that he developed an unhealthy obsession with coffee in order to have an excuse to talk to her.
“I don’t know how to explain it,” the Croatian midfielder admitted. “Every time I saw her, it felt like a bomb went off inside me.” Week by week, I gradually began to learn some Spanish words, and if I was having difficulty, I would use my hands to try to explain what I was trying to say to her.
“She thought that was funny. She was like, “Me… Jane. You… Tarzan. I was drinking so much coffee it was ridiculous. I probably asked her out 20 or 30 times.”
Ronaldo and his partner Georgina Rodriguez have become one of football’s most well-known couples since beginning their relationship in 2017.
In her Netflix series, I Am Georgina, she revealed how the pair met during her time working as a shopping assistant for Gucci, explaining: “I get to Gucci as usual, I was off at five in the afternoon.
“A colleague calls me and says ‘Hey Gio, I’m on vacation, but listen. There’s a client who’s going to buy some coats. Please stay half an hour and take care of her’.
“And when I’m leaving the store, I see a very handsome man appear, almost two metres tall. He was with a boy and some friends, and I stand frozen.”
Jamie Vardy of Leicester City met his wife Rebekah in 2014 when she was hired to plan his 27th birthday party at Sheffield’s Viper Rooms nightclub.
She was working as a promoter for the club at the time, according to OK!, and eventually agreed to a drink with the former England international after his persistent efforts.
Three months later, Rebekah became pregnant with the couple’s first child, and they married in Cheshire in 2016. They have three children together as well.
Colombian popstar Shakira confirmed earlier this year in a statement that she and Barcelona defender Gerard Pique had divorced after 11 years together.
The couple met on the set of Shakira’s 2010 World Cup anthem “Waka Waka (This Time for Africa)” music video, where Pique made a cameo.
The couple, who were born on the same day but 10 years apart, began dating a year later in 2011 and have since had two children together.
Lionel Messi, Pique’s former Barcelona teammate, met his wife Antonella Roccuzzo when they were children, Roccuzzo being the cousin of one of his childhood friends.