Napoli are enjoying an extended stay at the top of the Serie A table as Europe’s top-tier leagues have, for the most part, taken extended winter breaks due to the 2022 World Cup in Qatar. During their downtime, though, many won’t have been pleased to see music star Drake post a photo to his Instagram profile in which he was wearing an old-school Partenopei tracksuit top.
Superstitions exist in everyday life in many parts of Italy, even more so in the south, and when it comes to football they are taken seriously. That is true more in Naples than anywhere else, where many haven’t even been entertaining discussion of a possible title win despite Napoli’s healthy eight-point lead over champions AC Milan after 15 matchdays.
What is the Drake curse in football?
Drake has a long and unfortunate history of seeming to put some kind of jinx on any individual or club he is seen to represent in football. The most recent example came back in October, when Barcelona fell victim to the Canadian rapper. As part of their Spotify agreement, the Catalans wore Drake and OVO’s famous owl on their shirt for their Clasico meeting with Real Madrid that they would go on to lose 3-1.
Juventus’ Paul Pogba had previously fallen to the Drake Curse, as had AS Roma. Sergio Aguero, Jadon Sancho, Layvin Kurzawa and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang are other footballers to have lost matches after being pictured with Drake.
The Drake Curse in other sports
Although Drake is a keen support and considered to bring better fortune to his hometown NBA side the Toronto Raptors, the Canadian franchise are just about the only sports institution to have benefitted from any association with him.
In 2015, Serena Williams lost the final tournament of the year to stop her from winning every Grand Slam on offer after having met Drake, and MMA fighter Kamaru Usman lost his belt in August 2022 after being seen with the music artist as well.
It also happened to the Golden State Warriors, Anthony Joshua and even Conor McGregor when they each appeared unstoppable in their respective fields.
While it’s obviously unlikely that the curse is a real thing, it is a curious coincidence that Drake appears to have a negative impact on the chances of success in the majority of his meetings with sportspeople or shows of support to institutions.