(English football, from foot-foot and ball-ball), a sports team game in which the athletes, using individual guidance and passing the ball to the partners legs or any other part of the body, except hands, try to score it in the opponent’s goal the greatest number of times at the set time. The team has 11 people, including the goalkeeper. Game specially marked rectangular area – a field (110-100 at 75-69 m – for official matches) has usually a grassy cover. The length of the ball’s circumference along the diametrical cross-section is 680-710 mm, weight 396-453 g. The playing time is 90 minutes (2 periods-in-time for 45 minutes with a 10-15-minute break). Unlike other ball games, you can only touch the goalkeeper (within the penalty area), the rest of the players – when throwing the ball into the game because of the sideline.


Substantially affects the tactic of football rule “offside” – an athlete who is in the opponent’s half of the field has the right to take the ball from the partner, provided that between them and the goal line there are at least two players of the opponent, including the goalkeeper. For infringement of rules penalties on freely lying ball are appointed (at a distance from it of players of a command-contender not less than on 9 m); for violation in the penalty area – 11-meter kick (penalty) on the goal, protected only by the goalkeeper, standing on their line. The regulations of some soccer competitions provide, with no result of the meeting, additional time or a series of penalties for the identification of winners; for matches of children and youth – reducing the playing time and the size of the field.

Football is the most popular and massive sport in the world. To date, there are more than 300,000 professional clubs in the world. In view of the popularity of the game, there are many varieties of football, mostly with fewer players. The most famous are minifootball, futsal, beach football. These sports have their own federations and play their own competitions, right up to the World Championships. There are also exotic varieties of the game – marsh football, football freestyle, football tennis. Football is dedicated to songs, movies, books, a lot of media. For someone, football is a kind of commerce, and for someone – a hobby and health improvement. This game is in the public eye, but there are more myths and myths around it, some of which we propose to consider.

Football came up with the English.

It seems that this statement is absolutely unshakable – because England is considered the birthplace of football, and the British – the ancestors of the game. Confirm this and the numerous documented facts and even legends that the ancient Englishmen loved to drive on the battlefield the heads of the defeated Vikings. However, how to treat this fact – during the Zhou dynasty, even before our era, the Chinese were already running after the ball, hitting it with their feet. The field was attended by judges, gates and players who defended them. The game was regulated by rules, consisting of 25 chapters. The losers mocked or beaten, and the winners received expensive gifts. What is not the germ of professionalism? It’s unclear why, but in the 9th century AD our traces of the game completely disappeared. Now China is catching up to its lag, while unsuccessfully. The traces of the game are found everywhere, which allows us to assert that similar games originate among different peoples. In ancient Egypt, were found pictures of both the ball game, and themselves these items. Both the Greeks and the Romans played with their feet in the ball. Traces of such a game are found even among the Eskimos. The size of their site was huge – up to 400 meters in length, and participants were even women with children. Hitting a ball-like object, depending on the result of the match, the Eskimos somehow determined the future weather. Italians argue that football originated from the Florentine game “calcio”, the French – from the medieval game “la sul”.

Similar games existed in the Middle Ages, differing in extreme cruelty.

Players came out in knight armor, with weapons in their hands, so no one was surprised by the wounded and killed. The chronicles say that in 1583 two Britons were so eager to take the ball from the enemy, that with their strong blows to the chest, they broke all the ribs, hammering it directly into the field.

The official birth of football is 1863.

Indeed, at this time in English universities the first rules were documented and the first association was created. Although, for the sake of justice, it should be said that disputes over the rules were conducted in England since the beginning of the 19th century, which gave birth, together with football, a rugby game in which it is allowed to play with hands.


Women’s football originated in the late 20th century.

