Bale's Villa and Rooney's Retreat: The Most Lavish Footballers' Homes
Aside from the fame, the adulation, the phenomenal wealth, the women and the fact that you get to do your dream job, one of the biggest perks of being a professional footballer is the fact that you get to live in a gigantic prefabricated mansion in Manchester, the home counties or another prominent European city.
Unless you are Luis Boa Morte, in which case you can show MTV Cribs around your detached house and exotic Vauxhall Corsa.
Join us now on a tour of some of the most extravagant 'baller dwellings.
The Welshman did exactly that, moving into a modern £6.5 million mansion in the ultra exclusive Pozuelo de Alarcon neighbourhood of La Finca, a Madrid suburb.
Bale will be paying £10,000 a month in rent to his landlord, Kaka, who moved from the Spanish capital back to Milan in the summer. For that money, Bale will get a a six-car garage, indoor pool, a gym, several terraces and porches and over 16,000 square feet of floor space.
One of Gareth Bale's La Finca neighbours is Cristiano Ronaldo, who moved into his huge villa in 2009. It features seven bedrooms, two swimming pools, a garden big enough for a football pitch and the same modern boxy styling as his left-wing nemesis.
The Portuguese star fuelled speculation about his future over the summer when he put the luxury home up for sale.
After showing the world his taste in auto customisation, midfielder Stephen Ireland became the living embodiment of the phrase "money can't buy class." His mansion in Prestbury, Cheshire is decorated accordingly with huge fish tanks, personalised pool tables and furniture that Katie Price might find a little tacky.
The house features six bedrooms, an indoor pool, a spa, a cinema and a pool room. His daughter's bedroom is the pinkest thing you'll ever see.
John Obi Mikel
Despite recently getting his first Chelsea league goal after 185 attempts, John Obi Mikel has earned himself a beautiful Surrey home. Key features include a John Lennon-style white piano (which he can't play), an indoor pool and—judging by the mountains of take-away boxes—a completely unused kitchen.
Five hundred feet above Manchester at the top of the 47-story Beetham Tower, Phil Neville owns a £4 million four-bedroom apartment.
The 5,000 square feet property features walk-in wardrobes, children's bathrooms, a home cinema system and stunning views of Manchester's grey skies. It's a little nicer than his tastefully appointed Lancashire mansion.
Neville put it on the market three years ago, making it the most expensive flat ever to grace the city. However, he has been unable to sell it and is now asking for £15,000 per month in rent.
Steven Gerrard purchased his £3 million mansion in Formby, Liverpool in late 2007. He proceeded to fill the one-acre plot with lavish luxuries including an indoor swimming pool, a gym, a solarium, a putting green, a sauna, a jacuzzi plunge pool and a children's playground.
In 2010, a man was charged with burgling the property while Stevie G was away on Champions League duty.
Wayne Rooney demolished a 1930s mansion to create his £4 million neo-Georgian mansion in Prestbury, Cheshire.
It features a triple garage, a conservatory, cinema room, an indoor swimming pool and a golf simulator. It's all kept secure by a £30,000 CCTV system.
Wayne Rooney has plenty of footballer neighbours in Prestbury, including Peter Crouch, who started renting a luxury pile from cricketer Freddie Flintoff for £4.5 million in 2011.
The mansion's 10,000 square feet of floor space is occupied by an indoor swimming pool, a gym, a cinema and six bedrooms. As you can see in photos published by The Daily Mail, it's pretty tasteful.
Alex Livesey/Getty Images
John Terry has lived in the vicinity of Chelsea's Cobham training ground for many years, but he is currently putting the finishing touches on a brand-new £10 million nine-bedroom mansion next door to his current home.
In December 2011, the Chelsea defender earned permission to demolish the house next to his Oxshott mansion, which he had bought for his mother in 2007. The new house features eight bathrooms, an indoor swimming pool, a cinema and staff accommodation. Presumably, JT's mummy has found a new place to live.