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Top 10 Footballer’s Superstitions

As a rule Catch Seventy7 is not really a big fan of lists, but every once in a while exceptions must be made…

Blanc and Barthez: Bromance (Photo: Reuters)

Blanc and Barthez: Bromance (Photo: Reuters)

When it comes to superstitions, footballers are in a class of their own. Whether it be wearing the same piece of kit for a decade, or carrying out the same pre-match rituals, footballers will do anything if it makes them believe they will play better. Here are just 10 of the best footballing superstitions:


1. Malvin Kamara

When it comes to superstitions, the former Huddersfield midfielder certainly takes the biscuit. Or, more accurately, the chocolate. The 25-year-old watches Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory before every game he plays.

“It really helps to get me in the right mood for what lies ahead,” the 25-year-old revealed.
”That is the original Gene Wilder version I’m talking about though, the Johnny Depp one just offends me.” Obviously.


2. Romeo Anconetani

Former Pisa president Romeo Anconetani, renowned for his eccentric ways, had an unusual pre-match superstition. Before every one of his side’s games the Italian would throw salt onto the pitch. And the bigger the game, the more salt he would throw. In one particularly important match against local rivals Cesena, Anconetani distributed 26kg of salt on the pitch. Well seasoned.


3. Stuart Pearce

“Psycho” as a player, but a bit more of a softy as a manager. While in charge of Manchester City, the former England international turned to his seven-year-old daughter to help him end a losing streak.

That was how “Beanie” the stuffed horse ended up on the City touchline, and when Pearce’s side overcame West Ham, Beanie kept his place in the squad — until City lost 4-0 away to Wigan a month later.

Ince: Any excuse to get the shirt off...

Ince: Any excuse to get the shirt off...

4. Paul Ince

One of the more renowned superstitions in football, the self-proclaimed “Guv’nor” was famous for always being the last player on his team to run out onto the pitch, and the last to put on his shirt. It was a tradition that quickly endeared him to fans wherever he played.


5. Bobby Moore

In a variation on Paul Ince’s tradition, the World Cup winning captain would not put on his shorts until every other member of the team had theirs on first. Rumour has it that England and West Ham teammate Martin Peters was fascinated by this ritual, and would wait for Moore to finally put his shorts on before removing his own. Moore would then take his shorts back off and wait for Peters, and no doubt give the forward a tongue-lashing for his bare cheek (so to speak).


6. Laurent Blanc

It wasn’t home advantage that propelled France to a maiden World Cup triumph in 1998, but rather the pre-match ritual of their enigmatic defender Laurent Blanc. The former Manchester United defender, and current Bordeaux manager, started every game by kissing the bald head of his goalkeeper, Fabien Barthez.


7. John Terry

The Chelsea defender has admitted he has “about 50” superstitions, including always taking the same seat on the team bus, and listening to the same pre match music. The most unusual of the lot, however, must be his insistence on using the same pair of shinpads throughout his career—until he lost them after a Champions League tie with Barcelona in 2005. “Those shin-pads had got me to where I was in the game,” Terry lamented.


8. Sergio Goycochea

The Argentina keeper had the unusual habit of urinating on the pitch before facing a penalty. Apparently he relieved himself once before a penalty and saved it, and so continued the tradition for the remainder of his career. “It was my lucky charm and I went before every shoot out,” he said. “I was very subtle, nobody complained.”

Goycochea: Unorthodox technique

Goycochea: Unorthodox technique

9. Don Revie

The legendary Leeds United manager may have been the bane of Brian Clough’s career, but he was also an annoyance to suit-makers everywhere. Revie insisted on wearing his trademark blue suit to every game his team played, for over ten years. By the end, it was looking rather threadbare…


10. Shay Given

The Ireland and Manchester City keeper insists on keeping a vial of Holy Water at the back of the goal for every game he plays for club or country. With Ireland, he’s following in a tradition of superstitious keepers, as predecessor Packie Bonner used to carry a piece of clay from Gartan in County Donegal in his glove bag wherever he went.


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July 10, 2009 - Posted by | Sport | ,

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