10 Professional Footballers Who Are Good at Poker
In the 20th century, professional football (or Soccer in the US) has significantly improved in many aspects.
Firstly, the game itself is much faster, as the players work out on their own in the modern gyms that have all the latest equipment for developing their physical strength and motor skills.
Another important factor in soccer is a well-planned tactic.
In order to be on the same page, all players need to have the same idea in their minds about both the defense and the attack. Although a coach is usually the one who needs to come up with the tactic, some players also have a nose for it, and they benefit from this skill on the field on a personal level.
However, those who have a sense of it often tend to use it in some other activities apart from soccer. That’s why it comes as no surprise that some of the best professional soccer players can easily be spotted in the world’s best casinos as well as on legal poker sites.
The game they prefer is, of course, poker, as it requires a certain tactic which they are already familiar with. Moreover, all that money needs to be spent somewhere, right?
Famous Poker Playing Footballers
In this text, I will mention ten famous football players who play poker as well.
One of the best Spanish defenders and a pillar of Barcelona’s game, Gerard Pique, has some really good records when it comes to poker games and tournaments. He is as good as some of the professional poker players, so he can even be regarded as both a professional soccer and poker player.
Pique is often taking part in the World Series of Poker Main Events where he demonstrates brilliance, similar to the one on the field. His biggest cashout is the one from the European Poker Tour where he won an impressive amount of $56,000, which clearly indicates he has the brains for the game.
Neymar is one of those players who got everyone’s attention the moment he set his foot on a soccer field. Apart from his tattoos and great acting skills when it comes to granting fouls for his team, he is known as one of the most expensive players in the world. His record transfer fee of €222 enabled him to do whatever he wanted when he’s not playing soccer, so he decided to play poker.
Neymar’s record in poker earnings is around €18,000, which is less than what he earns per week, he finished 6th at 2018 BSOP Event. While it is obvious that he is not into it for the money, he would certainly make it as a poker player if he had to.
The Portuguese striker is probably one of the most famous names not only in soccer but in the world in general. Women want to be with him whilst men want to be him. He possesses many great qualities and one of them is love for poker.
Although Cristiano is managing to keep his poker success private, he is known for promoting PokerStars tournaments and poker events in general.
Gianluigi Buffon playing poker
Among all the great strikers and defenders, there is also one of the best goalkeepers the world has ever seen. Gianluigi Buffon, the Italian goalkeeper, is known for saving his teams from defeat in the past. However, nowadays, he is trying to save his chips at the poker table.
Buffon is not that much of a lover of the land-based casinos, but he is certainly highly interested in online poker. He is using his standard nickname “Gigi Buffon” when he enrols in an online poker game, so don’t be surprised if you happen to play against him. You might even beat him, as he hasn’t noted any great wins in particular.
Another Italian who is a soccer legend is Francesco Totti who marked the existence of AS Roma as their most valuable player of all times. He is definitely a role model for all Italian future soccer stars, but that’s not all.
Totti is a poker enthusiast who didn’t hesitate to share his passion for the cards. In 2010, he became the ambassador of partypoker Italy, and has played numerous games until the present day.
The former Brazilian soccer superstar is the older version of Cristiano Ronaldo when it comes to fame and success in this sport. As he is a retired athlete, he is now more familiar to the media as a professional poker player.
Furthermore, Ronaldo apparently prefers poker to soccer since he was so busy at the poker table in the Bahamas that he skipped watching Ballon d’Or ceremony. It certainly paid off, as he ended up cashing around $42,000 at the tournament.
This guy has definitely created an image of a soccer player who turned to a professional poker player. His earnings from the poker tournaments are exquisite and even poker players that are in the poker world their whole lives could envy him.
The former English Premier League striker has gathered more than $300,000 solely in his poker career. His most valuable poker game happened at the World Series of Poker 2016 Main event in which he finished 14th and acquired $60,000.
Jan Vang Sørensen
This name might not sound familiar to the younger audience, as Jan Vang Sørensen had to end his soccer career early. Namely, when he was 30 years old, Sørensen suffered a serious knee injury and never managed to recover from it to the extent to be able to play soccer on a professional level. Before that, he played for the Danish club Odense BK.
However, he didn’t let this unfortunate event leave him out of income, so he turned to poker after his soccer career ended. In his case, the popular saying “when one door closes, another opens” proved to be true, as the Danish poker pro has some remarkable games behind.
Jan Vang Sørensen’s poker career, he has one final table finish on the World Poker Tour, as well as one money finish on the European Poker Tour. The greatest success for him were one World Series of Poker Bracelet in 2002 — $2,500 Pot Limit Omaha and another one in 2005 — $5,000 Seven Card Stud event.
Tony Cascarino, a guy from Ireland, has done a great deal of work for both the Irish National Team and various soccer teams. He appeared in two World Cups for the Republic of Ireland, as well as in the colours of Millwall, Aston Villa, Celtic, Chelsea and Marseille.
When he decided to retire, he started playing live tournament poker and managed to win more than $500,000. After that, his great results continued with the first big win in 2007 when he was 14th at the European Poker Tour in London and took almost $30,000.
In 2008, he participated in the Grosvenor United Kingdom Poker Tour in Bolton where he won and got around $68,000. In the Grand Final of the same tournament, Cascarino finished 6th for a bit more than $35,000. His greatest success is winning the same competition the following year and cashing out the amount greater than $200,000.
If he hadn’t started playing poker, you would have never heard of this former Lyon and AC Milan central midfielder. He retired in 2007 and became more popular than he was as a soccer star.
Dhorasoo has written down two victories on the European Poker Tour. Apart from that, he won the $2,200 Barrier Poker Tour in 2010 and increased the numbers on his account for $187,887.
As you can see from the list above, soccer and poker definitely have a lot in common. Not everyone can make the most out of it though, as both require specific skills, patience, and tactic.
However, these soccer superstars are not the only ones with Formula One Drivers also proving that you can be great at more than one thing if you are passionate enough.