Footballers who love playing poker

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Updated: May 17, 2017

Considering footballers are forbidden from drinking, smoking or having fun, and are generally pretty rich; and considering the relatively small chance of getting ill or injured on a poker table, it’s understandable that these supreme athletes can be partial to a light gamble from time to time.

Everyone knows Texas Hold ‘Em is a great way to waste the hours away, (so ideal for those who only work 8am-12pm Monday-Friday) and is a game that you can actually learn to be good at if you put in the time and effort, so after a muscle wrenching training session it’s easy to understand why footballers and other sportspeople choose poker as one of their extra-curricular activities.

So who are the biggest names from the footballing world that also hold their own on the poker circuit?

Well, pokerglobal superstars Cristiano Ronaldo and Neymar are the two that spring immediately to mind, mainly due to their ambassadorial roles with a certain large online poker room, and both are pretty accomplished players too. Brazilian great, the other Ronaldo, also dabbles on the tables whilst Barcelona centre back Gerard Pique fancies himself as a decent player, too.

More interesting to fans of UK football is that Teddy Sheringham and Tony Cascarino are both serious poker sharks with a track record of profiting on the tables. Ex-Spurs, Man Utd and West Ham man, Sheringham, scorer of one of ‘those’ late goals which won Man Utd the Champions League in 1999, has won over $300k in live tournaments, including a 14th place finish in the 2009 main event. He lags behind TalkSport pundit and ex-Villa and Republic of Ireland forward, Tony Cascarino, however, who is incredibly approaching the $600k mark in live tournament winnings.

Trumping them all though is Danish midfielder Jan Vang Sørensen who has had so much poker success that he’s arguably more recognised for his $2 million winnings than his actual football career, which was mostly spend at Odense for anyone who’s interested…

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