GamingZion’s World Cup series are coming to a new episode: this time, we Will present you five football players with criminal backgrounds who will be there at the upcoming tournament in Russia!
When online sportsbook news sites in Russia talk about football players with criminal backgrounds, they tend to think in the past only. Coming up with (in)famous footballers like Vinnie Jones, George Best, Patrick Kluivert and many other celebrities sure is fun and interesting.
However, they all stopped playing (or, well, living…) long ago. But what should we know about World Cup 2018 participants? Are there any football players with criminal background still playing at the World Cup 2018? Of course there are, let’s see the worst ones!
5. Did you know that Cristiano Ronaldo almost went to prison?
One of the two best football players in the universe is also one of the football players with criminal backgrounds. Of course, the Portuguese crack didn’t kill anybody and he’s not even in the mafia. He just likes money. A lot. And like most of us, he doesn’t like to give any of it back to the state, even though maybe he should.
Cristiano Ronaldo has a huge income from his commercial images. And his numbers are even better for himself when he keeps the numbers lower – in front of the state. Allegedly, he hid €15 million from the Spanish authorities. Unfortunately for him, they found out. The case is still open. This means that Ronaldo might end up being one of the football players with criminal background at World Cup 2018!
4. Alexis Sanchez does look suspicious at all times…
Alexis Sanchez left the sinking boat before it was sinking – he went to Arsenal from Barcelona just before it was too late. Years later, the Spanish tax authorities took a look at his salaries and financial deals and found something dirty. Alexis Sanchez’s case was examined closely, which resulted in a 16-months prison sentence to the winger.
Of course he won’t have to go to jail, he will be on probation. Alexis, while admitted the crimes, said that the sentence is unjust and that the Spanish authorities forced many footballers to sign their fishy contracts. That doesn’t win back his purity. Sanchez will be Chile’s biggest star in the World Cup – and he will be another one of the football players with criminal backgrounds!
3. Neymar is another footballer with criminal backgrounds
Neymar’s life story is probably the most interesting among all football stars. Even his transfer from Santos to Barca was quite controversial as Barca’s negotiating technique don’t seem to be too pure. Santos received only €17 million for their biggest star at the time, while Neymar’s father himself was offered €40 million.
The deal was not transparent at all and it’s still not an open story how it all went down. The Neymar transfer saga resulted in Barca President Sandro Rossell’s resignation, but the story doesn’t end there. Neymar was sentenced to prison but it was less than 24 years and he had no previous legal issues, so he is on probation. No need for jail time – but he definitely joined the top football players with criminal backgrounds!
2. Luka Modric and the story of a false testifier
Modric’s case is a bit more interesting than the rest. He was also allegedly involved in tax fraud activities. Nevertheless, the Croatian midfielder is in an even worse position than the previous guys. Modric is facing a trial as a result of his possible false testimony. If the jury proves that Modric lied in front of the judges, Real Madrid’s crack could actually end up in prison.
The worst-case scenario for the Croatian would be five years in prison. Modric is supposedly friends with a certain Zdravko Mamic. He is a someone with important influential power in Croatian politics. They are both accused of tax fraud, but Modric’s testimony might be untrue. Will Real Madrid send its Croatian midfielder to prison any time soon?
1. Football players with criminal backgrounds: Leo Messi
Lionel Messi’s tax fraud case was the very first La Liga tax scandal that opened the line to the rest of the players. Cristiano Ronaldo’s greatest rival is actually one of the few football players with criminal backgrounds. And we will see the Argentina crack playing at the World Cup as well, obviously. He might even win the tournament after finishing as runner-up 4 years ago…
Messi owed millions of Euros to the Spanish authorities. He tried to protect himself. The Argentine voluntarily paid more than what they asked of him. However, it did not help him too much. They sentenced Messi to 21 months of jail time. Later on, they reduced it to 15 months. Of course, due to weird Spanish laws, he didn’t have to spend a day in prison. Still, he joined the list of convicted football players who played again.