5 Fascinating Facts About Soccer

Soccer is big business in the world today with many players especially in European leagues earning hefty sums. As seen during World Cup Finals, billions of people around the world watch the tournament and some fans even travel to the hosting country. The soccer we know today has however come along way and with it many intrigues.

Here are 5 Fascinating Facts About Soccer.

The Highest Scoring Soccer Game Was 149-0

You may wonder how a professional soccer team can concede that many goals but it was a form of protest. The event occurred in 2002 following the defeat of Stade Olympique de L’emyrne, or SOE by AS Adema also of Madagascar when the referee awarded a controversial penalty to AS Adema. During the next game, SOE players then decided to voice their anger at having been robbed of the title by scoring 149 goals in their own net. Spectators stormed the ticket booths demanding refunds while the opposing team stood about stunned by the unfolding events. The 149-0 scoreline broke the previous record of 36-0 set in 1885.

American Football And Soccer Derive From The Same Sport

During the 19th century different games were played in English public schools and almost all of them involved scoring by kicking a ball. Gradually, these rules were settled and Association Football and Rugby Football were formed. Rugby Football then came to America and eventually changed into the popular American Football we know today.

Barbados Once Had To Score A Goal On Themselves In Order To Win A Soccer Match

This was during the Caribbean Cup tournament in 1994 and there is valid reason why Barbados had to do that. Playing against Granada they had to win by 2 clear goals to make it through to the next round. Initially, they were leading by 2 goals but Granada scored a goal in the 71st minute meaning Barbados would have gone out of the tournament.

So they had to force a tie and go to extra time which under the golden goal rules, the first team to score wins. Since the golden goal was worth 2 goals, Barbados knew they could score in added time which they eventually did and advanced to the next round. A funny situation however arose where Granada players having realized the plot actually defended their opponent’s goal to prevent them from scoring. You can call this cheap tactic or ingenious play.

A Bolt Of Lightning Killed An Entire Soccer Team During A Game In October 1998

Sad as it may seem, it is fascinating in that only the 11-man soccer team from the Democratic Republic of Congo was struck while the opposing team was completely unharmed. The match played in the province of Kasai Eastern DRC was evenly balanced at 1-1 when the disaster occurred leaving many people wondering whether it was as a result of witchcraft. Thirty more people ended up with burns.

A Soccer Player Can Run 10 Km In One Game Which Is More Than 6 Miles

Following Gennaro Gattuso’s exploits while playing for AC Milan in 2007 against Manchester United where he ran an estimated 10 km, this was considered a remarkable feat. Though 10km is quite average and not unusual, this was equivalent to running across 350 basketball courts. The Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) had developed a system where a player’s runs and touches on the field could be tracked with multiple cameras and the exact stats relayed within a 3% margin of error. Actually, most players run without the ball sprinting for 800-1200 meters accelerating 40-60 times in a game and changing directions every 5 seconds. This means that in 4 games, a soccer player would have completed a single marathon

  • shaun wright

    I follow soccer quite closely and had never heard about the team from the Republic of Congo being struck by lightning. How oddly tragic is that? That must have really had players and fans upset and maybe even scared for a while.

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