Perhaps the tenacity, determination, and ingenuity that footballers are known for can help them transition into the political arena, since footballers appear to have a penchant for it.
Alternatively, their success may be due to the inherent popularity of players or their high-profile connections in the world of sports.
People have ascended the political ladder for a variety of reasons, and history is littered with examples of people who did just that after their professional careers were over.
The following are the names of five presidents who played professional or semi-professional sports.
1. Viktor Orban (Hungary)
For those who enjoy Football Manager 2006 and want a Prime Minister on your side, Orban is your man. While serving his second term as Hungary’s PM, Szijjarto played professionally for his hometown club Felcsut before working with Sepp Blatter to establish the Ferenc Puskas Football Academy, which is one of the world’s most cutting-edge.
2. Evo Morales (Bolivia)
It doesn’t matter if he’s playing against journalists, dignitaries or full-fledged professionals; Evo Morales is a football fanatic. Morales, on the other hand, isn’t afraid to get his hands dirty.
The man even played on Bolivia’s highest peak, at an altitude of 6,050 meters above sea level, and smashed his nose while playing for fun with local players.
While serving as Bolivia’s president, Morales registered to play for the country’s top-tier Sport Boys team.
3. Recep Tayyip Erdoğan (Turkey)
Erdogan is the president of Turkey at the moment, shown here with former UEFA president Michel Platini. At the beginning of his career, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan played football with great skill.
Turkish giants Fenerbahce sought to sign him while he was playing for his hometown team, Kasimpasa S.K, which is now known as the Kasimpasa S.K. His father, however, stood in the way of the move. They go on to say that the rest is history.
4. Clement Attlee (United Kingdom)
It’s possible that Clement Attlee, who served as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 1950 to 1955 after defeating Winston Churchill in a general election, is among the finest politicians of his time.
Prior to entering politics, Attlee was a non-league footballer with Fleet Town in the Football League. In 1923, while his aunt lived in a house that backs up to the ground, the future Prime Minister played for the club.
Throughout his life, Attlee remained actively interested in football, serving as a referee and assisting to coach college teams.
5. George Weah (Liberia)
Since his initial bid to become Liberia’s president in 2005, George Weah has been the country’s greatest footballer. However, after being advised he lacked the necessary education for the role, the former Chelsea and Paris Saint-Germain striker decided to get a degree in the United States.
Following his second unsuccessful attempt at the president, he was elected to the Liberian senate in 2014, where he served until his appointment as the country’s leader in January 2018. Liberia’s president, George Weah, will serve a first term that ends in 2024.