Family Affair: 5 footballers you didn’t know were related
The Premier League has produced many family ties and seen football relatives reunited on the pitch. In recent season’s there has been brothers like Kolo and Yaya Toure, Rio and Anton Ferdinand, the Wright-Phillips brothers and of course, Gary and Phil Neville.
The Premier League can be a real family affair at times, so let’s take a look at some of the relations that you perhaps did not know about...
Mark Viduka & Luka Modric: How can a burly Australian striker possibly be related to a Croatian who plays for Real Madrid? It turns out that Viduka, a former Leeds United legend and ex-Tottenham midfielder, Luka Modric are actually cousins. The Viduka family is of Croatian origin and moved to Australia in the 1960’s which is where the link to the Modric’s originates from. Both players became legends at their respective clubs in England and have gone on to captain their respective nations.
Leroy Fer & Patrick Van Aanholt: The Dutch pair are cousins and is is not just family genes they share. They are both currently embroiled in a relegation battle against each other at the pit of the Premier League. 27-year-old Leroy is at struggling Swansea City and Van Aanholt has recently switched from Sunderland to Crystal Palace in a £14 million move. Both players have represented the Netherlands and continue to make strides in the top flight of English football as they reach the peak of their careers. We can expect the duo to have many more battles against each other in the future, whether it be in the Premier League, Championship or around the dining table at Christmas.
Alex Iwobi & Jay-Jay Okocha: So good they named him twice! Believe it or not, Jay-Jay Okocha is the uncle of Arsenal starlet Alex Iwobi. The Arsenal winger is looking like the most promising youngster in the Gunners squad at the moment and Uncle Jay-Jay will surely be pleased with his progress so far at The Emirates. We can see where the pair get their footballing abilities from, both blessed with quick feet and dribbling skills. Okocha went on to become a Nigerian great and Alex will be hoping he can follow in his uncle’s footsteps.
John Terry & Paul Konchesky: John’s brother, Paul Terry is married to Paul Konchesky’s sister, Sarah. This does not make them legitimate brothers-in-law but something quite similar. The two have been friends since they were young and have faced each other on the pitch regularly.
Similar to John, Paul Terry admitted to cheating on his wife, which ultimately strained the relationship between the Terry and Konchesky families. Both players have been Premier League stalwarts with over 800 appearances between them. The pair have had entirely different fortunes with Terry being called a one-club Chelsea legend and England regular winning a host of major trophies along the way, whereas Paul spent his 18-year career at several top-flight clubs and now runs his own cafe called Konch’s Kaff in Essex with his Mum.
Yannick Bolasie & Lomana Lua-Lua: The two cousins grew up together in the Congo amongst conflict and poverty. Of the two, Bolasie is certainly the more famous having recently moved to Everton from Crystal Palace. Meanwhile, Lomana is remembered more for his acrobatic goalscoring celebrations having established himself in the Premier League at Newcastle United alongside the great Alan Shearer and at Portsmouth under Harry Redknapp. However, Lua-Lua ended up serving the vast amount of his career abroad playing for clubs in Qatar, Greece and Turkey. Lua-Lua also has a brother called Kazenga who is on loan at Queens Park Rangers from Brighton and Hove Albion in the Championship which makes this a real family affair.