There’s Only Two Michael Jacksons!
Germany’s under-21s beat their Irish counterparts 2:0 over the weekend, with a goal coming from Phillip Hofmann.
The striker looked very talented, I’m sure we’ll Seymour of him. But the young forward, who shares a name with the late American actor, isn’t the only lesser-known footballer with a more illustrious namesake…
While Fulham infamously had a statue of Michael Jackon outside Craven Cottage, the likes of Preston, Tranmere and Blackpool went one better and had a defender with the same name. The latter took over as manager of Shrewsbury last season with the aim of avoiding relegation, but was unable to Beat It – losing a six-goal Thriller to Peterborough in the penultimate game of the season.
While 39th President of America was left-wing, his footballing namesake plied his trade as a right-winger for the likes of Millwall and Arsenal. However such was his failure at Liverpool that, like his political namesake, he only lasted one term at Anfield.
There was a hint of magic at the start of Michael Johnson’s Manchester City career, with the player cited by Sven Goran Eriksson as a future England star. However, while his sprinter namesake became a legend of his sport, the footballer’s only 200m dashes came between pubs and kebab shops. He retired last year, aged just 25, after his career went off track.
While the Coldplay singer is still raking in the royalties from their Parachutes album, the former Norwich City striker Chris Martin would be relying on parachute payments if he hadn’t left the relegated Canaries for Derby County last season.
The musician has stated he gets bored of playing old hits like Yellow, while the footballer got fed up being a bit-part player in yellow, making only 102 appearances in seven years for the Canaries. The player was recently the recipient of a headbutt from Rangers defender Bilel Mohsni, who obviously got A Rush of Blood to the Head during their pre-season friendly.
The former Take That star is famously a huge fan of Port Vale, so may have watched his namesake play against the The Valiants for the likes of Barnsley, Stockport County and Huddersfield Town. The left-back has No Regrets about his lower league career, winning a couple of League One play-offs along the way. Williams was released by Plymouth Argyle last year and had the Freedom to sign for League of Ireland side Limerick on a free transfer.
While the controversial US music star was recently shot at in Los Angeles, his footballing namesake’s main driveby misdemeanour is a 2004 caution for firing paintballs at passer-bys from a car. The singer has battled negative publicity after beating up ex-girlfriend Rihanna, while the footballer has mainly battled relegation with the likes of Doncaster Rovers.
The former Hartlepool United winger scored 29 goals for the The Pools, no doubt muttering “I Feel Good” to himself after each strike. In his first full season he won Young Player of the Year and helped Hartlepool Get Up to League One.