Soccer is a ball sport played between two teams. Its roots go back to antiquity (called “sphaira” by the Greeks and “ollis” by the Romans); in Renaissance Italy, a more elaborate version, “calcio” was played. Soccer as we know it today was invented in England in the mid 19th century (1848). The first club, Sheffield Football Club, was formed in 1863, and the first competition, the Football Association (FA) Challenge Cup, was organized in 1872. The Fédération internationale de football association (FIFA) was founded in 1904. A demonstration sport in the Olympics of 1900 and 1904, soccer became an official Olympic event in 1908. Soccer is universal because its equipment and rules are simple and because of global coverage of the World Cup. No other international event is followed so closely, due mainly to television broadcasting of matches since 1958 (1.7 billion viewers watched the France-Brazil final in 1998). Today, 203 countries are FIFA members.
The objective of soccer is for one team to send the ball into the opposing team´s goal by propelling it with the feet or any other part of the body but the arms or hands. Two teams with a maximum of 11 players (1 goalkeeper and 10 field players) play two 45 min periods with a halftime of not more than 15 min.
Assistant referees or linesman: They signal out-of-play balls, goalkeeper runouts, corners, offsiders, and fouls that the referee did not see. They also supervise player substitutions .
Corner flag: A pole with a flag is placed at each corner of the field as a visual reference point. It marks the corner point.
Corner arc: This indicates the zone within which the ball must be placed for a corner kick. The opposing players must stay at least 9.15 m away from the corner point until the ball is in play
Technical areas (benches) There is one for each team. They are for the technical personnel (coach and assistant coaches, trainers, physiotherapists, etc.) and 5 substitute players. Each team may make a maximum of 3 substitutions during the game.
Center circle Durante a kickoff, each team must stay in its own half of the field. The team that is kicking can have any number of players inside the circle, while opposing players may not come closer than 9.15 m (the radius of the circle) to the ball until it is in play.
Goal: A goal is scored when the ball completely crosses the goal line
Center spot Spot where the ball is positioned for a kickoff. Kickoffs occur at the beginning of each period (to start play) and after a goal is scored.
Penalty spot Located 11 m from the goal line, it marks the position where the ball must be placed for a penalty kick.
Penalty area Zone within which the goalkeeper may touch the ball with his hands; fouls on an attacking player in the penalty area draw a penalty kick.
Penalty arc When a penalty kick is taken, all players except the kicker must remain outside of the arc and the penalty area.
Basic Formations A number of tactical formations are used in soccer, from the WM (3-2-2-3) popular in the 1950s to today´s 4-4-2 (4 defenders, 4 midfielders and 2 strikers). Other variations are used as needed (3-5-2, 4-5-1, etc) by professional teams to respond to the tactics of the opposing team. Today, the key to success resides in controlling the game in midlfield.
Refereeing and disciplinary Sanctions (El arbitraje y las sanciones) Warning (yellow card) Players receive a warming if they regularly break the rules, do not respect the referee´s decisions, delay the start of play, are afgumentative, or show unsportmanlike conduct. Expulsion or SEND OFF (red card) Players are expelled if they commit a serious foul, are violent, use abusive, offensive, or insulting language, or receive a second yellow card during the game.
Free kick (golpe franco) Wall: This line of players protects the goal area during a free kick
Penalty kick A penalty kick is awarded when a foul is committed by a defender in the penalty area. The ball is placed on the penalty spot and the attacking player tries to kick it directly into the goal .
Offside (fuera de juego) Players are offside when they are closer to the opposing goal line than the ball, unless two defenders are between the attacker and the goal.