'Ted Lasso' footballers, ranked

Get the Full StoryOn Ted Lasso, football is life. In the real world, as it turns out, football is also life...at least for some of the actors on the show. Given the entire show builds on a viral 2013 lost-in-translation-type NBC Sports sketch about Jason Sudeikis as an American coach in London, it's commendable how far Ted Lasso goes to create and sustain an authentic football experience. And for football fans like me who have played the game all their lives Jason, if you're reading this, I've got what it takes to make the AFC Richmond team. Hit me up! , watching real skills onscreen makes the show that much more enjoyable. When it comes to portraying football on the small and big screen, own goals have been scored in the past: Bend Like Beckham, The Damned United, The English Game...I can go on. But what makes Ted Lasso different is the creators and cast make the game feel and look real. Don't believe me? Just watch this "unadulterated" behind-the-scenes clip posted by Ted Lasso actor and writer Brent Hunt Coach Beard that shows Phil Dunster Jamie Tartt scoring a glorious free kick from close to the halfway line.

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A thing of beauty. Just like the entire casting process, it seems, where actually being able to play the game was a priority. According to Ted Lasso casting director Theo Park, actors were required to send in audition tapes that showcased their football skills. One of the most impressive of those tapes was from Cristo Fern ndez Dani Rojas absolutely crushing some pretty complicated skill challenges.

It's no wonder Fern ndez is that good after all he played football professionally before transitioning into acting. But Ted Lasso is packed with seriously great footballers and, heck, we're here to compile the ultimate ranking for the show. The through line in this endeavor is to be curious, not judgemental. Game on.


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So, criteria? The way we did it is we watched through all the gameplay footage from the show, which was around 30 minutes altogether, and used those clips to separate the Ronal-dos from the Ronal-don'ts. But because there's so much gameplay on the show, we've narrowed it down to those actors that have enough screen time with the ball to enable us to evaluate their skills. Fairly. The way the scoring works is kind of like how the FIFA games quantify the skills of real players arbitrarily, out of an unachievable total of 100 points.Alright, here we go whistle . 8. Brett Goldstein Roy Kent


Credit: Apple TV It's no wonder Brett Goldstein was the victim of a viral internet conspiracy accusing him of being "100 percent CGI" and "imported straight from FIFA." His character Roy Kent a Champions League winner and AFC Richmond captain is almost never seen with a ball at his feet and the few shots that are available like the GIF above are always from the back, so we can't really tell if it's him, a stunt double, or FIFA-esque CGI. Goldstein has himself admitted to lacking the football skills to match the larger than life Manchester United player Roy Keane, whom his character on the show seeks to emulate. What we do have is a few clips of him running around rather stiffly, almost robotically, kind of like Mission Impossible Tom Cruise, which is basically all the empirical data needed to know that Goldstein's not really a footballer I'd want on my Sunday league team Brett, if you're reading this, I just wanted to say, "I appreciate you." Please don't tank my dreams of making it as a Richmond footballer. Score: 49 1007. Jason Sudeikis Ted Lasso

Credit: Apple TV Wouldn't it be a fascinating twist if it turned out Jason Sudeikis was actually an exceptional football player? If that were true then Sudeikis' acting is all the more impressive on Ted Lasso because he appears to be...shit. Besides being nutmegged one of the most disrespectful things one player can do to another dribbling the ball between their legs by a young football prodigy Shannon Hayes , Sudeikis is also shown toe poking the ball during a training session scene. While some of the greatest goals in the game were toe pokes, for most players toe pokes point towards unrefined technique and a potentially injured big toe. It's the first type of kick y u try out as a kid and the first type of kick you learn to avoid in a game unless you're Ronaldinho . But football is not all about feet and Sudeikis brings a few other skills to the table he's got great awareness of the ball, showcasing promising technique with both his hands and head. But, most importantly, Sudeikis' can-do attitude and kindness just warm the heart and help him climb just above Brett Goldstein. Score: 50 1006. Mohammed Hashim Moe Bumbercatch

