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US Women Soccer Apparel

The Ultimate Guide on US Women Soccer Apparel and Accessories

The 2019 US Women's Soccer team does it again! The women in blue and red pull off the ultimate goal and win another World Cup, the 4th in their history. The WWC has only been around since 1991, yet the US Women have already captured 3 of the possible 8 World Cup titles! That's an astonishing 38%!! Of course the USA fans will want to wear all the apparel!

Since 1991, Nike has adorned the US Soccer Jerseys and other US Women's soccer apparel. Today Nike continues to provide the Red, White, and Blue women with some of the hottest soccer uniforms and apparel for women and girls of all ages. There are also several other companies that provide some apparel, US soccer fan gear, and other accessories for the US Soccer team, which we will cover here.

From the US Women Soccer greats like Julie Foudy, Mia Hamm, Christine Lilly, Brianna Scurry, Hope Solo, and Abby Wambach to today's hottest soccer stars like Alex Morgan and Rapinoe, the soccer apparel for the US women contains some of the hottest styles in modern era. Let's take a look at some of the best US women's soccer apparel, fan gear, and accessories on the market today.


US Women's Soccer Team Poster 2019 | USWNT Poster

Of course one of the most obvious ways to demonstrate your support for the national team is to adorn a huge poster right on your bedroom wall. There are several different size posters that you can choose from, but we love this one with some of the hottest stars on the team. You can pick from several others on Amazon or check the price of our top pick which includes your favorite players, Rapinoe, Morgan, Press, and Lloyd. This poster is a must for your US Soccer Women's collection!

US Soccer Gifts for Girls

If you are looking to buy a great gift for that Soccer loving girl on your gift list, for whatever the occasion, you've come to the right place. We will give you a list of great gifts to help you celebrate the special day and the Women's World Cup Victory simultaneously.  

Find some of the most unique USA Soccer apparel gifts and kids soccer clothes. Below is a comprehensive list to buy US Women soccer Training pants, Hoodies, warm up jackets, warm-up pants, shirts, soccer accessories, and other kids soccer clothes. 

The Nike U.S.A 2019/20 Squad Training Top

Train like the US women do in the Nike US Soccer Dry Squad Training top in blue. Made especially for the female soccer player, the blue training shirt gives the athlete all the advantages in Dri-FIT technology that helps you stay dry, comfortable and focused. The soft, 100% polyester fabric has just the right amount of stretch with a slim fit for optimal performance. 

 

USNWT Women's Soccer Jersey 2019/20

Of course the most spectacular piece of soccer apparel for any kid or adult is the US Women's Soccer Jersey! The very shirt they wore during their historic win at the 2019 World Cup. Nike, as always, held nothing back in designing the magnificent jersey of the stars and stripes.            
  • Nike Breathe fabric helps you stay dry and cool.
  • Dri-FIT technology helps keep you dry and comfortable.
  • "ONE NATION. ONE TEAM." is printed on the inside.
  • Standard fit for a relaxed, easy feel

USA Soccer Hoodie Jacket 

Get the same hoodie that your favorite women's soccer player was wearing during the 2019 World Cup! The historic win can now be celebrated with this great Dri-Fit Squad Hoodie which can double as a US Women's Warm up jacket. Warm up like your favorite USA Women player!

Squad Hoodie is made with the following:

  • sweat-wicking technology to help keep you dry and comfortable. 
  • A woven team crest on the sleeve lets you show your team pride.
  • Dri-FIT technology helps keep you dry and comfortable.
  • Standard fit has a relaxed, easy feel. 100% POLYESTER

Another Option for a great hoodie or warm up jacket to rock with some USA soccer pride is the OTS World Cup Soccer USA Hoodie. A little different than the Nike, but still a great option. 

  • Midweight 60% cotton 40% polyester blend
  • Lightly brushed, super soft interior; Ribbed details enhance durability
  • Distressed screen printed graphics for a vintage look
  • Officially licensed product of Team USA Soccer

 

 

 

Nike USA Womens Training Pants

Get  your hands on the coolest US soccer warm up pants for women in the game. The sleek navy blue training pants are a great addition to your US womens apparel collection. If you want something that feels like some US Soccer sweat pants, these are it. 

The Squad Training Pants are made with:

  • Stretchy, sweat-wicking fabric to help you stay dry and comfortable on the field. 
  • Zippered leg hems let you change quickly, and zippered pockets stash your stuff.
  • Zipper on the heel of each leg lets you easily change  shoes. Zippered side pockets secure your belongings while you play. 91% POLYESTER 9% SPANDEX

Nike Women's Soccer Leggings

Use the womens soccer leggings under your shorts for those cold days on the soccer field. Or you can just wear them to go out for a run while training for soccer season. Either way, the Nike soccer leggings will help you achieve your goals in style!

  • Elastic waistband with interior drawstring for an adjustable fit
  • Dri-Fit to help keep you dry and comfortable
  • Nike Power fabric give you stretch and support

 

 

USA Womens Soccer Blanket Soft Fleece

Cafe Press offers a beautiful quality 100% polyester soft and warm US Soccer fleece blanket measures 50"x60". Professionally printed with premium inks for long lasting warmth. These blankets are perfect to use at home as a sofa throw or lap blanket or to spruce up a student's dorm room or bedroom. They make great gifts for women and girls of all ages. 


Nike USA National Team Stadium Backpack

Carry all your soccer belongings and even some equipment in style with the new USA women's National Team Stadium backpack! Take it to school and take all your homework and books in your new favorite backpack. 

Measurements: Bottom Width: 12 in Depth: 6 in Height: 19 in Strap Length: 37 in Strap Drop: 16 in Weight: 14.4 oz

  • Features a large main storage compartment with a laptop sleeve inside
  • Women's national team stars and crest are detailed on the backpack to show your team pride


USA Women's Soccer Jewerly - Sterling Silver Soccer Ball Pendant 

Soccer Jewellry is the ultimate gift for that special soccer player on your gift list for Christmas, Birthday, or Special Occasion. The pendant is unique and unexpected. Sometimes you have to think outside the box to find that unique gift. 

  • USA BASED COMPANY AND SERVICE: This jewelry passes extensive quality checkpoints before being shipped to you. 
  • MEASUREMENTS: 1.2x1.2mm Round White Zirconia. Total Carat Wt is 1.3 cttw
  • CRAFTED: in 925 Sterling Silver with 925 stamp.
  • INCLUDES: Complimentary 18″ cable chain 


USA Women's Anthem Jacket Nike

Walk out to the biggest stage in the world with the women's U.S. Soccer Anthem Jacket. That special moment before the start of every match can now be imitated with the Anthem Jacket. Made of comfortable red 100% polyester fabric and embossed sleeves to commemorate the USA soccer dominance.

Features

  • Ribbed cuffs for a tighter sleeve fit
  •  Soft and comfortable, Thick knit fabric feels
  • Woven USA logo shows off the stars and stripes

Nike USA Soccer Crest Tee

The Nike USA Soccer tee goes with everything. Now you can show off your colors and pride with style wherever you go with the US Soccer Crest tee. The sleek navy blue color goes with your shorts or blue jeans every step of the way.

            

USA True Squad Cap Nike

Nike USA Soccer Baseball cap for the hot sunny day, styling with your favorite jeans and tee, or for a night out in the town. The True Squad Cap offers a sleek look for the US Soccer fan to demonstrate their support. 

The hat comes in two different colors, white and blue. Of course with Nike's top quality trademark logo. 

Nike USA Soccer Beanie Officially Licensed

Perfect soccer apparel for those cold days at the stadium, or the cold days of soccer practice. Actually you don't have to be involved with soccer, this can be worn anytime you want, but knowing you are supporting your favorite National Soccer team ever....  USA! 

And you can pair it up with your USA Soccer Scarf below.

  • 100% Knit Acrylic
  • USA badge on front cuff

USWNT  Women's Soccer Scarf Officially Licensed

Soccer scarfs are unique to this sport for some unknown reason. The only explanation we could come up with for this tradition is that the scarfs first became popular in Great Britain in the early 1900s. Soccer is sometimes played in the cold weather of England and fans had to bundle up with jackets, scarfs, and gloves to keep warm. Scarf manufacturers started making the scarfs out of the team colors. With this the fans could now stay warm during cold games and wear their team colors on their scarf. 

Throughout the years, the scarf has evolved into different designs for teams and some for special soccer matches. Now scarfs not only show off your team colors, but also your team crest. 

You can now stay warm or just show off your true USA colors of Red, White, and Blue with the officially licensed USA Women's Soccer Scarf. The scarf is perfect for Coaches, Players, Fans, Kids, Gifts, or any other person wishing to show their support for the team on game day!

USWNT Soccer Size 5 Signature Ball

Another great gift idea for the super passionate USA soccer fan, player, or even coach! It's a great addition to a soccer collection. 

The SIZE 5 soccer BALL is also great for skill training, games, and shooting practice.

Official licensed gear made with excellent materials for quality ball control. GREAT FOR PLAYERS: Awesome gift idea for kids, grandchildren, nephews, and nieces who love the beautiful game!

USWNT Soccer Champions Crest Poster 2019

Display the new and improved 2019 USA soccer champions crest  on your wall and show your support for everyone to see with this One Nation One Team poster. The 3 stars show the 3 World Cup Champtions, before they won in 2019. 

  • Measures 24" x 36"
  • A great gift idea for all US Soccer Fans

NIKE USA Soccer Mercurial Lite Shin Guard

  • The Mercurial Lite Shin Guards offers low-profile reliable protection. Anatomical design keeps the guards in place during play.
  • Dri-FIT fabric sleeves for a strapless fit.
  • Left and right guard are contoured for a better fit.
  • Molded EVA foam absorbs energy from impact.
  • M: 5’3” – 5’7”
  • US Womens Soccer 2019 Tumbler

    Not officially licensed, but still a great coffee cup for those who love to drink a warm cup of coffee and love Megan Rapinoe! Now you can have the best of both worlds! Celebrate the US women's Soccer WC win and Rapinoe's famaous pose.  Helps  keep Hot drinks hot and Cold drinks Cold.

    • Vacuum Insulated with Lid.
    • Choose 20oz or 30 oz
    • Material: Stainless Steel / Powder Coating

    USWNT Strideline Soccer Socks

    Wear your USWNT colors and pride on the streets or during pick up games with your Strideline USA soccer socks. Unique, comfortable and stylish. Get your pair today!


    Conclusion: 

    With this list of USWNT apparel you should be covered from hea to toe. No excuse not to represent your colors wherever you are since this list offers something for everyone! What else is missing? 

    ProCat Puma Socccer

    Puma ProCat is a soccer product line that was introduced by the Puma brand in 2016. Puma ProCat offers a wide variety of products for soccer from equipment to gear, including ProCat Soccer balls, shin guards, backpacks, and much more. The ProCat caught some hype, but not as much as Puma had hope for, although the line does offer some incredible styles. 

    Puma has historically provided some of the coolest gear in the history of soccer, however they have fallen off the market slightly in the past 20 years. Puma is best known for the Puma King Soccer shoes that Pele, Maradona, and some of the soccer greats wore during their careers. The ProCat line was an attempt to get back into the football market. 

    ProCat Fractal Soccer Puma Ball

    The ProCat Puma Soccer ball is a  size 4 ball used for training kids between the ages of 8-12. The ball is constructed from 32 Panels like most soccer balls.  The ball is ideal for training, but can also be used for less competative matches. 

    • Machine Stitched Panels With Multilayered Woven Backing for Enhanced Stability and Durability
    • A durable TPU casing and rubber bladder for air retention 

    Procat Puma Backpack Black

    The ProCat Puma Backpack is great looking backpack with a laptop sleeve on the inside.  The padded & adjustable straps are comfortable for carrying heavy and light loads. Also includes a reinforced base for heavier loads. 

    • Product Dimensions: 18 x 9 x 12 inches
    • Black

    ProCat Shin Guards


    ProCat cleats


    ProCat Goalie Gloves

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    Best Soccer Shin Guards 2019

    Shin Guards
    Soccer shin guards, Football guards, or sometimes just referred to as “Guards”, are all a soccer player has to protect themselves. Unlike American Football players that wear helmets, shoulder pads, thigh pads, knee pads, and even elbow pads, the soccer player is left with this small but critical piece of equipment. 


    Since all you have a shin guards, it’s important to equip the player with the best ones possible. The guards should do two very important things for the player. The player should feel comfortable while wearing them and the guards should be able to protect the player. 

