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The Bad Boys XI: Most Controversial Team Ever

Ashish Thakur

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article are that of the author and does not necessarily reflect that of Sportskeeda

Controversy is a part of the game of football. It can’t be avoided. Sometimes, the controversies take place on the pitch and at times, the players act unusual off the pitch. With some players, the controversy just never ends! And several times, unfortunately, great players get ruined and vanished because of it. And what if it happens that the most controversial players get together, form their own team and get on that green grass?

Here is the most controversial football team ever that can be created.

Formation: 4-3-3

Goal-keeper: José Luis Chilavert González

The former Paraguayan captain is probably the most famous Paraguayan footballer of all time. The keeper was a free kick and penalty kick specialist and is arguably the greatest goal scoring keeper in history. He was a fiery leader who fought with Colombian forward Faustino Asprilla. Chilavert once spit on Brazilian defender Roberto Carlos and accused him of racism and obscene gestures during the match.

Left-back: Ashley Cole

One of the most hated footballers, Ashley Cole was transferred from Arsenal to local rivals Chelsea in the year 2006. From swearing in front of a police officer outside a nightclub in 2009 to exceeding the speed limit in 2010, the Chelsea right-back had rough relations with the cops in London and has been fined more than a couple of times. In February 2011, Cole accidentally shot a 21-year-old student with a .22 calibre air rifle, at Chelsea’s Cobham training ground. He fired at Tom Cowan, a sports science student, from only five feet away, apparently unaware that the rifle was loaded!

Left Centre-back: John Terry

The controversy just never ends with him! In September 2001, John Terry was seen with several other teammates at a Heathrow hotel, drinking and mocking grieving American tourists. He’s been in the tabloids numerous times for cheating on his wife. The most famous incident was in early 2010, when it was revealed he had an affair with his former teammate Wayne Bridge’s girlfriend. On 2nd November 2011, Terry was placed under police investigation following an allegation of racist abuse made at Anton Ferdinand during a match against Queens Park Rangers. On 27 September 2012, the hearing concluded with Terry being found guilty; he was punished with a four match ban and a £220,000 fine.

Right Centre-back: Rio Ferdinand

In the year 2010, Manchester United defender Ferdinand unsuccessfully sued the Sunday Mirror to prevent the publication of a story about an alleged affair with Carley Storey. During the case, it was alleged that the England International had affairs with 10 different women. Ferdinand has been involved in many more controversies, like drinking and driving in 1997 or driving way over the speed limit, which he was caught doing in 2002, 2003 and 2005, or by failing to take a drugs test in 2002. In August 2012, Ferdinand was fined £45,000 for his tweet regarding fellow English defender Ashley Cole, referring to him as ‘choc ice’.

Right-back: Gary Neville

It was really tough to find a controversial right-back, but Gary Neville has a knack for getting on opposing fans’ nerves, which proved decisive for him to make it to this team! He ran the full length of the Anfield pitch in 2006 to celebrate an injury-time winner that he didn’t even score, by the way! Liverpool‘s Jamie Carragher called him out for it, and the police claimed it caused problems between fans after the game. He again antagonized the opposing fans after Michael Owen’s late winner of Manchester City in 2009. There’s almost no player opposing fans love to hate more than Gary Neville!

Left Midfielder: Zinedine Zidane

Zinedine Zidane is considered as one of the greatest footballers ever. However, it is a shame that the recent generation recognize him by only his headbutt in the 2006 World Cup Final. Zidane won two Serie A titles and one La Liga title, as well as appearing in three UEFA Champions League finals with Juventus and Real Madrid. Zidane also won the Ballon d’Or in 1998. He retired after the match, and for such a great player, it’s sad to see it end on such a controversial note.

Centre Attacking Midfielder: Diego Maradona

Diego Maradona is, without doubt, the most controversial footballer of all time. His ‘Hand of God’ goal is the most controversial goal ever in football history and his defense weaving goal against England in that same game is the greatest goal in football history. Most of Maradona’s problems are drug related. He was kicked out of the 1994 World Cup for doping and served a 15-month ban after testing positive for cocaine while at Napoli. Maradona has given the football world plenty of things to talk about over the last 30 years and I assure you there is more to come!

