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When Messi and Ronaldo advertised cricket: notable sports hoaxes for April 1st

Posted : 01 April 2024

Throughout the years, sports enthusiasts have grown accustomed to being teased, yet the efforts to deceive or simply entertain persist. On this day of playful deceit, Maccabi Ramat Gan successfully posted about signing Dwight Howard, a renowned NBA center. To celebrate this jovial occasion, we've compiled some of the most memorable pranks in sports over the years. Enjoy the anecdotes, but don't believe everything you hear or read.

One of the most notable pranks involved football icons Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo during their time at Barcelona and Real Madrid. On April 1, 2016, AS reported Spain's decision to promote cricket, with Messi and Ronaldo portrayed as avid players. The article claimed Messi excelled as a batsman, but it was all fictitious.

Another infamous moment in football history occurred during the 1966 World Cup final between England and Germany, where controversy surrounded Geoff Hurst's disputed goal. Decades later, a fabricated report emerged on April 1, alleging that the game ball underwent laboratory testing, revealing a chalk mark indicating it didn't cross the line. The story claimed the ball was now displayed in a German museum.

LeBron James, despite being one of the NBA's oldest players at 39, remains a dominant force. However, two years ago, he stirred speculation by announcing his retirement mid-season on social media. Despite James' attempt at humor, fans quickly recognized the prank.

Manchester United faced uncertainty after Alex Ferguson's departure, notably during Louis van Gaal's tenure. Taking advantage of the club's instability, former player Rio Ferdinand teased a coaching role at Old Trafford via social media. Though some fell for the ruse, others remained skeptical of Ferdinand's announcement.

One of the most inventive pranks unfolded during a 2004 college football game between Yale and Harvard. Yale fans disguised themselves as Harvard supporters, distributing signs that, when raised, supposedly spelled "Come on Harvard." In reality, the signs read "We suck," leading to an amusing revelation during the match.

Despite the jests and hoaxes, sports fans continue to revel in the spirit of April Fools' Day, cherishing these moments of amusement and camaraderie.


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