Footballers who subdue the ball with their MMA feats.
There is a lot going on in the world of football as FIFA World Cup continues to be the heartbeat of millions of fans across the globe. The pursuit of a single accolade sees diverse international talents from across the globes lock horns, displaying impeccable feats. As the competitions become a tougher going, some of the top league footballers have left no stone unturned to add perfection to their skills. This ecstasy that comes with stardom is the reason why many footballers opt for any form of MMA trainings in order to reign the field. Following are some notable current and former footballers who incorporated MMA trainings redefining the football realm.
Zlatan is an once-in-a-lifetime player. When he sets his eyes on something, he makes sure that he achieves it. His sheer determination and unique field skills have earned him exhilarating moments in the game. The 36-year-old prodigy exhibits impressive skills both on and off the pitch, partially owning to his MMA skills. The Swedish player earned a black belt in Taekwondo when he was 17 years old. His interest in martial arts enables him to view the field from strategic perspective, enabling him to score unbelievable goals. His outstanding overhead kick against England is a combination of pure expertise in martial arts and a champ’s mindset, pushing him to achieve the impossible.
Another footballer who loves to spend his leisure time perfecting his Judo moves is Chris Smalling. The Greenwich native, when not busy playing as center-back for his team, loves to experiment with Judo. With all the World Cup fervor, Smalling doesn’t have time to practice his Judo, however, his participation in Judo Championships enables him to incorporate its elements into football.
The former Bayern Munich player who also played for Bordeaux was an avid Brazilian Jiu Jitsu fighter and managed to bag a black belt with the help of his trainer Yannick Beven. His on-field performances often reflected his skills to transform his martial arts expertise into a goal scoring ability.
A phenomenal player in the late nineties, Fashanu was amongst the top league footballers playing for Wimbledon as well as Aston Villa and Norwich. Fashanu’s good form enabled him to win two caps for England. But what most people are not aware of are his interest for martial arts, and his black belt. It won’t be wrong to say that England owes its caps to the player’s interest in martial arts. No wonder no one was keen to mess with him on the field or off field.
Boudewijn (Bolo) Zenden
Former Dutch player Boudewijn Zenden, who served as attacking midfielder is known for his love for Judo. Before rising to stardom in football, the sensational player had already acquired a black belt. He also donned Judo’s 3-time championship in his home country Netherlands. Bolo is known to have relieve stress or celebrate happiness by practicing some solid Judo moves rather than running around the field in circles.