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Introduction To Soccer
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James W Kelly

 
By James W Kelly
Published on December 24, 2008
 
Soccer is the world's most popular sport, played by men and women of all ages, with millions of fans throughout the world. A chief reason for soccer's vast popularity is that it is among the most accessible and adaptable of the world's sports.

Soccer is the world's most popular sport, played by men and women of all ages, with millions of fans throughout the world. A chief reason for soccer's vast popularity is that it is among the most accessible and adaptable of the world's sports.




Sports fans are in love with it because watching soccer provides the same adrenaline rush as playing soccer. Soccer fans are known for their emotional outbursts, wild cheering and crying uncontrollably, in case their team loses. No other sports witnesses such passion in the stands.





The best thing about the sport is its simplicity. All that is needed to play is an area of open space and a ball. Much of the world's soccer is till-date, played informally on patches of ground, without field marking or real goals. In many places, the game is even played barefoot using rolled-up rags or newspapers as a ball.

The sport is played by two teams on a rectangular field, with the object of driving the ball into the opponent's goal. The ball is controlled and advanced primarily by using the feet; only goalkeepers are allowed to handle the ball.

Although it can be played on the streets for recreation, the ultimate spirit of soccer lies within the 100 plus meters tall football stadiums. The cacophony of cheering, shouts, cries, all contribute towards creating the soccer atmosphere.

The Legends of Soccer

The game of soccer has its own renowned masters since the conception of the game. Of them all, Pelé and Maradona are the leading contenders for the best soccer player of all time title. Whoever is the best among them, the line dividing the other’s greatness is so, slim that even after a decade people are still unsure who truly deserves the title. Most soccer fans however, hold that only Pelé has the right to the title.

While Pelé was Brazilian, Maradona was an Argentine. While it is hard to say with certainty who was better, Pelé is associated with finesse and Maradona is best remembered for his raw skill and strength. Both the players had what it takes to lead their teams and the ability to turn the tide of matches.

Among the current crop of players, Ronaldo is the strongest contender to the title of best soccer player. Often compared to all-time soccer greats, Ronaldo possesses the raw power, strength, stamina and the innate ability to score. He is well-deservedly called the ‘Phenomenon’. Besides, Ronaldo shares a Brazilian heritage with the legendary Pele.

The World Cup

The FIFA World Cup is the most-watched soccer event. Named after its governing body FIFA, the world soccer championship includes the best teams in the world. This event takes place every 4 years and the winner is awarded the FIFA World Cup Title.

The last FIFA World Cup was held in Germany in the year 2006. The championship is an important world sports event, aside from being the best tournament for the most-popular sport, it also attracts tourism and creates excellent business opportunities.