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The Vaseline Trend: Why Goalkeepers are Applying it to Their Gloves

by Thomaz Oseghale
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The Vaseline Trend Why Goalkeepers are Applying it to Their Gloves

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In recent football matches, top goalkeepers such as Andre Onana, Manuel Neuer, and Jordan Pickford have been spotted applying Vaseline to their gloves. This growing trend has left many fans puzzled, wondering why these elite players are using the jelly-like substance on their gloves.

Vaseline Improves Grip in Wet Conditions

The primary reason for applying Vaseline to goalkeeper gloves is to improve grip, particularly during wet weather conditions. Onana was seen applying Vaseline to his gloves during Manchester United’s Premier League clash against Liverpool, as rain poured down inside Old Trafford. Research conducted by OP1GK on YouTube tested the effects of adding Vaseline to gloves and concluded that it improved handling without any adverse side effects on the gloves.

Top Goalkeepers Embrace the Vaseline Trend

Bayern Munich’s Manuel Neuer, widely regarded as one of the greatest goalkeepers of all time, was seen spreading Vaseline on his gloves before Bundesliga fixtures in 2023. England’s first-choice goalkeeper, Jordan Pickford, has also been spotted applying Vaseline to his gloves during training sessions. Despite the apparent benefits, football writer David Cartlidge noted that the sight of goalkeepers spreading Vaseline on their gloves will always feel slightly unusual. Ben Foster Learned the Trick from Joe Hart Former England goalkeeper Ben Foster revealed that he first saw Joe Hart applying Vaseline to his gloves at the 2014 World Cup. Foster quoted Hart as saying, “Fozzy, honestly, it is a game changer!” Foster added, “It’s hard to explain, but if we were in a training session, I could tell which one had Vaseline on their gloves because as soon as you caught the ball, it does feel grippier.”

Goalkeepers Take Vaseline Application to the Next Level

Dutch goalkeeper Andries Noppert took the Vaseline trend a step further during the 2022 World Cup in Qatar by smearing his posts with the substance. This was presumably done to avoid having to open the pot every time he wanted to top up his gloves. As more top goalkeepers adopt the Vaseline trend, especially during wet weather conditions, it is likely to continue growing in popularity. While critics may doubt the benefits, elite players like Onana and Neuer wouldn’t use Vaseline if they felt it increased the chances of making mistakes. Footballers seek innovative ways to gain an edge, and adding Vaseline to goalkeeper gloves might be another trend that’s here to stay as goalkeepers seek to optimize their performance on the pitch.

This article was updated 1 month ago

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