Football How Hip-Hop invaded the world's biggest sport

Hip-Hop finally made inroads into football this summer as the world's biggest transfer played out.

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Paul Pogba, the world's most expensive football player play

Paul Pogba, the world's most expensive football player

(Paul Pogba, the world's most expensive football player )
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In January 2016, Jesse Lingard slid on the turf of St. James Park after scoring his second goal for the senior team of Manchester United against Newcastle United.

After sliding on the turf, Lingard simultaneously dropped his head while raising his arm and elbow. A lot of fans ignorant of the latest fad in Atlanta trap music were puzzled about Lingard's celebration. After a few Google searches the word 'dab' made its first entry into the world of English football.

Manchester United player Jesse Lingard dabbing after scoring a goal play

Manchester United player Jesse Lingard dabbing after scoring a goal

(Fox Sports )

 

Lingard would go on to dab some more in the summer that can best be described as the Hip Hop invasion of football.

Neymar Jr, Brazilian football god and a member of the defence destroying Barcelona attacking trinity perfectly christened MSN hung out with Justin Bieber before having an Olympic gold medal dangling from his neck.

Justin Bieber, Neymar hanging out play

Justin Bieber, Neymar hanging out

(Mirror )

 

Football for all of its worldwide popularity has been conservative and resisted influence from outside. Hip-Hop culture has dominated almost every facet of life on a global scale (Obama in 2013 stepped out to the White House Correspondents' Dinner to DJ Khaled's 'All I Do Is Win') but football has resisted its overtures.

Drake with Mario Balotelli play

Drake with Mario Balotelli

(The Sun )

 

Apart from US rappers rocking football jerseys and Drake name checking Mario Balotelli in one of his songs, the worlds of football and Hip-Hop haven't collided, well until now.

The biggest evidence that football is falling for Hip-Hop came during the transfer of Paul Pogba from Juventus to Manchester United. This summer Pogba moved back to his former stomping grounds for the sum of £89m, making him the most expensive football player in the world.

Paul Pogba with Drake play

Paul Pogba with Drake

(Instagram/paulpogba)

 

A transfer of such magnitude wouldn't be announced with a boring tweet and a player holding a jersey in front of a backdrop. Pogba's prodigal return was announced in a brash, confident and entertaining manner, all qualities of Hip-Hop music.

Antoine Griezmann doing the Hotline Bling dance at Euro 2016 where he was the highest goal scorer play

Antoine Griezmann doing the Hotline Bling dance at Euro 2016 where he was the highest goal scorer

(Daily Mail )

 

UK Grime rapper Stormzy did the honours by releasing a music video in collaboration with Adidas. In the video shared on Twitter, it shows Paul Pogba dancing. The lanky black player dabbed, did the Harlem Shake, Hotline Bling (that was brought into the world of football by Antoine Griezmann in Euro 2016), and the Milly Rock as the world reverberated. Hip-Hop had finally invaded football.

 

When Pogba, who had been stunning Italians with his Hip Hop dance moves on the pitch, made his (second) debut for Man Utd, he couldn't but help show how cool he is.

 

Handshake routines are not new to Hip-Hop lovers. It's a way of identifying who is hip to your culture. After playing against Southampton, Pogba's handshake with Eric Bailly was caught and tweeted around the world. The complex handshake made up of complex moves hypnotized an audience that wasn't really aware of black culture.

Paul Pogba autographing Harden's Man Utd jersey play

Paul Pogba autographing Harden's Man Utd jersey

(Twitter )

 

After the match, Pogba and US basketball star James Harden chopped it up in the dressing room. It would take a while before we see a Hip-Hop mogul buy a professional football team, but this summer has proven that Hip-Hop is a powerful and dominating culture. It will only take time.

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