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Association football, more commonly known as simply football or soccer, is a team sport that is played between two teams of 11 players using a spherical ball. It is played by approximately 250 million players in over 200 countries and dependencies, making it the world's most popular sport to date. The game is played on a rectangular field called a pitch with a goal at each end. The objective of the game is to score more goals than the opposition by moving the ball beyond the goal line into the opposing goal within a time frame of 90 minutes or more.

Football is played in accordance with a set of rules known as the Laws of the Game. The ball is 68–70 cm (27–28 in) in circumference and known as the football. The two teams compete to get the ball into the other team's goal (between the posts and under the bar), thereby scoring a goal. 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. Players may use any other part of their body to strike or pass the ball and mainly use their feet. The team that has scored more goals at the end of the game is the winner; if both teams have scored an equal number of goals, either a draw is declared or the game goes into extra time or a penalty shootout, depending on the format of the competition. Each team is led by a captain who has only one official responsibility as mandated by the Laws of the Game: to represent their team in the coin toss before kick-off or penalty kicks.

Football is governed internationally by the International Federation of Association Football (FIFA; French: Fédération Internationale de Football Association), which organises World Cups for men and women every four years. The men's FIFA World Cup has taken place every four years since 1930, with the exception of 1942 and 1946 tournaments, which were cancelled due to World War II. Approximately 190–200 national teams compete in qualifying tournaments within the scope of continental confederations for a place in the finals. The finals tournament is held every four years and involves 32 national teams competing over four weeks. It is the most prestigious men's football tournament in the world, and the most widely viewed and followed sporting event in the world, exceeding the Olympic Games. Similarly, the FIFA Women's World Cup has been played every four years since 1991, though football has been played by women since it has existed. A record-breaking 1.12 billion viewers watched the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup in France. (Full article...)

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Formative shot of York City in 1922.
Formative shot of York City in 1922.
York City Football Club is an English football club based in York. The club participates in the Conference National, the fifth tier of English football. Founded in 1922, they joined the Football League in 1929, and have spent most of their history in the lower divisions.

The club briefly rose as high as the second tier of English football, spending two seasons in the Second Division in the 1970s. At the end of the 2003–04 season the club lost their League status when they were relegated from the Third Division, and have since remained in the Conference.

York have enjoyed more success in cup competitions than in the league, with highlights including an FA Cup semi-final appearance in 1955. In the 1995–96 League Cup, York beat Manchester United 3–0 at Old Trafford.

Traditionally, York City's two main rivalries have been with Scarborough and Hull City with the rivalry between Hull and York being represented as a battle between a lion (York City's mascot) and a tiger (Hull City's mascot). (Full article...)

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Bobby Robson
Bobby Robson
Sir Robert William Robson CBE commonly known as Bobby Robson (18 February 1933 – 31 July 2009), was a former English football manager and former international football player. As an inside forward, his professional playing career spanned nearly 20 years during which he played for just three clubs, Fulham, West Bromwich Albion and the Vancouver Royals. He also made 20 appearances for England, scoring four goals.

He achieved success as both a club and international manager, having won league championships in the Netherlands and Portugal, earning trophies in England and Spain, and taking England to the semi-final of the 1990 World Cup. He was voted European Manager of the Year for the 1996–97 season whilst manager of Barcelona, with Ronaldo saying "without doubt he is one of the greatest in the world".

Robson was knighted in 2002, was inducted into the English Football Hall of Fame in 2003 and was the honorary president of Ipswich Town. In December 2007, he was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award at the BBC's Sports Personality of the Year show in recognition of "his contribution as both player and manager in a career spanning more than half a century".

He was first diagnosed with cancer in 1991 and spent much of his time in the latter years of his life campaigning and fund-raising for research into the disease, one of his most notable achievements in this field being the launch of the Sir Bobby Robson Foundation in 2008.

His cancer was diagnosed as terminal in 2008 and he died of the disease on 31 July 2009. (Full article...)

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Deutscher Fußball-Bund logo.svg

The German Football Association (German: Deutscher Fußball-Bund [ˈdɔʏtʃɐ ˈfuːsbalˌbʊnt]; DFB [ˌdeːʔɛfˈbeː]) is the governing body of football in Germany. A founding member of both FIFA and UEFA, the DFB has jurisdiction for the German football league system and is in charge of the men's and women's national teams. The DFB headquarters are in Frankfurt am Main. Sole members of the DFB are the German Football League (German: Deutsche Fußball Liga; DFL), organising the professional Bundesliga and the 2. Bundesliga, along with five regional and 21 state associations, organising the semi-professional and amateur levels. The 21 state associations of the DFB have a combined number of more than 25,000 clubs with more than 6.8 million members, making the DFB the single largest sports federation in the world. (Full article...)

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A game of Street football in Kolkata, India
Credit: Flickr user Dipanker Dutta
A game of Street football in Kolkata, West Bengal, India. The term street football encompasses a wide variety of informal games that are loosely based on association football but do not necessarily enforce all, or indeed any, of the Laws of the Game. Often the most basic of set-ups will involve just a ball with a wall or fence used as a goal, or items such as clothing being used for goalposts. The ease of playing these informal games means that they are popular all over the world.

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When the seagulls follow the trawler, it is because they think sardines will be thrown into the sea.
Eric Cantona, following the "Kung-Fu Kick Incident" of January 1995

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The 2011 FIFA Women's World Cup was the sixth FIFA Women's World Cup competition, the world championship for women's national association football teams. It was held from 26 June to 17 July 2011 in Germany, which won the right to host the event in October 2007. Japan won the final against the United States on a penalty shoot-out following a 2–2 draw after extra time and became the first Asian team to win a senior FIFA World Cup.

The matches were played in nine stadiums in nine host cities around the country, with the final played at the Commerzbank Arena in Frankfurt. Sixteen teams were selected for participation via a worldwide qualification tournament that began in 2009. In the first round of the tournament finals, the teams competed in round-robin groups of four teams for points, with the top two teams in each group proceeding. These eight teams advanced to the knockout stage, where two rounds of play decided which teams would participate in the final. (Full article...)

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