June 23, 2014 3:40 pm
Updated: June 26, 2014 11:21 pm

World Cup sex conundrum: Is abstinence helping players win?

Netherlands player Memphis Depay shoots past Chile goalkeeper Claudio Bravo to score his team's second goal on June 23, 2014.

(Clive Rose/Getty Images)

“He shoots, he scores!”

Just not for many soccer players, in the bedroom.

Are teams going sex-free for the World Cup outscoring their more permissive rivals on the soccer pitch?

A verdict now would be premature. But with the free-love Dutch beating fornication-free Chileans Monday, soccer player hanky-panky is looking increasingly seductive.


  • Netherlands (3-0)
  • Italy (1-0-2)
  • Switzerland (2-0-1)
  • Uruguay(2-0-1)
  • USA (1-1-1)
  • Australia (0-3)
  • England (0-1-2)
  • Ghana (0-1-2)

No sex

  • Bosnia and Herzegovina (1-0-2)
  • Chile (2-1)
  • Mexico (1-1-0)
  • Russia (0-2-1)

No sex the night before a match

  • Spain (1-2)
  • Germany (2-1-0)

Sex ok, but leave the Kama Sutra at home

  • Brazil (1-1-0)

Sex ok, but not all night long

Sex ok after you make it to Round 2

  • Costa Rica (2-1-0)

Sex ok, but only for spouses 

  • Nigeria (1-1-1)

Policy unknown

  • Japan (0-1-2)
  • Algeria (1-1-1)
  • Belgium (3-0)
  • Cameroon (0-3)
  • Colombia (3-0)
  • Croatia (1-0-2)
  • Ecuador (1-1-1)
  • Greece (1-1-1)
  • Honduras (0-0-3)
  • Iran (0-1-2)
  • Cote d’Ivoire (1-0-2)
  • Portugal (1-1-1)
  • Korea (0-1-2)

Assuming all these players are obeying their coaches’ edicts (and assuming everyone who’s allowed to have sex is indeed getting it on), a little fooling around between matches seems fine if your bedtime’s reasonable, or as an effective incentive to win lots of games. That said, we’d all like to know what Oranje’s secret is.

READ MORE: What does science say when it comes to sex and soccer?

There’s no scientific evidence that abstinence improves your soccer, says psychologist Dr. Kate Hays.

“They think it works. Whether I think it works is a whole other question,” Hays told Global News.

“These are all beliefs, they’re not based on actuality. It may relate to when you sleep, what you eat, what you wear, what you say, who you speak to.”

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