UTD Podcast: Albert reveals players' superstitions
Former Manchester United kit man Albert Morgan is the subject of the latest UTD Podcast.
Albert was right in the thick of it in the Old Trafford dressing room for years, overseeing the logistics behind league titles and European successes.
During that time, it’s fair to say he witnessed his fair share of strange superstitions, whether it was Paul Ince’s refusal to don his shirt until he made it onto the pitch or Rio Ferdinand’s risky decision to eschew boxer shorts.
There were also some odd food choices – Wayne Rooney has previously spoken about his love for Coco Pops, while Paul Scholes admitted last year that he'd always have beans on toast before games.
But there are two particular examples, both by former star United forwards, that particularly stand out for Morgan.
UTD Podcast: The Reds’ strangest superstitions
There have been a few odd habits in the dressing room down the years, particularly where Eric Cantona is concerned…
First is Eric Cantona, the Frenchman renowned for his sartorial choices, including that iconic upturned collar.
One lesser-known preference was for Eric to recycle socks – and he also used to add a strange ingredient into the mix.
“Eric used to want the same pair of socks,” recalled Morgan. “If we were playing in black socks, he’d want the same pair we had before. The girls used to stitch a little cross in them so we knew they were Eric’s socks. Whatever colour we had, he’d want the same ones.
“He used to want a salt pot. He’d get the pot, put the salt in his hand and then put the salt in the sock and then put his socks on. I christened him salt and vinegar feet.
“If it did the trick for him, well it did the trick. The aim of my job was to make sure that the lads obviously were ready and they didn’t have any sort of stupid issues in their mind, they went out to perform.”
Superstitions are a curious thing and often Morgan didn’t actually have to do anything to satisfy the players’ requirements.
This was the case with Andy Cole, who used to ask for his boots to be stretched minutes before the squads would line up in the tunnel.
“Andy Cole with his boots was a nightmare! I love Coley to bits, but he was a nightmare! He was the worst I ever had with his feet. He’d come to you at five to three and say 'Albert, just stretch them!'
“’Aye, alright Coley’. I’d just put them down somewhere and say ‘hang on’. He’d ask me where they were and I’d say ‘I’ve just taken them off the stretcher!’
“I hadn’t even put them on but he’d say ‘they’re brilliant they are’!”
You can listen to Albert’s UTD Podcast on Deezer and your favourite podcast platforms now.