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What to Eat Before a Football Match: Complete Guide

What to Eat Before a Football Match: Complete Guide

Sports performance in football, as in any other sport, depends on training, technical ability, and proper nutrition. For these players, knowing what to eat before a football match can make a difference in their energy, endurance, and ability to make quick decisions on the pitch.

Adequate nutrition provides muscles the energy to function efficiently, preventing premature fatigue.

In addition, a well-balanced diet allows for a faster recovery after exercise and prevents injuries.

The last feeding for the match is essential, as it guarantees that the football players have enough energy to perform at the maximum throughout the game.

What is the purpose of knowing what to eat before a football match?

The main objective of nutrition before the encounter is to provide the body with the energy it needs to face the intense physical activity that will take place on the field of play.

These include adequate carbohydrate intake to maintain optimal muscle and liver glycogen levels and protein information to support muscle repair and maintenance.

Attention should also be paid to adequate hydration to prevent dehydration and maintain optimal muscle and cardiovascular function.

In addition, you must consider the food digestion time to avoid gastrointestinal discomfort during the party.

What does a football player need to eat?

Caloric needs

The caloric needs of a football player vary according to factors such as age, gender, weight, level of physical activity, and position on the field.

A professional football player can require between 2,500 and 4,000 calories daily to maintain a high performance.

It is important to assess individual needs and adjust caloric intake according to the intensity and duration of breaks and parties.

This can be done through an individualized form that serves as a control.

The energy sources

Carbohydrates are the primary energy source for an athlete, as they provide the necessary glucose to maintain optimal glycogen levels in the muscles and liver.

Complex carbohydrates, such as wholegrain cereals, rice, pasta, and fruit, are preferable because they offer a sustained release of energy.

Proteins are essential for repairing and maintaining muscle tissue.

Even though they are not a primary energy source, proteins are essential in preventing muscle breakdown during prolonged exercise.

Lean protein sources include white meat, eggs, dairy, and vegetables.

As for grease, it is a concentrated energy source and is essential for absorbing fat-soluble vitamins and producing hormones.

However, they are not the primary energy source during high-intensity exercise like football.

Healthy fats should be consumed, such as those found in olive oil, avocados, dried fruits, and fatty fish, but in moderate amounts to avoid the feeling of heaviness and slow digestion.

What to eat before a football match

Below is a list of recommended foods and time for consumption:

3-4 hours before departure

The last main meal before the party must be balanced, including complex carbohydrates, lean proteins, and healthy fats in adequate proportions.

It is also essential to keep in mind the volume and density of food to ensure proper digestion.

Examples of food:

Carbohydrates: wholegrain rice, pasta, bread, quinoa, potatoes, fruits.

Proteins: pollo sin piel, pavo, pescado, huevos, legumbres, tofu, tempeh.

Fats: olive oil, avocado, dry fruits, seeds.

1-2 hours before departure

A light and easy-to-digest snack can help maintain energy levels without causing gastrointestinal discomfort.

It should be mainly based on carbohydrates, with a little protein and healthy fats.

Examples of these foods:

Yogurt low in grease with fruits and granola

Whole grain bar with dried fruit

Wholemeal toast with mani and plantain butter

30 minutes before the party

An easily digestible snack that provides quick energy can be beneficial in the moments before the party.

It must be fiber, fat, and protein low to avoid gastrointestinal discomfort.



rice balls with honey

Cereal bars low in fiber and fat

Hydration before a football match

We are maintaining adequate hydration before the match is essential for optimal sports performance.

Hydration helps regulate body temperature, prevents muscle fatigue, and favors cardiovascular function.

The lack of hydration, or dehydration, can cause a decrease in performance and a greater risk of injury.

To ensure adequate hydration before the party, follow these recommendations:

Drink between 500 and 600 ml of water 2-3 hours before the party.

Consume approximately 250 ml of water 20-30 minutes before starting the party.

Adjust these amounts according to environmental conditions (temperature and humidity) and your sweating level.

The water is generally sufficient to maintain adequate hydration before the party.

However, sports drinks can be beneficial in certain circumstances, such as long games (more than 60 minutes), extreme heat, or much humidity.

These drinks contain electrolytes such as sodium and potassium, which help replenish the minerals lost through sweat and maintain the fluid balance in the body.

If you consume sports drinks, choose those low in sugar and without caffeine.


How should I adjust my food before the party if I am vegetarian or vegan? 

Ensure your main meal includes vegetable protein sources such as legumes, tofu, tempeh, or seitan. In addition, it combines different sources of carbohydrates to obtain all the essential amino acids and guarantee a correct absorption of nutrients. 

What should I avoid eating before the party? 

Avoid eating fatty or fried foods, carbonated drinks, caffeine, and foods that cause bloating or gas, as these can cause gastrointestinal discomfort and reduce your performance in the field. 

Is it necessary to consume supplements before a football match? 

In general, it is not required to take supplements if you take a balanced diet suited to your needs. However, in specific cases or under the recommendation of a specialist, some accessories can be helpful to improve performance or cover nutritional deficiencies.

Join the CeleBreak community.

Throughout the day, CeleBreak organizes friendly parties without needing to meet someone who wants to play.

There are parties in the modality of women’s, men’s, and mixed football.

However, although you can attend the parties alone, CeleBreak also organizes private sessions for you to bring to all your workshop mates.

You can play on fields with artificial grass or indoor gymnasiums.

Join the growing community of CeleBreak football fans!

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