Men disdain for women’s football, they say, it’s not their business. And this sport arose, it seems, just recently. However, the first mention of a game that resembles football, with the participation of the beautiful half, refers to the very beginning of our era. In China, women played in “tsu ju”, the name of this game meant “kicking the ball”, and the goal was to make the greatest number of accurate shots. However, then the traces of the game are lost, and in the Middle Ages, similar games in China for women were even banned. The next mention of the ball game between women dates back to the 17th century. In Scotland, a duel took place between married and unmarried ladies. The official same ancestor of women’s football was also England, it was in it in 1895 was formed the first women’s club – “British Lady Football Club”, and the first official match took place in March of the same year.
However, men are rather skeptical about such entertainment of their friends, in 1912, women were forbidden to play in the stadiums where the matches of the men’s leagues are held. Football gained popularity during the First World War, when, in the absence of men, women suddenly liked this rough game, where you could remove all the pain, resentment, anger on the ball, and even on the opponent. In 1917, in Preston, a football match between women’s teams gathered a record audience of 10,000 fans. In 1920, the first international duel took place between Englishwomen and Frenchwomen. However, the development of women’s football was again stopped by men who considered this sport too rough for wives and mothers. The third breath sports received in the 1960s, with the development of feminism. In 1969 appeared the European Federation, and in the early 1970s in Italy and the first professional women’s league.
Gradual development and popularization of women’s football led to the fact that this sport was universally recognized. In 1991, the first World Women’s Football Championship was held, soon this sport became Olympic.

The best footballers are Brazilians.

But with this statement it’s hard to argue. Even simple statistics on the side of “football wizards.” So, the Brazilian team won the World Cup more often than others – 5 times. The best player ever recognized Pele (although FIFA shared the first prize between him and Maradona). Only in 2008 for foreign clubs went to play 1176 players, which is 8% higher than last year. Such a volume of exports can not boast of any country in the world. Most of these players continued their careers in Europe (762 people), 222 people left for Asia, and 15 Brazilians even went to Africa. The figures of departing football players are constantly growing, 30 years ago only 87 people left Brazil. International scouts find in the country all new diamonds, often taking out even underage players. However, the fact that the Brazilian teams are not the strongest can shake the validity of the statement. Of course, it is difficult to compare the game, say “Sao Paulo” and “Manchester United”, as they perform in completely different tournaments, having a chance to meet only once a year at the team world championship. However, even in such a rare full-time competition of victory, more often on the side of representatives of the Old World.European football is characterized by a large tactical sabotage, if the Brazilians are more technical, the Europeans are more athletic and cunning. It is no coincidence that Brazilians often beat at the same world championships, while pragmatic Italians became champions less than 4 times. And the southern temperament hinders the professional development of the players, the Brazilians have long established fame of the mood players, they can all throw and fly to the carnival in the beloved Rio, referring to the invented injury, from vacation these players often return late and overweight.

Balls on the head are harmful, the mental abilities of players from this decline.

I would like to dispel this myth, but it’s not so simple. Doctors say that each blow to the head of the ball causes damage to the nerve cells of the brain, similar to its concussion or edema. Such damage is difficult to detect only with the help of neuropsychological tests. In the future, perhaps, they can be determined using a blood test, according to the content of beta-protein S-100 in it. Scientists say that for such light shocks neutrons react with changes in structure and properties, they can lose their electrolytic balance. Cells are restored only for several months, however, their repeated damage during this period can lead to serious consequences. In addition, the constant strikes of the ball on the head lead to the “aging” of neutrons. Scientists observed 88 Dutch players and 11 of them found lesions comparable to a real concussion. The average player gets for the season from 800 to 1200 such micro-traumas. Most of them are harmless, but they can show themselves later, like boxers, 20% of whom have signs of impairment of brain activity by the age of 30. If the footballer has the gene Aroe-4, then the risk of brain damage will increase by 4 times. For example, the famous English football player Jeff Astle died in 2002 at the age of 59, his death was associated with numerous brain injuries. In the 60s, this footballer became famous as a master of blows to the head of the ball, and the balls at that time were heavier.
This problem is of a general nature for sports, so in 1996 the International Ice Hockey Federation banned hockey players from playing without a helmet, and in 2002, players were forbidden to hit the head. In Norway, in 2001, professional boxing was banned altogether. And the football authorities are struggling with these phenomena, the arbitrators have become much more strict about striking elbows in the horse race for the ball. In Holland, in general, children under the age of 16 were forbidden to engage in boxing and to hit the head with the ball during the game. The football players themselves at the beginning and end of the season will be subjected to a series of neuropsychological tests.

