Often, while watching televised sporting events, the camera switches focus from the players on the field to the fans in the stands. For us fans, it can sometimes be just plain annoying. After all, who wants to watch a bunch of over-weight, drunk and shirtless guys in the stands when there’s a pretty good game happening on the field. Of course, it’s not always just ‘regular’ fans the cameras are focused on. Celebrities, politicians and ex-players are all targets the camera searches for during a televised event. Whether it’s Spike Lee at a New York Knicks game, Jack Nicholson watching the Lakers, former President George W. Bush taking in the Texas Rangers or Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper spotted at a Winnipeg Jets season opener, celebrity and VIP spectators are as much a part of the entertainment as the two teams facing off.
One further favorite of the searching cameraman are the wives and girlfriends of players. Anyone who watched a New York Yankees’ home game a few years ago will have noticed how often cameras locked onto Cameron Diaz, then girlfriend of Alex Rodriguez, sitting in the stands. Similarly, actress Eva Longoria was always pointed out to the television audience when she came to watch now ex-husband Tony Parker play for the San Antonio Spurs. Wives and girlfriends (WAGs) of players attract so much attention because they are often models or actresses themselves. Their relationships provide the tabloids with a lot of material, usually scandalous in nature. Pictures of intimate moments, stories of cheating, rumors of pregnancy or announcements of marriage all draw the WAGs into the sporting world.
In the world of soccer, the WAG can command as much attention as the player. World Cup coverage often has a segment or special on WAGs, the weekly tabloid news always seems to include a story about one or two, and magazines like Sports Illustrated and Maxim are loaded with WAGs, mainly because so many are swimsuit models. Yes, the soccer WAG has secured a noticeable part in today’s soccer culture. The following list gives 15 of some of the hottest and popular WAGs today. Trust me, there are far more than 15 but the editors here at The Richest would not allow the space for a top 100 list. In any event, here they are, in no particular order.
15. Oksana Andersson (Christian Wilhelmsson – BaniyasSC)
This 29-year old model and dancer was born in the Soviet Union. Her break into the fashion world began when she was a dancer with Sunblock, a short-lived Swedish electronic band. She then moved on to television, starring in the reality show Paradise Hotel. Andersson also appeared in FHM, Slitz (Swedish version of Maxim) and Café magazines. In May 2010, she married Swedish winger Christian Wilhelmsson in Las Vegas.
14. Melissa Satta (Kevin-Prince Boateng – Schalke 04)
While she was born in America, Melissa Satta is better known as an Italian television personality. Beginning her career in fashion, Satta transitioned to television in 2005. In addition to appearing on and hosting several Italian television shows, she has appeared in Maxim and Sports Illustrated. Satta is the WAG of Schalke midfielder Kevin-Prince Boateng. AC Milan offloaded Boateng in 2013 because his form had dropped and injuries were common. Reportedly, Satta’s insatiable sexual appetite played a role in wearing the midfielder out and prolonging his injuries. Poor guy.
13. Alena Šeredová (Gianluigi Buffon – Juventus)
A Czech model and actress, Alena Šeredová currently lives and works in Italy. She placed highly in the 1998 Miss Czech republic and Miss World pageants which helped lead her into a career of modeling. She has appeared in two films and even co-hosted an Italian variety show. Šeredová has appeared on the covers of several magazines, including Playboy and Penthouse. She is married to Italian goal keeper Gianluigi Buffon and the couple have two children.
12. Lena Gercke (Sami Khedira – Real Madrid)
Winner of Germany’s first Germany’s Top Model, Lena Gercke is known as a television personality and model. Beginning her career as a commercial model, Gercke advanced quickly and was soon featured in magazines like Cosmopolitan, Glamour and Sports Week. She has been involved in advertising campaigns for a wide range of businesses, including Microsoft and H&M. In the footballing world, Gercke is best known as the girlfriend of Real Madrid midfielder Sami Khedira.
11. Federica Nargi (Alessandro Matri – AC Milan/Fiorentina)
Born in Rome, Federica Nagri is a model, actress and television personality. The 2007 Miss Cotonella and Miss Rome winner, Nargi has appeared in several reality, news and game shows. She has also played roles in film and on stage, all in Italy. The Brunette bombshell is, perhaps, best known in Italy for her role on the news-variety show Strip the News, a show she appeared on between 2008 and 2012. Since 2009, Nagri has been in a relationship with Italian striker Alessandro Matri. Matri plays for AC Milan but is currently loaned out to Fiorentina.
10. Georgina Dorsett (Tom Cleverley – Manchester United)
Manchester United has a fine tradition of assembling a notable army of WAGs over the years. Victoria Beckham and Coleen Rooney are just a few of the many famous ladies linked to the Red Devils. Georgina Dorsett is one of the newest members of the club. The 28 year old is a reality television star in England. Dorsett is best known for her role on the hit show The Only Way is Essex, a British equivalent of The Hills or Jersey Shore. Her time as a United WAG seems long-term, given she and boyfriend midfielder Tom Cleverley recently had a daughter together.
