In the old days — before reality TV — footballers' wives were meek and dowdy matrons who were almost invisible except on the biggest occasions.
But then came Victoria Beckham, Cheryl Cole and Coleen Rooney — wives of England stars David, Ashley and Wayne respectively.
So when the FIFA World Cup kicks off on June 14 the names of the wives and girlfriends (WAGs) of players like Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi and Jamie Vardy trip off the tongue almost as easily as the players themselves.
Ronaldo Switched From Russian to Spanish Model
Ronaldo, whose Real Madrid team will be hoping to win the Champions' League Final against Liverpool later this month, is currently dating 22-year-old Spanish model Georgina Rodriguez.
The former Manchester United star dated Russian model Irina Shayk for nearly five years until January 2015.
His Real Madrid team-mate Messi, 30, married his 29-year-old girlfriend Antonella Roccuzzo in their native Argentina last summer.
The wedding was attended by Manchester City star Sergio Aguero and his girlfriend Karina, Spanish international Cesc Fabregas and his fiancee Daniella Seeman, and former Barcelona striker Samuel Eto'o, who is now plying his trade in Turkey.
England Team Has Army of WAGs
The UK media is one of the most celebrity-obsessed in the world and the England team possesses a clutch of high-profile WAGs.
Liverpool midfielder Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is in a relationship with Perrie Edwards, a singer with the girl-band Little Mix.
Tottenham star Dele Alli is currently "walking out" with stunning model Ruby Mae, 23, while Manchester City's Raheem Sterling has a son, Thiago, with former shop worker Paige Milian, who has 32,000 followers on Instagram.
The hosts, Russia, have plenty of WAGs of their own.
They include Katerina Akinfeev, whose husband Igor is the national team's goalkeeper, and Anastasia Kostenko, the runner-up in the Miss Russia beauty pageant, who married Lokomotiv Moscow midfielder Dmitry in January.
Every country has its celebrity couples — Sweden's defender Victor Lindelof, who plays for Manchester United, is in a relationship with popular blogger Maja Nilsson, Spanish midfielder Isco is dating famous actress Sara Salamo and South Korean midfielder Ki Sung-yueng has a young child with Han Hye-jin, who is a famous actress back in Korea.
Japanese midfielder Shinji Kagawa is married to Margaret Natsuki, a top model and TV presenter in Japan. She was born in Scotland, is half-Canadian, and is known to her fans as Maggy.
Former Chelsea player John Mikel Obi — a star of Nigeria's Super Eagles — is married to a Russian, Olga Allegra, who is the mother of his two children and has learned how to cook Nigerian food. He met her in London where her billionaire father had a house.
One player whose wife you are unlikely to see in a bikini or a low-cut dress is Liverpool's Egyptian striking sensation Mo Salah.
He married Magi in 2013 — she wore a modest Muslim-style wedding dress — and his daughter Makka (Mecca) is named after the holy city in Saudi Arabia.