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The real reason why footballers cut holes in their socks before matches

The real reason why footballers cut holes in their socks before matches

The reason has been revealed.

The real reason why footballers cut holes in their socks before matches has been revealed.

Eagle-eyed viewers of Saturday's Premier League clash between Luton and Chelsea might have spotted Blues captain Conor Gallagher having two circular holes cut into both of his socks.

It is a strange sight, and raises the question of whether the holes are purposely cut, or whether they emerge through natural wear and tear on the pitch.

The former, in most cases, is the genuine reason, with footballers gaining several benefits by cutting holes in their socks.

But the main reason behind the practice is to protect muscles in the calf.

That is because tight-fitting football socks can inadvertently apply heavy pressure to the muscles, especially when running and stretching, which restricts their movement.

They can also affect bloodflow and circulation through the legs for players who have bulging muscles, which can lead to major issues over the long-term.

As a result, players cut their socks to improve breathability, increase their range of movement and avoid circulation problems that could have a detrimental effect on their performance.

Critically, it also reduces the risk of cramp, which can often impact footballers towards the end of high-intensity games.

Top football stars such as Jude Bellingham, Bukayo Saka and Kyle Walker take part in the practice, with Walker explaining his reasoning to SPORTbible in 2021: "The socks were actually too tight so it was causing pressure on my calves. [It was] just to release my calves - or release the tension.

"I just cut holes in them and all of a sudden I had a few alright games, and I was like, 'Ok, I'm keeping this now!'"

As for Gallagher, the practice appeared to have a positive impact on his performance against Luton, as he came close with an early chance before captaining his side to a 3-2 win at Kenilworth Road.

Featured Image Credit: Getty

Topics: Football, Conor Gallagher, Chelsea, Jude Bellingham, Real Madrid