9. Michela Quattrociocche (Alberto Aquilani – Fiorentina)
Michela Quattrociocche was born in Rome and is best known for her roles in Italian films. The 25 year old actress moved from modeling and acting classes to the big screen in 2008. She has since appeared in several films and television shows, although it’s highly unlikely many people outside of Italy have seen them. Michela’s WAG status was secured in 2009 when she started dating Italian midfielder Alberto Aquilani. The two are now married and have a daughter.
8. Elisabeth Reyes (Alexis Ruano – Getafe)
Born in Spain, Elisabeth Reyes is a model and television personality. In 2006, she won both the Miss Malaga and Miss Spain beauty pageants. She has modeled for a number of designers and companies as well as appeared in Spanish magazines and the German fashion magazine Gala. Reyes has appeared on several Spanish television shows and reality programs. As a WAG, she gained notoriety for her relationship with real Madrid defender Sergio Ramos. When the two parted ways, Reyes moved on to Getafe defender Alexis Ruano.
7. Tatjana Batinic (Sebastian Boenisch – Bayer Leverkusen)
The daughter of Croatian immigrants, Tatjana Batinic was born in Vienna, Austria. The 28 year old is best known for winning the title of 2006 Miss Austria. She went to school to become a elementary school teacher but currently focuses on her modeling career. In 2009, after breaking up with Croatian footballer Ivan Rakitic, Batinic met Polish-born footballer Sebastian Boenisch. At the time, a defender for Bundesliga side Werder Bremen, Boenisch has since moved to Bayer Leverkusen. The two were married in 2013.
6. Abigail Clancy (Peter Crouch – Stoke City)
You can be tall, lanky and awkward and still get a lingerie model. Just ask Stoke City forward Peter Crouch. Abigail Clancy was born in Liverpool and gained popularity as a model and television personality. She even had her own girl band for a while. Clancy has appeared in Sports Illustrated, Esquire and LOVE magazines. The 28-year old has appeared on numerous television programs and even won the 2013 reality show Strictly Come Dancing. Over the years, Clancy has been ranked on FHM’s Sexiest Women’s list. She started dating Crouch in 2006 and the couple were married in 2011.
5. Shakira (Gerard Piqué – Barcelona)
Born in Barranquilla, Columbia, Shakira quickly gained a love of poetry, song and dance. Her world-wide fame skyrocketed with a series of popular albums and hit songs such as ‘Waka Waka’ and ‘Hips Don’t Lie.’ She has performed or worked with many other artists including Usher, LMFAO, Skrillex, Stevie Wonder and Lil Wayne. Not limited to music, the 37 year old Columbian performer has also appeared on numerous television shows and is a judge on the talent program ‘The Voice.’ In 2010, Shakira met Barcelona defender Gerard Piqué during the shoot for the music video for ‘Waka Waka.’ The couple has one child together and currently reside in Barcelona.
4. Federica Ridolfi (Giuliano Giannichedda – Livorno)
Born in Rome, Federica followed in her father’s footsteps to become a performer and entertainer. For the 2005-2006 season, the 40-year old beauty starred on the Italian entertainment show Quelli che… il calcio; a program that covered a variety of topics, notably Serie A football. Over her career, Federica has been involved in several Italian television programs and featured in a number of men’s magazines, including Max Magazine. In 2011, she married retired footballer Giuliano Giannichedda, who last played as a midfielder for Serie A side Livorno.
3. Sarah Brandner (Bastian Schweinsteiger – Bayern Munich)
Brandner became a well known WAG when pictures of her watching the German national team and boyfriend, Bastian Schweinsteiger, were published during both the World Cup 2010 and Euro 2012 competitions. Born in Munich Germany, the 25 year old model has done work for Bild and GQ magazine, as well as a rather revealing body-paint shoot with Sports Illustrated in 2010. She first met Schweinsteiger while shopping in Munich. The two have been together since 2007 and currently live in Munich.
2. Yolanthe Cabau van Kasbergen (Wesley Sneijder – Galatasaray)
Try saying that name five times fast. Born in Ibiza, Spain, Yolanthe became well known in Holland thanks to her appearances in national television and film. Internationally, she is involved in the Stop Kindermisbruik foundation. This organization, which the 29-year old co-founded, works to help reduce or prevent child sexual abuse in developing countries. Yolanthe was named the sexiest Dutch Woman by FHM magazine three times. Dutch footballer Wesley Sneijder must have read the 2009 issue because he started dating her that year. The two were married in 2010.
1. Irina Shayk (Cristiano Ronaldo – Real Madrid)
So, who’s the lucky one here; The guy who gets a swimsuit model or the girl who get the World Soccer Player of the Year? Cristiano Ronaldo’s current girlfriend is Russian model Irina Shayk. She is best known as a long time Sports Illustrated swimsuit model, although she featured in several other magazines as well. Other modeling jobs have included Guess, Victoria’s Secret, LaCoste and Cesare Paciotti. Shayk allegedly met Ronaldo when both were working for the Armani Exchange Campaign in 2010. Since then, the two have been together.