Do you know there are copied celebrations in soccer? Almost every superstar footballer has one trademark celebration, or at least, a celebration that is very often associated with them. But would you believe that some of these celebrations were copied?
Copied celebrations in soccer
Just imagine you found out that Cristiano Ronlado’s Siu was copied. Crazy, right? Well, there’s nothing to prove that it was copied, but here are 5 celebrations that were actually copied but you probably didn’t know.
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1. Rashford’s finger to the head
Rashford is in blistering form right now. The Man United forward has pretty much been scoring for fun since after the World Cup, and it seems like his new goal-scoring form came with a new celebration. These days, after scoring, he runs towards the corner flag and then points a finger to his head.
But while a lot of people – United fans especially – have begun to call it the Rashford celebration, it appears that it was actually copied. This celebration is pretty common and has been done by different footballers way before Rashford, most notably Ruben Neves and Houssem Aouar as far back as the 2017-18 season.
More recently, Tchouameni did it at the World Cup after scoring against England with Rashford sitting on the bench. We’re not saying that’s where Rashford picked it up from, but oh well…
Anyway, it seems Rashford is the one who has popularized it among the English folk. Tammy Abraham did this celebration after scoring for Roma and wrote to Rashford on Instagram that he’s learning from him. Welbeck also did it after scoring against Liverpool the same day Rashford scored against City and did the celebration. Fans are saying that Welbeck, a former Man United player, did that to show his allegiance to United against their most bitter rivals.
2. Messi holding his shirt up to the crowd
Messi scoring a dying-minute winner against his most bitter rivals in their own backyard and then holding up his shirt to the fans to make sure they never forget the name of the man who destroyed them on their own home ground will remain one of the coldest ever moments in football history. But Messi did not come up with that celebration. People had done it before him.
Marcelo did it after scoring in the Champions League final against Atletico Madrid in 2014, and Ronaldinho had done it twice before that. He did it once when he was in PSG, that was as far back as 2002. Then he did it again after joining Barcelona.
Perhaps Messi’s iteration of the celebration is the most famous because it was the most controversial of the lot. Dying minute winner in your archenemy’s home ground? There couldn’t have been a better time to do it.
3. Hakimi’s waddle
Here’s another really cold moment. In a penalty shootout against Spain in the round of 16 of the World Cup, Hakimi scored the winning spot kick with a cheeky Panenka and celebrated by doing the waddle, a celebration which appears to have been copied from NFL wide receiver, Jaylen Waddle.
Hearing his name, it’s obvious why the American adopted the penguin-like movement as his trademark celebration.
Hakimi, however, seemed to have done it in that game as a nod to his club teammate, Sergio Ramos, who was snubbed by the Spain national team. Hakimi and Ramos have done the waddle together a couple of times at PSG, so people suspect that he did it in that game to sort of spite the Spaniards for not taking his friend to the World Cup.
4. Di Maria’s heart celebration
Everyone does the heart symbol every now and then, so honestly, it’s hard to say who copied who. But as far as football is concerned, Di Maria is probably the guy that first comes to mind when you think of the heart celebration. He has done it so many times and has been doing it for a long time, too.
But well, Gareth Bale also does this celebration, and he was the one who trademarked it. He trademarked the Eleven of Hearts before he even joined Real Madrid, which meant that he could use the image on jewelry, shoes, hats, bags, umbrellas, and stuff like that. And it also meant that nobody else could use that image for commercial purposes.
Pretty crazy that Di Maria is also known to always wear the number 11, isn’t it?
5. Gnabry cooking
Hakimi is not the first footballer to copy a celebration from an American athlete. Apparently, Gnabry copied his trademark cooking celebration from American basketball legend, James Harden.
Harden’s celebration dates back to, at least, 2015. Back then, Gnabry was still a struggling Arsenal player on loan at West Brom. Surely there wasn’t anything cooking with the Germans back then.
Honorable mention – The Griddy
The ‘griddy’ has become a favorite celebration in European football currently and has held its popularity for some time. This particular dance has been enthusiastically performed by numerous footballers in Europe, including Pulisic, Lingard, Moise Kean, Rafael Leao, Elanga, Tomori, and several others.
This celebration appears to be greatly adored by young footballers, yet it was evidently imported from the US. The dance was initially created by high school American football player Allen Davis and gained prominence through NFL wide receivers Ja’Marr Chase and Justin Jefferson.
Are there more famous copied celebrations you know in football? Let us know in the comments. But of all these we mentioned, who would you say owned their copied celebration the best?