On match day minus one, defender Liam Ridgewell, a veteran of nearly 400 professional games, relaxes his mind and body before a tough 90 minute match
“The day before the game, I’m usually focusing on making sure I’m getting enough rest. I also try not to think about the game too much. I mainly just enjoy spending time with my kids. We’ll maybe watch a film or do something really chill.”
On the day of the game, Ridgewell is up early to have his routine breakfast, before going for a casual stroll to get his legs moving.
“The morning of the game, I’m up having a scrambled egg sandwich with a cup of tea. After that, I’ll usually just chill out and not do too much. If it’s a night game, I’ll have a stroll to get some coffee just to move the legs a little bit.”
Upon arrival to the stadium, the Timbers captain has a certain superstition that dates back to his days as a youth player.
“Once I get to the stadium, I’ll get changed into my gear. After that, I’ll lay my towel out and my kit for the game, starting with the socks that I’m going to wear for the game, then my shin pad inserts, tape and then the captain’s armband. I guess you say it’s sort of my superstition. I’ve always done that since I was a kid. Once that’s done, I’ll go and get in the Jacuzzi to meet (Jack) Barmby and Benny (Ben Zemanski). Jack Jewsbury used to be in there as well, but we’re slowly losing numbers. Once that’s done, I’ll go and get on the treatment table.”