The Top 10 Most Hated Football Players
Who Are the Most Hated Footballers?
On and off the field, the players on this list have demonstrated profound deficiencies in character and morality. Whether through perpetual diving on the pitch or cheating on their wives off it, they need to be named and shamed to set an example for all upcoming sportsmen and women.
This list only includes currently active footballers. It also includes many players from the English Premier League and Spanish La Liga. With the largest audiences in the world, these leagues include the most hated players.
Occasionally, the hatred might be undeserved. For example, footballers who play for some of the biggest teams in the world are more likely to be hated by rival fans. If a number of players from the team you support are included here, take it as a compliment that your team riles the opposition!
To help justify the entries on this list, I have endeavored to find videos showing their most despicable acts. Enjoy, be outraged, or feel disgusted, for here come the shameful!
10. Ashley Young
Poor Ashley Young has a lot of trouble staying on his feet. Perhaps he has an enduring inner ear infection? More likely he has a disgusting inclination to cheat whenever the opportunity arises. The stats speak for themselves. Young won 11 penalties in 200 Premier League games before the end of 2012, and he's continued 'losing his balance' since then.
There is nothing wrong with winning penalties when you're genuinely fouled, but even Alex Ferguson said he fell dramatically for one of the penalties he won for Manchester United in the 2011–12 season. In the 2013–14 season, he was also warned by David Moyes about his diving. Other managers and pundits have been less careful with their words, blatantly calling him a cheater and diver. He has been booked at least four times in his career for diving.
9. Dani Alves
The antics of Dani Alves may be motivated by something far worse than merely winning penalties. Being a full back, Alves doesn't find himself in the opposition penalty area too often. Thus, Alves has adapted by feigning injury and exaggerating tackles in order to get opposition players sent off or booked.
One of the most notable examples was against Real Madrid in a Champions League encounter. The video shows how Alves perfectly timed the movement of his leg to look as if he was brutally fouled. The Madrid player was sent off, and Barcelona progressed to the next round. His formula of feigning injury until the referee reaches for a card has been repeated numerous times, and he damages the reputation of his great club, Barcelona.
8. Sergio Ramos
Sergio Ramos has had a long and distinguished career as Real Madrid's most dirty player. At the time of writing this entry, Ramos has 22 red cards and holds the La Liga record. With several years to go before he retires, that number will surely rise. Ramos is a notoriously hard-tackling defender with a nasty temper and a penchant for kicking and elbowing his opponents. This has made him a widely hated player, resulting in tirades of laughter when he happens to balloon a penalty into the stands.
7. Ashley Cole
There are so many reasons to despise Ashley Cole. Where do we start? He allegedly cheated on his ex-wife Cheryl Cole numerous times until she divorced him. He left the team that developed him into a quality player to get more money from a richer club.
When he joined Twitter, he faced a torrent of abuse from the thousands of people who hate him and responded by trolling them in ways that only a nasty little brat could imagine. He was convicted of speeding in a residential area, and his lawyer attempted to argue the police speed gun was faulty. He was fined for swearing at a police officer, and he shot a work-experience lad with an air rifle. This list will no doubt get longer and longer.
Other than his perpetual diving to win fouls and penalties and his tendency to be a petulant whinger, Ronaldo hasn't done a huge amount wrong. Three things may have acted to exaggerate his faults, though.
- First, he played for Manchester United, which always earns you a bad rub of the green.
- Second, he looks like a Ken Doll by wearing earrings and using hair gel, so there is a lot of scorn for this preening boy-band look from football fans.
- Third, he's just a very good football player who will draw fouls from the opposition.
Despite this, he achieved notorious levels of hatred during his time in the Premier League, although his diving antics have cooled since coming to Spain.
5. Sergio Busquets
Much like his Barcelona teammate Dani Alves, Busquets takes simulation to a new level of ruinous disgust. The two of them have made many football fans despise Barcelona, and that is unforgivable. His antics are worse than Alves' for the simple reason that he dives far more often and for far more innocuous challenges. In the video, you can see him actually in the process of cheating.
4. Patrice Evra
There are many words to describe Patrice Evra, and most are quite unpleasant, so let's try to fit them all in! He is an angry, petulant, immature, whinging toad for his abuse of the captaincy of France's World Cup 2010 team. He had an argument with one of the coaches and subsequently led a protest of all the players against the coaching staff that ultimately led to his nation's elimination from the tournament. In 2012, he wiped his behind with a French football jersey.
He is a nasty, vindictive prat who did more than his fair share in the Luis Suarez racism scandal by goading Suarez into the abuse. He makes trolling, caustic comments in the press about other football teams, notably calling Arsenal an "academy team" and a "load of rubbish". He mocked ex-teammate Dimitar Berbatov on the pitch and celebrated in front of Suarez. In 2017, he kicked a fan in the head before a Europa League game (see video).
3. Luis Suarez
Where do we begin with this wretch? For most fans, Luis Suarez first came to hateful prominence when he hand-balled on the goal line to prevent a certain goal against Uruguay in the 2010 World Cup. With Ajax, he bit an opponent.
Since his move to the Premier League, he has been accused of diving after winning a number of penalties for Liverpool. Then there is his ban for racially abusing Patrice Evra. In April 2013, Luis Suarez bit Branislav Ivanovich in a match against Chelsea. Shockingly, this Uruguayan vampire then bit Giorgio Chiellini in a 2014 World Cup match against Italy.
2. John Terry
For John Terry, there really is no end to the scathing headlines, and most of it is well deserved.
- Beginning in 2001, he taunted American tourists in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks.
- In 2002, he urinated in a beer glass which he then dropped to the floor of a nightclub. In the same year, he was charged for assault and affray outside a nightclub.
- In 2008, he parked his expensive Bentley in a disabled parking space.
- In 2009, he allegedly gave tours of Chelsea's training ground in return for bribes.
- Then in 2010, it was revealed that he cheated on his wife and two children by having an affair with a teammate's girlfriend.
As if this wasn't enough, he went to trial for allegedly racially abusing Anton Ferdinand during a 2011 football match. He was cleared of the abuse as it could not be completely proven. However, the Football Association only needed to prove that abuse was likely to have occurred, giving John Terry a 4-match ban.
1. Joey Barton
Among football fans, there is no greater hatred than that reserved for Joey Barton. He is the biggest thug of them all and acts like a criminal on the pitch. He has received numerous red cards, has committed atrocious fouls, and continues to do so despite the attention his thuggery has received. What makes Barton such a hated figure is the way he loses his temper and strikes out at other players. One of the clearest examples came at the end of the 2011-12 Premier League season, as can be seen in the video.
Hatred of Manchester United?
While this list is heavy with Manchester United players (past and present), a notable exclusion is Wayne Rooney. He is still regarded as a hero by many fans for being England's best player. Despite cheating on his wife with prostitutes, he is probably hated less than the 10 players on this list due to his perceived lack of intelligence and the fact that his wife forgave him. While I don't endorse hatred of Manchester United, their players don't do the club any favours.
The Darker Side of the Beautiful Game
This list of the most hated football players was compiled from the opinions of numerous football fans on many internet forums. The darker side of the beautiful game deserves as much attention as the goals, skills, and celebrations that make us smile. There is little hope of stopping fan violence and racism with these players providing such a hateful example.
Which Is the Worst?
In your opinion, what cheap shots are most worthy of your hatred?
Which Is the Most Hated Football Team?
© 2012 Thomas Swan