    Getting to this point where both goals are met may take some time. With this shin guards guide, you can make a better decision on what type of shin guards to purchase, wear, and protect those shins!

    Are Shin Guards Required

    It wasn’t until 1990 when FIFA restructured Law 4 of the FIFA code for player equipment. The law states shin guards must provide “a reasonable degree of protection.” There is a lot of room for interpretation here, so match officials are instructed to look at player’s gear before matches to see that shin guards are worn. 

    Looking more closely at the assortment of shin guards of youth and pro soccer players around the country, it is clear that size is unregulated and unimportant. Unlike the type of material, the size of the shin guard does not appear to concern FIFA or other organizations. 

    In our experience, the emphasis on shin guards is much larger in the youth stages of soccer. Young teams between U5 and u10 will line up in front of the referee and tap on their shin guards. This is a test for the referee and a reminder to the young player to wear their guards.

    However as the kids get older, this habit dies quick as the kids feel this is unnecessary and referees don’t want to bother. By the time kids are 14 or older they are expected to know and understand the reason shin guards are required. 

    Shin Guards History

    So how did shin guards make it into the game anyway? It is said that shin guards made their way into soccer in the early days of organized football in the UK. As early as 1874, players were already concerned about their shins and ankles, thus the shin guards were brought over from the sport of cricket. 

    Players knew that to protect their shins and livelihood, they had to wear some type of protection and there was never a mandatory rule. Over time, when astro turf was introduced as a playing field and players started wearing indoor soccer shoes instead of cleats. Since there was no FIFA rule requiring guards before 1990, some players stopped using them since they did not fear soccer cleats anymore.

    High School Soccer Shin Guards

    Since 2008, the National Federation of High Schools (NFHS) has required all high school soccer players to wear shinguards approved by the National Operating Committee on Standards for Athletic Equipment (NOCSAE). However the same issues occur with HS soccer, the size of the shin guard mostly goes unnoticed and unregulated. 

    In our experience, the referee will normally head over to the coach and ask if the players are all fully and properly equipped. It is then left up to the coach to ensure that the players are wearing appropriate shin guards. 

    NOCSAE does require the manufacturer to write this statement on the shin guard:

    WARNING DO NOT USE THIS SHIN GUARD IF THE SHELL IS CRACKED OR DEFORMED. NO SHIN GUARD CAN PROTECT AGAINST ALL FORESEEABLE IMPACTS. SEVERE INJURY MAY OCCUR TO YOU DESPITE USING THIS GUARD. DANGEROUS PLAY IS AGAINST THE RULES OF SOCCER.

    Soccer Shin Guard Brands

    There are numerous soccer shin guards available on the market today. From the largest soccer brands in the world to soccer specific brands, shin guards are widely available. Although the likes of Adidas, Nike, Puma, Under Armour, and make the most shin guards, there are some smaller companies making great shin guards using a different technology, like the G-Form company. 

    • PUMA
    • NIKE
    • ADIDAS
    • UNDER ARMOUR

    Soccer Shin Guards Sizes

    There are no standard shin guard sizes. The recommendation is that you review the specific manufacturers sizing chart. The reason is that the size of the guards differ between manufacturers. 

    However, most entry level youth soccer players and their parents choose the shin guards with ankle supports as well. This way the child is covered from shins to ankles. Most kids don’t complain when they first start playing. 

    Most older youth players and adults choose to play with the sleeve shin guards or shin guards with straps. These offer less protection, however the player feels less restricted since the guards are minimal in size and don’t provide adequate protection. By this time the player cares more about looks than actual safety. 

    Types of Soccer Shin Guards

    Slip On Shin Guards

    Slip on shin guards offer the least amount of protection. They are convenient and lightweight for the player looking for those features. The slip on has the shin guard in a sleeve. Sometimes the guard is sewn into the sleeve. It is very similar to just having shin guards and buying a sleeve to wear. The slip on shin pads are still critical in protecting players, so make sure you use the correct size. 

    Ankle Support Shin Guards

    Ankle support shin guards are the most widely used by youth soccer players. and probably the best shin guards for youth soccer players. This is because they offer the most support. However they can be uncomfortable for older players as they start to shed equipment and look for ways to get lighter and faster. 

    The ankle support will make the player look and feel bulky, which young kids won’t care since it’s mom and dad making the decision. Older kids prefer to lose the ankle protection. 

    Sleeve Guards 

    Sleeve Guards are shin guards that are purchased along with a sleeve. To be honest, the sleeve will mostly get worn out and you will end up tossing it out. Sometimes the players forget to take the sleeves…….. Yes we are guilty… 🙂 

    The sleeves offer some support for the guards under the sock, but the majority of older youth and adult players choose to eliminate the sleeves completely and just use the sock for holding the shin guard. This can be problematic if the sock is too loose, and won’t hold the shin guard. The shin guard will be moving all over the place and won’t be in place when needed. 

    Shin Guards with Straps 

    Shin guards with straps are similar to the sleeve guards, however the straps solve the issue of missing sleeves or loose socks. Since the soccer guards have straps to hold it in place, you no longer have to worry about the sleeves or the shin guard moving out of place. 

    The drawback to the straps shin guards is that they don’t offer ankle support and the straps can and will create a “bulky” look and feel in the player. 

    The majority of professional soccer players opt for using the Sleeve Guards or just loose guards under their socks. They were the highest premium socks on the market, so they don’t worry about the guards moving. 

    Carbon Fiber Shin Guards

    In the past two decades, shin guards manufacturers have started using carbon fiber to make some of the most expensive soccer shin guards ever. Carbon fiber made shin guards are expensive because of the cost of carbon fiber and the very intricate and time consuming process required to make the fibers.

    It’s much less complicated to make plastic or a hard shell and form it into a guard. Carbon fiber shin guards are popular because they have several advantages over competitors including high stiffness, high tensile strength, and lighter weight.

    CL CARBONLIFE Carbon Fiber Shin Guard

    • STRONG--The shin guard is made by pressing 3 layers of Carbon fiber reinforced Neoprene together.
    • THIN--1mm of carbon fiber gives as much protection as 20mm of plastic. 
    • LIGHT- carbon fiber is light, 35 to 52 grams depending on size
    • Handmade

    Best Youth Soccer Shin Guards with Ankle Support 

    As mentioned earlier, the ankle support is a good idea for the younger players. We recommend that as a parent you encourage the kids to wear ankle guards for as long as they can tolerate them.

    They do get bulky and uncomfortable as the kids get older and search for a more free and lightweight shin guard. But to start, get your kids shin guards with ankle guards to ensure they are protected. 

    The NIKE Youth Charge 2.0 Soccer Shin Guard is a great choice to get started with ankle shin guards. Offers protection, comfort, and great fit. 

    Sportout Kids Youth Soccer Shin Guards

    • COMPREHENSIVE SHIN PROTECTION: Include highly protective, lightweight, and hard PP front plates.
    • ERGONOMIC DESIGN: The design fits the calf contours very well. The thick EVA foam offers an excellent cushion which helps disperse energy from kicks. 
    • COMFORTABLE: The light EVA padded backing and simple construct give these shin guards high breathability and a great fit for  your leg shape.
    • STAY IN PLACE: The front velcro closure system allows the shin guards to stay in place during play without sliding.

    Nike Mercurial Lite Shin Guard

    One of the most popular shin guards on the market. We have this pair of shin guards and they are comfortable, lightweight, and really nice looking.  The sleeves are Dri-FIT for superb comfort and a secure fit. They are also very durable and were lost at about 7 months old, before they wore out. 

    • Anatomical design fits your shins for targeted cushioning
    • To protect against impacts, Nike uses a Molded, Waffle-designed EVA foam
    • Numerous designs and colors to fit your child's look and style

    Adidas Performance Ghost Pro Shin Guards

    Adidas offers the same concept as Nike. Great fit. Durable and comfortable sleeves which feel as if you are not wearing them, reduces bulkiness. Made from 95% polypropylene / 5% TPU injection-molded. 

    • EVA backing offers a high comfort and durable cushion
    • NOCSAE SEI-certified packaging logo to meet HS standards

    G-Form Pro S Compact Shin Guard

    One of the biggest advances in technology since the carbon fiber introduction to shin guards is the G-Form shin pad. The G-Form offers several distinct advantages over the competitors. The  G-Form patented RPT padding is very soft and flexible, but hardens on impact. The flexibility offered is second to none. 

    This technology, along with the shin guard sleeve, vastly improves the comfort and fit of the G-Form shin guard. Wearing some of these compact shin guards makes you feel like robocop. 

    • CERTIFIED: Meets NOCSAE and CE standards for play throughout the USA and EU
    • EASY CARE: Machine washable - no more smelly shin guards!
    • Offer Seveveral colors and sizes to meet your style and needs. 

    Storelli BodyShield Protective Shin Guards

    Another generally new technology and design in shin guards is the Storelli BodyShield. The difference in this one is that it offers lower leg, including calf, shin, and ankle protections. 

    This is a great alternative to adult or youth players who don't like the bulky feel of the shin guards with ankle supports. This one is an even better choice because it also offers protection in the calfs and back of the leg and reduces the bulky feel. 

    • ARMORED SHIN GUARD HOLDERS: Armored with flexible but heavy-duty 3mm XRD Extreme Impact Protection padding 
    • FITS MOST SHIN GUARDS (NOT INCLUDED): featuring built-in shin guard pockets that hold guards in place
    • BREATHABLE AND SWEAT WICKING: Employs lightweight materials that wick moisture away from the body to ensure maximal breathability. 

    Franklin Soccer Shin Guards with Straps

    If you are going to buy guards with straps, we recommend going with the two straps shin guards. The reason is that in our experience, using only one strap will still allow the shin guard to move and you are having to readjust throughout the game. 

    • Lightweight 
    • High density abrasion resistant shield
    • High density foam backing
    • Offer 3 different sizes for kids.

    Soccer Sock with Shin Guard Combo Adidas

    Well if you don't like the sleeves and you hate the ankle guards, then adidas has a solution for you. The Adidas Soccer Sock with Shin Guards offers the best of both worlds. A great soccer sock paired with your shin guards. The best part is that the sock has a sleeve built in. So you no longer have to worry about your kids losing the sleeves like it happens in our house constantly. 

    The drawback to using the soccer sock with a sleeve is that if your team uses a different color, you may be out of choices. So make sure that you wait until you find out what colors your team will wear before investing in these soccer socks with shin guards.

    The other problem is that you may only be able to use them for one season, if your team changes colors. Not to worry because you can still use them for practice, unless your team has some lame rule about sock colors during practice. 

    Shin Guard Stays from Nike

    An alternative to shin guard sleeves is a shin Guard Stay. These are velcro elastic thick bands that help the player keep the shin guard shells in place. These are and ideal choice when the player doesn't have tight socks that stay.

    The Shin Guard Stays will keep the guards from moving, but in our experience there is still some movement. Kind of like using only one strap on the shin guards. This also reduces the use of athletic tape, which kids like to use. 

    • Size One Size Fits All
    • Reusable, unlike tape
    • Offers several different colors

    Athletic Tape for Shin Guards

    Many players prefer to rely and use athletic tape to hold their shin guard shells. The players are opting for a tight fit and reduced bulk on their feet. The reason for this is that soccer is all about quick feet, so the lighter they are and feel, the better they can perform. 

    To reduce the amount of tape being used, you can purchase some Shin Guard Stays. Go to any youth or adult soccer game and you will hear someone ask "does anyone have tape" at least once before the start of each game! 

    Conclusion

    Since FIFAs ruling in 1990, shin guards became a mandatory equipment for all soccer players. With this rule, players are required to wear something to protect their ankles. The refs will rarely check, but your main concern should be your safety. 

    For soccer players, the question is Safety, Style, or Comfort? No shin guard has yet to provide all 3 at the same time, but that's objective. We feel the Storelli has definitely provided a unique style, great comfort, and probably the most safest. However this may be cheating since the Storelli is not actually a shin guard, lol, the sleeves don't include shin guards!!! But you can purchase those seperate and complete your package. 

    The majority of players will ultimately opt for just the single shell shin guard without a sleeve. They will then purchase a great pair of premium socks to hold the shin guards tight and comfortably. This will reduce the bulkyness and make the player feel lighter. There is just nothing lighter than "nothing". And players will always prefer less, so if they can get away with extras, they will. 

    Best Puma Soccer Ball 2019

    Puma La Liga 1 ball

    Puma Soccer Ball

    Puma is one of the top soccer ball manufacturers in the soccer equipment industry. Puma has come a long way since Adolf Dassler started the company after he split from his brother and Adidas in 1948.

