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Erling Haaland's GQ cover wasn't the first time a footballer's shoot warranted a red card

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With his flaxen locks flowing behind him, and clad in designer clothes – including a £2,000 jacket and a £690 Givenchy jumper – Manchester City’s hot-shot striker Erling Haaland is in full male model pose on the cover of GQ’s second annual global sports issue.

Somehow though, the glamorous shoot with the Norwegian striker, who earns £865,000-a-week, feels like an awkward fashion mis-hit – more Zoolander, than cutting edge haute couture. One football fan on Twitter wrote: ‘Haaland was made to be a viking warrior… not this.’

Yet, by posing up a storm, the Norwegian striker is simply following what dozens of star strikers have done in the past – with everyone from 70s icon George Best to Gary Lineker and David Beckham gracing the pages of fashion magazines.

Indeed, exuberant French footballer Eric Cantona, once Manchester United’s biggest weapon, disrobed completely for the cover of Elle magazine. 

The 22-year-old Norwegian striker, who has scored 33 goals this season, is the latest footballer to turn fashion model - appearing on the front cover of GQ's second annual global sports issue

The 22-year-old Norwegian striker, who has scored 33 goals this season, is the latest footballer to turn fashion model – appearing on the front cover of GQ’s second annual global sports issue

Let’s not forget the time when Cristiano Ronaldo and Didier Drogba appeared on the front cover of Vanity Fair, hands on hips, in the briefest of briefs.

And Spurs striker turned Match of the Day host Gary Lineker, who had to fend off sex noises while presenting last night’s FA cup match after the BBC studio was sabotaged, is pictured on the cover of teen magazine, Lookin; hair slicked back and wearing a fancy watch. 

Here, FEMAIL winds back the decades to look back at famous football stars who’ve shrugged off their kits for photoshoots – and may well deserve a red card for it. 

All the best! George Best, legendary footballer and philanderer, was arguably football's first pin-up star; the Northern Irish icon, who lost his long-term battle with alcoholism in 2005 at the age of 59, is seen here in 1971 on the cover of Fabulous 208 magazine

All the best! George Best, legendary footballer and philanderer, was arguably football’s first pin-up star; the Northern Irish icon, who lost his long-term battle with alcoholism in 2005 at the age of 59, is seen here in 1971 on the cover of Fabulous 208 magazine 

Can you guess who this is? Legendary footballer Ian Rush, whom many hail as the most natural goalscorer football supporters have ever seen, appeared on the cover of sports magazine Shoot

Can you guess who this is? Legendary footballer Ian Rush, whom many hail as the most natural goalscorer football supporters have ever seen, appeared on the cover of sports magazine Shoot

King Kev! Former Liverpool star Kevin Keegan - known for his curly mop, appearing on the cover of Look-in magazine in the Eighties

King Kev! Former Liverpool star Kevin Keegan – known for his curly mop, appearing on the cover of Look-in magazine in the Eighties 

A fresh-faced Gary Lineker on the cover of the same magazine in the early 90s...the Match of the Day host, who played for Spurs and England at the time, maintained the footballer's favoured folded arms look for the beach shoot

 A fresh-faced Gary Lineker on the cover of the same magazine in the early 90s…the Match of the Day host, who played for Spurs and England at the time, maintained the footballer’s favoured folded arms look for the beach shoot

Looking good Gary! In 1990, the star showcased a rather cheesy grin as he posed for the cover of Arena magazine

Looking good Gary! In 1990, the star showcased a rather cheesy grin as he posed for the cover of Arena magazine 

Blowing the whistle! In 1995, footballer Vinnie Jones was animated as he posed for the cover of FourFourTwo

Blowing the whistle! In 1995, footballer Vinnie Jones was animated as he posed for the cover of FourFourTwo 

Monochrome glory: Danish shot-stopper Peter Schmeichel, dad of former Premier League keeper Kasper, back in his Manchester United hey day posing for Danish magazine Euroman in 1996

Monochrome glory: Danish shot-stopper Peter Schmeichel, dad of former Premier League keeper Kasper, back in his Manchester United hey day posing for Danish magazine Euroman in 1996

In 2007, David and Victoria Beckham, then in their early 30s, struck a pose for W magazine; the bronzed Spice Girl and her then LA Galaxy playing hubby opted for California beach chic in this shoot - including a classic sports car