Right Midfielder: Roy Keane

Roy Keane is known as one the most aggressive football players on the pitch. During his 12 years at United, Keane sparked controversy with players, including Patrick Vieira and Alf-Inge Haaland and is still a villain in the eyes of Arsenal and Manchester City fans. Keane also upset his fellow countrymen when he was sent home before the start of the 2002 World Cup, due to a bust-up with manager Mick McCarthy. Later, Keane had an another bust-up with Sir Alex Ferguson, which led to the end of his Manchester United career. In 2013, Keane placed his views about the red card given to Nani in Manchester United-Real Madird clash in Champions League. It turned out that, except the referee of the game, no other person agreed with Roy’s verdict!

Left Forward: Luis Suarez

Enjoying the peek of his career, there a lot of things to talk about Luis Suarez rather than his goal scoring habit. On 15 October 2011, the Liverpool stiker was accused of racially abusing Patrice Evra and on 20 December, the FA concluded a seven-day hearing, handing Suárez an eight-match ban and a £40,000 fine. On Feb 11, during the traditional pre-game handshakes, Suárez seemed to avoid shaking Evra’s hand, leading to Evra grabbing Suárez’s arm. during the 2010 World Cup where he blatantly punched a goal-bound shot off the line and was sent off. Suárez has also been widely accused of diving. In January 2013, Suárez admitted to diving against Stoke in an October 2012 match. It seems, Suárez is committed to winning at all costs, even if it means breaking the rules!

Centre Forward: Eric Cantona

Eric Cantona was undoubtedly one of the greatest players in the history of Manchester United Football Club. Apart from having a ball in his feet, Cantona did something real ‘special’. Cantona was sent off for a kick on Crystal Palace defender Richard Shaw after Shaw had pulled his shirt. As he was walking towards the tunnel, Cantona launched a ‘kung-fu’ style kick into the crowd, directed at Crystal Palace fan Matthew Simmons, followed by a series of punches. Manchester United, his club itself, suspended Cantona for the remaining four months of the 1994/95 season. He was also fined £20,000 by the Football Association. This is probably the most remarkable act in Eric Cantona’s career. “My best moment? I have a lot of good moments but the one I prefer is when I kicked the hooligan.”

Right Forward: Mario Balotelli

Mario Balotelli has changed the definition of ‘controversy’ in the modern era of world football. The Italian has the ability to unleash a spectacular goal at any moment, but he can lash out with a stupid foul and get sent off as well. In March 2010, he came under criticism by Inter fans after he appeared on a press conference wearing an Milan jersey. ‘Super Mario’ has been involved in several car crashes, high speeding and uncountable strange events. From throwing darts at youth players, to being photographed in the company of two noted Mafia mobsters, and even letting his own house on fire with his friends when a firework was let off in it! Since arriving in Manchester City, Balotelli has been involved in multiple instances of training ground disputes, clashing with team-mates Jerome Boateng, Vincent Kompany, Aleksander Kolarov, Micah Richards and manager Mancini. Balotelli is the most ‘unique’ player currently in the world and its fun to watch him on and off the pitch.

Substitutes: (Players who created less controversy than compared to the above XI)Pepe, Joey Barton, Arjen Robben, Carlos Tevez, Wayne Rooney, Di Stefano, Zlatan Ibrahimovic

After the most controversial startng XI and bench warmers, the team will require a controversial manager to lead the team to further troubles to the football world! And undoubtedly, it has to be none other than the ‘king of controversy’, Jose Mourinho.

Manager/First Team Coach: Jose Mourinho

Mourinho has often been seen as a controversial figure in football. On 26th February, after the Porto game against Manchester United match at Dragao, an angered Sir Alex Ferguson got away from Mourinho and refused to shake hands with him. Mourinho called him to apologize. Later, in the game played in Manchester, Mourinho celebrated his team’s goal by running down 100 meters of Old Trafford touchline. The Portuguese, on several occasions, has criticized different coaches including the likes of Arsene Wenger, Martin O’Neil, etc. Recently, it has been reported that ‘The Special One’ had a bust-up with the Real Madrid board of directors which could see him quit the club in the summer 2013.

There is no hiding the fact that this team has quality players, but you just can’t imagine this team to get over the pitch and ‘play’ a game of football!

“The only thing worse than being talked about is not being talked about.” - Oscar Wilde

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article are that of the author and does not necessarily reflect that of Sportskeeda

Edited by Staff Editor

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