    Puma is better known for providing some of the first football boots, but the soccer balls made by Puma are also some of the best on the market. In the USA Puma is not as recognized, but they do produce great soccer balls for match games and training. They also make soccer balls of all sizes for every level, from youth to adult, to beginner to professional.

    Finding and indentifying the correct Puma soccer ball for your needs isn't difficult. The problem is learning what to look for in the best puma soccer balls. Depending on your needs, you may need a different puma ball than your neighbor. 

    Our constant training and playing soccer brings us across a variety of soccer balls. From the best puma balls to the worst, we've seen them all. In this article we will review some decision making factors in the quality of puma soccer balls. 

    What Size Puma Ball? 

    The size of the Puma soccer ball that you will buy will depend on the age of your children. You can read our article on Soccer Ball Sizes to learn more. Your child will need a correct size soccer ball if they are in a structured soccer team or league. The coaches and league administrators demand that the ball be the correct size. 

    A quick rule to go by is buy a size 3 or smaller if your son/daughter is 8 or younger. Buy a size 4 ball if your child is between the ages of 9 and 12 years old. You will need a size 5 ball once your child is 13 or older. Keep in mind that if your son/daughter is not going to use their ball for practice or games, then your options are unlimited.

    Cheap or Expensive Puma Soccer Ball?

    Puma soccer balls are sold in a variety of prices ranging from less expensive training balls to more expensive premium match socer balls.  

    Puma is now the Spanish First division La Liga's ball sponsor. Puma's presence in football continues to grow. 

    The price point for you Puma soccer ball soccer ball will depend on your needs. Think about what the ball will be used for. If it's just for kicking around the house, then a simple cheap training ball will do. However if you are looking for a match ball, then you may need to look at a more expensive ball. 

    Sometimes kids who play at a competitive level will need a quality training ball that can also be used for matches. These balls are the mid range price point.  

    Just like any other product on the market, the higher the quality, the more expensive the ball will be. But be on the lookout for some mid range balls that can sometimes be the perfect fit for you needs in terms of practice and match play. You can read more about what makes a quality soccer ball here. 

    PUMA La Liga 1 Official Match Ball

    Puma is now the Spanish Football's La Liga ball sponsor. This means that Messi, Barcelona, Real Madrid, and the rest of the professional players and teams in Spain will be scoring goals with La Liga 1 ball.  This model is certified FIFA Quality Pro and meets the highest standards of soccer balls. 

    The high-performance construction offers excellent form retention, bounce, durability, and rebound consistency. Bascially if it's good enough for the pros.... it will be good enough for the rest of us! 

    The La Liga 1 Puma Soccer ball is recommended for high level competitive teams and players. It is of very high quality construction and materials. This is no ordinary ball. Make sure whoever buys it knows how to appreciate this piece of art from PUMA. 

    For the features, Puma held nothing back and constructed one of the best soccer balls known to mankind. 

    Features

    • Certified by FIFA Quality Pro
    • 18 panels reduce seams for better feel
    • PU outer material for improved aerodynamics
    • POE inner foam provides firm touch
    • Rubber bladder with PUMA AIR LOCK valve and Perimeter Balance Technology for enhanced flight

    PUMA - Mens Final 1 Statement 

    A small step down from the La Liga 1 ball with a different design, but still meets all the specifications of a premium match ball. The Mens Final 1 Statement Puma ball is also made of high quality materials and passes the Fifa Quality Pro testing. 

    The Pro Testing means that it has been passed through the testing, not passed all of the passes. So in the end, the La Liga 1 Ball is still the highest quality.  

    This ball is also idealand recommended for high level teams and players. They come in size 5 only. 

    Features

    • 18 panels reduce seams for better feel
    • PU outer material for improved aerodynamics
    • POE inner foam provides firm touch
    • Rubber bladder with PUMA AIR LOCK valve and Perimeter Balance Technology for enhanced flight

    Puma La Liga 1 Replica Soccer Ball

    A replica of the official match ball. This Puma ball allows every youth player to dream on the pitch and score goals while using a similar ball of the greatest stars on the planet. For the parent, this means that you can buy that ball at half the price. 

    But just because this ball is a replica does not mean that Puma skipped on the technology or construction. This ball offers much of the same qualities as the Premium match ball. 

    This ball can be used for games as well with younger age groups between 13 -15. Some older groups can use it as a game ball as well if it's a recreational game. 

    Features

    • Certified FIFA Quality standard, FIFA Quality logo
    • Dimple PU outer material for improved aerodynamics and speed
    • TPE foam backing for enhanced stability and touch
    • Rubber bladder with PUMA AIR LOCK valve

    PUMA La Liga 1 MS Trainer Soccer Ball

    If you would like an even less expensive Puma soccer ball look no further than La Liga 1 MS Trainer. With design inspired by the Official match football that will be used for all of the La Liga Santander and La Liga 1|2|3 professional matches. 

    The La Liga 1 MS Trainer soccer ball offers sizes for everyone, including size 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5! 

    Features

    • TPE foam and polyester backing.
    • Rubber bladder
    • All Sizes 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5

    Puma Soccer Ball Size 4

    Size 4 ball will be used by kids between the ages of 9 and 12 years old. Puma made the MS Trainer ball for everyone. This ball can be used by all ages, but make sure you buy the correct one.

    Puma Final 6 MS Trainer Soccer Balls are made in all sizes. The combination of the TPU casing, TPE foam, and polyester backing with rubber bladder and machine stitching gives the ball a soft feel for all levels. This technology also improves the shape, bounce and flight characteristics.

    Features

    • Entry level Machine Stitched training ball.
    • Suitable for both training and backyard
    • Offers all ball sizes 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5

    Puma Soccer Ball size 3

    The size 3 soccer ball will be used by kids 8 years old and under.  This is another variation and new design of the Puma 6 MS Trainer. 

    The ball offers many of the same features mentioned above for the Final 6 MS Trainer ball, including the technology to improve the shape retention, bounce, and ball characteristics. 

    Features

    • Entry level Machine Stitched training ball.
    • Suitable for both training and backyard
    • Offers all ball sizes 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5
    • Cool neon color design

    Conclusion

    Puma has had its ups and downs especially in the USA. However Puma is making a comeback around the globe and now in the soccer ball market. We love that Puma is now the sponsor for La Liga Santander so they will get more exposure. We need Puma in the game because they offer many different styles and designs tha we shouldn't go without. 

    The new styles of the La Liga 1 ball, Mens Final ball, and the MS Trainer ball offer a ball for almost everyone on your gift list. From Premium to size 1 soccer ball trainer, they have a ball for everyone. We especially love the new design for La Liga 1 line of balls and look forward to watching it on TV. 

    Best Backyard Soccer Goal

    A backyard soccer goal can serve as a great training tool for the soccer players in your family. However when it comes to buying and choosing the best backyard soccer goals, you need to know what factors are important. We’ve done some research and have a lot of experience being involved with soccer for the past 20 plus years.

    We’ve seen all the new technology come and sometimes have a huge impact on soccer goals (like the invention of the super portable pop up goals). Some technology may improve one aspect of a goal, but sometimes it may decrease the efficiency of another part of the goal.

    Through the years we’ve managed to learn about what makes a great backyard soccer goal and today we discuss this in detail. Hopefully this buying guide will help you understand the qualities that make up a great backyard soccer goal.

    How to Buy the Best Soccer Goal

    With so many choices for soccer goals, it’s easy to just pick the largest or cheapest and not think twice about it. But understanding the needs of your child and family will go a long way in choosing the best soccer goal for your backyard.

    Some of the most important factors to consider when purchasing your backyard goal are the price, material, size, and portability. These 4 factors will ultimately decide the experience after your purchase. So let’s discuss below. 

    Soccer Goal sizes

    There many sizes of soccer goals that are manufacturered. That’s because during training or backyard pick up games, the size of goal doesn’t have to be official. Soccer goal manufacturers instead design several sizes to fit your needs, which is great for the player and consumer..

    Your decision on the size of a soccer goal, as a parent, is impacted by a few factors. The size of the goal will be determined by the age of your children, the level of play, size of your backyard, price, and the portability of the soccer net.

    If your children are very young, then you would consider buying a smaller goal, maybe even a pop up goal. If they are much older and are serious players, consider a larger more stable permanent soccer goal. Of course the other factors will impact your buying decision, like price and the size of the yard.  

    If you want to purchase an official size soccer goal, the size should be 24’ wide x 8’ tall. We would not recommend buying an expensive official soccer goal for your backyard, unless you train a team of players or play actual games. The reason is that you don’t need an official net to train on.

    There are other much cheaper alternatives like an inflatable soccer goal. Those are becoming more popular. You may also look into purchasing a soccer net rebounder. These offer a simple frame with a net to stop the ball, but without the depth of a soccer goal.

    Remember to analyze your needs and your children's, the level of play, size of your yard, and reason you are purchasing a soccer net. This will help you determine what size of soccer net you will need.

    Soccer Goal Design and Assembly

    Another major factor to consider when purchasing your backyard soccer goal is the Goal Design and Assembly. You will need to continue analyzing the needs of your family. For example if you plan on training with a group of teenage boys, you will need a soccer goal made of durable material such as steel or aluminum tubing. However if your children are just young toddlers, then maybe a pop up goal will do just fine.

    When considering your goal design and the materials used to manufacture it, think about the portability and assembly. Sometimes kids like to set up different games and move the goals around, this may not be an option if you purchase a heavy steel semi permanent soccer goal. Also consider the safety of each goal. Some heavier goals could become a risk.

    Unfortunately, as the quality of the materials used increases in quality and durability, the portability of the soccer goal suffers, and the price increases. A few companies have made some adjustments to improve the portability of larger soccer goals by adding wheels, but it still takes more than one person to move.

    Backyard soccer goals are made up of several materials like aluminum, steel, fiberglass, PVC plastic, metal, and sometimes a combination. Some companies even use bendable materials to create a magnificent portable soccer goal. But the majority of the large, official size soccer goals, are still made from steel or aluminum which makes them very heavy, however very sturdy.

    Soccer Goal Portability

    Buying a portable soccer goal for your backyard is always recommended for convenience. There are numerous reasons why you would want a portable soccer goal for your backyard. You have to move it to mow around it. The kids love changing the games often. It’s safer to move a lighter, portable goal. The kids grow up and you need to move the soccer goal or sell it.

    The portability of the soccer goal will also have an effect on the size and weight. Keep in mind that the larger and heavier a soccer goal is, the less portable it can be. You may think that buying a lighter more portable soccer goal for your backyard is the best way to go, but remember to stay safe by always anchoring all soccer goals. This is important especially when younger kids are moving the goals, always ensure that larger heavier soccer goals are anchored.

    Match and Training Quality Soccer Goals

    There is a huge difference in quality and price between training and match quality soccer goals. The reason is that most match soccer goals are specifically designed to take on the beating of official games. During soccer matches, anything can happen, so you want a goal that will withstand almost anything. 

    It is rare that someone will buy an official match soccer goal for their backyard, but it does happen. There are some serious players or coaches that like training with them. There is nothing wrong with that. If you can afford it, then it’s the logical thing to do. Just remember that you can still do 99% of your trainings and/or backyard games with cheaper and sometimes smaller goals.

    So let's take a look at the soccer goals. 

    Best Semi-Permanent Soccer Goals

    Semi-Permanent soccer goals are referred to goals that can be staked or anchored to the ground and can remain permanent for years or whole soccer seasons. These are very heavy and are sometimes used for matches. As mentioned earlier, you may never buy one of these for a backyard, but some serious families do decide to purchase a semi-permanent soccer goal.

    First Team Golden Goal 44 Sr. Club-SP 21 x 7 ft. Semi-Permanent Soccer Goal

    This goal is NOT official size, but definitely has the quality and built to last like a professional soccer goal. The First Team Golden Goal has 4 square posts made of aluminum construction. The posts are finished off by a bright White powder coat finish.

    Includes ground sockets for easy goal removal and set up. Comes with a white hexagon mesh net and Stay Put technology for net attachment. Includes wheels for efficient transportation.

    Pros:

    • Made in USA
    • Ideal for backyard training
    • Lifetime Superior Specifications
    • Construction Material Aluminum

    Cons:

    • Expensive
    • Weight 524 lbs

    SEMI Permanent Soccer Goals Round 8' X 24'

    The perfect, ideal backyard soccer goal is the official size 8' X 24'. The Semi Permanent Soccer goal includes 4" round posts. Wheels are included for quick and more efficient transport. Includes a white 4mm mesh net. Also includes 8 goal anchors for safety. This is not an Official Match goal. 

