The much, much worse footballing brothers of Harry Maguire, Paul Pogba, Eden Hazard and more

Being a brother is hard - but it's even harder when you're a modest footballer and your brother is at the top of your chosen sport.

Football is rich with famous footballing brothers. You can look at the likes of Jack and Bobby Charlton, Phil and Gary Neville, Kolo and Yaya Toure, Rafinha and Thiago Alcantara, Brian and Michael Laudrup, and many others.

However, the vast majority of the time at least one of the brothers will see their footballing aspirations fall well short of the top.

Still, a football career is a career in football, and it is more than most of us will ever get, so let's have a look at some world-class footballers with considerably less illustrious brothers in the game.

Florentin and Matthias Pogba

The biggest clubs in the world will likely be queueing up to sign Paul Pogba this summer, but his twin brothers never reached the heights he has managed.

Centre-back Florentin Pogba did okay in fairness. He carved out a decent career for himself in France, spending six years at Saint-Etienne which included a successful season on loan at Sedan.

He tried his luck in Turkey and MLS after that without much success before returning to France and settling again at Sochaux.

Forward Matthias Pogba has had an even harder time of it, taking in Wrexham, Crewe, Crawley Town and Partick Thistle as he struggled to establish himself. He currently plays for Belfort, who compete in the fourth tier of French football.

Lionel and Yoan Zouma

Kurt Zouma and Yoan Zouma

Until their deplorable treatment of cats came to light, everyone seemed oblivious to the fact that Kurt Zouma had a footballing brother.

Like Kurt, Yoan Zouma is a centre-back who came to English football from France. That is pretty much where the comparisons end, though.

Yoan Zouma has played for Bolton, Barrow and Altrincham - all with little distinction. He currently plays for Dagenham and Redbridge, who suspended him when the incident with the cat came to light.

Kurt and Yoan are not the only footballing Zoumas, though. The oldest of the three, Lionel Zouma, also a centre-back, currently plays for Swiss club Vevey United. His less-than-impressive career also features spells with Sochaux, Asteras Tripolis, Bourg-en-Bresse and Dhofar.

Joe and Laurence Maguire

Harry Maguire and Laurence Maguire

As with Kurt Zouma, it wasn't until controversy hit Harry Maguire that the nation became aware of his footballing sibling.

Joe Maguire, who is also a centre-back and a year older than England and Manchester United ace Harry, was caught up in the Mykonos brawl in August 2020. Like Harry, Joe was convicted of assault by the Greek authorities and handed a suspended prison sentence.

In terms of his football, Joe couldn't really be further from Harry. He currently plays for Ilkeston Town in the Northern Premier League Division One Midlands.

There is another Maguire brother in football too, with Laurence Maguire, the youngest of the three, forging a decent career for himself at Chesterfield in the National League.

Kylian and Ethan Hazard

Eden Hazard and Kylian Hazard

It was quite novel when Eden Hazard had one footballing brother, and even more fun when that brother, Thorgan, turned out to be very good in his own right.

While Thorgan Hazard has not hit the heights of Eden, he has become a genuine star in the Bundesliga with Borussia Monchengladbach and Borussia Dortmund. He has also become a regular for Belgium too, for whom he has earned more than 40 caps.

The footballing talents of the Hazard family don't end with Eden and Thorgan, though. Kylian Hazard, who is 25 years old now, has also established himself, albeit at a much lower level than his brothers.

Kylian has largely stuck to his homeland, where he is currently on loan from Cercle Brugge to RWDM in the second tier of Belgian football.

There is another Hazard too, Ethan Hazard, who is just starting to make his way in football and is on the books of Royale Union Tubize-Braine, an amateur club in Belgium.

Fabian and Felix Gotze

Mario Gotze and Fabian Gotze

When your brother has scored the winning goal in a World Cup final, you're probably always going to be considered a lot less illustrious.

That is the certainly the case for both Fabian and Felix Gotze, the much lesser-known brothers of Mario Gotze.

Felix Gotze started out as a very promising player and was even capped by Germany at under-9 level while a youth player at Bayern Munich.

He never made the breakthrough there, though, and moved on to another Bundesliga side - Augsburg. He is still there, although he is currently playing in the third tier of German football on loan at Kaiserslauten. By the age of 24, he probably expected better.

Fabian Gotze's career was even more uninspiring, despite also being capped by Germany at youth level. He played reserve football for Borussia Dortmund, Mainz and Bochum before a two-year spell in the third tier with SpVgg Unterhaching.

That came to an end seven years ago now and, at the age of 31, it seems unlikely he's going to get a chance to revive his career.

John and Graham Rooney

Wayne and John Rooney

While Wayne Rooney had the world at this feet from an early age, the same cannot be said of his much less impressive brothers.

John Rooney is still going in football. He had to go the long way around, unlike Wayne, to get a career in the game but he achieved it.

At the time of writing, 31-year-old John is playing for relegation-threatened Barrow in League Two.

John, perhaps trying to get away from the expectation on the family name, actually tried his luck in MLS early in his career with spells at New York Red Bulls and Orlando City.

Since then he has played for Chester, Wrexham and Stockport, among others.

The youngest Rooney brother, Graham, showed early promise in football but never got further than East Villa - who play in the Liverpool County Premier League.

As of 2016, he was the general manager of a pub in Redditch.

Felix Kroos

Toni Kroos and Felix Kroos

The brilliant Toni Kroos has to be regarded as one of the most decorated and celebrated footballers in modern history.

He has won the Champions League four times, the Bundesliga three times, La Liga twice, and a World Cup once. He has been a regular for Bayern Munich and Real Madrid and won more than 100 caps for Germany.

It's fair to say that things haven't gone quite as well for his younger brother Felix.

Felix Kroos, also a midfielder, played the majority of his career in the second and third tiers of German football.

He did also make it to the Bundesliga with Werder Bremen but never managed to establish himself as a key player and the level always looked just a little out of his reach in truth. That spell in Bremen did include the odd Champions League appearance here and there though.

He left for Union Berlin in 2. Bundesliga and helped them to promotion before dropping down again. In 2021, aged 30, he retired to focus on a coaching career.

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