Sporting events across the world took a major hit due to the coronavirus pandemic. The second half of 2020 saw action resuming with caution. However, on the field and off it, there was much said.
Sportstar brings you the 20 most memorable quotes from the world of sports in 2020.
- “Definitely not.” – Two simple words were enough. This was Chennai Super Kings skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s response to former New Zealand pacer-turned-commentator Danny Morrison, who asked if the league game against Kings XI Punjab on November 1 was his last in yellow.
- “Tomorrow they are not playing against Bundesliga teams but they are playing against FC Barcelona, the best team in the world.” – Former Barca midfielder Arturo Vidal before his side went on to lose 8-2 against Bayern Munich in a Champions League game.
- “That’s for all the kids who dream the impossible. You can do it too, man.” – Lewis Hamilton after sealing his record-equaling seventh Formula One world championship title at the Turkish Grand Prix.
- “The fact that I was selected once again sheds light on the fact that in order to push our game forward we need continued investment in the women’s game to give more female players the opportunity to be seen on TV in their home countries and globally while performing for club and country.” – US Women’s National Team star Megan Rapinoe after being included in the FIFA FIFPro Women’s World XI during The Best awards despite having not played a single match since March.
Megan Rapinoe during an interview on November 9. – Getty Images
- “I think the only chance for [Hansi] Flick to win is that Bayern [Munich] finds two or three more new competitions to win.” – Tottenham Hotspur boss Jose Mourinho empathised with the Bayern manager, who lost the race for the FIFA Best Coach of the Year award to Liverpool’s Jurgen Klopp.
- “He wanted to be the best basketball player he could be. And as I got to know him, I wanted to be the best big brother I could be.” – NBA legend Michael Jordan at Kobe Bryant’s memorial service.
Michael Jordan speaks during ‘The Celebration of Life for Kobe & Gianna Bryant’ at Staples Center on February 24 in Los Angeles, California. – Getty Images
- “Until we educate the entire human race, this thing will not stop.” – Former West Indies fast bowler Michael Holding delivered a powerful message in support of ‘Black Lives Matter’ campaign.
- “As my greatest rival over many years, I believe we have pushed each other to become better players.” – Tennis great Roger Federer while congratulating Rafael Nadal on his 20th Grand Slam victory.
- “It could happen to everybody… It was unlucky, a shame. Could happen to everybody. Never to me. Maybe to [Nick] Kyrgios.” – Italian tennis player Fabio Fognini on Novak Djokovic’s disqualification from the 2020 US Open.
- “It’s amazing why we keep loving this country, and this country does not love us back.” – Philadelphia 76ers coach Doc Rivers following the Jacob Blake shooting in Wisconsin.
- “Where’s Dele [Alli]? I understood already that you are a f**king lazy guy in training.” – Jose Mourinho motivating his midfielder, in his signature inimitable fashion, during a Spurs training session.
- “The WBBL and BBL don’t run simultaneously so why does the IPL and WIPL have to?” – Australia cricketer Alyssa Healy, while criticising the BCCI’s decision to schedule the Women’s T20 Challenge in November despite it clashing with the Women’s Big Bash League.
- “A lot of people back in Spain watched this game [against ATK Mohun Bagan] and asked me if this is a joke.” – FC Goa coach Juan Ferrando on poor refereeing calls in the Indian Super League.
- “One day we’ll kick a ball together in the sky above…” – Brazilian legend Pele on Diego Maradona after the Argentine passed away.
Diego Maradona tries to make up with Pele after a disagreement at the FIFA World Player Gala in Rome on December 11, 2000. – Getty Images
- “This is a big moment. I have no real words. I am completely overwhelmed. I never thought I would feel like this!” – Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp broke down while in conversation with Sir Kenny Dalglish after winning the Premier League title.
- “You can’t be dancing on tables, money-grabbing your way around Europe or trying to make a quick buck hosting the next exhibition. That’s just so selfish.” – Australian tennis player Nick Kyrgios on players partying during the controversial Adria Tour amid the coronavirus pandemic.
- “There’s going to be some psychological work to be done, because I really saw death coming. When you see images, not even Hollywood is capable of doing that. I sit back down and then thought about Niki Lauda… his accident… and thought ‘it couldn’t end like this, it couldn’t be my last race, it couldn’t finish like this. No way’.” – Haas F1 driver Romain Grosjean after miraculously surviving a crash at the Bahrain Grand Prix that saw his car go up in flames.
Haas F1’s Romain Grosjean is seen escaping his crash during the Bahrain Grand Prix on November 29. – Getty Images
- “If I want to make a career in football in India, I can do that. Would I be able to depend on a football career in India? No, I cannot.” – India footballer Dalima Chhibber on the sad state of women’s football in the country.
- “It’s not like we’re brushing our dolls.” – AC Milan coach Stefano Pioli when asked if his side had prepared Rafael Leao’s goal in training. Leao’s goal against Sassuolo in six seconds was the fastest in Serie A history.
- “I would like to say that I have always been myself. The way my personality and character is… I am the representation of new India.” – India cricket captain Virat Kohli ahead of the Test series against Australia.