    Pros:

    • Official size, Perfect for games or training
    • Includes Wheels for portability
    • 8 Anchors for safety

    Cons:

    • Expensive
    • Large and Heavy

    Portable Soccer Goals

    GOLME PRO Training Soccer Goal Full Size

    For those looking for a cheap alternative to a regulation size goal for training purposes in their backyard, this may cover your needs. GOLME Pro has produced the Training Soccer goal that folds into a small bag and makes it completely transportable, while offering many of the benefits of a full-size heavier version.

    The goals are crafted from durable and lightweight aircraft-grade aluminum for great support, strength, and durability. This allows for a thinner tubing and lighter goal that weighs only 30 lbs! Keep in mind that this is a foldable goal, not to be compared to a solid semi-permanent goal.

    Pros:

    • Patented one-piece design for quick 3-minute setup and takedown
    • Folds down
    • Easy Transport and Storage
    • Try risk-free for 30 days - 365 day warranty

    Cons:

    • Not for official soccer matches
    • Some sagging in the crossbar
    • Some rattling from hard shots

    QuickPlay Kickster Academy Soccer Goal 

    The QuickPlay Kickster comes in several sizes including the largest one at 16’ x 7’. Another excellent choice for the backyard soccer goal. The QuickPlay offers the ultimate in portability. Set up assembly is a quick snap of the poles. Even the kids help set it up sometimes.

    If you’ve never put one together, the poles are broken down into pieces, however they are held together with a chord that goes inside each tube. This makes for a quick assembly since all the pieces that go together are already in place, you will just need to snap them on. 

    This system referred to as “QuickPlay's click and lock pre-attached pole system”, also allows the goal to break down into smaller parts and placed into a carrying bag.

    The QuickPlay goal is very light and thus is not as sturdy. There are some anchors included to help keep it in place. But just understand that it could be knocked over by a hard shot. This system doesn’t have actual posts or a crossbar. The crossbar and posts are a thick vinyl material that is stretched across by the tension of each side.

    Pros:

    • Super lightweight and portable
    • Easy assemble and takedown
    • Low Price
    • Offered in 5 different sizes

    Cons:

    • Not for official games
    • Won’t stand up to rigorous games or training

    Inflatable Soccer Goals

    Eco Walker Inflatable Soccer Goal 

    In terms of convenience, the Eco Walker Inflatable is one of the most attractive on the market. This goal is ideal for backyards because it can easily Inflate and deflate with the provided pump, in seconds. 

    We are not talking about your kids birthday party inflatable here! This new technology known as “Rigid Air Technology” allows you to buy an affordable, great looking soccer goal for your backyard that will withstand competitive play.

    The soccer goal is lightweight and can be used on any surface! Fully portable without air inflation, but when inflated it makes the soccer games easier and safer for players. Each bar that makes up the Eco walker inflatable soccer goal is inflated to a maximum pressure of 15lbs psi. The frame was developed using a three-layer hose system. At this pressure when a soccer ball hits the frame it reacts like a normal soccer goal. Yet, the material is flexible enough to significantly reduce the risk of injury due to collision with the goal.

    The free standing, one piece, system can be assembled in minutes and is practically maintenance free. You just deflate after the game is done. It is super lightweight and can be used on any surface! Each goal comes with a net, a Two-Way Pump, a Carrying Bag, 4 Sand Bags, and 4 Stakes.

    Pros:

    • Portable
    • Easy set up
    • Safer
    • Inexpensive

    Cons:

    • Requires air pump
    • Not as stable as a regular semi-permanent goal

    Pop Up Soccer Goals

    Pop up soccer goals are one of the most convenient ways to ensure that you always have a goal for your backyard or wherever you play. The pop up goals fold away nicely into bags and then store away in a closet or flat in your car’s trunk (that’s where I like to keep mine) and then take up virtually no space.

    The Pop up soccer goals are unique because they can be set up in a matter of seconds and there’s almost no assembly required. Sometimes you may want to put down the small stakes that are attached or sometimes put a book bag or something heavy to keep it down.

    These goals are also very safe since they are mostly made of thin fiberglass or metal. They are mostly small and light enough that they won’t hurt anyone if they tip. The goals now come in a variety of sizes as well from 4’ and 6' wide. Although be careful with buying large pop up goals as they won’t stay up well, except the PUGGs....

    PUGG 4 Foot Pop Up Soccer Goal - The Original Pickup Game Goal

    The ultimate in pop up soccer goals is definitely PUGG. There is no question about which one is the best. PUGG was the original pop up soccer goal in 1994 and they set the standards which have yet to be reached. We’ve been coaching for over 20 years, attended several conventions, and have never seen another pop up goal like the PUGG.

    One thing to know about PUGG goals is that they are made of flexible metal that won’t brake!!!! Unlike the other cheap alternative pretenders on the market, PUGGS are NOT made from fiberglass. This is crucial in understanding what pop up goals to purchase. Although the other cheaper goals are less expensive, remember that they will not last as long and could potentially break the first day.

    The reason that the pop up soccer goals are so convenient for your backyard is because of the flexibility. The goals are lightweight, flexible, portable, collapsible, and easily stored away. It also sets up quickly and easily with a quick twist. The PUGG also includes a carrying case and a 2 year warranty.

    Pros: 

    • The Best in Pop up goals
    • Made of METAL
    • Lightweight
    • Portable
    • Easy storage

    Cons:

    • Sizes are limited due to construction.

    GOLME PRO Pop Up Soccer Goal 

    The GOLME PRO pop up soccer goals are just as ideal and convenient as the PUGG goals. They offer everything the PUGGS can offer with a few exceptions.

    The GOLME PROs are made of fiberglass which will not stand the rigorous play of a PUGG. That doesn’t mean that they are not useful. Especially for those looking for a less expensive pop up goal for their backyard.

    The GOLME Pro pop up soccer offers Sizes 2.5’, 4’ and 6’. Keep in mind that the larger the goal, the less stable it can be just based on the infrastructure.

    Pros: 

    • Portable with Carrying case
    • Inexpensive
    • Convenient Storage

    Cons:

    • Made of fiberglass
    • Does not stand up to rigorous play​​​​

    The majority of the pop up goals will have an oval shape, which is ideal for training, street play, and backyard games. There are some companies that offer pop up goals that are rectangular in shape. Let’s take a look at one that we have used in the past.​​​​

    Franklin Sports Blackhawk Portable Soccer Goal 

    Another awesome invention, a Pop-Up Soccer Goal and Net that is rectangular in shape. Franklin made this Blackhawk Portable soccer goal for Indoor or Outdoor use. The Goal folds for storage, assembles quickly, collapsible, easily portable in carrying case, and can be purchased in several sizes, including 12'x6', 9'x5.6', 6.6'x3.3' or 4'x3'.

    As mentioned earlier, the larger the goals get, the less stable they become. This is a result of the way they are designed. The many features that make it so convenient to own, also impact the stability while playing.

    The one thing we didn’t like about this pop up goal is that the pieces that hold it together have to be assembled. Unlike the PUGG goals where the entire goal is one long, bent, thick metal piece, the Franklin Blackhawk goal can get annoying when trying to collapse it.

    Pros: 

    • Quick Assembly
    • Portable
    • Inexpensive
    • Convenient Storage
    • Collapsible

    Cons:

    • Comes unassembled 
    • Does not stand up to rigorous play

    Bownet Soccer Goal

    There are other very portable soccer goals that are also utilized. Although we love these for indoor use, they can also be used for outdoors in your backyard. Just remember to bring it back inside after use. 

    The Bownet is our favorite because it offers the best in quality, durability, and design. This portable soccer goal is a little more expensive, but it's definitely worth it. We've had ours now for 6 years. 

    The only drawback is the carrying case fell apart after several years, but the goal is second to none. We have purchased others from different brands and the Bownet is simply the best. 

    Conclusion

    There are numerous choices for your backyard's soccer field and choosing the best soccer goal can be daunting. However, this can be a good thing for the consumer, don't forget to analyze your needs first because there are always soccer goals that can meet your needs. 

    If you want something portable, then review the portable goals. If you also coach, you may want to think about some PUGG goals for on the goal and easy transport. Or if you have a serious athlete on your hands, you may want to invest in a semi permanent soccer goal for your backyard. Have fun. 

    Best Foosball Table 2019

    Foosball tables offer so much fun for all, even those that are not into football. The reason is that a foosball table is an incredible game that can be taught in just a few minutes, even to a beginner. From start to finish, the fun can be enjoyed by any member of the family, including young children. Although the best foosball tables look similar to others, it’s important to get the best one for your needs.

    Hathaway Playoff 4’ Foosball Table

    Carrom Signature Foosball Table

    Tornado T-3000 Foosball Table

    Rally and Roar Mini Foosball Tabletop

    Sunnydaze 10 Combination Multi Game Table

     

    How to choose the best Foosball Table

    What is my Budget?

    The first question you should ask yourself is who is this foosball table for? Then ask yourself, what is my budget. This will help you in determining the best foosball table for your needs and your budget. A table for a family or young kids will be different than a commercial foosball table for a business. Both will have unique needs. Some parents may be be looking for a cheap foosball table for the kids, while a business owner would view the expense as an investment.

    After you determine your budget, you can then move on to identifying the best foosball table for you. The next feature to consider is the construction and materials.

    Foosball Construction and Materials

    There are numerous ways to manufacture foosball tables. You can use top quality materials and make a very expensive foosball table that will cost thousands of dollars. Another option is to get the cheapest materials around to make a cheap but useful foosball table.

    There are 2 materials to consider when choosing the best foosball table for your budget.

    Hardwood and MDF (Medium Density Fibreboard) Foosball Tables

    The best foosball tables are made of expensive hardwood. Cheaper foosball tables are made with particle board, sometimes referred to as MDF construction. In either case, the composite woods are the same density and thickness. A sturdy hardwood table is also heavier and will make games more stable. The MDF material will make the table lighter and can sometimes move during play.

    If you do use composite wood, make sure the playing surface finish is at least 1 inch thick. This will help improve the quality of the finish. The problem with composite wood is that it can dent, weaken, warp, and absorbs moisture. These drawbacks can and will impact the integrity of the foosball table, but can be avoided by choosing a thicker finish.

    Review the wood that is used to manufacture the legs, finish, and construction to ensure that it meets your needs and budget. You can play determine your list of what you need and determine what you want to pay for.

    Steel Rods

     Steel Rods are another important factor to consider during your purchase of a foosball table. These steel rods that hold the foosball players are critical in the speed of the game.

    There are three types of rods for foosball tables, hollow, solid, and telescoping. For a cheaper foosball table, look for the solid rods. Although these slow the game, most beginners won’t know the difference. For more advanced and higher end foosball tables, make sure you get the hollow rods. The hollow rods in foosball tables allow for faster spinning and movement of the toy players. Because the rods are lightweight, the players are capable of maneuvering the rods at a quicker pace.

    Telescoping tubular steel rods are less common, and offer only an advantage for high-end foosball tables. This option protects small children who could stand too close to the table and be hurt by the rod sliding through from the other side. Although this is a great feature, it makes the foosball table more expensive. It would also not be the best option for commercial use as these telescoping rods are not as durable, but offer safety.

    Four Types of Foosball Tables 

    The are four different types of foosball tables to consider before making your purchase. Once you’ve determine your budget, now it’s time to look at what type of foosball table will fit in your location. Some of these may be a combination or can be transformed from one to the other.

    Stand Alone Foosball table

    This refers to a foosball table that will be set alone and does not require any other set up. The majority of foosball tables are stand alone. The high-end foosball tables are all stand alone. 

    Multi-game Foosball table

    This type of foosball table offers the convenience and flexibility of offering numerous games on one table. Most these multi game foosball tables will offer other table games. Thos games can range from table tennis, ping pong, billiards, poker table, even air hockey. They are all fun games and it offers a great purchase for families who wish to pay extra for this flexibility.

    Table Top Foosball Table

    A table top foosball table allows for extra portability. This table, as the name implies, can be moved and played on most tables. This option offers two things, a cheaper foosball table, and the ability to transport the foosball table. It’s smaller and takes up less space. You can hide this in a closet or under one of the kids’ beds for easy storage.

    Folding Foosball Table 

    The 4th option to consider is the folding table. This type of table will offer some additional flexibility and purchasing options. The Folding foosball table allows you to get a stand alone foosball table and fold the legs for easier storage just like the Table Top.

