TIKI-TAKAS

Off-field round-up: Dier, Dani Alves, Achraf, Joaquín...

We round up some off-the-field stories from the foobtalling world: Dier goes coach, Achraf Hakimi joins the Dad Club, Dani Alves has car stolen, Joaquín gets bizarre.

Off-field round-up: Dier, Dani Alves, Achraf, Joaquín...

Dier straits as Spurs star flies coach

Several Premier League footballers have taken advantage of the winter break to jet off for a short holiday. And while most avail of the comfort of first class or a luxury private jet, Tottenham’s Eric Dier chose to rough it in economy class of an EasyJet flight to Marrakesh.

A couple of passengers spotted the 26-year-old defender and proceeded to take some photos of him sleeping and generally not looking too thrilled to be travelling in cramped conditions with the common folk. In one photo he can be seen staring depressingly at the food cart and apparently contemplating his life choices – or maybe just snack choices.

According to The Sun, his EasyJet ticket cost just £250, which won’t have put too much of a dent on his £60,000-a-week pay-check. Perhaps he could have forked out an extra £10 for an allocated seat so he didn’t have to be stuck in the middle row. But fair play to Dier for showing himself to be a man of the people -- in row 15, seat B.

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Eric Dier, viajando en clase turista a Marrakech

Eric Dier, viajando en clase turista a Marrakech

Eric Dier, viajando en clase turista a Marrakech

Eric Dier, viajando en clase turista a Marrakech

Eric Dier, viajando en clase turista a Marrakech

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‘It’s a Hakimi’: Real Madrid loanee Achraf becomes dad

Borussia Dortmund defender Achraf Hakimi, who is currently on loan at the German club from Real Madrid, is the latest footballer to become a doting dad.

According to Hello magazine, the Moroccan player’s wife, actress Hiba Abouk, gave birth on Tuesday afternoon at the Ruber International Clinic in Madrid, with Achraf travelling from Germany to be by her side.

The pair shared baby bump photos on Instagram over the past few months, together with heartfelt  messages, such as this one by Hiba: “The man in this photo has planted in me a seed of love and unwavering respect”.

Achraf originally broke news of the pregnancy on his Instagram last year. “Yesterday I promised my wife that I would go out on the field with a clear objective: score a goal to dedicate to our future baby. The joy and enthusiasm pushed me to score not one, but two,” said the defender after scoring two goals against Inter Milan in the Champions League last May.

Grand Theft Alves

Former Barcelona, Juventus and PSG full-back, Dani Alves brought an end to his illustrious career in European football last summer, returning to see out his twilight years in his native Brazil, where he signed for Sao Paulo.

After falling victim to house thieves in Paris just a year ago, Alves has now had to report his car stolen in Sao Paulo, according to Brazilian outlet, Globoesporte. The thieves reportedly attacked an attendant in a parking lot in Rua Fradique Coutinho, in the Pinheiros neighbourhood, before making off with the Brazilian defender’s vehicle on Tuesday.

Dani Alves

Real Bizarre: Joaquin can’t get enough of Temptation Island

Isla de las Tentaciones (Temptation Island) is the latest piece of reality TV drivel to take Spain by storm. The premise of the show is putting five couples, whose relationships are already on the rocks, on an island with ten single men and ten single women to see if their love can stand the test of temptation. What could go possibly go wrong? 

The answer, of course, is a lot. And one Spanish footballer who can’t get seem to get enough of the constant car-crash drama on Temptation Island (arguably the greatest show to hit TV since The Wire) is Real Betis veteran Joaquin. The 38-year-old forward has posted a bizarre video of himself watching the show's finale. Even if you don’t speak Spanish, this is quite entertaining.