A Timeless Game

 Through the ages people from every culture
have looked for new ways of entertainment from throwing sticks to kicking
rocks, people have cultivated some of today’s modern sports.  More than
240 million people around the world play soccer regularly according to the
Federation International de Football Association or FIFA. The game has evolved
from the sport with no rules to the extravagant game play it is today.

            Records trace the history of soccer back more than
2,000 years ago to ancient China, Greece, Rome, yet parts of Central America
also claim to have started the sport. it was England that gave the world modern
soccer, or what the British and many other people around the world call
“football.” The English are credited with creating uniforms for set teams and
also are given credit for the earliest stages of the strict rules in place
today. As the sport developed, more rules were implemented and
history was made. The penalty kick was introduced in 1891 and Yellow and Red
cards were introduced during the 1970s.  One of the more recent changes to
the rules of soccer was implemented in 1992 stating that goalies could no
longer pick up back passes and tackles from behind became red-card penalties in
1998.

Some of the top
players throughout history include Pele from Brazil, who scored six goals in
the 1958 World Cup and helped Brazil claim its first title. Lev Yoshin from
Russia, who claimed to have saved more than 150 penalty shots during his
career. Although there are many questions as to who should be considered the
number one soccer player, but athletes like Zine dine Zidane, Lionel Messi, and
Roberto Baggio make almost every list according to “The Big League”.

Another very
important development throughout the history of soccer has been the
stadiums that the teams are playing on. Some
of the top stadiums in the history of soccer include Nou Camp in Barcelona,
Spain, which remains the biggest soccer stadium in Europe; The elegant of Louis
II in Monte Carlo, Monaco, which is known as one of the crowd pleasing stadiums
in the world; and the International Stadium Yokohama in Yokohama, Japan, which
is considered the most high-tech venue because of its movable roof, huge replay
screens, and hundreds of lights.

For over a
century, England has been credited as cultivating modern soccer. A claim which
seemed to be true until as recently as 2011, when historians traced soccer’s
roots to a different place. An uncovered book, titled Vocabula gives support to
Italy’s claims. It described a game in which two teams played with a ball on a
field roughly the size of the present regulation pitches. Not only that, but
terms such as keeper, kick off, and switch halves were also mentioned. This
book was written in the fourteenth century, 400 years before the English
federation of soccer was formed.

            Although we can never know for sure where soccer
began, we do know that the sport has become one of the greatest sources of
entertainment for people in almost every country. In modern culture people from
every corner of the world gather together to watch the world cup, fans and
athletes prepare months in advance for the ever growing competition. It is
clear to see we have come a long way from throwing sticks and kicking rocks, and
even though we can’t agree on the origin of this classic sport I think it is
safe to say it has left a lasting impact on the world.