    Additional Foosball Options to Consider

    1 Goalie Foosball Table vs 3 Goalie Foosball Table

    Another option to consider, but may not impact price at all is the number of players on the foosball field and/or the number of goalies. Although this may only be a sticking point for some true soccer fanatics. The fact is that foosball tables offer several options when it comes to players and goalies. The USA market may offer 3 goalies, while the European market will offer 1 goalie per team.

    If you want to avoid controversy at the next tournament or family gathering, you may want to choose the 1 goalie foosball table. Only 1 goalie is used in the professional game.

    Adjustable Legs on Foosball Table

    You should always look for a model that comes with adjustable legs. Adjustable legs can change the angle or slant based on any dips in your floor. You can also adjust those legs to help your kids play easier. The adjustable legs will be especially critical in commercial use or foosball tournaments, when you can’t have any advantages.

    Foosball retrieval system

    If you are going to get a commercial foosball table or for tournaments, the ball retrieval system is critical. Commercial use will need a coin mechanism that will trap the balls. This should also be considered for tournament play to limit potential cheating.

    The ball retrieval system is made up of an internal system that allows the player to grab the small ball that was scored in your goal. Some tables have an elaborate rail system that drop the ball into a slot that holds them. Others have a more basic system that will drop the ball under your goal after a score from the opponent.

    A foosball table for home won’t matter where the balls are returned, as long as they can be retrieved. 

    The Foosball Table Playing Surface

    The playing surface could be critical, but it’s mostly not a problem. Do make sure that the field is not covered with stickers as they could later peel off. Look for a playing surface with permanent dyed designs, with the design built right into the playing surface to avoid future problems.

    Foosball Score Board

    Finally the score board is another feature to review when looking for the best foosball table. An electronic scoreboard will obviously add costs to the price of your table. Since foosball game matches are normally short and to only 5-7 goals, there is no need for an electronic scoreboard. Consider the electronic score board when holding tournaments or for commercial use.

    Are the balls included. The majority of the foosball machines come with the foosballs, but confirm before purchasing.

    Precautions for buying a Foosball Table

    Who will be putting the table together? 

    The foosball table needs to be assembled correctly so that the integrity is not jeopardized. The table needs to be squared, leveled, stable, and adjusted accordingly.

    Does the Foosball get stuck?

    Another issue that could arise from an improperly assembled foosball table is that the ball gets stuck under the foosball player’s feet. This could ruin the game if you need to continuously keep restarting. Check for this immediately after assembling.

    Now that you are well versed on finding the correct foosball table for your budget and use, you can proceed to review the top foosball tables listed, in no particular order.  

    Best Foosball Table for your Money

    Hathaway Playoff 4’ Foosball Table

    An offordable option with quality construction makes the Hathaway Playoff Foosball 4' Table an ideal option for a family. With  dimensions of 48.5” L x 24” W x 32” the stand alone Hathaway foosball table combines quality material and great design to keep costs down and affordable. They also included 1/2 inch chrome plated hollow steel rods to improve the speed of play. 

    Although the table uses MDF certified wood, it makes for it by offering other features like ergonomic handles, leg levelers,  and colorful graphics that enhance the table's aesthics. Besides the look, the goal boxes were built with an automatic end ball return for each player,  ergonomic handles on the hollow rods, and ABS molded players for visual effects. Hathaway also threw in a 180 day manufacturers warranty for the price concious shopper, which shows they stand behind their product! 

    Hathaway Playoff Pros: 

    • 1/2 in. chrome plated hollow steel rods
    • Cool Design with colorful graphics including a stadium, fans, and ABS molded lifelike players. 
    • Analog counters keep scoring Quick and Simple
    • Leg Levelers
    • 180 Day Manufacturers Warranty

    Hathaway Playoff Cons:

    • Constructed from certified MDF
    • Not for commercial use

    Best Home Quality Foosball Table

    Carrom Signature Foosball Table

    The Carrom foosball table is a little more expensive than the average, budget friendly, foosball tables. Carrom made the "Signature" with dimensions of 55L x 29W x 36H inches, with a 3/8 inch thick wear resistant playing surface. The Signature offers four drink holders, which are removable, leg levelers, and 2" leg supports. This helps with entertainment around the family home. The cabinet is a Wild Cherry wood laminated finish (sides and ends). 

    One unique feature offered by this table is that you can choose between one or three goalies, depending on your preference. This will help you avoid some arguments between family members. To allow you to play with one goalie, the corner ramps are included to interchange them. 

    Carron Signature Pros:

    • "Signature style" includes drink holders (removable), leg levelers, 2" leg supports, scoring beads, and wood handles
    • Cross supports underneath the playing surface ensure that the surface remains level.
    • Triple chrome-plated hollow steel rods
    • Eight-sided hardwood handles allow for precise player control

    Carrom Signature Cons:

    • Ships disassembled
    • Wood laminate composite finish
    • Expensive for non-commercial

    Best Commercial Quality Foosball Table

    Tornado T-3000 Foosball Table with 1-Man Goalie

    The top of the line and preeminent name in the Foosball table industry, Tornado is arguably the best offering. The Tornado Foosball company made the T-3000 sturdy, with true craftsmanship, and a true work of art. 

    This is the official table of the Tornado National Tour, and the most notable name in foosball competition. The Tournament-3000 table will come with a 1-Man Goalie and Banked Corners for continous non stop play. The cabinet is made of 1 1/2" Stainless Steel laminate.

    This table also offers Commercial quality brushed hollow steel rods (.156 thick) that can withstand the most aggressive play. The rods are engineered to offer enhanced precision and ball control, as well as a non-slip, eight-sided handles for comfort, stability, and more efficient play. 

    Tornado wasted no opportunity to show off their craftmansship and included split bearings on the steel rods to improve speed of play. Counter-balanced field players improve efficiency and technique. 

    Tournament 3000 is definietly the competition table that shook up the industry and set new standards for exceptional quality, strength, and durability.

    Tornado T-3000 Pros

    • Built for competitive play with a rugged, commercial grade cabinet, and sleek design
    • Thick heat treated, chrome-plated hollow steel rods, with enhanced precision
    • Patented Tornado counterbalanced players 
    • Sturdy, 1 1/2" Stainless Steel laminate.
    • Dimensions of 56 x 30 x 36 inches  and weight of 355 pounds
    • Solid as a rock. Made with true craftsmanship.

    Tornado T-3000 Cons:

    • The only set back we could find is the price, but it's well worth it!

    Best Table Top Mini Foosball Table

    Rally and Roar Mini Foosball Tabletop 

    The Mini Tabletop Foosball table offered by Rally and Roar offers a few of the features and options for foosball tables that we have discussed. First of all, the name says it all, it is a Mini Tabletop Foosball table. This table offers transportability and lightweight at only 17 lbs and dimensions of 40L x 20W x 9H inches.  The price is very affordable. 

    The manufacturing delivers eachplaying  rod at ½ inch steel-plated chrome with ergonomic plastic wood handles for a smooth and sturdy grip. Consists of ABS-constructed mini field players that spin swiftly and effortlessly.  The foam padded, folding legs, offer some stability, but not much is required since the mini foosball table will sit on the tabletop. 

    Pros: 

    • Fun, Mini Size for kids and adults
    • Lightweight, easy to set up, and Portable
    • Very very affordable

    Cons:

    • Small dimensions if you want a larger table
    • Due to lower price, durability may suffer

    Best Combination Multi Game Foosball Table

    Sunnydaze 10 Combination Multi Game Table

    The Sunnydaze 10 offers another great feature in Foosball table manufacturing, the ability to include more than just Foosball. The 10 different games might be a bit much but if versatility is what you are looking for, then this is the foosball table for you. 

    The tabletops are interchangeable and allow you to play air hockey, foosball, pool, shuffleboard, table tennis, chess, cards, checkers, bowling, and backgammon. The fun will never end. The games are easily switched since all the tables stack between the billiard base and foosball table. 

    If you are looking for just a foosball table, this is probably not for you. But if you would like a foosball table and some added benefits for the play room, well then you found your match! Sunnydaze did not go all out on the construction of the foosball accessories, since it's not a strict foosball table. In any case, it's an affordable combination multi game foosball table. 

    Pros: 

    • Space Saver, perfect for a game room
    • Dimensions for Foosball table: 24" wide x 32" tall x 41.25" long
    • WARRANTY - Sunnydaze offers a 1-year manufacturer's warranty

    Cons:

    • Not just a foosball table
    • Lower quality materials, not intended for commercial use

    Conclusion

    Choosing the best foosball table for your needs is now easier than ever. Refer to our guidelines above and do additional research by watching the video below on how to assemble a foosball table to see if you are ready for the challenge. 

    Decide on your budget by analyzing your needs. Don't over spend for something you don't need. If you are just buying for a novice youth, then a small one will do. If you are buying for an enthusiast, you may want to look at the Tornado if you have the budget. 

    The Soccer Ball Background

    Some people refer to soccer as the greatest game ever invented. It's a fair argument. But what is the game of soccer without the soccer ball? This whole website revolves around the soccer ball or football, and while we discuss the up and coming trends in soccer ball technology and reviews, we haven't discussed the history of the soccer ball background. 

    Over time, the shape and composition of the football has changed to achieve the perfect shape we have today.  Technology has increased the aerodynamics as much as possible and enable more precise play. The balls of today have little in common with those used decades ago.

    The development of the soccer ball has also been linked to the minor and major changes that football has experienced over time. The ball and the game's history can be analyzed by reviewing the origins and evolution of the ball with the passing of time in the major leagues, tournaments, and cups around the world. 

    Today we review the history and origin of the soccer ball to understand how it has changed over the centuries. In contribution with the players, coaches, fans, and media, the balls have created the most dynamic game of all time. 

    WHAT WAS THE FIRST SOCCER BALL? 

    Throughout history there have been various civilizations and towns that used balls for different games or sports. For example, the Mesoamerican ball game or pok ta’pok practiced by the Maya more than 3,000 years ago was already using a sphere made with rubber tree sap.

    The Aztecs  played a game called Ullamaliztli, the famous Aztec ball game, which was played on a tlachtli ball court (the game is sometimes referred to as Tlachtli). It was a very difficult game played with a large rubber ball. And supposedly the loser was sacrificed, although not confirmed by us... 

    England Advances Football

    Although many other games have been played with a spherical ball in the past, there is a huge debate about who invented the actual soccer game we know toay.  However, in relation to football, it is in the United Kingdom where this sport, that mostly resembles soccer/football, begins to become popular in the 19th century. 

    But even in the middle of the 19th century, Charles Goodyear was making rubberized soccer balls. Inside was a pig bladder that was filled with hay, for example. The pig bladder would only last a few days. The early soccer balls were not completely spherical, they did not bounce evenly, they even had a bump that could even harm the players. We've heard stories about deaths and major injuries in the early days of soccer, and apparently even the ball could hurt you!

    Then in 1862 a fellow by the name of H. J. Lindon developed an inflatable rubber bladder. This changed everything and it was time for the English Football Association to make a rule regarding soccer ball specifications.  They came up with the rule that balls should have a circumference of 70 centimeters and weigh between 350 and 400 grams. And thus became the first standardized soccer ball in the history of soccer and could now be mass produced.

    Although some artisens were still making some handmade soccer balls while everyone else was adjusting to the new parameters. We are almost positive that it was the older players that refused to adjust, lol!

    Mitre Produces The First Soccer Ball

    The first soccer balls that were mass produced, by Mitre, at this time were thick leather and were hard to head because of the cord that closed the seams on the outside. And besides, if they got wet they were much heavier and difficult to control due to the absorbtion of water by the leather. Most balls produced by that time used rubber bladders. 

    Subsequently, with the passing of the time, several decades later, the balls would evolve. These changes would be appreciated and welcomed by those involved with the game, including the professional players in each Soccer World Cup. The bladders improved and manufacturers started using synthetic leather for the soccer ball cover.

    HISTORY OF THE SOCCER BALL IN THE WORLD CUP 

    The tiento, the first ball used in the first World Cup in the history of football, the one held in 1930 in Uruguay. In fact, in the final between the host country, Uruguay and Argentina, each team had to present a ball. The Argentines produced the Tiento while the host country produced a T-Model, a larger and heavier ball which the Argentines blamed for losing. 


    In the years to come and in the subsequent World Cups, the balls changed. The bladder inside that provided them with consistency begins to be replaced in the 1938 World Cup in France by an inflatable valve that allowed the ball to be inflated without having to rip it apart. In turn, the panels were increased and the models that used the 18 panels in the year 1954 in Switzerland appeared.