Credit: Apple TV Largely absent during the first season, Mohammed Hashim elbows his way into the first team in Season 2 with some slick moves and soft passing. He's another great example of the very effective casting which gives the impression that literally every AFC Richmond player got skillz. What brings Hashim this high up in the ratings is his ability to act like he's worse than he really is a misplaced pass during training unleashes Ted Lasso's inner Mr Hyde, Led Tasso, whose explosive anger helps the team bond over a common enemy. Hashim caught our eye every time the camera was on him and he's the first actor on Ted Lasso that I'd basically beg to join my Sunday league team. Score: 77 1005. Shannon Hayes Soccer Girl

Credit: Apple TV Shannon Hayes plays a pivotal, albeit brief, role on Ted Lasso, helping the uprooted American fall in love with the game of football. Credited only as "Soccer Girl" or Shannon, she sneaks in two seamless nutmegs against both Ted and a teenage boy and makes the cut for an off the books five-a-side game with other seasoned street footballers. Most importantly, she plays football with a smile, her quick feet and exquisite touch maneuvering the ball with utter ease like Megan Rapinoe. Score: 80 1004. Toheeb Jimoh Sam Obisanya

Credit: Apple TV Both on and off the pitch, Toheeb Jimoh's character is AFC Richmond's moral compass. His gradual path to stardom in the show is carefully complemented by his speed and agility as a footballer and his unflinching ethics when it comes to pretty much anything else from love to fame. That of course means Jimoh received a lot more screen time playing football and can be seeing scoring first touch goals, performing one-two passes, and long aerial crosses. However, that detailed exposure reveals a slightly questionable technique on the ball and, frankly, a few very flimsy goals. Jimoh is edging towards a very complete player, like a young Gareth Bale, exploding on that right side of the pitch. His character starts off as a full back a defensive position , but is gradually moved forward to a winger an attacking position and Jimoh definitely has the football chops to make that transition feel real pretty real.Score: 81 1003. Kola Bokinni Isaac McAdoo

Credit: Apple TV Bokinni, who portrays AFC Richmond captain and central defender Isaac McAdoo, takes a little while to really showcase his football on the show. And it's no surprise defenders rarely get the accolades and are often criticized for lacking technique and skills. This is certainly not true for Bokinni, who is seen here performing a backheel nutmeg during that five-a-side game mentioned above. More importantly, Bokinni shows off a beauty of an outside foot goal that spins right into the net, a little like that godly Benjamin Pavard World Cup 2018 screamer. He gets a few bonus points for maintaining that disciplined defensive work, while obviously having that deadly instinct. With Bokinni on my Sunday League football team, I'll finally get my hands on that elusive copper cup. Score: 85 1002. Phil Dunster Jamie Tartt

Credit: Apple TV Although some of the magic was lost after Dunster admitted that most of the skills we see him nail in the show were heavily rehearsed, there's still a lot to work with here. That video tweeted by Brendan Hunt of him actually scoring a free kick from over 40 meters is pure gold. As the main antagonist in the first two seasons, Dunster is required to carry most of the weight when it comes to glossy gameplay. And, for the most part, he delivers! He even does surprisingly well at hitting the side post with jeans and sneakers on. There's a lot to admire in Dunster's game, particularly his skillful feet and slick roulette turns. He moves like someone who plays football, so much so that I actually think he'd probably turn me down if I invited him to join our Sunday league matches he may just be too good.Score: 88 100


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1. Cristo Fern ndez Dani Rojas

Credit: Apple TV Football has been life ever since I was a toddler, pointing at everything round and belting out "Goal!". And yet, I've only successfully performed scissorkicks on sand and never as seamlessly as Fern ndez does here. What makes this scene all the more satisfying is it apparently only took a few takes to get right. In an interview with Screen Times, Fernandez humbly admits to football greatness on the small screen, adding that everything Dani Rojas can do, he can do better.It's not surprising that he's the GOAT on Ted Lasso, given that he used to get paid to play football in Mexico and a number of other South American countries. I guess we're all lucky he struggled with knee injuries a real footballer's curse and found his way into our streaming hearts. It's almost impossible to even finish this paragraph because I'm constantly distracted by that almost hypnotic scissor kick GIF. Just sublime, isn't it? Score: 90 100

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