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England v Netherlands live – Three Lions fall behind in Euro 2024 semi-final



England v Netherlands live – Three Lions fall behind in Euro 2024 semi-final

Superstar Bukayo Saka had big holes in his socks when he scored the goal that took England to penalties against Switzerland – but they weren’t old and worn.

Eagle-eyed fans watching the Euro 2024 this summer may have noticed multiple teams with holes in their socks, as well as in previous Premier League and Champions League games. Back in 2018, Kyle Walker was spotted wearing socks that looked like they had seen better days, and Saka and Jude Bellingham appeared to follow the trend in the World Cup 2022.

But why do so many players cut up their socks? It turns out that having holey socks isn’t a footballer wardrobe malfunction – it serves a very clever purpose. Long socks are worn to keep their leg muscles warm and also make sure their shin guards stay in place. While they are incredibly useful, they can be quite tight and restrictive – which can cause problems with blood flow.

Dr Stefaan Vossen, founder of Core Clinics, backed up the scientific reason for cutting the socks. Speaking to The Mirror, he explained that footballers use new socks for every game, which can make them feel tight because they aren’t worn in. He said: “As the match goes on, footballers’ calves will swell as they fill with blood due to exertion. This can cause the socks to feel tight. The last thing players want to do is restrict blood supply in their legs, so over-tight socks could be a real issue. On the other hand, a level of compression can improve performance by reducing muscle fatigue.”

In a bid to combat this, some footballers cut holes in their socks in areas where they feel tight or have had problems in previous games. Speaking about the physical benefits, Dr Vossen said: “While there’s likely to be genuine physical benefits of cutting customised holes in new socks there is also likely to be a psychological benefit. Footballers have extensive pre-match preparation rituals and whenever they find something that they feel improves their performance they’ll want to repeat this.”

(EURO 2024 News Pool (ENP))
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