    The segments that formed the contour and the shape of the soccer ball did not allow making a ball too spherical which impacted the irregularity of the ball. In 1962 World Cup held in Chile, the Crack, the name of the official ball of the WC, changed the shape of its panels. The manufacturer expanded and changed the shape of pattern and instead went with 12 hexagonal and six rectangular shapes, which contributed to a more regular appearance. It also incorporated the latex valve that kept the air longer in the previous version. However, the rectangular segments returned to the traditional model in the year 1966, in which it was the first ball created by the English manufacturer, Slazenger and not Adidas. 

    The great revolution came in 1970 in the Mexican World Cup championship. In 1970 Adidas struck a deal with FIFA and became the brand that would sponsor the balls for the World Cup and presented the now famous Telstar. This 32 polygonal segments ball was something new and also had adopted the black and white color that would be established as the classical look to increase visibility for fans and TV audiences. 

    Following this design, in 1978 Argentina WC Adidas created another ball that marked another era: the Tango of hexagonal segments and that would be used for 6 more WC editions, although it would experience some variations.

    In the 1982 World Cup in Spain, leather and polyurethane were combined to make the ball waterproof and ensure water and moisture did not make it heavier. The other major change came four years later, when the first 100% synthetic ball cover was created, which further reduced water absorption compared to those seen to before. 

    While the Tango lasted, models were created that improved the composition using polyethylene foam, braided fiber meshes, resistant micro gas bubbles, polyurethane on the outside ... All this contributed to create more manageable, resistant and spherical balls.

    It was in 2002 when Tango stopped being used and the  new Fevernova arrived, used in the World Cup in Korea and Japan. The Fevernova is  one of the most remembered balls in these competitions. Noted for its colorful design that was inspired by the culture of both countries. It incorporated a new system of three woven layers to have a more precise and predictable flight. 


    It is from 2002 when the most groundbreaking developments in soccer balls begin to arrive. The 2006 World Cup presented a ball with fewer segments, the Teamgeist. Although it was in 2010 when one of the most revolutionary was created: the Jabulani, protagonist of the World Cup in South Africa because of the complicated result of stopping and the strangers he seemed to be doing in the air. It was the most spherical ever created. And the employee in the World Cup Final, the Jo'bulani, with which Spain won its first world championship with the mythical goal of Andrés Iniesta is already a ball of legend.

    In 2014, Brazuca arrived, which with six panels tried to maintain the same control, weight and roundness in all the scenes regardless of the area for which it is improved.

    And finally, in 2018, Adidas chose to return to the legendary Telstar in the World Cup. This time with technological improvements never seen before. This time with only 6 panels instead of the original 32. It also incorporated a chip which allowed officials to know if the ball crossed the goal line.

    Conclusion

    From vulcanized rubber, to thick leather, and pork bladder to polyurethane and technology chips, the history of the soccer ball has had some significant advances. A complete  change in the quality of the soccer ball occurred.  Will the sphere that makes soccer so great and loved by billions continue changing? How much better could a soccer ball get?

    How to Coach Youth Soccer

    Coaching Kids in Soccer

    Have you ever thought about becoming a youth soccer coach? Soccer is the sport played the most by kids under 8 in the United States. At some point the majority of parents in the US will have a son or daughter playing youth soccer. Many parents hesitate to coach due to a lack of knowledge about coaching or experience with the game of soccer. They think that coaching a young group of kids will be too much for them to handle. It is not as complicated as you may think or as others like to make it appear. However, you should also understand that coaching a youth soccer team is not an easy task. You do have to learn how to handle young kids’ behavior. 

    Soccer is a simple sport that is made difficult by the defense. That’s it! Just think about how easy it would be if it was like Golf and your opponent stands next to you while you try to score….. That would be easy right? But the soccer Gods added a defense to make it a real sport and that’s what makes the game so difficult. 

    You should also know that “the game is the best teacher”. So don’t try to over think the training, developing, and coaching of soccer. If you run out of things to do, just go back to the game itself and play a small sided game of 3 v 3 or 5 v 5, etc. It all depends on your numbers. 

    Here are the top 8 tips on how to coach youth soccer teams. These are geared more towards the beginner coach in the youth ages of U6 soccer teams, and other younger teams like U8 and U10. Hopefully they help you get started in becoming a great youth soccer coach and you can influence the lives of many young players. After all, that’s what coaching is all about. 

    Top 8 Tips on How to Coach Youth Soccer

    1. Let them play! 

    At this age the kids are looking to just have fun. They are not interested in your organized Barcelona Tiki Taka tactics. They are there because kicking a soccer ball is fun. So you may want to keep your Barcelona Soccer Drills DVD and booklet at home. I am a huge proponent of “Free Play”, which is a form of pick up soccer. You don’t coach while they play, you let them figure out the problems on their own. You can easily find a ton of soccer drills, try them all, your kids may like one or two, but don’t focus solely on drills. Let them have some fun and keep coming back. 

    Learn more about the Free Play Model here, which was introduced by Ted Kroeten.

    2. Chaos is part of the youth soccer game. 

    Don’t expect every coaching activity you try with the kids to be perfect. They are going to run around because they don’t understand the training activity half of the time. Do not take this as a sign of incompetence on your part. You must understand that they have a difficult time understanding soccer tactics, no matter how well you explain it. At this time they are still trying to figure out how to control the ball, run, and kick at the same time. 

    Also remember that chaos is part of soccer, don’t expect everything to be perfect. It’s not Football where everyone lines up and gets set before each play. Soccer is a game of transition, back and forth, with teams getting organized, unorganized, and attacking or defending. It is rare that you get set pieces where you can restart play in soccer. So embrace the chaos in youth soccer and don’t stress over it. 

    3. Forget Soccer Tactics. 

    As mentioned earlier, the kids are not interested in winning as much as you and the parents are. To them it’s just a soccer game. They may ask if they won or lost, but they are not training to beat the next opponent. They are there to kick the ball around with their friends and have a good time, it’s in their nature as young kids. 

    Don’t waste your time trying to teach kids too many tactics at this age. You have to understand that tactics can only be learned after they have mastered control of the ball, dribbling, passing, receiving, and shooting. You can spend a year explaining tactics to a 5 year old soccer player, but when the ball is passed to his feet, if he can’t control, there is nothing he can do and you just wasted a year of development. 

    4. Focus on Soccer Player development. 

    If you truly care about any youth soccer players you coach, and you want them to be successful when they get older, then you must assist in developing them. If you take this approach, you are not necessarily “coaching the team” but rather “developing players”. Your wins will be every time a player can dribble with the ball properly (close to their feet and in full control), or pass and receive with the inside part of his/her foot. That’s how good coaches of young players measure success, by the development of their players. 

    Winning is not everything at this young age when coaching youth soccer. It does not help if your team is winning every game because there is one player that runs past everyone and scores all the goals. The rest of the kids have to develop as well, but they can’t do it by just watching, they have to get involved. So don’t measure success by wins, instead celebrate every time your young players learn something new. 

    5. Practice is more important than games. 

    Many parents think that the actual game is what helps develop kids and what will make them good players. You must understand that their development happens during practice and free play. It is during practice that each child can have a ball and play with it, compared to a game with 14 kids and only one ball. Remind parents about the importance of practice if they care about development. It would be better to miss a game instead of practice. Unfortunately, parents will miss practice first before they miss a game.

    That’s just the culture of youth soccer in America. Games are the only time parents are screaming and hollering at the kids. Why don’t they do that at practice so their child improves even more. It’s during practice that a soccer player will have a ball at their feet the majority of the time, it’s during practice that they can make as many mistakes as they need to perfect their skill set. 

    6. Drills are overrated. 

    Don’t look at soccer drills as the only way to optimize player development. Remember that too much structure is bad for development of creative players. One of the funnest games or activities that I have found that kids enjoy are some of the most simple training drills. 

    Remember that before we decided that we could manufacture players, there were already great players. Where did they learn to play? They learned to play at home and on the streets. Remember that most of the big names you know of today, Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Messi, Ronaldo, were all very poor kids growing up. They did not have great coaches, equipment, clubs, teams, or drills. They all had a passion for soccer that was developed through their environment. Through their passion to play, they developed into great players. They all started playing at small clubs, and eventually sold to larger clubs that we know today. 

    7. Create a nurturing environment. 

    As stated earlier, all the great players were part of a great soccer environment. They were not trained by Mourhino or Guardiola as youth players (most were trained by parents or local coaches) they were trained and developed by their soccer environment and their passion. This combination is what creates great players. 

    As a coach, you want to create the best soccer coaching environment for youth soccer players to develop. You want the young soccer players to keep playing after they leave your team because that’s the only way they will continue to learn and develop into good soccer players. Development is a process and will end when the player is done playing. But you need to either plant that seed or keep nurturing it so that it can blossom. The environment for young soccer players should be positive, all inclusive, and fun. They should have nothing to worry about but having fun. 

    8. They look up to you. 

    Remember that kids this age look up to all most adults, including their soccer coach. They don’t know weather you’ve played professional soccer or half can’t even spell soccer. They won’t discriminate, they just want to have fun. Be confident and show them a good time. Whenever they do something special, they are looking for positive reinforcement from you, make sure you praise them. 

    Behave in a positive manner around them and give them a great example to follow. Be aware that they watch your every move and are ready to emulate you. So teach them to be good respectful players. 

    Coaching U6 soccer team or a U8 soccer team can be so much fun and a great learning experience. But don’t set high expectations, they are just kids. 

    Conclusion:

    In closing, let us again recommend to try and make this a fun experience for both you and the kids. There is absolutely no reason to stress out about wins and losses at this age. You will get burnt out as a soccer coach and never come back. The whole point of playing sports is to have a good time competing and make great friends while getting in great shape. 99.99% of kids will never play professional sports, there is no point in getting upset over a u5 soccer game. Have fun and enjoy. 

    For the more serious parents who have kids with some promise, you can read our article on Training Like Ronaldo.

    Ready to get started coaching? Then it's time to find the best soccer balls for your team. 

    How Long are High School Soccer Games

    How long are High School Soccer Games? 

    High School soccer (or football) games are a joy to watch and participate in. The kids finally getting a chance to represent their school colors on the pitch. The parents so proudly going to the HS soccer match to support their community and child. The time and energy that goes into getting all this to happen is massive. From the coaching, to the administrators, to the grounds personnel, and finally High School referees. 

    Because the kids are normally only playing 4 years at the most during high school careers, we end up with some parents that may not know a lot about soccer and the rules surrounding the play time. So the question of how long a High Soccer game really is comes up a ton. Good thing for us, we have a soccer coach on staff to explain everything that goes into determining the length of a High School soccer match. 

    First let’s take a look at how the how the United States Youth Soccer Association break down their recommended time for a soccer game on their website. This mostly impacts the Recreational and Competitive/Travel soccer leagues around the country. 

    • Youth Under-6: Should play four 6-minute quarters, with unlimited subs. Stoppage time is not added. 

    • Youth Under-8: Should play four 12-minute quarters, with unlimited subs. Stoppage time is not added. 

    • Youth Under-10: Should play two 25-minute halves, with unlimited subs. Stoppage time rule does impact the game time. 

    • Youth Under-12: Should play two 30-minute halves. Referee does stop the time during injuries. Extra time could consist of two 10-minute halves if needed, however rarely is this ever used in youth soccer leagues. 

    • Youth Under-14: Should play two 35-minute halves. Injury time is added at the end of the match. Extra time could consist of two 10-minute halves if needed, however rarely is this ever used in youth soccer leagues. 

    • Youth Under-16: Should play two 40-minute halves. Injury time is added at the end of the match. Same thing with extra time. 

    • Youth Under-19: Should play two 45-minute halves. Injury time is added at the end of the match. Extra time could consist of two 15-minute halves if needed, however rarely is this ever used in youth soccer leagues. 

    How Long are Professional Soccer Matches

    Now lets analyze how long professional soccer matches are which are very similar to U18/19 Travel soccer league matches. The professional soccer game is scheduled to play 90 minutes total, with 45 minute halves. The game is stopped by the referee on his own watch. However the time is never stopped on the unofficial game clock. This is the part that confuses many viewers. They think the game clock on the television or scoreboard is the official time. 

    But what does FIFA say about the game clock? In their rulebook, Law 7 explains the duration of professional soccer matches and states that every game is composed of two halves of 45 minutes and a 15 minute half time period.. It’s that simple. FIFA feels it should be 90 minutes of play time. 

