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Bucking the trend

Ronaldo, Nadal, Federer, Xavi, Mbappé... tattooless sports stars

Cristiano Ronaldo

The Juventus striker is also the world's most famous bone marrow and blood donor: he donates peripheral blood stem cells as well as blood and this requires him to remain tattoo-free for periods of four months or more.

Photo: @Cristiano

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Cristiano Ronaldo

The Juventus striker is also the world's most famous bone marrow and blood donor: he donates peripheral blood stem cells as well as blood and this requires him to remain tattoo-free for periods of four months or more.

Photo: OSCAR DEL POZO AFP

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Rafa Nadal

"I’ll never have a tattoo – I just don’t like them, and when you’re old they can look a disaster. As for piercings, I don’t like them on men," the 17-times Grand Slam champions said in a interview a few years ago.

Photo: SAEED KHAN AFP

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Rafa Nadal

"I’ll never have a tattoo – I just don’t like them, and when you’re old they can look a disaster. As for piercings, I don’t like them on men," the 17-times Grand Slam champions said in a interview a few years ago.

Photo: Scott Barbour DIARIO AS

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Roger Federer

"Yeah, and not only on the arm!" Federer told tennisworldusa about where his fans get tats of the 20-times Grand Slam champions. "In Serbia, a fan of mine showed "RF" tattoo on his calf. In Buenos Aires a guy took his t-shirt off and on the pecs, there was a tattoo featuring my face." Why Federer has no ink he did not say, but the vast sums he makes through endorsements based on his wholesome image probably has something to do with it.

Photo: TONY ASHBY AFP

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Roger Federer

"Yeah, and not only on the arm!" Federer told tennisworldusa about where his fans get tats of the 20-times Grand Slam champions. "In Serbia, a fan of mine showed "RF" tattoo on his calf. In Buenos Aires a guy took his t-shirt off and on the pecs, there was a tattoo featuring my face." Why Federer has no ink he did not say, but the vast sums he makes through endorsements based on his wholesome image probably has something to do with it.

Photo: Clive Brunskill

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Novak Djokovic

Janko Tipsarevic may have a fair bit of body art but his compatriot Djokovic has always avoided the tattoo parlour.

Photo: SAEED KHAN AFP

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Novak Djokovic

Janko Tipsarevic may have a fair bit of body art but his compatriot Djokovic has always avoided the tattoo parlour.

Photo: TORSTEN BLACKWOOD AFP

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Sergio García

The Spanish golfer has no visible tattoos, not even of his idol Seve Ballesteros.

Photo: Warren Little Getty Images

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Sergio García

The Spanish golfer has no visible tattoos, not even of his idol Seve Ballesteros.

Photo: David Cannon

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Andrés Iniesta

We imagine the idea of getting a tattoo is anathema to the "White Knight," who has always shunned the spotlight and prefers to concentrate on his vintages at his Castilla-La Mancha winery.

Photo: Buddhika Weerasinghe Getty Images

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Andrés Iniesta

We imagine the idea of getting a tattoo is anathema to the "White Knight," who has always shunned the spotlight and prefers to concentrate on his vintages at his Castilla-La Mancha winery.

Photo: RODOLFO MOLINA DIARIO AS

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Pau Gasol

The celebrated basketball player is another exception to the rule in his sport: the NBA is awash with the tattooist's ink.

Photo: Christian Petersen AFP

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Pau Gasol

The celebrated basketball player is another exception to the rule in his sport: the NBA is awash with the tattooist's ink.

Photo:

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Iker Casillas

The former Real Madrid keeper, now at Porto, has always been humble about his achievements and his upbringing in the Madrid suburb of Mostóles was fairly traditional, making him an unlikely candidate to get so much as a dolphin on his ankle for a bet.

Photo: FRANCISCO LEONG AFP

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Iker Casillas

The former Real Madrid keeper, now at Porto, has always been humble about his achievements and his upbringing in the Madrid suburb of Mostóles was fairly traditional, making him an unlikely candidate to get so much as a dolphin on his ankle for a bet.

Photo: JAVIER GANDUL DIARIO AS

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Xavi Hernández

Like his former Barcelona teammate Iniesta, we imagine Xavi - and Carles Puyol - would have blanched at any young upstarts marching into the Camp Nou dressing room with a full hipster sleeve. Which is probably why Leo Messi waited until they had left to get inked.

Photo: KARIM JAAFAR AFP

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Xavi Hernández

Like his former Barcelona teammate Iniesta, we imagine Xavi - and Carles Puyol - would have blanched at any young upstarts marching into the Camp Nou dressing room with a full hipster sleeve. Which is probably why Leo Messi waited until they had left to get inked.

Photo: @Xavi

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Luka Modric

The Real Madrid man has avoided the tattoo parlours of the Spanish capital, which is no mean feat given the amount of empty skin left on some of his teammates.

Photo: JUAN FLOR DIARIO AS

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Luka Modric

The Real Madrid man has avoided the tattoo parlours of the Spanish capital, which is no mean feat given the amount of empty skin left on some of his teammates.

Photo: AMR ABDALLAH DALSH REUTERS

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Kylian Mbappé

Olympic athletes, almost without exception, get the five rings inked as soon as they are named in a country's delegation so you would have though the practice would be rife among the even smaller group of a World Cup-winning side. However, Les Bleus golden boy Mbappé has so far remained ink-free.

Photo: FRANCK FIFE AFP

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Kylian Mbappé

Olympic athletes, almost without exception, get the five rings inked as soon as they are named in a country's delegation so you would have though the practice would be rife among the even smaller group of a World Cup-winning side. However, Les Bleus golden boy Mbappé has so far remained ink-free.

Photo: @k.mbappe

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