The Pre-Match Meal I Eat Instead of Pasta


People are always asking me what I eat before a soccer game to optimise performance… right now, this is the answer.

I started experimenting with different pre-match meal options when I moved to Berlin and found my team’s kick off times to be earlier than in England. 10:00 am early.

If the game starts at 10:00 am, then I need to have left the house by 8:15 am to be at the ground in time for warm up and a team talk. I like to sleep, so it’s really not an option to get up at 6:00 am just to get ‘breakfast’ into my system. There’s not enough time to digest a meal and still feel light on the pitch. Instead, I combine night-before prep with this special BLT with Mushroom ‘stack’.

It’s important to eat a good meal the night before a game with a few more carbohydrates than usual. Provided you get this meal right and don’t spend too much energy pre-game, you can still turn up with everything you need in your system. Hydration is key, of course. Then comes the BLT with Mushroom.

The BLT With Mushroom

Beetroot Juice
w/ Mushroom Coffee Mix

This is strange. This is eccentric. But it’ll get you firing like absolutely nothing else. Seriously. The first time I used this stack I came off the bench at half time after no pre-season training and a week partying in Ibiza and scored within 15 minutes. Here’s why it works.

Energy, Alert, Focused

Beetroot Juice
The right dosage of concentrated beetroot juice can give you a 3.5% gain in activity and aerobic capacity.

Dose: 600ml of juice consumed between 2 and 2.5 hours before training or playing. You can get this through normal juice from the grocery store, or more conveniently by bulk ordering concentrated powder made by companies such as US-based Neogenesis Labs. This is much better if traveling to away games.

This amino acid increases alpha brain waves, promoting a calm state but with zero drowsiness.

Dose: I take 150 mg 2 hours before training or playing, with my mushroom coffee. I use Doctor’s Best Suntheanine.

Mushroom Coffee Mix
This specific mix combines instant coffee with two superfoods, Lion’s Mane mushroom and rhodiola root, for perfect mental clarity. It will light you up like a firework.

Dose: One packet with 200ml of hot water 2 hours before training or playing. You can get this direct from the Four Sigmatic website. You can also get it on Amazon, which I find more convenient because the official website is often out of stock.

Once this is in me, I’m out the door. I’ll also eat a banana on the way to the game.

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