5 Famous Soccer Players Who Were Once Ball Boys

By Peter C

The dream of every ball boy is to become a superstar player at some point. While it may not happen for all young athletes, it has happened to some in the past. Below is a list of five of those boys who lived their dreams.

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Philip Lahm

Popularly touted as ‘the magic dwarf,’ Philip Lahm is arguably the most excellent defender of his era. The right-back joined Bayern Munich’s academy in 1995 at age 11. Lahm has spoken about how watching Bayern games as a ball-boy shaped his early career. He enjoyed an illustrious career with Bayern and the German national team.

Fabio Cannavaro

He was named the FIFA Best Player in 2006 after captaining Italy to success at the 2006 FIFA World Cup. Cannavaro began football as a ball-boy with his hometown club S.S.C. Napoli.

Callum Hudson-Odoi

Hudson-Odoi broke into Chelsea’s first team at a young age. He made a remarkable impression when Chelsea’s Youth team secured consecutive FA Youth Cups and clinched the U18 Premier League title. This former ball-boy marked his inaugural appearance for the first team on January 28, 2018, during the FA Cup match against Newcastle United.

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Pep Guardiola

Rising from ball-boy to being a key player in Johan Cruyff’s Barcelona ‘Dream Team’ is a monumental achievement in itself. However, going on to become the club’s most successful manager is an absolute beauty of a journey. That’s Pep Guardiola!

Phil Foden

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola once made a noteworthy statement about Phil Foden, who had once served as a ball boy. He asserted that Phil was the most talented player he had ever seen in his managerial career. Presently, Foden is one of the most talented young players in Europe.