Celebrating Leap Day: Seven footballers born on February 29

Here, on February 29, let's explore some of the notable footballers born on Leap Year and the impact they've had on the beautiful game.

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Payal Debnath
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Celebrating Leap Day: Seven footballers born on February 29

Ferran Torres is one of the notable footballers born on February 29. Image- Barca Blaugranes

In the realm of football, there are players who stand out not just for their skill on the pitch, but also for the unique circumstances surrounding their birth. February 29, known as leap day, comes around only once every four years, making those born on this date a rare breed. In this article, let's explore some of the notable footballers born on February 29 and the impact they've had on the beautiful game.

Also Read: 10 players who have won the most trophies in football history

Footballers born on February 29

1. Ferran Torres | Year- 2000

Ferran Torres is one of the notable footballers born on February 29. Image- Goal.com
Ferran Torres is one of the notable footballers born on February 29. Image- Goal.com

Ferran Torres, born in 2000, is comes at no. 1 in the list of footballers born on February 29. Torres is a Spanish winger who began his professional career at Valencia before making a high-profile move to Manchester City in 2020. Torres has since established himself as a key player for both club and country, showcasing his talent on the biggest stages of European football.

Torres is the youngest player in Valencia history to reach 50 league games. He made headlines in 2017 when he became the first 2000s-born La Liga player. The Spaniard played 43 times for the Citizens and struggled to make an impact in a stacked and constantly rotated attack. He returned to Spain two years later, joining Barcelona, where he has already made 100 appearances across all competitions, scoring 25 goals.

2. Jesper Lindstrom | Year- 2000

Jesper Lindstrom is one of the notable footballers born on February 29. Image- talkSPORT
Jesper Lindstrom is one of the notable footballers born on February 29. Image- talkSPORT

Jesper Lindstrom, also known as Jobbe, was born in 2000. The Danish midfielder comes at second in the list of footballers born on February 29. He rose through the youth ranks at Brondby before breaking into the first team. After making 65 appearances for Brondby, Lindstrom caught the eye of Eintracht Frankfurt, where he began to make a name for himself. His impressive performances for the Eagles, including 39 appearances across all competitions in the 2021/22 season, helped propel them to success, notably securing the Europa League title by defeating Rangers in the final.

The following season saw Lindstrom continue to shine, making 38 appearances and directly contributing to 11 goals in the Bundesliga. This remarkable form caught the attention of Italian giants Napoli, who secured his services in the summer transfer window. Although Lindstrom has predominantly featured as a substitute for Napoli, with only one start in Serie A among his 16 appearances.

3. Benedikt Höwedes | Year- 1988

Benedikt Höwedes is one of the notable footballers born on February 29. Image- Eurosport
Benedikt Höwedes is one of the notable footballers born on February 29. Image- Eurosport

Benedikt Howedes, born in 1988, a retired German defender undoubtedly holds a revered place in the annals of Schalke's prestigious academy, standing alongside luminaries such as Mesut Ozil and Manuel Neuer.

Despite being poised for a lifelong tenure with Die Knappen, Howedes embarked on a remarkable chapter of his career that saw him venture beyond the confines of Gelsenkirchen. A World Cup-winning German center-back, Howedes made a notable move to Lokomotiv Moscow, following a loan stint at Serie A powerhouse Juventus. His two-year spell in Russia marked a pivotal juncture in his career, ultimately culminating in his retirement from professional football. Embracing a new role, Höwedes transitioned to coaching, leaving behind a legacy etched in Schalke folklore and a lasting impact on the game.

Also Read: 10 Most Successful FA Cup Winners List: FA Cup in detail

4. Saphir Taider | Year- 1992

Saphir Taider is one of the notable footballers born on February 29. Image- Sportsnet
Saphir Taider is one of the notable footballers born on February 29. Image- Sportsnet

Saphir Taider, born in 1992, is an Algerian midfielder comes at No. 4 in the list of footballers born on February 29. Taider's professional football journey began in 2010. He has played for seven clubs across five countries, including Grenoble, Bologna, Inter Milan, Southampton, Sassuolo, Montreal Impact, and Al-Ain.

Notably, Taider's temporary move to Southampton in August 2014, as part of a swap deal with Dani Osvaldo heading to Inter Milan, captured attention. However, this arrangement was short-lived, terminated merely a month later. Most recently, Taider plied his trade with Saudi Arabian outfit Al-Ain, showcasing his talents in the Middle East. Despite his capabilities, the midfielder has found himself in an unfamiliar position as a free agent for the past 18 months, awaiting the next chapter in his footballing odyssey.

5. Taylor Twellman | Year - 1980

Taylor Twellman. Image- Sporting News
Taylor Twellman. Image- Sporting News

Taylor Twellman, a household name in American football media, boasts a career that spans both on-field prowess and off-field analysis. Despite earning 30 caps for the US Men's National Team (USMNT), Twellman never had the opportunity to represent his country on the grand stage of the World Cup finals.

Following a short-lived stint with 1860 München's reserve team in Germany, he found his stride in Major League Soccer (MLS) with the New England Revolution. Over 174 appearances for the Revolution, Twellman showcased his scoring prowess, tallying an impressive 101 league goals. This remarkable achievement firmly places him among the most prolific goal scorers in MLS history, solidifying his legacy as a true icon of American soccer.

6. Darren Ambrose | Year- 1984

Darren Ambrose. Image- Sky Sports
Darren Ambrose. Image- Sky Sports

Born in 1984, Darren Ambrose is a former English professional footballer, bid farewell to his illustrious 15-year playing career in 2016, culminating his journey with Colchester United. This closure marked a poignant return to his roots, considering his beginnings at Ipswich Town, where he enjoyed three separate spells throughout his career. Ambrose's versatility and talent saw him don the jerseys of various clubs, leaving an indelible mark on each.

Notably, Ambrose graced the pitches of Newcastle United and Charlton Athletic, showcasing his skill and determination. A curious footnote in his career came in 2014, as he embarked on a brief sojourn to Greece, donning the colors of Apollon Smyrni. Ambrose's journey through the ranks of English football reflects a legacy built on dedication, resilience, and an unwavering passion for the beautiful game.

Also Read: Top 10: Most Free-kick Goals In Football History (Updated)

7. Mike Pollitt | Year- 1972

Mike Pollitt. Image- Sky Sports
Mike Pollitt. Image- Sky Sports

Born in 1972, Mike Pollitt is the seventh player who comes in the list of footballers born on February 29. Mike played for numerous clubs in the English Football League, including Man Utd, Oldham Athletic, Bury FC, Lincoln City, Darlington, Notts County, Gillingham, Sunderland, Rotherham, Chesterfield, Wigan, Burnley, and Barnsley. Mike's football journey began in Manchester United's youth set-up during the era when Sir Alex Ferguson assumed control of the club. However, despite his time with the Red Devils, Pollitt never made a league appearance for Manchester United.

Since retiring from professional football, Mike has transitioned into coaching to mentor the next generation of goalkeepers. Currently, he can be found imparting his knowledge and expertise as part of the coaching staff at Preston North End.

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