The first football fans-hooligans put up to appear in the 14th century

This is true, and finally football hooliganism took shape in the late 50’s of the 20th century. At the turn of the 70-80s, hooliganism crossed the borders of Britain and assumed a European scale. In the mid-80’s, English clubs were even suspended from participating in European club tournaments. Today, the stadiums of England as a whole reigns a peace-loving atmosphere and the majority agree that, like in England, they do not get sick anywhere – it is difficult to convey feelings in words when the whole stadium singing songs dedicated to the beloved club in a single rush. I remember the 2005 Champions League Final, when the English “Liverpool” lost 0-3 to the break of the Italian “Milan”. It was the fans with their famous anthem “You are never walk alone” that inspired the English to storm, which allowed them to equalize, and later to snatch victory.


The best fans are in England.

And many will disagree with this statement. However the fact – in 2005 in the final of the English League Cup was recorded a record of noise in the stadium. After the goal of the player, “Liverpool” Riise at the gates of the London “Chelsea” fans made a scream with a capacity of 130.7 decibels.This unique achievement was recorded in the “Guinness Book”. What should be considered a criterion for the fan? Just a scream? The most visited is the German championship, which on average collects about 37,000 fans per match. The English Premier League, for example, holds a record for television contracts, although its attendance is less than the German league, about 35,000 fans per match. In France, on average, the match goes to just over 20,000 people. The record for the attendance of the stadium was the Brazilian Maracana, which in 1950 collected 200,000 fans. Someone considers the best fans of those who are most fiercely given to the experiences for their favorite team. It is the English fans who are known for their dedication to the game.

In 1942, in the German-occupied Kiev, a “death match” took place.

History says that in the summer of 1942 the Dynamo Kyiv in the occupied city was forced to play with the Luftwaffe team, reinforced by professionals. During the meeting, the Germans in an ultimatum demanded that Soviet football players lose the match. Despite the arbitrator’s excesses, the rudeness of the German Dynamo players defeated the enemy. On the same day, Soviet players were arrested and destroyed. Later, the death toll was reduced to 3-4, and with the light hand of the writer Kassil, this match became known as the “death match”. In fact, the story is as follows. Because of the hasty retreat of the Soviet troops in Kiev, there remained a large group of people who had not managed to leave the city. They included footballers from different Kiev teams. Soon they got a job at a bakery, whose owner was fascinated by football and created his own football team “Start”. Players played matches, almost every week – for the Germans it was an indicator that the city has a peaceful life, and for football players – an extra means of earning. It is documented that during the summer of 1942 the “Start” played 7 international matches, of which – 3 with Hungarians, and 4 – with the Germans. It is curious that Soviet footballers won all meetings, often even devastatingly, and after the matches they posed together with the opponents before the cameras. All matches were served by German judges. So describes one of the episodes of the match newspaper “The Stalinist tribe” of 1946: “Our goalkeeper is tightly taking the ball, punched by striker Schmidt.” The German strikes him with a boot in the head, and then pushes the unconscious goalkeeper with the ball into the goal. “. However, eyewitnesses, in particular, the newspaper “Novoe Ukrainskoe slovo” on July 19, 1942, note, on the contrary, the favor of the referee to the players of the “Start”: “Two goals scored in the gates of the German team should be attributed to the judge, because they were clogged from the net” offside. “In general, the work of the judge was not precise and precise.” In general, the matches were held in a friendly atmosphere, the removal of eyewitnesses recalled only one thing when they removed the German for the impulse of our player. The surviving players remember even that they play themselves deliberately rude, trying to achieve victory. Where did the “death match” come from? In Kiev, there was another one, similar to the “Start” team led by a certain Shvetsov, called “Rukh”. After another victory over the Germans, the match “Start” – “Rukh”, which ended with a score of 8-0. This greatly offended Georgy Shvetsov, who banally told the Germans that the players of the bakery team conduct an easy life, and many of them before the war were in the departmental society of Dynamo, which was associated with the NKVD. The players were allegedly left behind for underground work. It is known that four football players were killed as a result of the arrests, while Nikolay Korotkih was tortured in the Gestapo as an NKVD worker in 1942, and Trusevich, Kuzmenko and Klimenko were shot in the camp together with many other prisoners only on February 24, 1943. The reasons are not known for certain, but they could be violations of the camp regime, and the activation of partisans and the approach of Soviet troops.Thus, there was no “death match” in nature, it was invented by Soviet propaganda. This myth was fueled by publications, books made with films. The testimony of the players gradually came to a common, “official” denominator. To confirm the myth, its participants were awarded medals, and at the stadium “Start” in 1971 a monument was erected. Already in the 90’s, journalists began to conduct research that completely and rebutted the myth, the Germans also carried out their investigation since 1975, which was finally closed in 2005. The connection between the shooting of football players and a football match was found.

