Barton had agreed to crop his facial hair as a forfeit of a bet amongst team-mates as soon as the Toon secured their first three points in the Premier League. His wonder strike helped Newcastle to a 6-0 win over Aston Villa last weekend.
But the 27-year-old’s moustache is simply paled into insignificance when compared to those sported by some of yesterday’s footballing greats. The Sport Review examines five of English football’s most iconic moustaches.
The famous Liverpool goalkeeper was renowned for his characteristic handle bar moustache at Anfield. Who knows, perhaps it was Grobbelaar’s impressive handle bar number which caused both Bruno Conti and Francesco Graziani to miss their spot-kicks in the 1984 European Cup final to hand Liverpool their fourth continental title.
David Seaman was England’s first choice goalkeeper for almost a decade and one of the stand-out shot stoppers in the Premier League. The 46-year-old is best known for his time at Arsenal, during which he boasted a bushy moustache which became tidier as the years progressed.
Rival Manchester United goalkeeper Peter Schmeichel did once, albeit tamely, attempt to out-do Seaman’s facial hair. However, while the Dane may have held the upper-hand over Seaman between the sticks, the Englishman undoubtedly won the battle of the brushes.
The 80’s were an era in which moustaches were almost utilised as fashion accessories. Former Liverpool general Souness can now be found doing punditry on Sky and RTE television, sadly however, without his recognisable handle bars.
The former Liverpool defender matched the efforts of his team-mates during the club’s glory years under Bill Paisley, Joe Fagan and Kenny Daglish. The moustache continued to remain prominent as Lawrenson joined the Match of the Day panel.
However, after famously predicting that Bolton would be relegated in 2001-02, Trotters fans challenged the former Ireland international to shave off his pride and joy should they finish above the bottom three. Lawrenson kept his word and removed the moustache following Bolton’s Premier League survival.
It is fair to say that Gary Neville has his very own brand of moustache. The England international has made famous the feather-weight goatee in recent years at Old Trafford. Indeed, the 35-year-old generated so much intrigue in his weak attempt at growing facial hair that it has even been ordained with its own page on Urban Dictionary.
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