The World’s Best Football Photographer and The World Cup: Ryu x Rio

We’ve featured the sublime photography of Ryu Voelkel on AFR for years, so - unless you’re remarkably new here - the man hardly needs an introduction. But he does need your help.

Ryu captures the game’s atmosphere and aesthetics in ways that no one else can, and he wants to tell a story unlike anything you’ll see around this summer’s World Cup. He has already been given the green light by FIFA to shoot matches, but he needs support to spend the month in Brazil, travel to the tournament’s biggest matches, and create an incredible book around the 2014 World Cup. If you appreciate great photography and support independent artists, get behind Ryu’s Kickstarter.

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Through Ryu’s Lens: Belgium’s biggest match (in Belgium)

Despite a population of just over 11 million and a history of little prestige in football on the world’s stage, Belgium are considered the darkhorse by many to win this summer’s World Cup. With Hazard, Kompany, Courtois, Lukaku, and Vertoghen (just to name a few) leading the Red Devils in Brazil, Belgium have shown that they’re united and have the quality to perform against any opponent.

But before millions support an underdog’s hopes to win it all, Ryu took his camera to Brussels to capture the biggest match within Belgium’s borders: Anderlecht vs Standard Liege.

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Through Ryu’s Lens: José does it again

Parisian fans have swooped past frustration and sit in their city with nothing but existential angiush. Oh, what could have been. This was their year, and it was led by the mighty Zlatan. That is, until he was reminded of his humanity and sidelined with an injury.

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Through Ryu’s Lens: Blues in Black

It was a bright and sunny day in London. A rarity for Chelsea faithful. Matchday was made even better when Mourinho’s men stole 3 points in the dying minutes of the match against Everton. Nevertheless, Ryu brought out his camera and turned the lights down low at Stamford Bridge.

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Through Ryu’s Lens: Barça storm Manchester

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Through Ryu’s Lens: The North London Derby

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Through Ryu’s Lens: Milan falls in the Milan Derby

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Through Ryu’s Lens: A Night in Plzeň

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Through Ryu’s Lens: Anything you can do…

There’s only one person more disappointed that Zlatan won’t be in Brazil than Zlatan, and that is Ryu Voelkel. The big man deceives, acting and performing in a way that makes him seem to be more than just that. Camera in hand, Ryu was in Stockholm to witness a  battle between two greats.

Just when Portugal were comfortable, Ibrahimovic put them on the back foot. Just when Sweden were full of hope, Ronaldo silenced the stadium. The Swede did all he could, but could only watch as his counterpart did more.

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