Let’s-a go! Euro 2024 star Asani wears Super Mario boots

Having already scored the quickest goal ever at a European Championship in their spirited 2-1 defeat to Italy, Albania impressed once again by grinding out a dramatic 2-2 draw against Croatia in their second group outing at Euro 2024.

One player in particular stood out in Jasir Asani thanks not only to his perfect cross to set up the opening goal in the 11th minute but for his choice of footwear.

The 29-year-old, who plays his club football for Gwangju in South Korea, took to the pitch wearing a pair of custom Super Mario Bros.-themed boots.

On his left foot, Asani had an image of Nintendo’s iconic Italian plumber Mario, leaping into the air after (presumably) stomping on a hapless turtle and collecting a stash of gold coins.

On his right foot (yep, you’ve guessed it) was Luigi, Mario’s brother and partner in crime in so many video game adventures.

With the Super Mario Bros. by his side, Asani played a pivotal role as his country powered from 2-1 down against the semifinalists of the last two FIFA World Cups to rescue draw in the 95th minute that keeps Albania’s hopes of progressing out of Group B alive.

However, the forward isn’t the only player to have turned up to Euro 2024 with his feet clad in bespoke boots, with several other stars doing likewise.

While not the most ostentatious of designs, Romano Schmid of Austria came off the bench against France with his own initials daubed onto the heels of his ice-white Adidas boots.


In the same game, it took an eagle eye to spot that France full-back Ferland Mendy was wearing a set of cleats marking the date of the 2024 Champions League final, in which Mendy’s Real Madrid beat Borussia Dortmund at Wembley.

However, unlike that night on June 1, when Mendy played the whole of Madrid’s 15th European Cup final triumph, he didn’t get on the pitch against Austria.


When Spain faced Croatia at the Olympiastadion in Berlin on Saturday, La Roja‘s teenage star Lamine Yamal made sure not to lose sight of his roots by adding the flags of Morocco and Equatorial Guinea to his boots in honour of the birthplaces of his parents.


Of course, one player who certainly hasn’t forked out for a fresh pair of unique boots is Germany stalwart Toni Kroos, who is famed for wearing the exact same model of white Adidas Adipure boots for the past decade, long after the brand stopped producing them.

Still, they clearly work for him: the midfielder only misplaced one of his 102 passes in the host nation’s opening win over Scotland, and completed 94.7% of his 124 attempts in Wednesday’s 2-0 victory against Hungary.

If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.