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Balls.ie Picks The Football XI Of Superheroes You Both Deserve And Need Right Now

Balls.ie Picks The Football XI Of Superheroes You Both Deserve And Need Right Now
By Gavan Casey Updated

The world is going to go superhero-crazy (not necessarily in a good way) in 2016, with roughly 187 Marvel and DC films scheduled for release in the coming months.

For literally no other reason at all, we decided to create a footballing eleven composed entirely of superheroes. After much deliberation, we've decided to line out with an offensive 4-2-3-1 formation. Don't ever let it be said that we don't know what the fans want.

With the dust finally settling at Balls HQ after weeks of painstaking comic book research and violent table-tennis duels to determine where to fit aged talisman Bruce Wayne, we finally arrived with the team of heroes that you deserve, and every bit the one you need right now.

Here is our official Superhero XI:

Goalkeeper: Deadpool

Strengths: In many ways the perfect goalkeeper. Lightening-quick reflexes cultivated from his life as a master swordsman, combined with his ability to read opponents' intentions based on their previous actions, make him an almost impermeable final hurdle in the unlikely event that rival sides make their way out of their own half.

Deadpool is also immune to psychic or telepathic powers, meaning opposing strikers can't 'give him the eyes' en route to goal.


Weaknesses: A foul-mouthed contrarian with a flare for the oft-maligned 'camera save.'

Right Back: Spider-Man

Strengths: Has an unfathomable ability to sense danger. Spider-Man is a nightmarish marker, in that attackers can think they've finally beaten him for pace before becoming entangled in his defensive web. It's almost as if he's glued to his opponents, particularly from set-pieces.


Weaknesses: Finds it difficult to separate his emotions from his performances. Has been known to leak dressing-room pictures to the press. Obessed with Instagram.

Centre Back: Groot

Strengths: A brave, tree-like presence not unlike Marouane Fellaini. 'The Guardian' is physically dominant, with a penchant for last-ditch heroics. When on song, he can become one with the pitch, but not on artificial surfaces. Literally 23 feet tall.


Weaknesses: Lacks focus. Occasionally found wanting in the communication department by fellow defenders.

Centre Back (c): Captain America

Strengths: The defensive general, and the sole genuine leader amongst a team of prima donnas. An obvious choice to take the armband. 'Cap' provides a more-than-solid defensive shield when the naive young Groot is caught napping. His tactical and positional knowledge is second to none, his influence on younger players unparalleled.


Weaknesses: Won't sell many jerseys outside of the States.

Left Back: Thor

Strengths: A combative protector of his realm, capabable of thunderous offensive bursts. Inhumanly strong, 'The Great Dane' joins Roberto Carlos, Giacinto Facchetti and the legendary Dennis Irwin on our strangely satisfying list of left-backs who could unleash the otherworldly hammer from distance.


Weaknesses: Has been known to go missing. Thinks he's God.

Centre Mid: Iron Man

Strengths: Inventive genius Tony Stark is the creative influence in a midfield not shy of offensive talent. The flamboyant talisman glides effortlessly from box to box. Capable of unleashing bullet-like shots of his own from range or teeing up his teammates for the killer blow.


For all his attacking qualities, Iron Man certainly doesn't shirk defensive duties. He retains the highest interception rate in the side, famously diverting the occasional boom-missile from Deadpool's goal.

Weaknesses: Notoriously abrasive, and a rumoured challenger to Captain America's leadership. Tendency to overthink when in possession. Once refused a $250,000-per-week contract for what he maintains were 'footballing reasons.'

Centre Mid: Wolverine

Strengths: Indestructible. The timeless veteran constantly rolls back the years, displaying an uncanny ability to claw his side back into games that seem otherwise lost. Signed on a Bosman Ruling from Brazilian outfit Corinthians in 2011 (this following an unfortunate stabbing incident during a nightclub brawl involving his manager and several prostitutes), the steely Canadian vehemently maintains that his decision to grow a beard was to "conceal his identity", and not to resemble his long-time icon, Joe Allen.

Weaknesses: Brash, abrasive and rejects authority. Bears a grudge. The only thing that separates Wolverine from Roy Keane is that Eamon Dunphy doesn't think he's a player. And his chronic cigar addiction.

Right Wing: The Flash

Strengths: Blink and you'll miss him; Barry Allen's lightning pace will likely haunt bedazzled opponents for centuries. His split-second decision-making can make defenders look silly. And for all his force going forward, he's no stranger to tracking back.

Weaknesses: Struggles with the physicality of the Barclays Justice League.

Left Wing: Superman

Strengths: Covers a lot a ground; a seemingly unstoppable force as he flies up and down the wing. Pace. Power. Laser-like precision.

Weaknesses: Attracts unwanted media attention for outlandish off-field behaviour. The Kieron Dyer to Batman's Lee Bowyer. Feels wasted on the left. Kryptonite. He's also the Secret Footballer.

Number 10: Batman

Strengths: He's Batman.

Weaknesses: Struggles with the notion that he's no longer 'the main man' following his big money move from Borussia Dortmund last summer. Seems distracted by Wayne Enterprises' plans to start an MLS expansion franchise in his native Gotham. Playboy lifestyle known to affect his performance. Has lost a yard in recent years.

Striker: Daredevil

Strengths: An instinctive finisher with a fifth sense for goal. The elusive striker is lethal from six yards out, and no further. As seen in the above image, he has a predilection for the beautiful, lost art of the diving header.

Weaknesses: Totally and unequivocally blind.


Hulk - The Boy In Green. Enigmatic impact replacement.

Green Arrow - Adds some extra strings to the bow should Daredevil misfire in front of goal.

Raphael, Ninja Turtle - Defensive shell. Impermeable at the back.

Star Lord - Young up-and-comer. Silky moves. Midfield pilot.

Green Lantern - Bebe reincarnated. Won a raffle of some description.

Ant-Man - Diminutive playmaker.

Professor X - Largely immobile as he enters his twilight years, but still reads the game as well as anyone.




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