From Alan Shearer and Michael Owen to Steven Gerrard and Joey Barton: Five sets of England team-mates who had famous bust-ups

9 Sep

Alan Shearer and Michael Owen were great friends during their time at Newcastle, but not anymore.

Last week, the pair of footballing legends engaged in a furious war of words that took the whole of English football by surprise.

In his new bookMy Life, My Time, Owen was heavily critical of Shearer’s time as interim manager of the club.

Shearer and Owen played alongside each other for Newcastle during the former’s final season as a footballer
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Shearer started the spat on social media by responding to an extract of the book and said: “Yes Michael, we thought that also, whilst on £120k a week…”

Owen was quick to hit back though and hinted about a time when the Premier League’s record goalscorer tried to force a move to Liverpool.

Despite their social media spat, both of the former strikers have admitted they were great friends on and off the pitch during their playing days.

However, in light of the feud, talkSPORT.com has identified other ex-England internationals who have had famous falling outs while with the Three Lions…

Have a look at our findings below…


Jack and Bobby Charlton

Bobby admitted in his own autobiography My Manchester United Years, that he fell out with his own brother Jack – the former Leeds United star – over Bobby’s wife, Norma.

Cissie Charlton, the pair’s mother, never got along with Norma and Jack took his mum’s side, leading to a family feud which would rumble on for decades.

It is believed the World Cup winners Bobby and Jack resolved their differences in recent years.

“When he (Jack) is in the Manchester area, he pops into our house and sometimes it’s easy. Sometimes less so,” Bobby recently said.

The two brothers infamously fell out with each other
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Rodney Marsh and Dennis Tueart

“Before I left his [Manchester] City farewell party, I stuck my hand out to him and said: ‘Good luck Rod,’” said ex-Man City star Dennis Tueart. “F*ck off,” came the reply – and ever since a furious spat between the pair simmered for years.

A furious Tueart told the then City boss Tony Book that Marsh was a ‘self-indulgent’ and a ‘show pony’, while Marsh said Tueart was ‘miserable and two-faced’.

And it is understood the two of them never made up, although Marsh recently joked he bumped into him at a party two decades later and said: “You’re a bastard, but I can’t remember why anymore.”

Marsh recently admitted he can’t remember why he fell out with Tueart
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Teddy Sheringham and Andy Cole

Both players have spoken frequently of their dislike of one another during their United days, despite enjoying incredible success on the pitch together – but it was their time at England which saw them really fall out.

Cole recalled of his England debut: “I walked onto the pitch, 60,000 or so watching. Sheringham is coming off. I expect a brief handshake, a ‘Good luck, Coley’, something. I’m ready to shake. He snubs me. He actively snubs me, for no reason I was ever aware of then or since.”

From that moment both players never said a word to one another off the pitch, with Gary Pallister once saying to Cole: “I know you don’t speak to Teddy and he doesn’t speak to you, but at least you play well together.”

Sheringham and Cole were team-mates at Man United
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Joey Barton and Steven Gerrard

After Frank Lampard, Gerrard and Ashley Cole almost simultaneously published autobiographies following England’s disappointing 2006 World Cup in Germany, outspoken Newcastle midfielder Barton was not impressed.

He fumed: “England did nothing in that World Cup, so why were they bringing books out? ‘We got beat in the quarter-finals. I played like sh*t. Here’s my book'”.

Later in 2007, Barton received an England call-up and Gerrard tried to defuse the situation by jokingly leaving a copy of his autobiography outside his hotel room.

“I’ve signed it for him,” said Gerrard. “You get a lot of time to yourself and I thought he might like to read it.”

Barton never made another appearance for the Three Lions.

Joey Barton’s England career lasted 17 minutes
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Rio Ferdinand and John Terry/Ashley Cole

Ferdinand launched a scathing attack on Terry in 2014 autobiography #2sides just two years after Terry was accused of racially abusing Rio’s brother Anton during a match against QPR.

“For me, the biggest idiot will always be John Terry,” Ferdinand said.

“I’ve never actually spoken to John about the case. I no longer talk to him.

