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world cup

By Maya Reyes-Solano

The World Cup has officially started in Brazil, which means the majority of the world will spend the next month glued to their TV screens, filled with patriotic pride- even in countries like the US, where soccer is slowly building a fan base. I highly suggest everyone watch because it’s a fairly simple sport to understand, fun to watch and the players, well, they aren’t terrible to look at. The favorites to win, in case you were wondering, are Germany and host country Brazil.

World Cup promotion aside, football/soccer is the world’s sport and with 32 countries from all corners of the earth involved in the finals, so interesting names are just waiting to be discovered.  The full rosters, with both first and surnames included can be found on Fifa’s website, but some of the best are listed below. And you’ll find that some of the most popular naming trends in the U.S. are reflected on the rosters of several countries: Italian variations of our Top 100, Roman names, place names, and other trends can all be found on footballers.  

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football names

By Denise K. Potter

This Sunday February 2nd, the Seattle Seahawks and Denver Broncos will go head-to-head at Super Bowl XLVIII. And while the U.S.A. is in a complete football frenzy, loyal name nerds everywhere will be questioning which team wins—the name-game that is. Take a look at the 12 most enthralling names of Super Bowl XLVIII. Which is your MVP?

From Seattle

Byron Maxwell – The name of Seahawks’ cornerback is arguably the dreamiest of the league, with its romantic, windswept aura stemming from images of the poet Lord Byron.

Golden Tate – recognized as an All-American player for the University of Notre Dame, Golden H. Tate III was drafted for the NFL in 2010 and became the Seahawks’ wide receiver. With its shimmering metallic connotation, this unisex color name is almost too stunning for an ordinary boy.

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olympibboy

By Tara Ryazansky

The men hoping to compete for the US Olympic Team have names that are just as winning as the women.’s  I put together a list of some boy names that might win over new parents in 2014.

LeifAs in Biathlon team member, Leif Nordgren.  This name has a strong Scandinavian vibe, but feels usable here in the US because of its well known connections to Leif Erikson and Leif Garrett.  I think it’s a great choice, but I must admit, I am guilty of the mispronunciation “Leaf“.  Its authentic pronunciation is more like “Layf”.

Stokes- Stokes Aitken of the US bobsled skeleton federation has a compelling name.  This very unusual choice could be inspired by any of the counties and towns across America called Stokes.  It is a fairly common English surname with variants that date back to the Middle Ages.

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Drew Brees Baby

While the country’s attention will be focused on football this Super Bowl Sunday, some of us may be more interested in another aspect of the action: The crazy names of the players, of course!  Nameberry’s new intern Robert Harclerode breaks down the most interesting names on both teams:

The Super Bowl has displayed a vast amount of talent and drama, but it has also showcased some of the most unique names on one of the biggest stages in all of professional sports.

The Pittsburgh Steelers and the Green Bay Packers both boast their own separate historic franchises, as well as their own fascinating names within the Super Bowl’s past.  In Super Bowl I & II, which both ended in Green Bay victories, Bart Starr was named the Most Valuable Player. Other great Packers in those first Super Bowls include Forrest Gregg, Boyd Dowler, Elijah Pitts, Max McGee, Lionel Aldridge, and Zeke Bratkowski.

The Steelers also had their share of unique names that have won the Super Bowl MVP in the past such as Franco Harris, Lynn Swann, Terry Bradshaw and Santonio Holmes.

Here are some distinctive names to listen for in this year’s Super Bowl showdown:

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worldcup3

The World Cup means many things to many people–mostly rooting for their country’s team–but to name nerds it also means a chance to sample a smorgasbord of international names. They’re all here–Slavic names, Norse names, Hispanic names, African, Asian and Anglo names…

Here’s a selection of some that we found particularly intriguing and possibly exportable, together with the team they play for  (understanding that it doesn’t necessarily represent their own ethnnicity).  In some soccer cultures–especially Portugal and Brazil–there’s a tradition of using only one name (one Brazilian superstar moniker I’m NOT including is Kaka, even if the accent is on the second syllable), and some of the choices below are the nicknames the players are known by.

ABOU Diaby (France)

ACHILLE Emana (Cameroon)

ALOU Diarra (France)

ARJEN Robben (Netherlands)

AURELIEN Chedjou (Cameroon)

BECARY Sagna (France)

BOJAN Jokec (Slovenia)

BROU Angoua (Ivory Coast)

BROWN Ideye (Nigeria)

CACAU (Germany)

CLEMENTE Rodriguez (Argentina)

CRISTIANO Ronaldo (Portugal)

DANILO Turcios (Honduras)

DANKO Lazovic (Serbia)

DECO (Portugal)

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