Soviet football was one of the strongest in Europe.

Nostalgia for the past time, many sigh – oh, there was time. First of all, the victories of Kiev and Tbilisi “Dynamo”, the success of the national team at tournaments in the 60s and 80s, are recalled. However, what determines the strength of football and the championship as a whole? Of course, in the first place, a comparative assessment. Like, our players are both technically and tactically better “shod”. However, in the USSR there was practically no information about foreign championships, “Soviet Sport” printed extremely sparse truncated reports. Live matches could watch several dozen people. That is, even specialists were not able to compare the level of development of football in the country and in Europe. Another criterion is the results we show in the international arena. It should be noted that after the 1960s generation in the history of Soviet football there were rare spikes, there were no stable successes at all. If in the 1950s and 1960s the USSR team won the European Cup, the Olympics, it was in the fourth place at the World Championship, then in the 70s the team did not have any significant successes at all. Only in the late 80’s the team flashed, winning the second place at the European Championships in Germany, conquering the Olympics in Seoul. At the same level of club competitions, three Cup Winners’ Cups were won. However, participating more than 20 years in three European club tournaments and win only three of the most insignificant trophies – an indicator of only 8-10 countries in strength. According to the number of European Cup victories, the USSR is inferior to Scotland and Belgium to Portugal, not to mention football monsters like Italy and England. The Dutch have performed much more successfully both at the club and at the national level. A significant indicator is the table of club coefficients of UEFA, where the USSR climbed high, the top five only in recent years. The USSR national team, by the way, showed quite good success in unofficial meetings and was even nicknamed “World Champion in friendly matches”. Alas, we must admit that our football was not advanced. Soviet football was inherent in character, charisma, he combined diverse schools and coaching thoughts, but the constant rotation in “his own juice” prevented his progress.
Are there still coefficients of UEFA, where the USSR in recent years has climbed very high, constantly upholstered in the top five (maybe it pushed the mythmakers to the birth of their creation?), But to be constantly fourth, third, second – it means to be a loser. As well as excellent results in training games, where the USSR national team did not know equal, as it was then said – the world champion in friendly matches.
Alas, there was no Soviet football in European leaders. But that’s what was – it’s originality, it’s charisma, it’s the diversity of schools and directions. All the things that sport like. That’s why I’d like to see matches between modern Spartak and Dynamo Kiev, CSKA and Shakhtar and many others. But life requires realism and the return of the USSR championship is impossible.

Church condemns football.

