Soccer, often known as football in most parts of the world, is one of the most well-known sporting events worldwide. It’s so popular that even casual sports fans can enjoy a soccer game just the same.
Soccer also has one of the richest histories, traced back to the 1850s-1860s. European countries played the earliest games without having a specific set of rules. Today, soccer’s governing body is the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA), which is the head of other confederations around different countries worldwide.
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The Popularity of Soccer
There are a lot of reasons why soccer is popular. To start, it is a sport that’s easy to play. Anyone can play it, even if there isn’t any official equipment. Anything round and kickable can make do to start a soccer game at home. Its gameplay and rules are straightforward, too. All you need to know to enjoy and ultimately win a game is to kick the ball into your opponent’s goal.
It is an inexpensive sport. However, it only gets expensive as gameplay and difficulty increase, which improves a player’s performance.
Many fans worldwide participate in its various sporting events to support and cheer for their national teams. Some even participate in betting using reputable sites like FanDuel Sportsbook to amp up the excitement. It brings national unity among fans of the different countries as each team represents their flag in the biggest league.
Soccer is also a great betting opportunity. Sports betting is another way to enjoy the game. Moreover, soccer betting has the most prominent betting pool, with millions of accumulated wagers. It is easy to get into soccer betting if you’re already knowledgeable about the sport. Even beginners can start small by learning the basics.
Getting Into Soccer
Learning the soccer terms can help you understand more of what you are watching. For experienced soccer enthusiasts, a little bit of refresher is needed once in a while. These are some of the basic terms in soccer.
- Soccer compositions. A team consists of 11 players, each assigned a number for their position in the team. The positions can be categorized into three main parts: the defenders, the midfielders, and the forwards or the offense.
The offensive positions of the team are called the forwards or the strikers. They’re the main ‘attackers’ of the team, mainly taking action in the entire match. They are the closest to the opponent’s side to land the ball into the opponent’s goal. It consists of the center forward (9), strikers (9), and the second striker (10).
The midfielders, meanwhile, are in the middlemost in the positioning. They are responsible for maintaining the game’s flow, connecting the forwards and defenders of the team. It consists of a defensive midfielder (4 or 6), a central midfielder (8), an attacking midfielder (10), and the left/right midfielder (11 or 7).
The defenders are the closest to the goal, protecting the goalkeeper and blocking the opponent’s ball. It consists of the center back (4 or 5), right and left fullback (2 or 3), wingback (2 or 3), and the sweeper (5).
The goalkeeper, keepers, or goalies (1) are the final line of defense of the team. The goalkeepers must prevent the ball from getting into the goal by blocking it using their hands.
- Soccer Formations. The defensive and offensive soccer formations are used to employ an advantage over the opponent. These formations usually follow a pattern of back to front, from defenders to midfielders to forwards. Ten players are deployed in the field for these formations, not including the goalkeeper.
There are two formations commonly used: 3-5-2 and 4-4-2 formations. The 3-5-2 consists of three defenders, five midfielders, and two forwards, while the 4-4-2 consists of four defenders and midfielders with two forwards.
Meanwhile, the 4-3-3 formation is a defensive and an offensive-midfield formation based on the midfielder’s position. It is a standard formation usually adapted in US matches.
- Stoppage/ injury/ added time. A term to tell time elapsed between the start of the first half of the match and when the referee blows the whistle to indicate its end. Only the referee knows the actual time passed throughout the match.
- Switch the field. It’s a tactic where the team passes the ball across the field.
- Cap. Refers to the number of matches a country’s national team partook in, determining how experienced the team is.
- Golazo. A term that refers to a well-done goal or an unusual goal beautifully done.
- Booking. Booking is a punishment given by a referee to a player after receiving one straight or a red card and two yellow cards. This means the player is expelled from the match.
Soccer Betting and Odds
Soccer betting is as popular as the sporting event itself, and betting for it has lucrative payouts, which punters opt for. It doesn’t get overwhelming for newbie punters either since various betting games start with small wagers. Several sites also offer insights on soccer betting odds to help punters before placing a wager.
But before betting, a punter must know some of the common types of soccer wagers. Soccer wagers are straightforward and easy to follow. Its most well-known wagers are the Moneyline or win-draw-win wager and the total goals wager.
Moneyline wager is a primary wager where you put your stakes on the team that is most likely to win the match, while the total goals wager bets on the number of goals scored at the end of the match.
Moreover, different sportsbooks offer wagers that may vary from others. You can also increase your profit by wagering on betting sites that have bonuses and promotions. However, before you place your bet on any sportsbook, ensure that it is verified and secured.
Every soccer and sports enthusiast can attest to the excitement they get whenever a beloved team scores. Not only does the sport itself bring excitement, but the betting games it has also provided bettors an additional layer of thrill and entertainment. Without a doubt, soccer is one of the most enjoyable sports out there.