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Luis Figo

National Treasure

Figo, who is married to model Helen Swedin and has one child, is revered in his native Portugal. FIFA President Joseph Blatter, presenting the Footballer of the Year award in 2001, called him "the most unbelievable player from Portugal ever since the legendary Eusebio; he has the touch of an artist and the skills to be the most complete player ever." Still, Figo is past 30. In Real Madrid's 2-1 victory over Bayer Leverkusen of Germany for the 2002 European Champions Cup, he was substituted in the 61st minute (a regulation soccer game is 90 minutes) while Zidane and Spaniard Raul Gonzalez (generally known by first-name only) carried Madrid. Figo has learned to adjust, as have other aging stars. And, Phil Ball writes in ESPN's Soccernet Web site that he is prone to taking dives, in an attempt to draw foul calls from officials. "Great player though he is," Ball writes, "(He) continues to perfect the art of the balletic fall as if it were going out of fashion."

Additional topics

Famous Sports StarsSoccerLuis Figo Biography - Raised In Lisbon, Controversy Over Transfer Fees, World Cup Frustration, Chronology, Awards And Accomplishments