    Extra Time without a Tie:

    The official time is held by the referee and his/her assistants. The referee will stop the match clock on his wrist for several reasons but most notably for timeouts and substitutions. This time is generally unknown until close to the end of the match when the referee signals how much more time he has added on to the unofficial game time. This is determined by how many subs and injuries occurred during the game where the referee had to stop the game in order for a substitution to come in or a player to receive medical attention. This rule was added because many soccer players would start to stall, fake injuries, or take a long time making substitutions once they had the lead.

    What about Tie games

    If the score is tied at the end of the second half, several things could happen depending on the rules of the soccer league or level. For youth teams and their leagues, as mentioned above, the game is called a draw and it’s over. This also happens in some professional friendly matches, league play in pro matches, or group play in tournaments pro and youth,including high school. In some leagues they could go straight to penalty kicks or overtime.

    Overtime Soccer Game

    Overtime is different from added time in two ways. One way is that the time that will be added is predetermined before the tournament. So this is not a decision by the referee, but instead by the rules committee before the football tournament.The time is normally 15 minute halves for professional matches and 10 minute halves for Youth soccer leagues. A total of either 30 minutes or 20 minutes will be played. There is usually a 5 minute break in between the halves. 

    FIFA used to use what was referred to as the Golden Goal, which is no longer in use. The Golden goal rule stated that the first team to score in overtime would win the soccer match. That is no longer in practice and the entire overtime must be played by both teams. 

    If there is still no winner after the overtime addition, then the teams are forced to kick penalty kicks.

    Penalty Kicks

    If a winner is required by the rules, but there is no overtime, then the winner of a tie game is determined by penalty kicks. Each team will get 5 shots on goal, with each team taking an alternate turn. There is a coin toss to see who shoots first. A different player must take each shot. The team with the most points after 5 shots wins. More shots can be added, if needed, however after 5 players have shot a penalty from each team, it becomes sudden death. 

    How Long do High School Soccer Games Last

    So after learning all of this, you can see where High School Leagues get their rules from. They are not part of FIFA or the US Soccer Federation. So they make up their own rules, but take all these into consideration. The National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS), based in Indianapolis, Indiana, sets the rules that govern high school soccer games in the United States.

    However NFHS allows each state to determine its own rules and game length, but for the most part high school soccer games usually consist of two 40-minute halves totaling 80 minutes of play with a running official clock. The referee may stop the official game clock on the scoreboard, but does not add any additional time to the game clock unless there is a mistake by clock management. This is different from pro matches where the game clock is posted, but is not official. Once the game clock ends in High School soccer, the game is over. 

    We have visited several states in the Midwest and Southwest USA, and all the games are played in 40 minute halves. Unless it’s a JV game, which usually consists of 35 minute halves. 

    What about Overtime in High School Soccer?

    The OT rule is determined by the teams if it’s a non conference game before the soccer match begins. You might think this causes confusion, but for the most part, teams agree that they don’t want to play overtime if it’s a non conference game, it’s viewed like a friendly. 

    However for high school conference games, the league determines the OT rule before the start of the season or tournament. We usually get  together with league officials and coaches and determine if we'll have OT after a tie game, how long the OT will be, and how the winner or points are determined. Sometimes we decide that if a game is tied at the end of regulation, the teams will go straight into penalties. Other times we may decide before the soccer season that we will add 10 minute halves for overtime and then go into penalties. 

    So how long do HS soccer matches last? 80 minutes with running clock. Overtime will be 20 minutes. And Penalties could take up another 10 minutes. And the celebration … may never end…. ! 

    Best Soccer League in the World

    The best Soccer Leagues in the World

    The debate over the best football leagues in the world is one that ranks highest at the top of every soccer fan in the universe. There are so many criteria to evaluate and so many different factors that change annually and sometimes daily! The problem with this hypothetically debate over the top soccer leagues is that there is no way to actually have the leagues play against each other. So we are left with opinions and that’s what we will give today.

    This will not be based on some stupid stats pulled from other websites, instead, we will analyze some of the important factors that would impact where the best soccer leagues in the world could be. We saw one website explain that the best leagues were based on where more goals were scored…… well in that case our Sunday league would rank the highest because games end up 9-7 all the time…..

    Ranking the top soccer leagues in the world is subjective, but at least we can try to give an unbiased and informed opinion. So lets rank the top football leagues in the world and explain some of the factors that impact the top ranking based on our opinion.

    According to FIFA, the league to send the most players to the 2018 World Cup was the English Premier League. This criteria is a great factor in determining where the best players in the world play. The FIFA world cup normally has some of the best players in their prime of their careers representing their country in a bid for the World Cup title. Since 2018 was the most recent world cup, we felt this is a huge factor in determining where the best football leagues are since many of the top players play there.

    One of the problems with using this criteria is that there are some players that are in the top 10 in the world, but since they come from a weaker football country, they were not in the world cup in 2018. A player at the top of his game like Sala was not in the World Cup and he’s a great example of a magnificent player not playing in the 2018 WC.

    The counter argument would be that this criteria is still a great resource because the countries that did make it through were filled, presumably, with great players. So Sala may have been left out, however he was not surrounded by good talent in Egypt, therefore this statistic would not count his team as “top players”. So one great player is left out, but so are many other weaker players.

    Here is the list of the top Soccer Leagues in the world that sent the most players to the 2018 World Cup. As noted above, the English Premier League ranks at the top using this criteria.

    Country Players Percentage         Outside

    national

    squad    Lower tier

    players

     England               129         17.53%  106         24

     Spain    81           11.01%  64           2

     Germany            67           9.10%    52           5

     Italy      58           7.88%    58           0

     France 49           6.66%    40           1

     Russia  36           4.89%    15           0

     Saudi Arabia      30           4.08%    10           0

     Mexico 23           3.13%    14           1

     Turkey 22           2.99%    22           0

    Others  241         32.74%  146         1

    Total      736         100%     527         34

    Looking closer at this list, you can see that Italy was the only country that was not represented at the World Cup, however they still sent a total of 58 players.

    Lets look at another set of criteria and see which teams in the top Football Leagues had the most player representation at the 2018 World Cup.

    At the top was Manchester City with 16 players, however Barcelona and Real Madrid followed with 15 and 14. Tottenham had 12. This demonstrates what the top of the best soccer leagues in the world look like in terms of top players in the world. Although Manchester United had 16, the next team representing the English Premier were the Spurs with 12, giving England two teams in the top 5 and a total of 28 players. In contrast, Spain’s La Liga had two teams in the top 5, with Barcelona (15) and Real Madrid (14) players representing their countries in the world cup. So this would tell us that Spain has the top teams with the most players with 29, just one over the English Premier League’s 28. But that’s a small sample size and we will go down to the top 10 teams with the most players in the World Cup in 2018. We then see that the English Premier League has legitimate reason to proclaim the top position in the top soccer leagues in the universe. The EPL had a total of 4 teams in the top 10 list, including Man City (16), Tottenham (12), Chelsea (11), and Manchester United (11). Spain did not have any other teams in the top 10. This gives the English Premier League a total of 4 teams with a total of 50 players.

    Club

    Players

    Manchester City

    16

    Real Madrid

    15

    Barcelona

    14

    Paris Saint-Germain

    12

    Tottenham Hotspur

    12

    Bayern Munich

    11

    Chelsea

    11

    Juventus

    11

    Manchester United

    11

    Lets take a look at another factor that has a huge impact on determining which soccer league is the best in the world. The next factor is the EUFA Champions League winners, past and present. The reason this is a good determining factor is because it’s the most prestigious club championship tournament in soccer history. I think we can all agree that the best teams, players, and leagues are in Europe, that doesn’t mean that other leagues can’t compete, but that historically it’s usually one of those leagues that have the best players and teams that compete.

    So who are the most successful soccer clubs in the EUFA champions league tournament? Real Madrid and Barcelona have combined for a total of 11 UEFA CL titles. That total dwarfs any other soccer league in the world. The closest leagues that come close to them is the English Premier League and Calcio in Italy with 5 CL winners coming from each League respectively.

    Barcelona and Real Madrid have captured 7 of the past 11 titles, YIKES!!! Both clubs are from Spain’s La Liga. That’s a complete domination of the CL tournament in Europe. The counter argument to this as mentioned above is that some of the top players in the world may not play for a team in the CL tournament, but just as mentioned earlier with the SALA argument, some top players and teams will be left out, but we have to draw the line somewhere to form an opinion based on facts.

    CHAMPIONS LEAGUE WINNER

    Titles and success

    Season

    Team

    Victory coaches

    UEFA Champions League

    18/19

    Liverpool FC

    Jürgen Klopp

    17/18

    Real Madrid

    Zinédine Zidane

    16/17

    Real Madrid

    Zinédine Zidane

    15/16

    Real Madrid

    Zinédine Zidane

    14/15

    FC Barcelona

    Luis Enrique

    13/14

    Real Madrid

    Carlo Ancelotti

    12/13

    Bayern Munich

    Jupp Heynckes

    11/12

    Chelsea FC

    Roberto Di Matteo

    10/11

    FC Barcelona

    Pep Guardiola

    09/10

    FC Internazionale

    José Mourinho

    08/09

    FC Barcelona

    Pep Guardiola

    07/08

    Manchester United

    Sir Alex Ferguson

    06/07

    AC Milan

    Carlo Ancelotti

    05/06

    FC Barcelona

    Frank Rijkaard

    04/05

    Liverpool FC

    Rafael Benítez

    03/04

    FC Porto

    José Mourinho

    02/03

    Milan AC

    Carlo Ancelotti

    01/02

    Real Madrid

    Vicente del Bosque

    00/01

    Bayern Munich

    Ottmar Hitzfeld

    99/00

    Real Madrid

    Vicente del Bosque

    98/99

    Manchester United

    Sir Alex Ferguson

    97/98

    Real Madrid

    Jupp Heynckes

    96/97

    Borussia Dortmund

    Ottmar Hitzfeld

    95/96

    Juventus FC

    Marcello Lippi

    94/95

    Ajax Amsterdam

    Louis van Gaal

    93/94

    Milan AC

    Fabio Capello

    92/93

    Olympique Marseille

    Raymond Goethals

    Value of the top clubs in the world.

    Another criterion to use is to analyze the richest clubs in the world and see where the most valued clubs come from. Although this will show the top of each league, it does help us determined where the top clubs are that have the money to bring in top talent and to create good teams in their league. This would also put pressure on the lower level teams to increase their own spending so they can compete in the league.

    According to FIFA, the top two richest clubs in the world are in Spain, with Real Madrid and Barcelona taking the first two spots. But looking at the list closer, we can determine that the English Premier League has 9 of the top 20 richest clubs in the world. This demonstrates that the clubs in the EPL have the resources to bring in top players from around the globe, making the league and teams more competitive.

    This list also demonstrates what we mentioned earlier about the champions league tournament. The top 20 richest clubs in soccer all come from leagues that are represented at the tournament. So the top teams in terms of value are all European clubs.

    The counter argument to this is that there is a small sample with only 20 teams being represented. Some may also argue that just because a football club is valued high doesn’t mean they are a good team. But as mentioned above, the richest clubs have more resources to purchase players from other countries in the transfer market, given them a higher probability to field a good team on the pitch. Let’s face it, the majority of good players are expensive. A soccer team should also field some scrappy work horses that can defend and do the dirty work, but the majority of teams have some deep talent on their roster if they want to be successful.

    Rank

    Team

    Country

    Value

    In millions

    % change
    on year

    Debt as
    % of value

    Revenue ($M)

    1

    Real Madrid

    Spain

    4,239

    4

    1

    896

    2

    Barcelona

    Spain

    4,021

    -1

    0

    824

    3

    Manchester United

    England

    3,808

    -8

    19

    795

    4

    Bayern Munich

    Germany

    3,024

    -1

    0

    751

    5

    Manchester City

    England

    2,688

    9

    0

    678

    6

    Chelsea

    England

    2,576

    25

    0

    597

    7

    Arsenal

    England

    2,268

    1

    11

    520

    8

    Liverpool

    England

    2,183

    12

    3

    613

    9

    Tottenham Hotspur

    England

    1,624

    31

    37

    511

    10

    Juventus

    Italy

    1,512

    3

    9

    480

    11

    Paris Saint-Germain

    France

    1,092

    12

    0

    646

    12

    Atlético Madrid

    Spain

    953

    12

    23

    363

    13

    Borussia Dortmund

    Germany

    896

    -1

    0

    379

    14

    Schalke 04

    Germany

    683

    -3

    12

    291

    15

    Internazionale

    Italy

    672

    11

    50

    335

    16

    Roma

    Italy

    622

    1

    41

    298

    17

    West Ham United

    England

    616

    -18

    10

    236

    18

    Milan

    Italy

    583

    -5

    42

    248

    19

    Everton

    England

    476

    32

    0

    254

    20

    Newcastle United

    England

    381

    -

    0

    240

    In 2018 There were a total of 262 non-Home Grown players in the English Premier league, a number that is steadily increasing towards its maximum of 340, as it would be if all 20 Premier League teams were to take up the max number of 17 slots. The FA estimates that on current trends that 340 would be reached by 2030. This trends demonstrates the competitiveness of the EPL. All the clubs are looking to buy talent from abroad, even though it’s more expensive if they can’t find it at home.

