afaqs! news bureau

Nike pits football legends against modern-day superstars

2006 Ronaldinho is confused about how everybody can predict his moves.

Using the immortal question – Who’s the better player? – a group of scientists in Geneva, Switzerland use a time machine to assemble football legends and present-day superstars to settle the debate.

It is also one of those rare films where a group of scientists unleash something good into the world and not a world-consuming monster.   

Think Kylian Mbappé squaring off against 2006 Ronaldinho when Barcelona did not have a shirt sponsor, or a young Cristiano Ronaldo doing the Siuu with the legend he has become, 1998 Ronaldo against 2002 Ronaldo?, and Edgar Davids, Dutch legend and eternal Nike favourite, marvelling at the sportswear giant’s new cleats.

Weiden+Kennedy, Nike’s long-time creative partner, uses the magic of technology and the irresistible charm of nostalgia to create a film of unadulterated joy.

“Footballverse” exemplifies Nike’s long-standing belief that the future of sport has infinite potential — and encourages a new generation of footballers to prove it,” says Nike in a blog post on its website.

The four-and-a-half-minute film features a dozen elite Nike athletes: Alex Morgan, Carli Lloyd, Cristiano Ronaldo, CR Jr., Edgar Davids, Kevin De Bruyne, Kylian Mbappé, Leah Williamson, Phil Foden, Ronaldinho, Ronaldo Nazário, Sam Kerr, Shane Kluivert and Virgil van Dijk.

In addition to notable players, the film has a familiar soundtrack, “Weird Science,” written by Danny Elfman and performed by Oingo Boingo.

This new spot does take one back to the old Nike ads. There is the iconic Cage where stars indulge in a three-a-side match inside a literal cage or the always popular Ole where Portugal and Brazil stars go bonkers trying to get their feet on the ball.

And the answer to how everyone can predict Ronaldinho’s moves is YouTube.

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