Poker and goals are the perfect combination for any sports bar. Some great footballers have fallen in love with our card game, and in this article, we share their histories, including some Fifa World Cup champions!
The Brazilian national team superstar has been playing poker since 2014. Over the years, he has excelled in balancing both football and poker.
In 2015, Neymar signed a sponsorship contract with an online poker room – PokerStars. It was one of the most popular poker sites in the world.
Interesting fact. On 1 November 2021, Pokerstars launched a new 4-max format called the Neymar Jr Kick-Off. A share of the prize pool is awarded for the “head” of the opponent who is knocked out. And the payout may be randomly boosted up to 6,000 times!
Neymar had major success in his professional poker career in the spring of 2022. He placed third in a $10,300 buy-in event and won $125,678.
About live tournaments, in 2018, he won $21,072 in one of the Brazilian Series of Poker tournaments, his greatest achievement thus far. In 2022, he participated in the World Series of Poker (WSOP) held in Las Vegas, where he didn’t secure any significant victories.
In October 2023, he finished second in the $5,200 buy-in Titans event and won $66,056. Neymar also plays low-stakes tournaments (as cheap as $50).
In an interview, Neymar said that when he finishes playing football, he will travel more and compete in various poker tournaments.
Good luck to Neymar!
Mario Mosbeck played football in the lower and youth leagues of Austria. He made it to the Austrian Bundesliga at twenty-one but played only two games for Wiener Neustadt. In 2017, he stopped mixing football and poker and instead became a professional poker player.
Mosbeck first heard of poker at 12 after watching tournament broadcasts from Las Vegas. He then registered on Full Tilt and started playing freerolls. In just a few weeks, he won an unexpected $28,000 and withdrew all his winnings despite being underage.
Later, Mario’s friendship with Germany’s most famous poker player, Fedor Holz, helped him improve his poker skills. Within a short period, he achieved significant success in online poker.
In April 2021, he won the $1,000 SCOOP Main Event and took home $839,000.
Mario had a breakthrough performance at the 2023 Triton Super High Roller in Monte Carlo.
Competing against the best players from around the world, he won nearly $3.5 million:
- 2nd place and $2,690,000 in the The Special Triton Invitational $210K.
- 1st place and $718,000 in the Mystery Bounty 7-Handed for $43K.
In December 2023, the former footballer will head to Las Vegas to compete in the million-dollar Big One Drop tournament!
The Israeli footballer David Levi played for his local team, Hapoel, in 1989. Sadly, a knee injury caused him to end his football career early. He later moved to Las Vegas and became a professional poker player.
Over the past 20 years, Levi has cashed more than 440 times in various live poker tournaments in the US and has earned over $4 million! His highest payout of $229,540 was recorded at the Mandalay Bay Poker Championship in May 2007.
David doesn’t appear to be slowing down anytime soon. The biggest win of the year was $26,259, earned in a mixed poker game that alternates between Omaha and Stud.
Gerard Pique retired from football in 2022 after playing his last match for Barcelona against Almeria. Pique was successful with the Spanish national team, winning the World Cup and European Championship. Similarly, he greatly succeeded with Barcelona, winning the Champions League and Club World Cup three times.
Nevertheless, there are rumors that the 36-year-old could be about to start playing for his own club, Andorra FC.
Pique’s poker career is going just as well, although he does not play regularly. All of his successes have come in the poker series at his Barcelona. This is where the football player earned over $700,000. In 2023, Pique played the European Poker Tour and won $70,456 in the High Roller tournament.
The ex-Leyton Orient football player is a regular in major series, including the WSOP, EPT, and WPT. Steve Watts’s best result was 59th place in the 2013 World Series of Poker Main Event for $123,597.
His poker career started in 2008, winning a tournament and £9,000 at a small casino in Britain. Since then, the former footballer has won almost a million pounds.
Steve regularly participates in the WSOP Main Event, winning $35,000 in the 2023 edition.