Sport

After Wayne Rooney’s son Kai joins Man Utd: Ronaldo, Neville, Zidane, Maldini and sons aiming to fill dad’s big shoes – The Sun

WAYNE ROONEY’S son Kai became the latest boy wonder looking to fill the boots of his famous father late last year.

Proud dad Wazza announced the news his 11-year-old had penned a deal with Manchester United as he shared a snap of him and Coleen alongside the boy wonder in December.


But he won’t be the first son looking to fulfil the great expectations they were born with.

Offspring of legends like Zinedine Zidane and Patrick Kluivert are also looking to make their own way in the footballing world while dealing with the pressure of their iconic surnames.

And Maxim Gullit, son of Ruud and great nephew of Johan Cruyff, became the latest last year when he came off the bench for Jong AZ Alkmaar for his first taste of senior action.

Here, SunSport takes a look at the 13 other youngsters aiming to follow in their fathers' giant footsteps:

Cristiano Ronaldo Jr, 11

Cristiano Jr has a heavy legacy to live up to if he attempts to emulate his five-time Ballon d'Or winning father Ronaldo.

The youngster is part of Juventus' academy and has impressed in a number of youth tournaments.

And Ronaldo, 36, has admitted in the past he would 'like' to see Junior follow in his footsteps.

But the Portugal captain has insisted he will not 'pressure' his eldest son into a footballing career.

Joe van der Sar, 23

Joe van der Sar is the son of legendary father Edwin.

Joe began his career at Man Utd, where his dad starred for six years, and then moved on to Noordwijk before signing for Ajax in 2013 where Edwin is CEO.

These are giant gloves to fill and the expectations are high. He's now back at Noordwijk aiming to work his way to the top.

Maxim Gullit, 20

Son of Ruud and great nephew of Johan Cruyff, Maxim Gullit could hardly hope for better footballing genes.

Maxim, a defender and son of Estelle Cruyff, predominantly played for AZ’s Under-19 side in 2018-19 – but was handed an Easter treat – being called up a level.

The talented teen came on for the final 19 minutes of the AZ second team’s clash with champions Twente in the Netherlands’ second tier and helped his side keep a clean sheet.

He has since gone on to become a regular for their Under-21 side this season, while he made his debut for the first team in the 4-1 Europa League win over HNK Rijeka in the Europa League in October 2020.

Zidane (Luca, Enzo & Theo)

Zinedine Zidane has three sons aiming to follow in his giant footsteps.

Midfielder Enzo, 26, is currently at Ligue 2 side Rodez, and 19-year-old Theo is looking to develop in Real Madrid's academy.

Goalkeeper Luca, 23, made two appearances for Los Blancos, but he left in search of game time.

He is now at second-tier side Rayo Vallecano.

Gudjohnsen (Andri Lucas, Sveinn Aron & Daniel Tristan)

Former Chelsea, Tottenham and Barcelona striker Eidur Gudjohnsen has one son at Real Madrid, one son at Barca and another in Italy.

Sveinn, 23, and the spitting image of his father, is on loan at Danish outfit OB from Serie B side Spezia while younger brother Andri Lucas is in the big time at the Bernabeu.

The London-born 19-year-old, who is starring for Iceland's U19s, joined Real's La Fabrica academy in Valdebas last summer while 14-year-old Daniel Tristan is also at Los Blancos having previously played for Barcelona's youth team.

Eidur famously came on for his father, Arnor, while playing for Iceland, in 1996.

Tyrese Campbell, 21

Stoke's young star Tyrese Campbell made a huge breakthrough in 2019-20 – appearing 33 times in the Championship for the Potters.

The forward, who joined Stoke from Man City's academy in 2016, is son of former Arsenal, Everton and West Brom striker Kevin Campbell.

Tyrese scored his first goals for Stoke in the FA Cup in 2018-19 before being loaned out to League One Shrewsbury for the remainder of the campaign.

He scored six goals in 16 Championship games for the Potters in 2020-21.

Harvey Neville, 18

With TWO Manchester United Treble winners as father (Phil) and uncle (Gary), plus England's netball head coach for an aunt (Tracey), there was little chance of Harvey going into auditing.

Harvey, who plays in midfield or on the wing, began his career at United before moving to rivals City where he won the Premier League International Tournament as an Under-13.

He moved to Valencia when his father and uncle took charge of the first-team before returning to Old Trafford in 2018.

And earlier this year he followed dad Phil to the USA – joining Fort Lauderdale CF just up the road from his old man's digs in Miami.

Maurizio Pochettino, 20

Definitely a name that Tottenham fans can immediately warm to, Maurizio is the offspring of former Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino.

And the Argentine youngster, described as a wide player with an eye for goal, continued to play for the Lilywhites in 2019-20 despite his dad getting the sack in November that season.

He even signed a new contract with the club, but quit to join Watford on a free in January 2021.

Justin Kluivert, 22

The name may have got him noticed but it is Justin Kluivert's talent that has seen him thrive at such a young age.

Son of Patrick, left winger Justin was nurtured by the Ajax academy and is now starring in Serie A for Italian side Roma after signing in 2018 for £14.9million.

Manchester United were also believed to be after the youngster – who bagged five goals and two assists in 2019-20.

He spent the 2020-21 season on loan at RB Leipzig, where he has enjoyed a return to top form.

Daniel Maldini, 19

The Maldini dynasty continues, with Daniel following in father Paolo and grandfather Cesare's footsteps in Milan.

Daniel operates at the opposite end of the pitch to his father and has displayed his talents as a second striker.

The talented teen made his first-team debut against Hellas Verona in Serie A in 2019-20 – becoming the third generation of Maldini's to play for AC Milan.

He has since played seven Serie A matches and four Europa League games for the San Siro side.

Giovanni Simeone, 25

Son of Atletico Madrid boss Diego, Giovanni is one of the few in this group to have already established themselves.

Usually deployed as a second striker, Giovanni has broken into the Argentina team where he has been capped on five occasions – scoring once.

He joined Cagliari in the summer of 2020 after a successful loan spell where he has scored five goals in six Serie A matches.

Erling Haaland, 20

Erling Haaland, son of Man City's Alf-Inge whose career was ended after a horror tackle from United legend Roy Keane, is one of Europe's hottest properties.

The 20-year-old was mentored by Ole Gunnar Solskjaer at Molde, before smashing in the goals for RB Salzburg.

The hulking centre forward then rejected interest from the Red Devils and moved to Borussia Dortmund in January, and he has not stopped scoring since.

Haaland is now a target for City, Chelsea and Real Madrid – among many others.

Sydney van Hooijdonk, 21

Son of former Nottingham Forest striker Pierre, the 21-year-old has been in fine form for NAC Breda in the Dutch second tier in recent seasons.

The towering centre-forward has chipped in with 23 goals in 70 games since his 2019-20 debut.

His hot form has seen him linked with Forest, Swansea and Sheffield Wednesday in recent seasons.

    Source: Read Full Article