Glory Hunters in Soccer: What You Need to Know! - Soccer Knowledge Hub (2023)

The term ‘glory hunter’ has been used in soccer for a long time now. Honestly, it’s not the most pleasant term out there, but it’s essential to understand it.

So, what is a glory hunter? How can you tell if someone is looking for glory? And how do you avoid becoming a glory hunter?

Let’s find out now.

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What is a glory hunter in soccer?

A glory hunter in soccer supports a team simply because they are successful. They often don’t have any affiliation with the team they support and are only interested in following them because they win trophies. In some cases, glory hunters ditch their team as soon as they start losing before choosing to support someone else entirely! As you can imagine, this is frowned upon in soccer. Let’s dig into the concept of glory hunting in more detail now.

Where does the term come from?

It’s not 100% clear where the term glory hunting originates. However, many in England associate the term with Manchester United, who have a famous chant that goes ‘Glory, Glory, Man United.

The song was released in 1983 before United played in the FA Cup final of that year. But it wasn’t until the nineties that the song really became mainstream.

Under the leadership of Sir Alex Ferguson, Manchester United became one of the most successful teams globally, winning trophy after trophy with relentless ease.

With United’s success came a considerable increase in their global fanbase. In the 1980s, Manchester United were just like any other English team, and most of their supporters were from the city.

Fast-forward to the late nineties when Ferguson led United to Champions League glory at Barcelona’s Camp Nou, and United were one of the most well-supported teams in the world.

This led many fans of other teams – ironically Manchester City fans being among the most vocal – to tarnish the new United fans as ‘glory hunters.’

In England, at least, if a person from London explains to someone that they are a Manchester United fan, they’re often accused of being a glory supporter.

While the term is now used to refer to fans of other teams, there’s no doubt that the term was popularised by supporters’ envy of the great Manchester United team of the 1990s.

Are Manchester United fans glory hunters?

No, not all Manchester United fans are glory hunters. In fact, Manchester United have one of the most loyal core groups of supporters that travel to watch their team home and away, no matter where they play.

However, Manchester United’s dominance of English football in the 1990s attracted their fair share of glory hunters, which is why their fans are often accused of being supporters simply because of the team’s success.

The same accusations are now leveled at supporters of neighbors Manchester City, as well as Chelsea and Liverpool.

Ultimately, all of the world’s most successful teams will attract supporters who like them because they’re successful – this is an unavoidable truth!

How can you tell if someone is a glory hunter in soccer?

There isn’t necessarily a distinguishing feature of a glory hunter in soccer. That being said, they are typically supporters of teams they have absolutely no affiliation with.

For instance, if you grow up in Utah and support Paris Saint Germain, people might question your motivations for doing so. Is it because they’re one of the wealthiest teams in the world? Is it because they have a forward line of Messi and Neymar Jr.? Did you support them when they weren’t even the best team in France?

While it’s entirely up to you who you support, some fans of lesser teams get offended by glory hunters in soccer, as they believe that you should support your local team.

Often, glory hunters also don’t know a great deal about the team’s history that they support, which further frustrates those who have been following the team for generations.

Is being a glory hunter in soccer a bad thing?

At Soccer Knowledge Hub, we believe you can support whoever you like! We think you should support a team that you can relate to and with whom you have a connection.

If you’re new to the beautiful game and are thinking about who to support, be sure to check out our recent post –The Ultimate Guide to Picking a Soccer Team– where we cover this in detail.

However, we feel like it’s important to tell you that many football fans regard being a glory hunter in soccer as a bad thing.

Therefore, we’ve included three tips that will help you avoid following the wrong team for the wrong reasons!

How to avoid becoming a glory hunter (Three tips)

If you want to support Real Madrid because they’re one of the best teams in the world, go ahead. But if you want to experience the ups and downs of football fandom, here are our tips to avoid becoming a glory hunter in soccer:

Support your local team

The best way to avoid being branded a glory hunter is to support your local team. If you were lucky enough to be born in Madrid, you have the perfect excuse to support Real or Atleti, two of the most successful teams in Europe!

Equally, if you were born in London, you could make a case for supporting the likes of Arsenal, Chelsea, or Tottenham, or one of the lower league teams in England.

With the rise to prominence of the MLS in recent years, you have so much choice when it comes to supporting a team that plays in your state.

This gives you the perfect opportunity to tune into their matches live and get involved with the community around the club.

Do some research

Soccer is a funny game. Many of the super famous and popular teams today – Manchester United and Manchester City, for instance – have not always been successful.

There are so many reasons why teams rise to the top, but it often has to do with financial backing in the present day.

Trust us when we say that it’s so much more rewarding to support a team that has come from nowhere to rise to the very top! The ups and downs are what make soccer so unique.

Our advice is to do some research into some of the teams that you enjoy watching and see if you can support a team with a long and exciting history!

Ignore the haters

Our third and final tip might seem a little counterintuitive, but it’s essential all the same. If you really want to support a team because they win lots of trophies, you can do what you like.

Therefore, if you’re thick-skinned, just ignore the haters! Instead, wear that CR7 Manchester United top with pride and go about your own business.

Soccer is a game for the masses, and you can support whoever you like. If you’re able to shut out the noise from the haters, you can become a fan of whatever team takes your fancy.

The verdict: Glory hunters in soccer

Glory hunters in soccer have been around for a long time. We credit the rise of glory hunting to the success of Manchester United in the 1990s, but it has come a long way since then.

The key takeaway is that a glory hunter in soccer is someone who picks a team for no other reason than because they’re successful.

While you might think there’s nothing wrong with this, others will say it’s not a legitimate reason to support a football team!

Either way, the choice is yours.

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