He also said he fell out with Cole over the incident, claiming: “For me it [the relationship] ended the day he [Ashley Cole] decided to go to court in support of John Terry,” explained the former England defender.

Ferdinand and Terry are two of England’s greatest defenders of the modern era
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Forget Boris and Jo Johnson – The top 10 brothers in football, including the Toures and the Nevilles

6 Sep

Boris Johnson will continue to campaign for an election he is yet to successfully call, after a torrid day where his brother RESIGNED from Government while describing being torn between family and ‘the national interest’.

The Prime Minister visited Scotland on Friday, to drum up support among voters, as opposition leaders continue their talks over how to prevent a no-deal Brexit on October 31.

Boris and Jo Johnson have endured quite the falling out in Parliament
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The PM’s continued campaigning comes after a day of unwelcome events saw Jo Johnson quit as a senior minister attending meetings of his brother’s Cabinet.

The pro-EU Johnson described facing ‘unresolvable tension’ and being ‘torn between family loyalty and the national interest’.

But Boris Johnson maintained his uncompromising stance on Brexit, saying in a televised speech that he would rather be ‘dead in a ditch’ than go to Brussels to ask for a further delay.

Although rare, sport often offers siblings the chance to bury any lingering issues from childhood and build successful bonds.

Despite the ongoing rifts between Boris and Jo, we thought it apt to celebrate the footballing siblings who went from teenage tykes to winning trophies.

Check out the top ten below.

10. Filippo and Simone Inzaghi

Filippo enjoyed the more decorated playing career, but Simone is proving to be a better manager thus far
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‘Pippo’ made a name for himself as the archetypal poacher, a Fox in the Box whose six-yard strikes helped him win two Champions League titles, three Serie A titles and the World Cup in 2006.

For brother Simone, his playing career was relatively modest and he remained firmly in his brother’s shadow.

However, his move into management has seen the roles reversed, with Simone coming into a world of his own and he has been in charge of Lazio since 2016. Filippo was in charge of former side AC Milan, but has struggled and has just been appointed as manager of Benevento.

9. Lars and Sven Bender

The midfielders played for Bayer Leverkusen and Germany together
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12 minutes is the only difference between the twins, with Sven slightly older. As youngsters, both trained at TSV Brannenburg before both moved to 1860 Munich in 2006.

However, the older brother moved to Borussia Dortmund in 2009 and the siblings were separated as Lars moved to Bayer Leverkusen. The duo enjoyed mixed success at their respective clubs, with Lars earning the captaincy of Die Werkself, while Sven reached the Champions League final in 2013.

Thankfully, Sven brought his eight-tenure with Dortmund to an end in 2017 and the pair form part of Leverkusen’s defence.

8. Frank and Ronald de Boer

The brothers literally followed one another around for their entire career, featuring for Ajax, Barcelona, Rangers, Al-Shamal and Al-Rayyan before retirement
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Another set of twins, there have arguably never been a pair who impacted the game as much as the De Boers. Technically gifted, both began their careers at Ajax in 1988 and became key components of Louis van Gaal’s successful side.

They then followed Van Gaal to Barcelona for £22million, but their successful first season was prove to be a one-off. Both brothers joined Dick Advocaat at Rangers, before seeing out their careers in Qatar.

Frank was a ball-playing centre-back, while Ronald was a goal-scoring midfielder.

7. Eden and Thorgan Hazard

While Eden is currently the more successful of the two, Thorgan is making a name for himself in Germany
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For fans of the Premier League, former Chelsea star Eden will need no introduction. But the stage may soon be set for Thorgan to usurp the Real Madrid winger.

After lighting up the Bundesliga with Borussia Monchengladbach, the 26-year-old moved to Borussia Dortmund in the summer and is a regular with Belgium alongside his brother, the captain.

Thorgan has started the season for Dortmund alongside the likes of Jadon Sancho, while Eden’s start at the Bernabeu has been far from plain sailing. Questions about his fitness and even his weight have plagued the 28-year-old since he arrived in Spain.

