When it comes to soccer, the athletes aren’t the only ones earning fame and fortune. Increasingly, it’s the athletes’ wives and girlfriends who are stealing the spotlight from their famous beaus.
It all began with the couple known simply as Posh and Becks. In 1999, golden boy David Beckham married Spice Girl Victoria Adams. The pair was a tabloid gold mine (rekindling Victoria’s sputtering fame). Soon, the partners of soccer stars everywhere were grabbing attention, each seemingly eager to promote a career as a model, actress or TV presenter. By the 2006 World Cup, the English team’s wives and girlfriends—dubbed the “WAGs”—had become a collective phenomenon.
More than just attractive women given to appearing in racy photos, their soap-opera-like stories of marital spats and hook-ups have become enthralling tabloid fodder. They are now so popular that the WAGs’s life and behaviour is (sadly) fast becoming an ideal for more and more young British girls.
But will this World Cup be WAG-free? England manager Fabio Capello initially forbade the team’s wives and girlfriends from tagging along to South Africa, eager to avoid the distracting media circus. While Capello has since relaxed his stance, many players have volunteered to fly solo for the tournament.
World Cup glory is, perhaps, the most seductive thing of all.