maxi_crop.jpg

This is the latest installment of The World Cup According to Kempt™, our series on the stuff that really matters at this summer’s tournament in South Africa.

We love when a person from one part of the world looks like a person from a completely different part of the world. It makes our planet seem a bit smaller. It also makes our planet seem a bit funnier.

Nowhere are there more examples of this than at the World Cup. For instance, you may have turned on your TV this weekend and thought for a second that Adam Sandler (albeit a young Adam Sandler) was playing midfield for Argentina. In fact, it was a 29-year-old named Maxi Rodriguez. (We hear he’s almost as funny.) This got us thinking: who are some of the World Cup’s other lookalikes? Here’s what we came up with…

Carlos Dunga, Brazil: Martin Kove, aka, that mean karate instructor from the original Karate Kid
As mentioned in a previous piece, Dunga looks like the evil dojo instructor from the original Karate Kid. You can almost see him shouting (in Portuguese), “Defeat does not exist in this dojo!” It’s mainly the forehead. They’ve got the same menacing, over-pronounced, overbearing forehead. Let’s hope Dunga didn’t smash his hands through a car window after his team went down to Holland on Friday.

Steve Cherundolo, USA: Friday Night LightsZach Gilford
A friend of ours pointed out this resemblance at a watch party for the USA-England game, and we think he’s right. This one isn’t quite as impressive since both guys are from the same country, but still. From certain angles, they look a lot alike. Maybe after Cherundolo gets finished playing professionally in Germany, he can do some stand-in work for Gilford. Or maybe they can just hit the bars together and mess with people.

Didier Zokora, Ivory Coast: Snatch’s Lennie James
Last week we happened to be watching the first episode of the second season of Hung, and we were like, whoa, that pimp talking to that other pimp looks like Didier Zokora. (You know you watch a lot of soccer and cable TV when you make this comparison, by the way.) James is from London, and Zokora used to play in London (for Tottenham Hotspur). We wonder if they ever got mistaken for each other.

Daniele De Rossi, Italy: Daniel Craig
This one was brought to our attention via the soccer blog Who Ate All the Pies. It’s a good call. Especially when they both have beards. We never did think De Rossi looked especially Italian. He looks more like a Brit or even an American.

Lionel Messi, Argentina: Dustin Hoffman in All the President’s Men
Speaking of foreign guys who look American, Lionel Messi looks like a guy who belongs in a dorm at the University of Missouri, smoking pot and watching The Simpsons. Or, as Bill Simmons pointed out, running around D.C. with Robert Redford.

Carlos Tevez, Argentina: Shrek
Mean, but true.

Franck Ribery, France: the dude from Goonies?

Mesut Ozil, Germany: any character on The Simpsons
This guy has eyes that are more buggy than any other person we’ve ever seen in real life. And amazingly, he’s really fast and good at soccer. He could easily be one of Bart’s classmates. Or Lisa’s classmates. Or, if Germany goes on to win the World Cup, maybe he could even appear on the show as himself. It would be the easiest Simpsons-ification of a real person ever.

Vicente del Bosque, coach of Spain: Inspector Clouseau
This one is also by way of Who Ate All the Pies. And we think it’s right on the money.

Oguchi Onyewu, USA: Vin Diesel
Now we’re reaching…

Robinho, Brazil: Tiger Woods
Yes? A little bit? In the eyes?

Lukas Podolski, Germany: a young Arnold Schwarzenegger
We watched the Germany-Argentina game thinking, “Who does Podolski look like?” It really bugged us. A young Arnold is who we came up with. Then we started thinking, Podolski has actually been around for a while, even though he looks young. It could be that we’ve reached the stage where Lukas Podolski just reminds us of Lukas Podolski.

Gonzalo Higuain, Argentina: Bryan Greenberg
This one we are quite proud of. It’s there. The hair color. The facial hair. The eyes. The nose. It’s undeniable. If Bryan Greenberg were watching Argentina, there’s no way he couldn’t think, “That dude looks like me.”

—S.D.

CONTRIBUTORS

  • Shawn Donnelly