What Do Football Players Wear Under Their Shorts? [Practical advice]

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You may have seen them running around on the field and wondered, what do footballers wear under their shorts?

Do they go commando? Do they wear thongs? Compression shorts? Briefs? The answer, my friends, is a little bit of everything.

Well, we’re here to tell you that it’s not as glamorous as you might think. In fact, most of them just wear plain old underwear.

Keep reading to find out more about this little-known secret of the football world, find out what women wear too and which under garments would be right for you.

What do footballers wear under their shorts?

Most football players actually wear a pair of snug-fitting compression shorts. These shorts serve two purposes: they help keep muscles warm and they protect the player from any potential injuries that could be caused by impact with the ball or another player.

What do women football players wear under their football shorts?

Women have a few options when it comes to what they can wear under their football shorts whether they’re playing a match or in training. The most popular choices are briefs, compression shorts, or (believe it or not) thongs. Each one has it’s pros and cons.


Briefs are the most traditional choice for women football players. They offer the most coverage of all three options and stay in place well. However, briefs can ride up and cause chafing.

  • Pros: Offer the most coverage, stay in place
  • Cons: Can ride up and cause chafing

Compression shorts.

Compression shorts are another popular choice for women football players. They offer more coverage than thongs but don’t tend to ride up as much as briefs can. The downside to compression shorts is that they can be hot and sweaty.

  • Pros: Supportive, can help prevent injuries, don’t ride up
  • Cons: Can be hot and sweaty


Thongs are a popular choice for active wear because they offer the least amount of coverage. This means that there is less fabric to get in the way and cause problems. Thongs also stay in place well and don’t tend to ride up like other styles can. The downside to thongs is that they can be uncomfortable and can cause chafing.

  • Pros: Offer the least amount of coverage, stay in place
  • Cons: Can be uncomfortable, can cause chafing
what do footballers wear under their shorts infographic

What do male footballers wear under their shorts?

It turns out that most male professional footballers wear compression shorts under their regular football shorts.

Compression shorts are tight-fitting shorts often made of lycra or a similar material. They’re designed to provide support to the muscles and minimise potential injuries. In fact, you’ve probably seen compression gear worn by runners, weightlifters, and other athletes too.

While there are many benefits to wearing compression gear during a game, style is not one of them!

That’s why most footballers opt for plain black or white compression shorts instead of the brightly colored versions you often see in stores.

Of course, not all footballers wear compression shorts. Some prefer traditional briefs or boxer briefs. Others go for specially designed ‘jockstraps’ that offer both support and protection.

No matter what type of underwear they choose, one thing is for sure: comfort and the freedom to move around with any restrictions is the name of the game.

Which type of underwear is right for you?

The type of underwear you choose to wear under your football shorts is a personal preference. There are pros and cons to each style, so it’s important to choose the one that will work best for you.

If you’re looking for maximum coverage and support, briefs or compression shorts are a good choice. If you want something that is less likely to cause problems, a thong might be the best option.

In the end, it’s important to choose something that you’re comfortable with and that won’t cause any problems when you’re playing. Trial and error to find the perfect style for you.

Why is wearing the right underwear important?

So why opt for plain underwear instead of something a little more exciting? Well, there are a few reasons.

First of all, you need to be able to move freely without any restrictions.

Second of all, you need to feel comfortable since you’ll be wearing them for hours at a time.

And last but not least, they need to be able to focus on your play and not worry about your underwear riding up or falling down.

Practicality is key when it comes to what footballers wear under their shorts. Plain old briefs might not be the sexiest option, they get the job done and that’s all that matters.

What about colour?

When it comes to the colour of your underwear, it’s best to stick with black or white.

That’s because those colours are less likely to show through your shorts if they happen to get wet during the game.

How to choose the right underwear for playing football.

Here are some pointers to help you determine the right active wear support for you.

1. Know Your Why – Before you even start thinking about which type of underwear to buy, it’s important to ask yourself why you’re wanting to wear one in the first place. Is it for extra coverage? Extra support? To avoid chafing? Once you know your why, it will be much easier to find the right pair of briefs for you.

2. Go for Breathability – One of the most important things to look for is breathability. After all, nobody wants to be sporting a wedgie that’s drenched in sweat. Look for underwear made from moisture-wicking fabrics such as Coolmax or Dri-FIT. Trust us, your skin will thank you.

3. Avoid Visible Lines – If you’re wearing shorts, the last thing you want is for your underwear to create visible lines. Opt for seamless briefs or thongs made from stretchy fabric such as Lycra or spandex. This will help avoid any unwanted VPL (visible panty line).

4. Choose the Right Size – It’s important to choose a pair that fits well so that they don’t end up riding up during play. If you’re not sure what size to get, we recommend going up one size from what you would normally wear. That way, you can be sure they’ll stay in place no matter how much you move around.

The final score.

As you can see, there are a few different options when it comes to what women football players wear under their shorts. Each has its own set of pros and cons, so it really comes down to personal preference in the end.

At the end of the day, it’s important to choose a pair of underwear that you’re comfortable in.

And remember, black or white are always safe choices if you’re worried about them showing through your shorts. Thanks for reading and we hope this helped!

This article was written by

  • Anna Adams, Creative Director & Content Lead

    Hi there! I'm Anna Adams, your go-to source for all things women's football. I've been crazy about football for over 20 years, ever since I was kicking a ball around with my brothers as a kid. I've turned my passion into a career where I get to share all the cool stuff about football with you. As a content lead, I've had the awesome opportunity to work with various sports brands and publications. Whether it's the latest gear, pro tips, or just some cool football trivia, I'm all about making f...