We found the England football team’s old social media profiles and it’s honestly so entertaining
Why are they all dressing up as Ali G? Why?
One of the great things about the current England team is how normal they all seem – like everyday blokes who just happen to be good at football – a far cry from the preening "golden generation" of Becks, Wazza and Lamps whose faces were constantly splashed all over the tabloid press back in '06.
As anyone who has grown up in the age of social media will testify, part of being "normal" is having uploaded a veritable treasure trove of embarrassing content – unaware that it will still be online far after you realised that fedoras were not a substitute for a personality or that absolutely nobody has ever really pulled off Chelsea boots.
The England football team are no different, and a quick look through their (often still functional) Myspace, Bebo and Instagram accounts produces some moments of joyous purity – missives from an altogether simpler time in their lives. I cannot overemphasise how much I unironically love these lads – here are some of their best bits:
The England captain and leading goalscorer has a Myspace page that is a pure delight. Nearly every single photo features him wearing the black shirt with white tie combination that makes him look like Sid from Skins attending his sixth-form prom.
Young Kane is simply a man who has found a look and stuck with it – no matter what anyone says. It's that kind of dogged determination in the face of adversity that is what makes him England's captain and potential golden boot winner – though I hope if he does win a pair of golden boots he doesn't wear them because they wouldn't go with the tie.
England's penalty hero against Columbia and man of the match against Sweden, Pickford is the kind of guy who could save even the government's disastrous Brexit process.
His Instagram absolutely nails the "northern hardman with a heart of gold" vibe that he displays on the pitch – with an excellent speciality in "alpha male protectively standing behind his girlfriend" photos.
This is the kind of guy Alex Turner used to write songs about – necking supermarket cider and swinging at any guy that looks at him funny – before making up in the smoking area and buying him a pint later to say sorry.
The first thing you learn through traipsing through Harry's Insta is yes, his head always used to be that big. The kind of head that makes such strong contact with the ball that you hope for the goalkeeper's sake that he doesn't get a hand to it lest it yank his arm out of the socket.
Even in his most recent posts he still treads this line between "bloke in your dad's pub league darts team", and "world class professional athlete" with noteworthy aplomb.
Maguire is wearing an England kit here AS A FAN. He has gone to a Sports Direct and paid actual money for a replica of a kit in four years he'd be wearing for real. An almost Dickensian tale.
So confident in his masculinity that he not only admits to drinking cocktails, but says which exact cocktail it is for the benefit of the viewers at home.
J.Lingz is the ultimate social media savvy player – his Snapchat stories are full of him roasting his fellow England and United team mates and his celebrations tend to reference video game sensation and sad boy staple Fortnite.
Considering all of this it is no surprise that his social media tends to be pretty free of shockers – with the notable exception of this adorable Mother's Day post that looks eerily like an old Catherine Tate sketch.
Dele has straddled the line between the old days of Myspace and the bright new future of Instagram in a laudable manner. His still live Myspace account contains this all time classic profile picture:
Since signing his first professional contract with MK Dons, Alli has transitioned into the more mature role of "literally every single boy on social media in the world." He's got all the hallmarks:
The pointing at your boy so everyone knows he's your boy
The ill-fated attempt to pull off a hat that was never repeated
The phone-reflected-in-the-sunglasses poolside selfie
A true hero.
England football players aren't meant to be this sexy – it just seems unfair on the rest of us for Daddy Rubes to have been blessed both with brilliant skills as a ball-carrying midfielder and have such chiselled cheekbones.
However he is let down by a few questionable Instagram posts – like this one where you absolutely know he was planning on going out in just the t-shirt before his mum said he needed to look a bit smarter:
Henderson's Bebo is sadly no longer with us – but screenshots of it most certainly are.
Unlike many of the others, Henderson also put a huge amount of effort into his bio, so that we could truly get to know the real Jordan. Whether this is from his actual social media account is to be disputed, but I'm enjoying it either way:
His Insta is absolutely textbook professional footballer, mostly shots of him playing, wearing suits at awards ceremonies and very rarely enjoying time off at a beach somewhere:
Hang on, are we absolutely certain that isn't Sam from Love Island?
BONUS SECTION: WHICH ONE OF THEM LOOKS BEST AS ALI G?
England footballers just really love to dress up as Ali G. But who pulls the look off the most?
Very, very solid showing from Dele here – got exactly the right plasticky sheen on the tracksuit. Bonus marks for the appearance of Kyle Walker here as a very respectable Mrs Doubtfire – 8/10
Pickford's beanie hat here is absolutely spot on, but it just lacks a bit of bling and the tracksuit looks more like a bin bag – 5/10
What would be a very average Ali is saved by Maguire's incredible expression and simple hashtag – 7/10
Dele takes it.