Some of the worst footballing tributes ever created!
Manchester City have announced that they will be honouring club legends David Silva and Vincent Kompany with statues outside the Etihad Stadium.
They should however tread carefully.
There have been some terrible attempts to honour footballing greats down the years. Lets take a look at the very best of the worst!
David Silva (Las Palmas)
David Silva has already been honoured in his home town of Las Palmas, Canaries.
Unveiled in 2009 the statue appears to either be a predicted depiction of Silva playing walking football at some point of 2040 or a tribute to Begbie from 90s hit movie Trainspotting.
Radamel Falcao (Santa Marta)
“Rule one of statue creation: Make sure it looks like the person.
Sadly not a rule obeyed by the man behind Radamel Falcao’s 19-foot immortalisation in his home town of Santa Marta.
At least they got the trademark celebration right.”
Michael Jackson/Nani (London/Manchester)
Nothing strange about putting a massive sculpture of Michael Jackson outside your football stadium right. Certainly, that was the view of former Fulham owner Mohammed Al Fayed who erected this monstrosity outside of Craven Cottage.
It didn’t help that it bared more than a passing resemblance to former Manchester United midfielder Nani either.
Al Fayed was keen to defend his piece of art when he responded to criticism of the statue saying:
“If some stupid fans don’t understand and appreciate such a gift they can go to hell. I don’t want them to be fans. If they don’t understand and don’t believe in things I believe in they can go to Chelsea, they can go to anywhere else.”
The statue has now (thankfully) been removed and was moved to display at Manchester’s National Football Museum before being removed in 2019
Carlos Valderrama (Santa Marta)
At least they got the hair right.
It’s hard to disagree that artist Amilcar Ariza created an instantly recognisable recreation of Columbian No10 Valderrama to be erected in his home town of Santa Marta.
However, you have to question his use of what would appear to be Super-Noodles to depict Carlos’ trademark locks and why he decided that “Jazz Hands” would be the ideal post is anyone’s guess?
Diego Maradona (Kolkata)
Why there is a statue of Diego Maradona in Kolkata, India is one thing, why it looks like a cross between Susan Boyle and Ian Krankie is another.
Best of all the unflattering 12ft bronze monstrosity was unveiled by the Argentine legend himself on a trip to the city. The man himself didn’t seem too upset saying;
“I am not a god of football but a simple footballer. I’m happy to be here in Kolkata again. It’s amazing to have my statue here.”
Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal)
The first of two appearances from the Portuguese superstar in the list.
This one is certainly the lesser of two evils.
Erected in 2014 at Ronny’s CR7 hotel in Funchal, Portugal it’s not a bad likeness to the Juventus star… if it wasn’t for the slightly ludicrous bulge in the player’s shorts!
This has become somewhat of a visitor attraction in recent years with the lump in question have been polished to a shiny finish by people rubbing his shorts for good luck.
Ted Bates (Southampton)
Undoubtedly a Southampton legend it was no shock that the club wanted to mark Ted Bates 50 years of devotion to the Saints after his death in 2003.
Just over £100k was spent on the bronze statue that was removed after less than a week after prompting an angry reaction from supporters.
If you don’t recall what Ted Bates looked like in real life you can be assured that his arms and legs, in reality, were in perfect proportion with his body… unlike this statue.
Still not the biggest waste of money in the clubs history – that honour is still Dani Osvaldo’s.
Mohamed Salah (Egypt)
You have to admire the courage of attempting to honour both Liverpool striker Mohamed Salah and 70s disco icon, Leo Sayer, in one statue… but fair play to the artist who seems to have done just that.
The statue was unveiled in Salah’s home country of Egypt back in 2018 and was instantly likened to Gail Platt, Marv from Home Alone and even Beavis and Butthead… harsh.
Cristiano Ronaldo (Madeira)
The GOAT of terrible football statues has to be the bust of Christiano Ronaldo that was placed in Madeira airport in 2017 and unveiled by the man himself.
The bronze head appears to be the love child of Niall Quinn and Bez from the Happy Monday’s and was widely mocked on social media when it first showed its (ridiculous) face to the world.
Sculptor Emanuel Santos said his work was just “a matter of taste” but it certainly didn’t fit with the taste of Ronaldo’s family who asked for it to be replaced. It was, a year later, on the same day that Ronaldo scored a hattrick for his country vs Russia in the World Cup, with a far better likeness.
Not everyone is happy however and there has since launched a petition to have the old version of Ronny’s mug back in its place at the entrance to the airport – and rightly so!