There’s the “I refuse to shave my playoff beard” kind of fan, and then there’s the “I write my team’s name on a piece of paper and put it into a toad’s mouth” kind of fan — often soccer fans. To each their own. Soccer in particular, though, seems to engender some of the most bizarre “soccerstitions.” So what’s the weirdest fan ritual you’ve ever encountered?
To get the ball rolling, I asked friends who are hardcore fans for their soccer rituals. Here’s what they confessed:
My friend Nicolás has been wearing the same blue sweater, regardless of weather, to his team’s stadium for years. He also faithfully spits on the floor when the referee blows the kick-off whistle.
Andrés, a Colombian sports journalist and full-time fan, has a whole kit of rituals: When going to a game, he never leaves the house without his team’s cushion (in theory to sit on it at the stadium, but he never sits), which has a foldable poncho inside. He always must enter the stadium through the doorway on the right, never the left. And when his team really needs a goal, he recites the names of four important men who’ve passed away (two grandfathers and one uncle who were fans, plus one famous defender who used to play on the team). He confirms that this has never failed.
Jan, a German soccer fan with an undying love for his hometown Hamburg team, always waits until minute 25 of the match to eat a bratwurst.
Alek, a Polish fan, says that when he was a kid his mom was the luckiest of charms: If she was in the stadium, the team would win. Once she decided she’d had enough of live matches, Alek’s dad spent the rest of his life imploring her to at least walk close to the stadium, in hopes her luck would somehow reach his team.
And lastly, Miguel, a Mexican superfan, restrains himself from answering nature’s call, regardless of how many beverages he has during the game. Once the 90 minutes are over, he always bolts to the restroom.
What “soccerstition” do you practice? Or have you witnessed something really out-there? Let us know in the comments!
Astrid Harders is a senior writer for Studio@Gizmodo.