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Team facts: Know when your mate is bluffing about who the better team is


Picture this… You’re down the pub and you end up having the same old argument with your mate AGAIN. He’s a Manchester United fan and you’re Arsenal through and through.

The banter is all about who’s the better side. Soon enough he starts reeling off “facts” that he’s “read in the paper” to support his argument.

We’ve won the FA Cup more times than Arsenal,” he says. You know it’s a load of rubbish deep down, but you can’t be sure and you can’t prove it right at that second.

So, the question is…

How can you tell if your mate is bluffing?

Some people are good liars and they’ll say anything to prove a point. If you don’t want to be a mug, you need to be able to spot when people are telling the truth and when they’re spouting a bunch of lies.

Here are the signs you should look out for:

  1. Facial Expressions – These might be subtle, but you can tell if someone is having you on by studying their face carefully. Are their cheeks flushed? Are their nostrils flared? Are they blinking a lot or chewing their lip? These types of things are a good sign that a person is lying or bluffing.
  2. Exaggerated Phrases – When someone is lying they might go over the top, trying to prove that they’re not lying. They’ll say things such as “To be honest” or “To tell the truth”. When a person is genuinely telling the truth and not bluffing, they don’t need to reinforce the fact that they are.
  3. Shifty Conversation – Does what they’re saying sound natural? If not, they’ve clearly thought about it and planned what they’re going to say. When people tell lies they often go through it all in their heads before coming out with their rubbish.
  4. Body Language – You probably know already that body language is one of the most obvious tells. Look out for signs that they are nervous. For instance, they might fidget and not be able to sit still or they might avoid eye contact while they’re talking to you.
  5. The Way They’re Speaking – People tend to speak more quickly when they’re lying, so watch out for that. Plus, their tone of voice might change. If they start speaking all high-pitched then there’s a good chance they’re lying.

But armed with the above, they won’t get away with it anymore, now that you know how to spot their bald-faced lies.

How can you bluff better than your mate?

Have you had enough of your mate’s bluffs? You might want to play him at his own game and tell a few porkies of your own – so you can finally win the argument. A few white lies never hurt anybody, after all.

If you want to bluff well then you need to learn from the best. And who are the best bluffers in the world? Pro poker players, of course. So we’re going to take some top bluffing tips from professional poker player and 888poker ambassador Martin Jacobson:

  1. Get Your Story Straight – You have to make sure you’re not stretching the truth too far or it will be clear that you’re lying. Jacobson says: “If your story doesn’t stack up then it can be very obvious that you are telling a lie.” Don’t come out with something that sounds ridiculous. Only exaggerate the truth a little bit.
  2. Be Confident – Say what you want to say with conviction. If you appear nervous, then they’re going to spot your lie from miles away.                                                                                                                                                        According to Jacobson: “To lie convincingly, you must pretend that you believe what you are saying to be true. The more you believe in what you are saying, the more convincing you will be to others.”                                        If you have a lot of passion for your team then this should be easy enough to do.
  3. Look Them Right In The Eyes – Again this is all about showing your self-assurance. Jacobson says that looking somebody directly in the eyes “shows you have confidence in what you are saying, and that you have nothing to hide – even if you do!”

Basically, to tell a good white lie don’t show any of the tell-tale signs that we talked about before. If you can bluff as well as a professional poker player, you’re going to come out on top every time.

All in all, banter about who has the better side is all part of the fun of being a football fan. People come out with all kinds of nonsense when they get heated up over a match.

But now you’re going to be able to see right through it. Plus, you can prove once and for all who the better team is, even if there are a few white lies thrown in there for good measure.

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Amiya Saha
Avid follower of Manchester United FC. Have blind faith on the Red Devils at any point. Waiting to see Manchester United bring back the Ferguson era. Has a dream to watch Manchester United play at Old Trafford live.

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