Skip to Content

Why Do Soccer Players Wear Gloves?

Gloves are used in many sports, but most of the time, it has to do with helping with grip. However, in a sport like soccer, where hand use is prohibited for every player except the goalie, it does not make much sense. With that said, there are times where players are wearing gloves and those watching the match do not understand why.

Why do soccer players wear gloves? A soccer player’s decision to wear gloves in the field almost always comes down to staying warm. Since soccer matches occur throughout the year, some conditions get very chilly. Other less common reasons include better grip when throwing passes in, and to help protect against injury.

Fighting Against The Cold Weather

Hands can get pretty cold during the winter months, especially running around for so long without any added protection. Players have increasingly become more and more open to using gloves on their hands as a way to stay warm. The fingers, particularly, can get pretty cold in certain weather, and it just does not make sense to run around without any type of coverage.

Gloves need approval like every other piece of equipment in the top leagues, but most players have no problem meeting those requirements. They do not necessarily come into play at all, as people are doing it only to stay as warm as possible.

The only way a person could get in trouble is if there was any type of material underneath that could help give advantage to a player. For example, if there was something hard underneath the gloves that could be used when fighting for the ball, referees could toss a player from the match.

There are no restrictions with gloves compared to other accessories that must match the uniforms of players. The reason why is that in some scenarios, wearing gloves is a spur of the moment decision. Some players might not even own their own gloves, and they are borrowing a pair one time.

Ball Grip For Sideline Passes

Why would a soccer player ever need grip with your hands? Some players rely on gloves to toss the ball in correctly when it goes out of bounds. It might not seem like something that is that big of a deal, but it is certainly slippery to throw around in certain conditions. All it takes is one bad toss that sets up an easy goal, and a player is looking for ways to never have that happen again.

Soccer balls are usually small enough that players feel like they have a good enough grip on it in decent weather conditions. However, if it is rainy or snowy, grip with gloves might be the way to go. Some players are more likely to toss the ball in than others, so it might be only something that a player or two considers necessary on a team.


Gloves offer a layer of protection that might not initially be apparent. A lot of injuries can happen on the field, and even though the hands are not used in the game directly, they are still right there in the middle of action.

Players who slip around on the field will break their fall by throwing their hands down. A little bit of padding with gloves can help prevent any cuts, and may even reduce the chance of a sprain or broken bone.

Gloves also help cut down on the opportunity of a laceration happening because a person’s hand gets stepped on by an opponent. A lot of these are considered freak accidents that might occur on the pitch, but it might just be enough for people to consider wearing gloves in warmer temperatures.

Recovering from a hand injury might be one reason why a person throws a glove on as well. While everything heals, a little more protection provides confidence.

Are Some Players More Prone To Wearing Gloves?

Soccer players who are originally from warmer climates tend to wear gloves more often than others. It makes sense, because they might not be fully used to the cold. Some players are even experiencing snow for the first time when playing with a new club, so they need to find some way to stay as warm as possible.

As players get more accustomed to the temperature, they might decide they do not want to wear them. However, it can even become a bit of a lucky charm for some players if they find ways to have success with gloves on. Since it does not affect whether a player plays positively or negatively, it is more of a mental edge.

Are There Any Negatives To Wearing Gloves In Soccer?

The only real negative that some soccer players might face when they are wearing gloves is that it slightly increases the chance of an accidental handball.

As soccer players know, a handball is a penalty, and can swing a match just by accidentally making contact. Since gloves make a person’s fingers and hands just a little bit bigger, there is added risk.

Players also might find that they do not need to wear the gloves as they move around, but all it takes is finding time to take them off in the middle of a match. It might be a little difficult for players who are constantly in the middle of the field, but there will be a time when possible.

Goalie Gloves

Obviously, field players are much different than goalies. Every single goalie in todays game uses gloves of some sort, and they are necessary to have as much success as possible.

Not only does it provide proper padding for hard shots, but they can have grip and even add some extra length so that players can get something on the ball and bat it away.

The gloves that goalies use are much different than what any field player would use. They are meant to be comfortable and provide a little bit of warmth in certain situations, but it is mostly about function over everything.

These gloves are also a bit on the expensive side, especially for high-end models. Goalies want to make sure that they have everything properly protected, because a person can do quite a bit of damage to their hands or fingers if exposed in any way. All it takes for a ball to go off the fingers in the wrong way, and it could cause a sprain or a break.