World Cup Tattoos
UPDATE: Our Instagram friends tell us that Nigel de Jong's tattoos, as shown above, are by Ade Itameda.
I swore to myself that I wasn't going to do a World Cup tattoo post, but after being inundated with news articles on player and fan tattoo tributes, I'm falling for the hype -- and doing so because there's actually good work out there on the field. [Less so in the stands and in front of TVs.] So I culled through the many, many news articles and came up with some worth checking:
Let's first ignore the tired cliche "Once sported only by biker gangs, outlaws, and sailors, tattoos are now ..." that begins the IBN article "11 players in FIFA World Cup 2014 with the coolest tattoos ever!" Yup, quite a statement. But there are some decent picks from the mass of tattooed soccer/futball players. For one, the traditional Samoan sleeve (shown below) of Australia's Tim Cahill (as discussed in these videos). According to IBN, "The sleeve on his left arm has his Samoan roots from his maternal family with a symbolic lifeline of his grandmother after she died, linking it with that of his own and his parents." Then there's that photo of USA's Tim Howard, who also stripped down for PETA's Ink Not Mink campaign -- as a personal favor to me.
The Telegraphs' "The 10 best tattooed footballers" is more about the best players and not the best tattoos, but the list includes Nigel de Jong (photo above) who has some interesting blackwork. Check more of Nigel's tattoos on his Instagram. And even if all the tattoos on this list are not that artful, some of the stories behind them are worth a read.
The Daily Fail's photo piece on players wasn't as bad as their usual tattoo coverage. I particularly liked the focus on the footballers with full sleeves, with discussion on some of the details. Naturally, they referenced David Beckham as the inspiration. And speaking of Beckham inspiration: thank you, H & M.
What discussion of soccer tattoos would be complete without those "wacky fans"? Following the tradition that sports tributes make for the most questionable of decisions, this Dutch fan did not disappoint with these portraits of Louis van Gaal and Robin van Persie, just after 2 World Cup games. I guess it's called FIFA fever for a reason.