    Germany's Bundesliga 1 and 2 do not have a maximum foreign player limit, but instead a minimum "local" player limit. At least 8 players must have played for the club in three seasons each before turning 25, and at least 4 further players must have done the same at any German club.

    France's Ligue 1 appears to have a limit of five foreign players (with a similar meaning as above) and further allows only four to be playing on the field at any time. However sources on this are unclear as to whether the five is actually four (and thus the second limit is unnecessary). Actual regulations are not easy to find.

    La Liga

    La Liga regulations permit up to three "foreign" players per team.

    "Foreign" refers to a player from outside the European Union. Due to a legal ruling over a German handball player, there are exceptions for people from countries with EU association agreements (because a quota that counts them is a restriction on their employment opportunity contrary to such an agreement).

    Players with ancestry of an EU country may also use this to be counted as an EU player, and therefore not as foreign. For example, Argentine players of Italian descent have used this method to avoid the quota.

    Next we will review the attendance at the top soccer leagues in the world. The attendance was a difficult factor to analyze and determine if a league’s attendance equals a higher rating. However one way to determine “the best soccer leagues” is to take attendance and see how many people are going to the games!!

    Below is the list of the top 5 attendance in domestic leagues in football.

    League

    Sport

    Country

    Season

    Teams

    Games

    Average
    capacity

    Average
    attendance

    Average
    Attendance
    Percentage of
    Average
    Capacity (%)

    Total
    attendance

    Ref(s)

    Premier League

    Association football

    England/Wales

    2017–18

    20

    380

    38,519 *

    38,274

    99.36

    14,505,999

    [6]

    Bundesliga

    Association football

    Germany

    2017–18

    18

    306

    48,791

    44,646

    91.50

    13,661,796

    [7]

    EFL Championship

    Association football

    England/Wales

    2017–18

    24

    552

    28,087

    20,489

    72.95

    11,309,726

    [9]

    La Liga

    Association football

    Spain

    2017–18

    20

    380

    39,532

    26,842

    67.90

    10,173,142

    [10]

    Serie A

    Association football

    Italy

    2017–18

    20

    380

    41,174

    24,767

    60.15

    9,411,539

    [11]

    Ligue 1

    Association football

    France/Monaco

    2017-2018

    20

    380

    22,524

    8,559,056

    [13]

    Major League Soccer

    Association football

    United States/Canada

    2018

    23

    391

    22,863

    21,873

    95.67

    8,552,503

    [14]

    With the attendance statistics, we see that again the English Premier League is by far the most attended by fans. We believe that this translates to competitive teams throughout the league and fan interest across all teams. Although many may feel that the EPL is top heavy, this table shows that it may not be the case. Fans all over the country show up to support the team. However this does not take into account the TV audience numbers, which could reflect a different story. But it should be noted that in the US alone, the TV audience for the EPL has grown over 74%!! (http://worldsoccertalk.com/2019/08/21/premier-league-viewership-grew-74-last-decade-us-tv/The popularity of the EPL keeps growing, especially since the games are broadcasted in English and the team’s communications and interviews are in in English. That’s a huge advantage over leagues like La Liga, Bundesliga, and Serie A.

    Surprisingly the EFL Championship League in Wales came in 3rd place, that is surprising considering the league is not very popular around the globe. It even beat out La Liga, which many feel that it is very top heavy. This table could help prove that argument as the top 4-5 clubs in the country take up all the attention with Atletico Madrid, Real Madrid, Barca, Sevilla, and Valencia getting the majority of the trophies.

    Another surprise on this list is the Major League Soccer in the USA. Although not nearly as popular around the world as, let’s say, the Brazilian, Mexican, or Argentinian Leagues, it does get higher attendance. This however may be the result of just simple economics, since the US has a higher income per capita ratio than the other 3 countries.

    In conclusion, the choosing of the top leagues in the soccer world is not an easy task. But instead of just making up subjective answers based on weak observations, we looked deep into the data that could tell us where the best soccer league is located.

    Europe boasts some of the best soccer clubs and leagues in the world. However the Seria A in Italy has been plagued by all types of issues including money laundering, game fixing, and several others. But still it’s a great league in the top 5.

    The Bundesliga in Germany and the Ligue One in France are great leagues, but they don’t have the depth of an EPL, but another one that should be in the top 5. They have also represented well in the Champions League and have Bayern Munich a huge player in Europe and currently PSG.

    La Liga is probably the closest to the EPL. It’s watched around the globe. They have two huge giants. They get players from all over the world and huge transfers, but it’s mainly 3-4 clubs doing it. So for the lack of depth and lack of attendance, la Liga gets 2nd place.

    There are many other soccer leagues that are very competitive and exciting, including the Campeonato Brazileiro Serie A, Liga MX (Mexico), and the Super Liga Argentina in South America. However, the issue with these leagues is the money invested into each league. The money in Europe is just too astronomical for players to pass up. This is a never-ending cycle and these leagues can’t keep up. The cycle starts when a great player is offered Millions of dollars or pounds to go play overseas. The domestic leagues in countries like Brazil, Mexico, and Argentina cannot match the offers. So, the best players in these leagues leave, and who can blame them. This basically means that these leagues will never ever keep a young star because in order to have the money to keep one of them, the teams need to get better and increase the revenue. However they can’t do that because the best players leave, thus leaving the team weaker and with less value.

    Take for example the club Santos in Brazil and the player Neymar comes to mind. Neymar was starting form into one of the best players in the world as a teenager just 8 years ago. He was so good that Santos dominated the Campeonato Brazileiro Seria A with him. They even won the South America’s version of the Champions League, Liga Santander de Campeones. Santos then went on to represent South America in the Club World Cup held in December 2011. Santos played vs Barcelona. And as Santo FC was starting to compete in world stage with their superstar, although they lost 4-0, by 2013 Barcelona took Neymar and Santos had to start over again. So with Barcelona already a European and World Giant, they went and took Santo’s only chance at competing and instead got even better. Barcelona was able to offer for Neymar a $90,000,000.00 transfer fee.

    So this is a great example of why the odds of the South American clubs ever catching up to the European clubs, the odds are stacked up against them. Also, the players want to go to Europe to play, so there is more money and more prestige, something drastic will need to occur.

    So, moving on…..

    Based on the data collected we have concluded the English Premier League is the world’s best soccer league. Although the leagues, as a whole, have not won many European Champions League finals, they have represented well in the tournament and always do, as evident in 2019 when both teams playing in the final were from England.

    We also have to take into account the other European League’s top-heavy tables. In Spain you have the two giants, Barca and Galacticos. In Seria A you have AC Milan and Inter Milan. In the Bundesliga there is Bayern Munich and Bayern Leverkusen. These teams represent a huge obstacle for the EPL clubs who also have to deal with a very tough domestic league.

    Some may argue that it can’t be the EPL because England hasn’t won a World Cup in a long time, however we were not evaluating the national team’s progress in the WC, but rather the players and teams in that country’s domestic league.

    We chose England because they have some of the richest clubs in the world of football. They also lead in attendance. English Premier League also had the most players representing their countries in the most recent world cup as of 2019. The EPL also has the 2nd most CL titles and tied with Seria A in Italy. And finally as mentioned above when comparing teams that had players in the 2018 WC, the EPL had a total of 4 teams in the top 10 list, including Man City (16), Tottenham (12), Chelsea (11), and Manchester United (11). Even though Spain had the top two teams, it did not have any other teams in the top 10.

    What other criteria should we have used to find the best football league in the world?

    Ball on a String

    Why a Ball on a String?

    The ball on a string has a history that goes back to the early 1900's, but no one knows really when they were mass produced. However, the ball on a string is probably the most convenient way to play and train on your own. The football on a string allows the child to train soccer or football without having to chase after the ball, making this toy one of the most efficient ways to train. 

    How to Train with Football on String

    As mentioned above, this tool allows the player to train for hours at a time and extremely efficient since there is ZERO time wasted on chasing balls. So what kind of training can you do with a ball on a string? Here is a list of the Top 10 ways to train with a soccer ball on a string. 

    1. Soccer ball Juggling

    Since the ball is on a string, you no longer have to worry about chasing it after you lose your juggle. Now you can practice all your juggline calm and collected since you don't have to do the worst part of juggling..... chasing the ball down after a bad touch. 

    Refer to the article on juggling to use all the techniques taught there. 

    2. Football Volleys

    Football Volley is one of the most amazing ways you can score a goal. The problem is that it's so difficult to improve your volley because the kicks are very unpredictable until you get really good at them, so the ball will be kicked for about 30-50 yards away from the playing area. No one wants to chase that ball down. The football on a string though, allows you to practice as many volleys as you'd like and never ever have to go find the ball. 

    You can do bicycles, shoot half volleys, in the air or on the ground, the shots are limited only to your imagination. The most important part is that the ball will be right next to you because of the string. Work on your volley technique though, don't just kick for no good reason. A good rule is to learn to make contact with the ball and your laces, it's not always how hard you kick the ball, but it's about technique, because remember that the ball will already have some speed in the air. Also... be very careful and learn how to fall while attempting these volleys. 

    3. Proper Soccer Ball Shooting Technique

    With your football on a string, you can also train and perfect your proper shooting technique. You will have unlimited opportunities to shoot as many times as you want. Do practice all of them. Shoot with the laces, inside the foot, outside the foot, and even heel pass/shot. 

    4. Proper Soccer Ball Passing

    Same as with your shooting drills. Learn and use the proper techniques so that you are not wasting your time. Use the correct form and get unlimited amount of time on the ball. The ball on the string allows you to be extremely efficient and do nothing else but work on your ball passing. 

    5. Receiving the soccer ball

    So how does the ball on the string help you learn to receive the soccer ball? Well whenever you shoot or kick the ball (while training of course) the ball is normally pulled back into your body from the elastic string. Take advantage of this opportunity to receive the ball with the proper technique. Don't just grab it with your hands, be even more efficient by properly receiving the ball with your feet, chest or other part of the body. 

    6. Heading the Football

    Just like the passing and shooting, the ball on the string will also help you improve your heading of the ball if you choose to. Practice proper heading technique and make sure your child is old enough to start heading the ball. Make sure the ball is the correct size. 

    7. Quickness on your feet

    To practice this, you must also receive the ball with your proper technique. So when the ball is kicked away, prepare yourself to receive the ball. Get on your toes immediately and be ready to adjust your body depending on where the ball will land. This will help you get quicker. Don't waste any of these opportunities to improve your soccer game development. 

    8. Gauging the ball

    Also tied to quickness on your feet. Your player will learn to gauge where the ball will land. This one might be a stretch, but we had to make a top 10 list!!! Still try to gauge the speed and spin on the soccer ball as it approaches your body on the string. Processing this information will help you adjust and receive the ball with the appropriate part of the body. 

    9. Punting for Keepers

    Punting is another one of those things that you need a partner for that can retrieve the ball for you. But what if you don't have someone? Or if you don't have alot of space? Well now you can put the ball as much or as hard as you want because it's not going anywhere with the string attached to it. This lets you practice your technique and form until there is no tomorrow. 

    10. Free Kick Specialists

    As with the shooting and passing, the ball on a string allows the soccer player to train all day long and focus on their form. This can be done without a goalie or teammate because the string will retrieve the ball for you. You can practice all of your favorite free kicks and perfect them through proper form. Spend the time training and not chasing balls. 

    Conclusion:

    I owned about 3-4 soccer balls on a string during my lifetime. The ball on a string is a neat little toy, but it's also dynamic football training tool. If you are serious about training and development, you need to have a football on a string. If you just want to have fun with your ball but don't have a group of friends to train with, then this ball will never leave your side and you can spend your time playing instead of chasing. 

    We Recommend the Star-Kick from SKLZ. This has everything you will need and it's the best ball attached to a string or bungee.