In celebration of its ongoing partnership with the UEFA Champions League, Pepsi has premiered its 2020 International football campaign ad ‘Play Never Stops’, which sees Raheem Sterling and Paul Pogba joining returning players Leo Messi and Mo Salah.

Pepsi follows up last year’s Lionel-Messi-and-Mo-Salah-starring ‘Last Can Standing’ ad by recruiting Raheem Sterling and Paul Pogba for ‘Play Never Stops’, a fast-paced, sharply-styled commercial that’s been directed by award-winning film producer and director Henry Scholfield. Scholfield's best known for creating iconic music videos for some of the world’s top artists, and his visual style is apparent throughout the ad with a creative mash-up of swag-filled storytelling in quick-fire cuts.

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Boosting the number of pros in the ad certainly starts to bring back memories of the old west shootout from 2003 between Beckham and Casillas, overseen by a host of their United and Real Madrid teammates along with a special cameo from Rivaldo. Or the 2004 epic in which Beckham, Ronaldinho, Raul, Totti, Roberto Carlos and a young Fernando Torres saved a medieval village from a bunch of thieving bad guys who were stealing all the villagers’ Pepsi. Sure this is not quite the same scale, but there’s something about seeing all these players together on set. Like the beginnings of a dream all-star team.

The ad itself features the four players going head to head for the last can of Pepsi… and you know the rest. If not then why haven’t you watched it yet? As well as the ad, the international campaign also boasts behind-the-scenes content, a collection of limited-edition player-themed cans, and out-of-home and in-store point of sale materials across Pepsi and Pepsi MAX.

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Natalia Filippociants, Vice President, Marketing, Global Beverages, PepsiCo commented: “We are so excited to be launching this lively and upbeat campaign. We’ve taken some of the best football players, incorporated their cultural influences off the pitch, and put them in unconventional situations with unexpected twists and turns, with plenty of laughter and swagger. Our aim was to play with the energy of the ad and to entertain people, rather than show people being entertained. Hopefully, our fans will enjoy these ‘Play Never Stops’ stories as much as we enjoyed making them!

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Like a football-themed game of tin can alley...