To be a manager or coach is not always easy, especially if you have players in your team who constantly talk back, disagree with the decisions and turn even the others against you. With some separate talks and discussions usually, they calm down, but the mentioned footballers below are really special cases. They are the most difficult football players in history.
What do we mean by difficult players? Someone who always got into confrontations with the opponents, with their coach, even with their own teammates. Someone who can’t behave himself on and off-field gets into trouble all the time. It’s not just about getting red cards, but also making chaos anywhere he goes. Sounds familiar? Surely you’ve already had some names on your mind, let’s see if it matches our list.
Suarez was one of the most difficult football players
We have to start with one of the most famous and hated footballers at the same time, Luis Suarez. The Uruguayan forward seems to calm down now at Barcelona, but before joining the Catalans in 2014, he was a very difficult player. It’s enough to think about his biting attacks on different players, like the one on Chelsea defender Ivanovic in 2013, after which he received a 10-game ban. Of course, he caused a lot of problems with his bans as it is not easy to replace him in any team, especially for such a long period. Well, there wasn’t any biting recently, and he is one of the best players at Barca who will meet Napoli in the Champions League next week.
Other difficult players from South America
It’s a boring expression, but it’s true, South Americans are more vehement and hot-headed than people from other places. It is true for football players as well, who grow up and play football in heated atmospheres. So many of them keep this behavior in Europe as well, where it won’t be tolerated.
But even this doesn’t explain the behavior of Carlos Tevez, who just simply refused to play for his team, Manchester City in the Champions League against Bayern Munich. Why anyone would do this is still a mystery, but we do know that he was suspended after for a long time by the club. He also had a bad joke about Sir Alex Ferguson during a City victory parade, waving a banner with ‘RIP Fergie’ on it. The club of course apologized and Tevez left the club next year.
Brasilian Robinho stayed even shorter at City as online sportsbooks in the UK were reporting. He was famous for taking part in orgies and parties and going away without any permit. After his second season, he left the club. In Italy, his behavior got worse as he was convicted of gang rape but his sentence is being suspended during his appeal. Luckily Man City doesn’t have any problematic players now, and they can concentrate on their next PL game.
The giant primadonna
Zlatan Ibrahimovic is a very special player. He is 38, but just joined his latest club, AC Milan, and plays as superbly as ever. But at the same time, he must be a very difficult teammate to play with. It’s enough to listen to his comments about others and himself. For example, he refused Arsenal’s offer for a trial as “Zlatan doesn’t do auditions”. Ibra can get angry easily and fight with anyone, he also visits clubs frequently causing more problems. He talks about himself in third person and interviews himself before the games.
A guy with uber-ego for sure, but at the same time he has won titles with most of the teams he played for from Ajax to PSG. He might not win the Serie A with Milan this season but can help them to finish in a good position. You can bet on their next games at bet365.
A tough guy from England
Joey Barton is probably more famous for his scandals than his football. Even online sportsbook news in the UK was reporting about his behaviors. Like assaulting his teammate, Ousmane Dabo or spending 77 days in prison for another assault in front of a McDonalds. Barton was a big promise in English football, but he could never fulfill it. He was aggressive on the pitch as well, eg. he punched a Blackburn winger, and got a three-match ban, but in 2012 he got even worse.
As a QPR player, he managed to attack three Manchester City players in one game, receiving a 12-game ban after. Surely all of his managers were afraid of him and his acts, luckily he has retired from playing football now. But we can still meet him at a game as he is the manager of Fleetwood Town. Don’t think that he has changed a bit, as he is just waiting for his trial for assaulting the Barnsley’s manager after a game in the tunnel.
The most difficult player
Though all of the mentioned players are hard cases, Mario Balotelli should be the winner in the most difficult football players’ category. It’s hard to find where to start, but he tried to beat his own manager, Roberto Mancini at one point. He also stomped on Tottenham player Scott Parker’s head, receiving a four-match ban after. And threw darts on young players just because he was bored. He also burnt down his bathroom after a firework. Visiting clubs, being late, not turning up on training or fighting with his teammates are just usual stuff for him.
Everything looked brighter after his return to his hometown, Brescia last season. He was getting into form again and concentrated on football, but there is the latest scandal. There are allegations about Balotelli committing sexual violence against a 17-year old girl back in 2018. Though he was cleared by the police the case is not over yet. Looks like something is always happening with Mario, it’s a shame that it’s not on the football pitch, but mostly outside of it.