What happened in the match where Gabor Kiraly ditched his famous tracksuit bottoms?


When you mention the name Gabor Kiraly, just one thing comes to mind - his grey baggy tracksuit bottoms.

The Hungarian goalkeeper graced the Premier League with spells at Crystal Palace, West Ham, Aston Villa, Burnley and Fulham and was always seen wearing his grey trackies.

The tradition began very early in his career at Szombathelyi Haladás in his native country.

In an interview ahead of Euro 2016, Kiraly explained exactly why he ditched shorts for tracksuit bottoms.

“It started 20 years ago these gray bottoms, it began in Hungary and it brought me luck and then I take to (Hertha) Berlin and it brings luck as well as we were in the Champions League. After that, I take it to London, to Crystal Palace,” Kiraly told BBC Sport.

“I want to be confident in the game. You cannot just put gray bottoms on in goal (to play well), you have to move your bottom. I want to work and I can only do this in these gray bottoms. In the beginning, they were black, the kit man didn’t wash them and on Friday and on Saturday we had a game. I had no other bottoms and I take the gray ones and that was the start of the luck.


“I play 20 years in these bottoms for Hungary and I don’t think I’ll be changing.”

However, since the tradition started, there was ONE match that Kiraly didn’t actually wear his famous bottoms. Instead, during Palace’s trip to Chelsea in 2005, Kiraly was seen in shorts - and it didn’t go well. 

Palace lost 4-1 at Kiraly made a massive error by letting Mateja Kežman’s shot slip through his legs - his baggy trousers would definitely have prevented the ball from finding the net.

According to the Independent’s Ed Maylon, it’s the only time Kiraly has ditched his famous tracksuit bottoms.

Quite why he didn't wear his trackies is unknown but he hasn't made the same mistake of wearing shorts since.

And, at the age of 41, Kiraly is still wearing those famous trackies back at his very first club - Szombathelyi Haladás.

And if you want to pay tribute to the legendary shot-stopper, you can even buy an official pair of Kiraly tracksuit bottoms from his official website.


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