Football is currently in the spotlight, with an estimated five billion spectators tuning into the Qatar World Cup. But just as fans are delighting at events on the international stage, just as they always do during the leagues in their countries, there’s always gossip about what the star performers get up to away from the pitch.
Take the example of Argentinian striker Mauro Icardi, whose glittering career has taken him to Italian giants Sampdoria and Inter Milan, France’s most successful club, Paris St Germain, and now on loan to the only Turkish club to win a UEFA trophy, Galatasaray.
There are just as many stories centered on his on/off relationship with his agent, Argentinian model Wanda Nara, six years his senior. So what’s the latest in this seemingly never-ending soap opera?
How about rewinding to the start? Although Icardi was born in Argentina’s third-largest city, Rosario, in 1993 he moved to the Spanish Canary Islands aged nine.
Gaining widespread attention for his goal-scoring abilities for the local club, Vecindario, in 2007, a bidding war began involving La Liga clubs Barcelona and Real Madrid and top English sides Arsenal and Liverpool. Barca made the most tempting offer before he was transferred to Sampdoria in 2011.
While playing for the Genoese team, he was to meet Wanda Nara, then married to his teammate, fellow Argentinian Maxi Lopez.
Despite being much younger, Icardi was instantly drawn to the mature bombshell. After all, there’s nothing unusual about age-gap romance, with many young men actively pursuing cougars via virtual services for mature sex dating with hot MILFs.
Perhaps the Argentinian striker spent time browsing through the profiles of delectable older women in the online environment – joining these sites or their app equivalents does present so many opportunities for singles to mingle with vibrant older females.
But once he set his sights on Nara, the pair became smitten. Unfortunately, this led to a fallout with Lopez, not to mention kickstarting what was to become an ongoing soap opera in the popular press and social media.
Even Argentinian legend Diego Maradona was critical of Icardi having been so disloyal to his buddy, and there have also been rumors about this being a reason for Icardi having only gained eight caps for his country.
The relationship between Icardi and agent, model, and dancer Nara has been volatile, to put it mildly. Although they married soon after Nara’s divorce from Lopez, going on to have two daughters together, the Argentinian press was always keeping them under the spotlight.
Maradona persisted in indulging in heated Twitter exchanges with Icardi – something the tabloids reported with relish. During a Sampdoria match in 2014, Lopez pointedly refused to shake Icardi’s hand at one point, leading to the press dubbing the game ‘the Wanda derby.’
Balancing being the darlings of the football press with a rocky nine years of marriage has always been tricky. When Icardi was with French club Paris SG, and on loan to Galatasaray, there were rumors of his infidelity – allegations that Nara was only too keen to reiterate in her social media channels.
Initially, Nara has been fully supportive of her husband’s move to Istanbul, although as his agent, she did make some unusual demands, such as stipulating he needed to have a personal chef!
Divorce – and reunion!
After she suggested an affair, Icardi flew from Paris to Milan to hold ‘crisis talks.’ This seemed to appease the situation, although there was always a hint that this calm was never going to last the course.
Eventually, it seemed that Nara had had enough, and she made an emotional TV appearance to explain that their marriage was over. She requested privacy for their daughters’ sake.
Later, she appeared to take the driving seat by posting sexy Instagram photos of exiting a swimming pool in a tiny black bikini, leaving little to the imagination in exposing her generous bust.
But the tabloid anticipation that there might be still more mileage in their on/off affair was greeted with a recent announcement by Nara. Despite their divorce, she was pleased to announce a full reconciliation, confirmed by photographs of them embracing during a holiday to the Maldives.
The Argentinian striker added the caption, “It was not the woman of my life, it was my life turned into a woman. Disney stories also have second seasons. I love you, Wanda.”
As we can see, there has been so much more to the life of Mauro Icardi than attempting to slot a football between two posts. Not only having to satisfy the demanding fans of a string of top clubs, from Sampdoria and Internazionale to PSG and Galatasaray (not forgetting Barcelona when he was a youth signing), he has had to cope with being in the public eye in general. Fans from all over the world love to pore over the details of his relationship with mature Argentinian model Wanda Nara.