“Even stuff like going to Tesco for your shopping takes more time to get round the aisles with people stopping you.  I've had people looking in my trolley to see what I'm buying, to make sure it' s all healthy, but I think my diet's OK so I got pass marks! I remember one time I was getting in a big shop and the check-out lady wanted an autograph for her son. She even offered to put through half my shopping without scanning it!”
Gary Mackay-Steven on the difference between playing for Celtic, who he joined in January, and lesser clubs

“Messi is the greatest player in football history. Many say that Maradona did more [because he won] a World Cup, but those were different times. Messi is better. Messi and Ronaldo are two great players, but Leo is the best and that’s why I named my son after him. If we compare them to tennis [players], Ronaldo is like Nadal, Messi is like Federer.”
Antonio Cassano

“I was going to Madrid. I got on the plane and I saw Ronaldo and Roberto Carlos. We greeted each other and they said, ‘Cool, you’re going to Spain on holidays’. I said, ‘No, I’m going to Spain to coach you two! They were stunned.
Vanderlei Luxemburgo on becoming Real Madrid coach
 

"It's shameful they have won just one league title in seven seasons. I think – even at my age – I'd win more than one Spanish title playing with a load of former players! It’s good that they’ve given more importance to their basketball team, because they’ll be watching the football finals on television!”
Hristo Stoichkov
taunts Real Madrid

“Less than a week after Mum died, Chelsea had the second leg of a Champions League semi-final against Liverpool. The night before the game, Avram Grant, our manager, came to my room and said he didn't want to select me. I begged him to let me play. Steve Clarke, one of Avram's assistants, spoke to him and pushed for me, and I played and scored a penalty in extra-time in our victory. Football was such a big part of my life that it was a thing I could cling to in the aftermath of Mum's death. Football was all I knew to take my mind off it. To take that away was something I didn't want to handle. I played that game in a bit of a zombie state. I don't remember much about the game. I remember the penalty. Maybe I shouldn't have taken it, but I felt like I had to.”
Frank Lampard

"Pogba a superstar? No, a superstar in football is someone who scores a lot of goals. It’s interesting to note that whenever he loses possession and the team gets into trouble, the other players all have a go at him."
Michel Platini

“You need guns and bombs to stop them!”
Moreno Torricelli on Barcelona’s front three

"I've never cried over football before – no no – but this was a special reason. My friend Bert van Lingen – we have done 25 years together – came over. He was crying, so I didn't need much encouragement. He said, ‘Let it go’, so I said ‘Why not?’ and did the same.”
Dick Advocaat after leading Sunderland to Premier League survival

"First I’m taking the belt back home to the Emirates. Then I’m taking it to Wembley for the final to wave it at all the fellow fans.”
James DeGale, a huge Arsenal supporter, ahead of his IBF super-middleweight title challenge at the Agganis Arena in Boston

“Arturo Vidal! Arturo Vidal!”
Beyonce Knowles gives an unprompted football-themed greeting to seeing some Chileans at Port au Prince International Airport, Haiti