It’s been said that a woman stands behind every great man — inspiring him, supporting him, exhorting him to greatness. And since competing in the World Cup is a truly great achievement, it’s no surprise that power couples like the 10 on this list are so prevalent on and around the pitch.
Lionel Messi and Antonella Roccuzzo
Nearly two decades after meeting as teenagers, and following the arrival of sons Thiago and Mateo, Argentina’s five-time Ballon d’Or winner married long-time girlfriend Roccuzzo, a former dentistry and communication student who is now pursuing a modelling career. A third son, Ciro, was born the following year.
Neymar and Bruna Marquezine
At age 26, the world’s most expensive footballer is currently dating Bruna Marquezine, a 22-year-old actress. Both Brazilians are famous in their own right: Neymar for his 2016 Olympic gold medal and other sporting exploits, and Marquezine for a career that includes 20 TV shows, six movies, and a stage role.
Radamel Falcao and Lorelei Taron
Years before he became Colombia’s all-time scoring leader, and shortly after playing in his first senior-level FIFA match in 2007, the 32-year-old striker known as “The Tiger” married Argentina singer Taron, 29, who released her first album, No Me Rendiré, in 2017.
Marcelo and Clarice Alves
The three-time Club World Cup winner and the Brazilian actress married in 2008 after meeting as teenagers in their native Brazil. Now 30 and 29 years old, respectively, the couple is raising a son, Enzo Vieira.
Gerard Pique and Shakira
World Cup couples fun fact: with both their birthdays falling on Feb. 2, Colombian pop superstar Shakira, 41, is exactly 10 years older than her Spanish World Cup champion husband.
Sergio Ramos and Pilar Rubio
He’s 32, she’s 40, and between them, this Spanish power couple has a 2010 World Cup title, various TV media awards, and three children: Marco, Sergio Jr., and Alejandro.
Lionel Messi and Antonella Roccuzzo
Nearly two decades after meeting as teenagers, and following the arrival of sons Thiago and Mateo, Argentina’s five-time Ballon d’Or winner married long-time girlfriend Roccuzzo, a former dentistry, and communication student who is now pursuing a modelling career. A third son, Ciro, was born the following year.
Luis Suarez and Sofía Balbi
Talk about a rags-to-riches romance. Suarez and Balbi met in 2001 when he was a poor street sweeper in Uruguay and she a middle-class teen. Eight years later, after a meteoric rise that saw Suarez score twice in the 2007 FIFA U-20 World Cup, the couple married. Now, heading into Suarez’s third World Cup, they are raising two young children
Luka Modric and Vanja Bosnic
Bosnic isn’t just the wife of Croatia’s captain—she’s his agent too. The couple met when Vanja worked in the same office as Modric’s former agent; they married in 2010, and now have three children: Ivano, Ema, and Sofia.
Toni Kroos and Jessica Farber
Since Kroos and Farber, a former tourism student, began dating in 2008, the German striker has won the World Cup once and the Club World Cup three times (with Bayern Munich and Real Madrid). The pair has also been busy raising a family, with son Leon arriving in 2013 and daughter Amelie coming in 2016, a year after her parents tied the knot.
Cristiano Ronaldo and Georgina Rodriguez
The five-time Ballon d’Or winner, 33, reportedly met his 21-year-old Spanish girlfriend in the VIP area of a Dolce and Gabbana event in Madrid. The dancer-turned-model has since become a mom after giving birth to Ronaldo’s fourth child, Alana Martina, in 2017.