Football managers and clubs banned chips, tattoos, and other weird and random stuff over the years.
1 – Antonio Conte refused ketchup, mayonnaise
New Spurs boss has the reputation of implementing dietary changes as he did at Chelsea, which won them the Premier League title in 2017. Conte has banned fast food, ketchup and mayonnaise in the Spurs training centre. Three of his coaches are working on fitness to improve players’ physical conditioning.
Conte said: “At every one of the clubs that I trained, I had a nutritionist, and these aspects are important because you have to stay at the right weight and to do that, you have to have the good fat and the good muscle.”
Spurs are unbeaten in the league under Conte and are only 2 points behind 4th placed Arsenal with 2 games in hand. Spurs are yet to win a trophy in almost 13 years, but with Antonio Conte, in the dugout, you can fancy them winning a trophy in coming years if they obey the changes made by the Italian.
2 – David Moyes banned chips
David Moyes had a tough time managing Manchester United, and it was expected as he was replacing the greatest manager of all time, Sir Alex Ferguson. Moyes was criticised for his strange tactics, and if the on-field issues weren’t enough, his off-field changes were also disliked by players. Moyes had his ideas and implemented them into a team that had been obeying the rules and traditions for many years.
Moyes banned players from having chips, a pre-match tradition at Old Trafford. Rio Ferdinand even expressed his criticism in his autobiography. “We loved our chips, but Moyes comes in and, after his first week, he says we can’t have chips anymore,” he revealed in his book.
3 – Arsene Wenger banned Flamini from cutting his shirt sleeves
Some clubs follow different traditions, but Arsenal followed a weird rule that all players should wear the same kit their captain selected on match day. So the decision of wearing full or half sleeves was decided by the captain.
However, Mathieu Flamini didn’t like this tradition and used a pair of scissors to cut out the sleeves. Flamini continued his habit, but it created tension in the dressing room and a row between him and the kit man.
“I do not like that, and he will not do that again,” Arsene Wenger said. “I was surprised he did that; we don’t want that.”
However, Flamini made his thoughts clear.
“I’ve been playing at the top level for ten years. I like to wear short sleeves. That’s what I like to do,” Flamini said.
4 – Roy Keane banned players from swapping shirts
Imagine the scenes in the dressing room if Flamini had disobeyed the rule with Roy Keane being his captain…well, never mind, it would be a classic altercation between those two, but Roy Keane too had his issues with jerseys.
But his problem was with swapping shirts at the end of the game. During his days as Sunderland manager in 2007, he didn’t like players, especially senior players asking for shirt swaps. He didn’t want his players to be doing something like that but to be focused on the game and challenge ahead. I had senior players coming up and asking me for my shirt during a game, and I’m thinking, “Are you focused on the game at all?” You see players now who say, “I’ve got 50 jerseys in my garage,” and I think, “Yeah, brilliant. But how many medals have you got?” said Roy Keane. A classic Roy Keane assessment, to be fair.
5 – Werder Bremen banned players from getting inked
The football game has changed a lot in the last 10-15 years, but so has the identity of modern-day footballers. Flashy hairstyles and tattoos have become a common thing among youngsters. David Beckham was the pioneer as he set the trend of tattoos and hairstyles, which would inspire the younger generation.
However, Hamburg’s Eljero Elia faced extreme pain while wearing a jersey due to his tattoo turning septic. After this incident, Bremen decided to ban all their players from getting a tattoo. The Werder general manager, Klaus Allofs, said, “I will not dramatise the danger, but we pointed out that we, in principle, prohibit tattoos that are done during the season. This is a risk that we have to exclude.”
6 – Neil Lennon banned Beanie hats
Neil Lennon earned his managerial reputation when we won three league titles, two domestic cups and got his side into the Champions League. But in his first training session, he implemented a weird rule by banning his players from wearing beanie hats in training sessions, ironically donning one when laying down this rule. He was, therefore, signed by Bolton Wanderers.
“I don’t want players training in hats because they don’t play football in hats. If they want to get warm, they should run around,” said the former Celtic boss.
7 – Fabio Capello banned WAGS
Fabio Capello had his ‘no sex’ policy during the 2010 World Cup as wives and girlfriends of English players weren’t allowed from visiting the training camp. Fabio must have thought about bringing the team together with his idea, but his concept didn’t work whatever he had planned for.
England failed to beat Algeria as the game ended with a 0-0 draw and eventually a 4-1 hammering from Germany to knock them out of the World Cup.
8 – Sir Alex banned backflips and coloured boots
Sir Alex Ferguson wasn’t a fan of girlfriends either, as you can recall his troubles with David and Victoria Beckham. However, he was a disciplinarian, one of his key factors that brought glory to Old Trafford. Apart from being a master tactician, Ferguson was authoritative about what his players should do or shouldn’t.
He banned backflip goal celebration to fear a career-threatening injury to his players. However, Nani wasn’t having any of it and celebrated his goal with a double backflip.
His second ban was for Manchester United’s junior players, who were banned from wearing flashy coloured boots.
“They are told they have to stick to wearing black. Once in the reserve or first-team squad, there are no restrictions, but if you are wearing flashy colours and don’t play too well, you’re likely to get singled out,” said defender John O’Shea.
9 – Pep bans sports cars
One of the greatest football managers, Guardiola, has always been a disciplinarian. His ability to bring the best out of players who can be one of the greats.
His player engagement and strict rules may cause a rift between the player and manager, but this method has also brought stars such as Joshua Kimmich and Phil Foden into the limelight.
However, Guardiola banned players from driving sports cars to training grounds.
Similar to tattoos, cars also define personality. The idea behind the rule was to keep his players down-to-earth and humble despite achieving a lot of success.
But this rule didn’t go well with players who are outspoken such as Zlatan Ibrahimovic, “I thought this was ridiculous, it was no one’s business what car I drive. So in April, before a match with Almeria, I drove my Ferrari Enzo to work. It caused a scene,” Ibrahimovic revealed.
10 – Paolo Di Canio banned almost everything
“This is a complete revolution. Not just in the way we play, but in how we approach everything,” claimed Paulo Di Canio.
Paulo Di Canio played a vital role in Sunderland’s survival from the relegation battle in his brief stint. His idea of making off-field changes was to control almost everything inside the dressing room. Mobile phones, coffee, mayonnaise, ketchup and fizzy drinks were banned. If that wasn’t enough, he even banned players from joking, gossiping and singing in the shower to ensure the players were at their best. These bizarre changes caused nothing but mutiny as his players turned against him.