• 17 World Cup Players who Won our Hearts Just by being Dads

    One week after the finals ended, we still can’t shake off the World Cup fever.
    by Rachel Perez .
  • Missing the World Cup already? We do now after we found out that these fine footballers are proud dads – both on and off the field!

    Lukas Podolski (Germany)

    Lukas Podolski

    He may have not played in the finals game, but he sure did share the big win with his teammates. Lukas's guest of honor on the pitch? None other than his six-year-old son Louis.

    Looks like Lukas is trying to shield Louis from the flashing lights here:

    Podolski GIF


    Lionel Messi (Argentina)

    Lionel Messi

    The World Cup is the only award missing from his shelves. Good thing being a dad to his almost-two-year-old son Thiago can more than fill the loss of finishing second this year.

    Look, he doesn't even want to let go of Dad:

    Messi GIF


    Robin Van Persie (Netherlands)

    Robin van Persie

    See The Flying Dutchman's incredible header this year, and you'll understand why he's every bit of a Superman in his children's - son Shaqueel and daughter Dina - eyes.

    She obviously adores her father:

    van Persie GIF


    Neymar da Silva Jr. (Brazil)

    Neymar da Silva Jr

    Brazil's talisman and number one scorer made our hearts melt when he spent time with son David Lucca during tournament training breaks (and also when he was sidelined because of a back injury).

    Dad and son's favorite selfie pose? Sticking their tongues out:

    Neymar GIF



    James Rodriguez (Colombia)

    James Rodriguez

    Yes, we think James (pronounced ha-mes) is too young (and too cute!) to be married, but we're loving how this first-time dad adores his one-year-old little princess Salome.

    Rodriguez GIF


    Gerard Pique (Spain)

    Gerard Pique

    Defending champion Spain may have gone out early this time, but dad Gerard sees the silver lining - he won't have to miss his son (with singer Shakira) Milan, 1, any minute longer. Those cheeks don't lie!

    Dad and son look adorable in matching uniforms, don't you think so?

    Pique GIF



    Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal)

    Cristiano Ronaldo

    Ronaldo managed to net just one goal in the entire tournament, but this guy makes good headlines outside of football: He's a philanthropist and has full custody of his four-year-old son, Cristiano Jr. Technically, he’s a single dad!

    How cool is this?

    ronaldo GIF



    Guillermo Ochoa (Mexico)

    Guillermo Ochoa

    Arguably one of the best goalkeepers in the World Cup this year, Guillermo "Memo" Ochoa's curls would sure come in handy for when his daughter Lucciana, 1, wants to play dress-up.

    Ochoa GIF


    Miroslav Klose (Germany)

    Miroslav Klose

    The leading scorer in the World Cup might have played his last international game in the finals (he's already 36!), but he's as fit as any to play dad to his twin sons Luan and Noah.


    He doesn't seem to mind that they're a handful:

    Klose GIF



    Arjen Robben (Netherlands)

    Arjen Robben

    Netherlands' loss to Argentina made news, and so did Arjen's 6-year old son Luka, who started to cry when his favorite team got eliminated. Maybe Dad promised him he'll win the World Cup? Well, his son (and his team) would have to settle for third this year.

    Here's Robben consoling Luka after their semi-final loss:

    Robben GIF



    Jermaine Jones (USA)

    Jermaine Jones

    Jermaine has been busy - on the field and otherwise. Soccer (a.k.a. football) is in an upswing, thanks to this team reaching the quarterfinals this year. And off the pitch, he has Keanu, Liya-Joelle, Kenyon, Junius, and Jadee-Mae – his five (yes, FIVE!) kids to keep him busy!


    Xabi Alonso (Spain)

    Xabi Alonso

    Losing their first game in a tourney they won four years past is devastating. But anyone who chooses to be with his wife who's giving birth (Xabi and his wife have three children together: Jontxu, Ane and Emma) rather than play the game is a winner in our books.

    Here he is with son Jontxu in a celebratory mood:

    alonso GIF


    David Villa (Spain)
    David Villa

    Spain's all-time leading scorer said goodbye to playing for the country with a goal in the World Cup this year. He left the pitch with tears in his eyes, but we're certain he's happy to be spending more time with his three kids Zaida, Olaya and Luca.

    The pitch is his kids' playground, as you can see:

    Villa GIF



    Sergio Aguero (Argentina)

    Sergio Aguero

    Like father, like son, and like grandad: Benjamin, 5, son of Sergio Aguero and grandson of football legend Diego Maradona is already showing off his football skills. "Dad's elated!" was the caption of his Instagram post on his son's first goal in training.

    Here's Benjamin giving Dad a good luck kiss:

    aguero GIF


    Vincent Kompany (Belgium)

    Vincent Kompany

    Belgium will definitely be back to compete for the World cup in four years. In the meantime, Vincent's daughter Sienna has declared to the world that she's part of the "greatest family in the world." Heads up, Royal fams.


    Tim Howard (USA)

    Tim Howard

    Tim holds the record of the most saves in a World Cup game, and had the Internet on fire with #ThingsTimHowardCouldSave memes! What keeps him grounded? His wife Laura and their 2 kids.


    Iker Casillas (Spain)

    Iker Casillas

    Spain's goalkeeper may have let many goals get past him this year, but we bet he'll make sure he'll never miss the milestones his six-month-old son Martin will make.


    casillas GIF


    Photo credits: Lukas Podolski, Lionel Messi, Robin Van Persie, Neymar, Jr., James Rodriguez, Gerard Pique, Cristiano Ronaldo, Guillermo Ochoa, Miroslav Klose, Arjen Robben, Jermaine Jones, Xabi Alonso, David Villa, Sergio Aguero, Vincent Kompany, Tim Howard, Iker Casillas

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