In 2007, David and Victoria Beckham, then in their early 30s, struck a pose for W magazine; the bronzed Spice Girl and her then LA Galaxy playing hubby opted for California beach chic in this shoot – including a classic sports car 

Patriotic pants: Former Chelsea star Didier Drogba, and Cristiano Ronaldo, who recently moved to Saudi Arabian club Al Nassr for a rumoured £173million a year, were snapped in their underwear matching their country's flag for Vanity Fair in 2010

Patriotic pants: Former Chelsea star Didier Drogba, and Cristiano Ronaldo, who recently moved to Saudi Arabian club Al Nassr for a rumoured £173million a year, were snapped in their underwear matching their country’s flag for Vanity Fair in 2010

Six years ago David Beckham, like Haaland, graced the cover of GQ for the first time - wearing a leather biker and a skinny tie

Six years ago David Beckham, like Haaland, graced the cover of GQ for the first time – wearing a leather biker and a skinny tie  

Darcy Beckham: Another serious model pose for the former England star came on the cover of Elle magazine in July 2012, when David, then 37, was pictured in tight jeans emerging bare chested from a lagoon

Darcy Beckham: Another serious model pose for the former England star came on the cover of Elle magazine in July 2012, when David, then 37, was pictured in tight jeans emerging bare chested from a lagoon 

Ooh la la! Eric Cantona, who became famous for both his crowd-kicking antics and his own brand of philosophy while playing for Manchester United, featured naked on the cover of Elle France in 2015 after his retirement from the game in 1997

Ooh la la! Eric Cantona, who became famous for both his crowd-kicking antics and his own brand of philosophy while playing for Manchester United, featured naked on the cover of Elle France in 2015 after his retirement from the game in 1997

With his floppy hair and smidgen of designer stubble, Jack Grealish, Manchester City's star midfielder appeared on the cover of Homme+ in November last year, much to fans' delight

With his floppy hair and smidgen of designer stubble, Jack Grealish, Manchester City’s star midfielder appeared on the cover of Homme+ in November last year, much to fans’ delight

Zoolander who? In 2013, footballer Gareth Bale gave readers of Esquire a rather model-like stare as he posed for a feature about his'irresistible rise'

Zoolander who? In 2013, footballer Gareth Bale gave readers of Esquire a rather model-like stare as he posed for a feature about his ‘irresistible rise’ 

Last year, Liverpool's Mohamed Salah graced the cover of GQ wearing a rather unusual string vest and a white pair of jogging bottoms with rolled up socks for a'global sports issue'

Last year, Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah graced the cover of GQ wearing a rather unusual string vest and a white pair of jogging bottoms with rolled up socks for a ‘global sports issue’ 

In demand! In May, England captain Harry Kane donned a smart black suit as he appeared on the cover of FourFourTwo

In demand! In May, England captain Harry Kane donned a smart black suit as he appeared on the cover of FourFourTwo  

Oh Ah Cantona! Former Manchester United legend and French international Eric Cantona showcased his stubble and hairy chest for Esquire readers

Oh Ah Cantona! Former Manchester United legend and French international Eric Cantona showcased his stubble and hairy chest for Esquire readers 

One of England's greatest ever players, Gazza, sat down with football outlet Four Four Two to talk about his craziest stories

One of England’s greatest ever players, Gazza, sat down with football outlet Four Four Two to talk about his craziest stories   

Remember the name - Wayne Rooney! When the nation thought the World Cup was coming home (again) in 2010, the former Manchester United striker and his childhood sweetheart Coleen Rooney opened up about their dreams and passions to Hello magazine

Remember the name – Wayne Rooney! When the nation thought the World Cup was coming home (again) in 2010, the former Manchester United striker and his childhood sweetheart Coleen Rooney opened up about their dreams and passions to Hello magazine

Mario Balottelli never tired of making the news! The Italian forward was dubbed the best young striker in football and was tipped to take over the sporting world with his talents. And in this interview, he was clearly not short of confidence

Mario Balottelli never tired of making the news! The Italian forward was dubbed the best young striker in football and was tipped to take over the sporting world with his talents. And in this interview, he was clearly not short of confidence 

Former French footballer and heart throb David Ginola was interviewed by magazine Tetu, where he showed off his muscular physique on the front cover

Former French footballer and heart throb David Ginola was interviewed by magazine Tetu, where he showed off his muscular physique on the front cover

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