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    Footballers invest in bizarre and beautiful properties they call home

    With plenty of money in their bank accounts, it is no wonder that footballers can easilybuild their dream homes. While some like John Terry love it regal, king of bling, Stephen Ireland ups the quirk factor with shocking colour choices. We take a sneak-peek into the multi-million dollar properties owned by current or former footy stars. Text: Aakanksha Devi 

    Football1aPink panther
    While the midfielder for Stoke may seem he couldn’t be as extravagant with a paltry £4.5 million as wages for a footballer, Stephen
    Ireland breaks the bank for his little daughter. In addition to a 12-metre indoor pool, spa bath, six bedrooms, cinema and snooker rooms in Prestbury, Cheshire, Ireland, his wife Jessica’s bedroom sports a brown, gold and black colour palette. The crowning glory though is the neon pink room for their daughter. With a princess-inspired theme, the room contains princess murals on the pink walls, a pink chair, bedspread and even ceiling. The multi-coloured home is topped off by a massive fish tank, a pool table with Ireland’s name splashed across it and a garage with a pink-trim Range Rover.

    Own goal
    Captain of Argentina, Lionel Messi, has used the talent of Spanish architect Luis de Garrido to build himself a property designed like a football. Divided by a hexagonal pattern, half of the roof is covered in grass while the other is glass, giving it the look of a football. With the ground divided between grass and swimming pool, elevated gardens beside the circular shape of the house also translates into the forward’s shirt number – 10.

    Football3aRoyal affair
    Chelsea captain John Terry really does like the high life and until recently, had a mansion to prove it. His mansion in Cobham, Surrey, where he is surrounded by other team mates and footballers, features nine bedrooms (for his and other’s wives!), an indoor swimming pool, Jacuzzi, steam room and even a fishing lake in the backyard. The house also sports a snazzy cinema theatre, an annex for staff and another wing for guests. Plus, an underground aquarium and a nuclear shelter. The England international recently sold his dream home, to Omani royalty for £10 million.

    Football4aHoly investment
    Andres Iniesta is certainly making a mark on his home in Fuentealbilla, Castile, Spain. While other players may make a house theirs by putting up photographs of themselves and family, Iniesta stamps his authority with his name and jersey number engraved on the
    outside walls. But very different from other lads in his profession, this Spanish star has a chapel at home, in addition to five bedrooms and a swimming pool.

    Going green
    He’s been getting flak for boring fans with his commentary during the World Cup, but Gary Neville’s taste for architecture will garner much worse. Although he abandoned his plans half-way through, the football pundit was all set to live in a Tellytubbies home. The five-bedroom home was to be covered in grass with wind-turbines giving it electricity, but apparently the neighbours were so
    distraught with the look of the monstrosity they objected and won. The eco-home on the West Pennine moors near Bolton is a certified zero-carbon one and the first to be built in the North-West of England.

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