Perhaps the illiteracy of the population towards religion and the church gave rise to this myth. The general attitude of the church to the sport, generally benevolent, if the competitions are not connected “with the revelry of some unclean passions and waste of huge money.” To maintain their own health, many priests even engage in physical education.The fact is that a sedentary lifestyle significantly affects the figure, so there are priests who are engaged in both running and swimming. As for football, this game won even the Vatican at St. Peter’s Stadium! Teams play the Cup of the Holy See, which is a metal-cast soccer ball, mounted on two boots and topped with a wide-brimmed hat. The drawing of this cup is also called Vatican championship. It is attended by more than 300 players from fifty countries, representing even such exotic countries as Gabon, Rwanda and Papua New Guinea. Players represent the Catholic educational institutions of the Vatican, and the teams are divided not by nationality, but by the belonging of their players to various Catholic orders: Franciscans, Dominicans, Capuchins.

An excellent football player becomes an excellent coach, and a well-known player can become a successful coach.

There are many examples that disprove this myth. It would seem, who else should become a coach, if not a footballer who knows the “kitchen” from within. But in order to become a coach, you must pass the appropriate courses, take exams, get a license. Of course, it’s easier for a former football player to go that route, familiar with both the system and the subject of training. However, nothing prevents a person from becoming a coach. The most famous examples were Arrigo Sacchi and Jose Mourinho. The first, after a bit of amateur football, seemed to have thoroughly devoted his life to the shoe business. In 1972 he became the coach of the local amateur team, then his career went uphill and in 1987 he became the coach of Milan, with whom he won both the championship, 2 European Cups and a bunch of other titles. In 1991, Arrigo was appointed coach of the Italian team. Another example is the Portuguese Mourinho, who did not play at the professional level, and started his career in football as … an interpreter. Soon the curious employee liked the legendary Bobby Robson, became his assistants, and soon went on his own coaching. Mourinho won the UEFA Cup and the Champions League with relatively modest by the standards of the giants “Porto”, moving to English Chelsea, immediately made that champion after a 50-year hiatus. Today, Jose Mourinho, perhaps the most highly paid coach of the world. Regarding the other part of the legend, you can see that the two main legends of world football – Pele and Maradona have not achieved anything in the role of coaches. Recently zavyazavshy with football, Zinedine Zidane generally preferred activities outside of sports. If you take the list of the owners of the Golden Ball (the prize is awarded to the best football player in Europe) for the last 30 years, none of these players has become a great coach. Someone may have everything ahead, but someone turned out to be a mediocre leader. Nevertheless, the specifics of the work of a football player and coach are quite different.


All players are poorly educated people.

There is even an anecdote that modern football stars write books more than they read. Of course, it should be noted that education is most often obtained by correspondence, in parallel with sports. Professional football leaves little time for intellectual development. And if in the USSR it was considered necessary for an athlete to get any education, at present it is more a hobby than a necessity. Many even knowingly refuse to study, devoting all their efforts to a career. However, getting a profession in parallel with football is a common thing. Players think about post-football career. Someone becomes an economist, someone a functionary, and someone and designer clothes, like the Russian star Andrei Arshavin. Of course, the “stars” can comfortably live on the capital earned by million contracts, they do not study anything, and the majority of players still try to get an education to continue earning money already out of football. Some even achieve scientific success. Thus, the legendary Socrates became a doctor of philosophical sciences.

Football rules are practically unchanged.

This statement is incorrect, since with the development of the game rules are constantly being changed. The original set of rules consisted of 13 articles, three of which were explicitly forbidden to touch the ball with their hands. Now the rules consist of 17 articles. So, although the size of the football field was generally approved in 1863, only 12 years later the final size of the gate was established. In 1880 it was decided that on the field from each team should be 11, and not 12 people. Initially, the judge sat on the rostrum and allowed only controversial points. Over time, the referee appeared in the field and got two assistants. Currently, FIFA is considering the issue of attracting two more judges to service matches, as well as the possibility of video viewing disputed points. Penalty was introduced only in 1891, and the mark for a strike only after 12 years. In 1894 a new, noticeably updated version of the rules was approved. Of the last significant changes, it should be noted the introduction of the 1968 replacement rules, and in 1970 – yellow and red cards. Thus, along with the evolution of the game, the rules gradually evolve, making the game more attractive.

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