The buzz of bumping into a celebrity is the stuff of dreams for us ordinary folk, particularly when it’s someone we perceive to be a hero such as our favourite footballer.
Despite them continually giving us reason after reason to think the exact opposite of that, footballers will always be portrayed as real-life superheroes. It’s incredibly funny, then, when we bump into these seemingly extraordinary people doing incredibly ordinary things.
Seriously, they aren’t all they’re cracked up to be. Especially when they’re driving through your McDonald’s drive-thru on a Saturday night and very annoyingly paying for a large Coke with a £50 note. Yes, that really happened. Thanks, Marcus Rashford.
A Twitter account has surfaced that collates all sorts of encounters like your humble Planet Football writer’s very own, but all under one roof. We’ve pulled out the very best examples and listed them below.
Boubacar Kamara discovers McFlurrys
Perhaps footballers just don’t know how to operate a McDonald’s. A good thing, really.
"Boubacar Kamara was at the table next to us in Maccies with his wife and kids. Their tray full of food was just fries and sauces. He walked up to the counter and asked someone 'What is a McFlurry?', and I took the perfect opportunity for a photo."
Submitted by Matt E pic.twitter.com/OMSfvbA11v
— Spotted Premier League Players (@SpottedPLPlayer) July 22, 2023
Balotelli wants a chance
He probably would’ve buried Romelu Lukaku’s chances once upon a time.
Or missed them and reacted accordingly by setting off a firework in the dressing room.
"We met Mario Balotelli in Istanbul the day after the Champions League final. We were apprehensive to approach him because of his aura but he was lovely and we chatted about his career. He said he would have buried Romelu Lukaku’s chances in the final."
Submitted by Finlay W pic.twitter.com/15CDe9BGIs
— Spotted Premier League Players (@SpottedPLPlayer) July 14, 2023
Declan Rice trains with Portugal boys
Still not at all sure how Rice worked his way into a training camp with Bruno Fernandes and Rafael Leao.
The chap who met him should’ve asked, really. Strangest trio ever.
"Saw Declan Rice in Portugal. He was also with Bruno Fernandes, Joao Cancelo and Rafael Leao and they were just chilling around the sports centre. Fernandes asked me what I was training for, he's a top bloke compared to what he's like on the pitch!"
Submitted by Jack S pic.twitter.com/iMy4un26SA
— Spotted Premier League Players (@SpottedPLPlayer) July 14, 2023
Pablo Fornals on a bender – sort of
Brilliant banter from the West Ham man. Hats off.
"We were walking back to Liverpool Street and saw Pablo Fornals on a bender with Conor Coventry. I asked if it was really him and he said 'No, no, no, Manuel Lanzini!'."
Submitted by Tyler C pic.twitter.com/9vuiArLuyw
— Spotted Premier League Players (@SpottedPLPlayer) July 12, 2023
Allan Saint-Maximin loves Lays
Not gonna fit much in that bag, Allan. Ask for one at the till – especially with those crisp packet sizes abroad.
Fever dream stuff, this one.
"My girlfriend was needing some more sun cream on our holiday in Crete, so at 11 at night we went to a random corner shop down the road from our hotel. We walked in and Allan Saint-Maximin was standing there choosing from the crisps."
Submitted by Lewis R pic.twitter.com/SNEsKJBCzu
— Spotted Premier League Players (@SpottedPLPlayer) July 10, 2023
Terrible pun, that. Sorry.
Hopefully the bedding Keylor picked out was better.
"I bumped into Keylor Navas in the Sainsbury's in Nottingham. He was buying bedding. He looked like he was having a nice time but he didn’t say a single word."
Submitted by Rory C pic.twitter.com/aNWrRycdHq
— Spotted Premier League Players (@SpottedPLPlayer) July 9, 2023
Virgil van Dijk gaffe
Brilliant from this young chap, without realising.
A shame Van Dijk is such an unbothered king.
"I heard rumours of Virgil van Dijk being in our local shop, so off I went to find him for a photo. It was only after I looked back at the photo that I realised I was wearing my Man Utd shirt."
Submitted by Calum G pic.twitter.com/ESqsR4Tk8Z
— Spotted Premier League Players (@SpottedPLPlayer) May 4, 2023
Manchester United’s number one
Not in that way.
Everything about this is hilarious, from the pre to early-smartphone era photo quality, to the idea of doing the business alongside a footballer – awkward in itself – and then hanging around outside the bogs for him. I’m not a weirdo mate, honestly.
"I was next to Anderson at the urinals in a Manchester restaurant. Much to my Mrs' horror, I waited outside the gents to then get this photo."
Submitted by Denis F pic.twitter.com/FvHrBi2VBL
— Spotted Premier League Players (@SpottedPLPlayer) March 16, 2023
Bernardo Silva – quizmaster
Wonder if he took part, or was just there to see if any questions had him as the answer.
Either way, Bernardo, there’s a few shots and some watermelon VKs with your name on waiting at the bar, in true student fashion.
"We met Bernardo Silva at a students pub in Preston on quiz night. He scored a hat-trick against Watford a couple of days later."
Submitted by Josh H pic.twitter.com/JH9ewfaEoZ
— Spotted Premier League Players (@SpottedPLPlayer) March 12, 2023
Aaron Lennon in Vegas
Perhaps the most professional footballer in Vegas interaction one could ever have.
"I snuck into Aaron Lennon’s booth in Vegas. We got this picture moments before he ripped off his shirt and dived onto the table, drinks and glass went everywhere. Nobody batted an eye."
Submitted by Jamil K pic.twitter.com/W64wkzmsLD
— Spotted Premier League Players (@SpottedPLPlayer) March 10, 2023
Weekend work with Eto’o
Aye, graft isn’t it Samuel pal. Fancy swapping shifts?
"Met Samuel Eto'o at the Esso in Cobham. He said he was going to training, I replied 'I'm working on a Saturday too, it's a nightmare isn't it'."
Submitted by Jon B pic.twitter.com/G8NrUkeGbN
— Spotted Premier League Players (@SpottedPLPlayer) March 4, 2023
Di Maria loves waterparks
Wonder if he had to stand around in the queue for the massive one that everybody goes to Siam Park for.
"We saw Angel Di Maria at Siam Park in Tenerife in a queue for one of the rides on his own. We weren't sure it was him at first until we checked Instagram to see he was on holiday with Ander Herrera."
Submitted by Jack R pic.twitter.com/1Fz0xLXIiB
— Spotted Premier League Players (@SpottedPLPlayer) December 9, 2022
Tanguy ‘dodgy mate’ Ndombele
Incredible that you can spot a footballer from a mile off by the awful clobber they’re often wearing, even if you’ve no idea who they are.
"My mate was having a cigarette near Bank station when he saw Dele Alli, Toby Alderweireld and Moussa Sissoko walking by. He asked them for a photo and said 'Include your dodgy mate, he looks like a footballer'. It was a very nervous Tanguy Ndombele."
Submitted by Paul B pic.twitter.com/qDYcvS0MRy
— Spotted Premier League Players (@SpottedPLPlayer) November 4, 2022
At least you tried Aly
Serious beer fear the morning after that one. Football heritage.
"We met Aly Cissokho on a night out the day Aston Villa got relegated. I told him he was shite but at least he tried his best and he just gave me a thumbs up."
Submitted by Brandon B pic.twitter.com/WkpkawuEFO
— Spotted Premier League Players (@SpottedPLPlayer) August 28, 2022