Association football, more commonly known as football or soccer, is a team sport played with a spherical ball between two teams of eleven players. It is played by 250 million players in over 200 countries and dependencies, making it the world's most popular sport. The game is played on a rectangular field called a pitch with a goal at each end. The object of the game is to score by moving the ball beyond the goal line into the opposing goal.
Association football is one of a family of football codes, which emerged from various ball games played worldwide since antiquity. The modern game traces its origins to 1863 when the Laws of the Game were originally codified in England by The Football Association.
Players are not allowed to touch the ball with hands or arms while it is in play, except for the goalkeepers within the penalty area. Other players mainly use their feet to strike or pass the ball, but may also use any other part of their body except the hands and the arms. The team that scores most goals by the end of the match wins. If the score is level at the end of the game, either a draw is declared or the game goes into extra time or a penalty shootout depending on the format of the competition. Association football is governed internationally by the International Federation of Association Football (FIFA; French: Fédération Internationale de Football Association), which organises World Cups for both men and women every four years.
Francesc "Cesc" Fàbregas i Soler
(born May 4, 1987 in Arenys de Mar
), commonly known as Cesc Fàbregas
, is a Spanish footballer
who plays as a central midfielder
Fàbregas started his career as a trainee with FC Barcelona but signed by Arsenal in July 2003 looking for regular first team football. He did not feature much in his first season for the Gunners, but following injuries to key midfielders in the 2004–05 season, his playing time increased. Before long, he had established himself as Arsenal's starting central midfielder and playmaker and went on to break several of the club's records as he began to earn a reputation of a technically-gifted player, excellent passer of the ball and key component of the Arsenal lineup.
In international football, the Spaniard's national career began at the youth level, representing the Under-17 side at the 2003 FIFA U-17 World Championship in Finland. As a result of his club performances, he was called up the senior Spanish national team and played in the 2006 World Cup.
The illuminated exterior of the Allianz Arena in Germany. Completed in 2005 at a cost of €340 million, it is now the home ground of Bayern Munich and TSV 1860 München. Nicknamed the "Schlauchboot" (inflatable boat), its exterior is constructed of 2,874 foil air panels which are inflated with dry air. These panels can be individually lit with either red, blue or white lights.
Did you know...
- ... that MLS Cup 2007 was the first Major League Soccer championship rematch to be played in consecutive years? (3 March 2019)
- ... that the San Jose Earthquakes won MLS Cup 2001 only one season after finishing at the bottom of the league table? (4 March 2019)
- ... that Dutch footballer Leon de Kogel's playing career ended following a car accident in which he had to be cut out of his vehicle by the fire service? (9 March 2019)
- ... that the inaugural MLS Cup was played in heavy rain in the aftermath of Hurricane Lili? (4 May 2019)
- ... that collegiate soccer coach Pete Fewing has also officiated at the weddings of two of his former players? (10 May 2019)