6. Rio and Anton Ferdinand

Both came through the fabled West Ham academy, but Anton never reached the same heights as Rio
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After seeing Rio depart for Leeds United for a world-record £18million in 2000, West Ham fans were convinced they would have to wait years to see another centre-half come through the ‘Academy of Football’.

However, just a few years later brother Anton came through and displayed the same composure on the ball as well as the outstanding physical attributes which his elder brother had become fabled for.

But it was Rio who enjoyed the more glittering career, moving for another world record fee to Manchester United and winning six Premier League trophies and the Champions League, amassing 81 caps for England as well.

5. Rafinha and Thiago Alcantara

Arguably the best sibling duo still playing the beautiful game today
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In terms of pure technical ability, these two may just be the best thanks to their World Cup-winning father Mazinho and their education at Barcelona’s famous La Masia academy.

But although they are both gifted midfield players., that is where the similarities end. Thiago opted to play for Spain and is sponsored by Nike. Rafinha plays for Brazil and is sponsored by adidas.

Mazinho’s career took him across the globe, resulting in his sons’ multicultural upbringing. Thiago was born in Italy and then he moved to Spain at the age of five.

For Rafinha, he was born in Brazil and failed to quite hit the heights of his older brother, currently spending the season on loan at Celta Vigo from Barca while Thiago lights up the Bundesliga with Bayern Munich.

4. Michael and Brian Laudrup

Michael won league titles with Juventus, Barcelona and Real Madrid as well as a European Cup,. but Brian won the 1992 European Championships with Denmark
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Before Christian Eriksen became the darling of Denmark, the Laudrup brothers were the pride of Scandinavia, with their elegance and poise on the ball mesmerising.

Michael was arguably the more successful of the two, league titles with Juventus, Barcelona and Real Madrid as well as a European Cup. In fact, he was named as the Best Danish Footballer ever in 2006.

But younger brother Brian played a crucial role in  Denmark’s 1992 European Championships win and became a cult hero at Chelsea and Rangers during the latter stages of his career.

3. Sir Bobby and Jack Charlton

Both men won the World Cup with England in 1966 but Bobby went on to become the nation’s all time top scorer
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Although the two brothers are no longer particularly close, their journey from the small mining town of Ashington to World Cup glory in 1966 is truly remarkable.

Bobby, the short and dynamic attacker, was a complete contract to Jack’s unerring centre-half. But the duo were brought up in an impoverished life where they only had one another at times.

As the final whistle blew on that scorching afternoon at Wembley against West Germany, Bobby headed straight for his older brother.

“Nobody can ever take this moment away from us,” he told Jack as they embraced, tears streaming down the younger sibling’s face.

2. Phil and Gary Neville

Sister Tracey was head coach of England Netball and their dad is called Neville…seriously
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The duo began their footballing careers in Bury as two tykes who just wanted to kick lumps put of each, as brothers naturally do. Older brother Gary was the more physically advanced of the two and broke into the Manchester United team first.

But it was Phil who took his brother’s right-back spot for the 1996 FA Cup Final, before being left out of England’s 1998 World Cup squad.

Phil left for Everton and became club captain, before both ended up at Valencia during an ill-fated management spell. The younger Neville is now managing the England Women’s team, while Gary can be heard airing his views on football in his role as a pundit.

1. Kolo and Yaya Toure

The best footballing brothers, let’s hope Yaya doesn’t expect a cake for the accolade
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So iconic are the Toure brothers, the fan favourite song meant for them transcended football and was soon being performed on the strips of Magaluf and Malia.

After older brother Kolo earned a move to Arsenal, it seemed natural Yaya would follow. But Arsene Wenger passed on the chance to sign the midfielder and he wound up at Barcelona.

Meanwhile Kolo got a lucrative move to Manchester City and convinced Roberto Mancini his brother was the man City needed.

While neither man will have wanted to leave the Etihad in the way they did, the impact the Toure brothers had on the Premier League was huge Kolo was a key part of the Gunners’ 2004 ‘Invincibles’ team while Yaya will be remembered as one of the greatest midfielders to ever grace these shores.