CHELSEA star Marcos Alonso’s surprising pre-match routine has been revealed by his good friend Oisin Murphy.
The champion jockey, 26, is a huge Chelsea fan and has got to know the Stamford Bridge wing-back well.
Alonso, 30, is a regular at Surrey racecourses Sandown and Kempton, where Murphy often races in Flat contests.
Turns out the two are in close contact – and Alonso takes his obsession with racing right up until kick-off.
Rio Ferdinand revealed earlier this year that Sir Alex Ferguson spent more time on the phone to his bookie than taking training at United.
And though Alonso doesn’t like a flutter, he is equally fanatical about following the form.
Murphy told the Sunday Times: “Marcos is a good pal. He came to Kempton one night in the cold, rain and dark and he asked for a photo.
“Then he came to Goodwood a few days later. Now we speak every few days and he even facetimed me when I was at Longchamp recently.
“He doesn’t bet, so I haven’t given him any tips, but he loves his racing and it’s on his phone when he’s in the dressing room before games.”
Alonso’s love of racing – his uncle is a trainer and he says his family are ‘massive’ racing lovers – is far from unique among footballers.
Former England striker Mick Channon set up a hugely successful stable and continues to land big winners today.
Michael Owen can thank five Liverpool stars for giving him the ‘most embarrassing’ moment of his life thanks to their horse.
Former Newcastle and Coventry striker Mick Quinn gave up gambling and fighting in football to become a top trainer too.
Even Antoine Griezmann is getting in on the action, with the World Cup winner harbouring dreams of winning the Arc de Triomphe.
Fergie’s love of racing is perhaps the most well known though.
The infamous Rock Of Gibraltar row threatened to tear Manchester United apart completely.
But in more recent years Fergie has seen great success with the likes of Clan Des Obeaux and Protektorat – who both helped the former boss to a £169,000 win at Aintree last April.
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