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Crystal Ball Before Football 

  • November 16, 2022
  • 2 min read
Crystal Ball Before Football 

Football has always been an arena of superstitions and black magic rituals. Some teams do crystal ball gazing before kicking the football! Most teams, coaches and players believe that superstitions bring success to their teams. Some team officials bury skulls in the ground while some others keep wizards with the team.

During the Santhosh Trophy Tournament (Indian domestic football tournament among State teams) in Manjeri in the Northern Kerala district of Malappuram, West Bengal’s coach Ranjan Bhattacharya was seen  bringing ‘Kali’s blood’ to the ground on match days. Players and coaches smearing their bodies with the blood of sacrificial animals is common in Africa.

Ranjan Bhattacharya applying Kali’s blood onto the ground.

In the 1974 World Cup, Zaire (now the Congo) lost to Yugoslavia by nine goals, and the whole country believed that it was because of the failure to bring a  female horse with magical powers from Zaire to Berlin, the host city. Coaches and players alike asserted that Kuwait’s defeat in 1982 was due to the lack of opportunity to keep a camel tied in the stadium.

When Nigeria plays, magicians bring to the stadium a wild fowl’s feather in a white tampal (a big, round tray with a high rim) and a snake’s sheath anointed with honey.
Once the game starts, they start chanting mantras.
An ‘Argentinian Ritual’ of urinating beside the goal post before penalties.

Once the current edition of World Cup starts, astrologers will work overtime in  Thailand. Once they say who is favored by Jupiter, the betting houses don’t think about any other team.

Argentina’s famous goalie Sergio Goycochea used to urinate on the ground before every penalty kick he faced. In the 1990 World Cup semi-final shootout against Italy,  the hosts, Goikosia was urinating after every kick.

Europe is not far behind Africa, Asia and South America in holding such beliefs.
English footballer Gary Lineker would not hit the post during warm-up matches because he believed that that would have been a missed opportunity in the real game. John Terry used to sit in the same seat, listen to the same song, and use the same bathroom during tournaments.

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About Author

Jafar Khan MM

M.M. Jaffar Khan is an award winning Sports Journalist , hailing from Areacode in the Northern Kerala district of Malappuram, where “football fever” runs high all the time and peaks during the World Cup season.

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