Lists

It's not just Cristiano Ronaldo... 10 more of football's craziest commercials

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1. Back of the Futre

Sorry to start here, and we'd understand if you didn't want to read on, but.. well, just watch the thing. If former West Ham winger Paulo Futre juggling a ball with his manhood isn't already scary enough, it's accompanied by genuinely terrifying music and a stare from the protagonist that almost definitely warrants him a place on a register.  

Randomness rating: 10 ladies dancing.

2. Ronaldo's breast milk

Brazil legend and one-time FourFourTwo guest editor Ronaldo is an all-round good egg, and as a younger man The Phenomenon did a free ad promoting breastfeeding. “He drank a lot of milk today,” gushes Ronnie lovingly, before placing the infant in his cot. As he closes the door, his offspring begins juggling a football. It won’t happen again, mind: after fathering his fourth child Ronaldo had a vasectomy to – in his own words – “close the factory”.

Randomness rating: 8 rusks.

3. Adebayor conga

What’s not to like about a conga line of computerised Emmanuel Adebayors grooving round a pitch in the style of phone game Snake, controlled by massive overlord Emmanuel Adebayor using his boot as a computer controller? Nothing, that’s what, and Adidas’s lo-fi, geeky-but-cool Tune Your Game ad was a hit in Holland.  

Randomness rating: 126 Adebayors.

4. Messi Pepsi

Lionel Messi is no Jim Carrey. Minus points to the Pepsi exec, then, who thought putting The Flea in a vaguely tribal African shirt and getting him to riff comedically with a troupe of meerkats would be a winner.

To his chagrin, Leo is beaten in a kicking competition by one of the desert mongeese, who bounces a ball off a tree and a goat to topple cans of the refreshing carbonated liquid. Nonsense.

Randomness rating: 3 John Waynes.

5. China destroys Europe

Any US Republican hawks looking for proof the Chinese are destruction-crazed Commie zealots bent on destroying civilisation should whack this advert on a PowerPoint presentation immediately.

Promoting Now TV’s Euro 2012 coverage, this disturbing animation features football as war, with bombs, Big Ben on fire, a bent Eiffel Tower, dribbling superheroes, defensive walls, gas masks and players turning into massive, mythical animals. We should probably nuke them now to be on the safe side, right, Dick Cheney?

Randomness rating: 10 horsemen of the apocalypse.

6. Duck, dive, dodge... dandruff

You know an advert isn't going to be great when Cristiano Ronaldo appears on screen with the caption "world-famous footballer".

What you don't expect is for it to get worse, which this one does as CR7 ducks and dives his way past balls of dandruff on a pinball table. We suspect the Real Madrid superstar rather enjoyed it, mind – just check out that closing pout.   

Randomness rating: A couple of Matrix jackets.

7. Zidane's bottle-bottoms

Footballers have now comedy-juggled their way around virtually every conceivable commercial outlet in the name of making hulking wads of money, and things reached their illogical conclusion in this French Grand Optical ad, which sees Zinedine Zidane walloping a stunned teen’s basketball around an optician's as he road-tests his new specs.
 
However, we don’t get to see him collect his snappy little case, microfibre cleaning cloth and set of mini-adjustment screwdrivers, which is a shame.
 
Randomness rating: 4 eyes.

8. Shinji vs the Samurai

Our heroes have faced all kinds of random football adversaries in ads over the years, but Shinji Kagawa gets it easy in a Kirin beer commercial. True, after taking a much-needed sip of silly-sauce he is magically transported to face a Samurai squadron; however, the elite warriors are clearly encumbered by their bulky armour, and the Borussia Dortmund man simply dribbles past them before lashing the ball past a helpless, heavy helmet-laden keeper.

For the bankable Kagawa, this was a fairly straightforward "plot" compared to some ads he's graced. In a Softbank mobile phone commercial, he crosses a ball for the company’s doggy mascot to score, while talking to a manatee. Deeply confusing.

Randomness rating: 7 Samurai and a manatee in a pear tree.

9. Cha Du-Ri does the dusting

A housewife sits, melancholy and exhausted, at a kitchen table. How is she going to get through another day of chores? Worry not: former Celtic utility man Cha Du-Ri bursts terrifyingly out of a cupboard, wearing an extraordinary green spandex suit, to hoover, wash up, dust and mime playing a mop-guitar with enviable gusto.

His secret? Liver tablets – a popular pep remedy across East Asia. Well, obviously.

Randomness rating: 9 detoxified glands.

10. Maradona the chair

In scenes straight from The Fast Show, Diego Maradona appears as an irritating talking chair, heckling his match-watching owners with chants of “Argentina!” and generally making their life a misery. And, to prove you can sell anything online, they respond by selling the Diego-seat on South American eBay-style listing website bomnegocio.com. Hmm, maybe FFT can flog that Boubacar Barry-themed chaise longue…

Randomness rating: 10 Shiltons.

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