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The Borussia Dortmund star's ritualistic method of getting dressed before matches features in the latest of our series chronicling the extraordinary power of belief

A whole raft of footballers have bizarre beliefs when it comes to getting changed for the match. Borussia Dortmund striker Marco Reus insists on putting on his right sock, boot and shinpad first when he's getting changed, but then always puts his left foot first onto the pitch.

The problem with having such an intricate routine is that team-mates, keen for a wind up, like to play havoc with your system. On several occasions, Reus's colleagues have hidden his shinpads, and before a game against Cologne two years ago, Mario Gotze deliberately shoved him in the back so that he stumbled, and put his right foot on the turf first. Reus insisted on walking back to the tunnel and repeating his routine so that he put his left foot forward first.


Reus is careful about the order in which he needs to put his clothes on

Other famous footballers who were fussy about the order in which they get dressed include Bobby Moore. Wwriter Desmond Morris noted that the former England captain would stand around holding his shorts, waiting for everyone to finish dressing, before he put his shorts on, and that Martin Peters used to enjoy taking his off and putting them back on, forcing Moore to follow suit.

Still, none of those examples are as extreme as former England keeper David James, who admitted that his pre-match routine was "so complex it could fill a page". As well as his intricate dressing process, he insisted on then going to the urinal, waiting until the dressing room was empty and spitting on the back wall.

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