Soccer, also known as football in Europe, is the world’s biggest sport in terms of sheer numbers. With over 3 billion fans and 240 million registered players, soccer has come to completely dominate the sporting world over the last few decades, and few other games are quite as old or have as much of an ancient history.
Due to its global popularity, soccer gives home to a number of international events that billions tune in to, and although the game has massive world cups and endless enthusiasts, it started out as something much different.
The very earliest records of soccer can be dated back over 2000 years to ancient China, Rome, Greece, and parts of Central America. It’s as simple as they come, a number of players on a field manipulate a ball to try and score points against their opposition, while that opposition does the same, all while defending their goals.
This simplicity is one of the biggest reasons for the game’s popularity, and the reason that so many are able to easily transition into playing it. Despite its ancient origins, many believe it was the United Kingdom that created the first renditions of modern soccer that we all know and love today.
It was the British that created the first rules and regulations for the game, including punishments for certain actions during the game.
Along with the international championships, soccer has given rise to a number of other industries, such as sports betting. Bets placed on soccer or football are now a huge part of the game, and millions take the time every year to have their go at winning money on the game.
Did The British Invent Modern Soccer?
There has been some debate on which country was truly the first to make soccer what it is today.
Most believe that Britain was the first country to really take the sport and elevate it to a professional level, but the Italians disagree completely, with many claiming that soccer was made modern in Italy.
As far as the British are concerned, soccer first came into being in 1824 in Edinburgh by a man named John Hope.
Despite being the first soccer club in the country, FIFA do not officially recognise it as the oldest due to the fact that it closed down almost two decades after its creation.
FIFA has long claimed that it was the first soccer club on the scene, and though many never doubted it too much thanks to Britain’s long history, this was all changed recently with the discovery of an uncovered book called the Vocabula.
This book contained records of regulated soccer that dates back to over 400 years before the British modernised the game, and has a full range of different rules and penalties that governed how it worked.
Despite all this, it cannot be denied that the British are the reason the game maintains its global dominance in today’s world.
Many modern games have long and deeply-rooted histories, but those are not quite the same games that we enjoy today, and like with most popular sports, the British have played the biggest part in their continued fame.