American Football vs the World Football


I have been living in the US since 1985 and never understood why American football is called “football” given the ball is not even really a round ball and the players barely touch the ball with their foot. The American football should have been called “handegg” or “Fatball”:-)

The answer is well put by the British comedian, John Cleese. It sounds like American football is not all about sport. The advertisers and sponsors want to orchestrate it like that for profit.

The world football (known as soccer here in America) is the most democratic sport on earth. You just need a ball and a flat surface and you are ready to play. You don’t have to be tall, big, strong (like the players in the American football) to play it. Don’t need any expensive equipment so, rich or poor, anyone can play . A tie game can be as exciting as a win.

I guess in our ultra competitive and money driven country all this is very hard to understand.

Watch the clip and judge it for yourself.

Here is an Awesome comparison of the two:

Not to mention the world football players are by far better looking and in much better shape than the American football players :-)

World Football players

American Football players

That said, if you have a favorite team, feel free to create a page for them on awesomize.me and get your friends to awesomize them :)

Feel free to connect with me via awesomize.me

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About Elias Shams
I have been a serial entrepreneur in telecom and social media space for past 12 years or so. I hold a M.S. degree in Telecommunication Engineering from the George Washington University and a B.S. degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Maryland. I’ve lived and worked in many countries and cities including London England, Tehran Iran, Bonn Germany, Paris France, Alicante Spain, Delhi India, and my favorite of all Washington, DC of great US of A. Two of the greatest Washington, DC based companies I worked for and very proud of are Yurie Systems which was sold to Lucent in 1998 for $1.23 B and telezoo.com that I founded in 1999. I am currently the founder and awesomizer @ awesomize.me

28 Responses to American Football vs the World Football

  1. Michael H says:

    Well put and right on

  2. Jennifer says:

    Duh! of course the advertisers run the American football. Anyone think American football is really run by the players, they are either on dope or know nothing about American football

  3. Great job. Though I do like American football more than “soccer”. American football is called so because the game begins with a kickoff. And Handegg just sounds strange. :P

  4. Kamran Abdi says:

    Elias, Did you make the 2nd video yourself? Are the comments within the video yours? Regardless, indeed, the clip is a great comparison.

    • Elias Shams says:

      No, I spent about 15 minutes on youtube to find it. There are ton of videos online comparing the two. This one was the best one.

      I am still waiting for a counter attack from anyone who understands and loves American football and proves me wrong. ANYONE? hello!!!

  5. I don’t think the case is quite as clear cut. American football requires intricate teamwork performed by specialists. The risk of injury is high due to the high level of violence, and styles and strategies change year-over-year, because the other teams adjust these schemes. If you want to live a long time after you finish playing, however, go play almost any other sport.

    World futball is more of a generalist sport. The strategies are simpler. The governing body, FIFA, is massively inflexible. I have been intensely interested in the World Cup, but some things about futball are just flat out stupid:

    Why doesn’t FIFA have goal sensors that would clearly pick up calls like this? The NHL, which has far fewer resources, has this for every game?
    Why doesn’t FIFA have competent end-line officials, like major league baseball has foul line officials in the postseason. Their job is to make sure fair/foul and home run calls are correct.
    Why aren’t FIFA officials required to confer with each other on controversial calls to make sure that they are right?
    Why isn’t there a replay system that could be used for goal/no-goal calls related to offsides and other transgressions that disallow goals?
    Why does FIFA believe that effective use of technology doesn’t apply to them?
    Why doesn’t FIFA penalize for faked injuries and other delaying tactics at the end of tight games? The NFL has rules against this at the end of halves.
    Why can’t you take players out in the middle to get them some rest and put them back in again like every other team sport on the planet?
    Do you think the offside rule is stupid – particularly in areas close to the goal where defenders can slow down or stop to make up for a bad play on their part?

    These factors can all ruin a really well-played match.

    • Mimiam214 says:

      Peter, I agree. FIFA got to make the decisions based on the replay and not jut the referee who might be biased against one of the teams. We should have won 3-2 in one of the games in this World Cup. The replay clearly showed our goal was legit, but the referee for whatever reason did not count it.

    • Elias Shams says:

      Peter, Shortly after your complain, FIFA took action :-)

      FIFA Apologizing for Bad Ref Calls, Reconsidering Using Video Technology

      http://awesomedc.com/2010/06/30/fifa-apologizing-for-bad-ref-calls-reconsidering-using-video-technology/

    • ScottSTL says:

      That is what is ruining American sports. People don’t watch a game just to see it. They watch for the controversy. Underneath it all they live for the bad calls and that is what gets the blood pumping. We have made American sports so vanilla that the number of people who like to watch it on TV has dwindled. At least Hockey still has some testosterone in it.

  6. KrimTim says:

    Though I personally enjoy American Football better, I do find soccer fun and challenging. I think some people, particularly in the United Stated, dislike the culture with which soccer is associated. It is kind of gay and “Europy”.(lots of crotch action, strange haircuts and mentally unstable fans) It also appeals to poorer countries because it is inexpensive.—Americans tend to want to distance their national identity with such characteristics.

  7. Mimiam214 says:

    baseball isnt all about big armed players. look at any centerfielder, they are usually the fastest players on the team without those big arms. and power in anything comes from your hips, not your arms. baseball swings start off with your hips because that is the biggest muscle in your body. basketball, soccer, football, and hockey are the most athletic sports in their own ways. baseball isnt as much but it still takes a tremendous amount of skill

  8. Raana M says:

    LOL! I had just seen this clip a few days ago!

  9. irina says:

    Elias, bashing american football only on the base of being from another culture and have little clue about the game is a little childish. There are americans who grew up watching and playing this kind of sport just like you grew up experiencing another one. I don’t think they even should be compared, as they are so different.
    The British invented Football, full name Association football, the term football is the formal name while soccer is its nickname that was created by the English in order to distinguish it from rugby football. Soccer became a shortened reference to the word asSOCiation football. Therefore, Football’s nickname soccer is often used to refer to football in countries where another form of football exist

    • Elias Shams says:

      Excluding the last two photos comparing the players as a joke, I don’t think anyone is bashing anything here. The argument is why the American football is called Football given they use no round ball and barely anyone touches the ball with their foot and the Fifa football called Soccer.

    • Ramin Arvand says:

      HAHAHA…. Na Ghom khodeh and Kashooon , lanaat bar hardotaashoon…. Bazi faghat “Yeh Ghol, Do Ghole)

  10. smith says:

    there are a few reasons why american football is called football. 1 theball is a foot long , but the rest of the world uses the metric system. 2 when soccer was first played there were no set rules for using your hands when rules were made two sports were made soccer (futball) and rugby. american football is based off of rugby but they used the name of the sport rugby was based on.

    i hope what i typed made sense

  11. episkyros says:

    Until at least 1862, it was all ‘football’, played between rival English public schools (for those who don’t know, they are in fact aristocratic boarding schools) like Charterhouse, Eton, Harrow, Rugby and others. The games were played both with the feet and the hands, arbitrarily, it seems. Then a few school graduates with a view to organizing and putting an end to disputes established the Football Association, which preferred playing with the feet. Both association football and the hand-carrying variety (Rugby School football) were carried around the world by the currents of British commercial empire. Hence ‘Corinthians’ (in honor of an eponymous English team) in São Paulo, Brazil and ‘Athletic’ in Bilbao, Spain;

    Interesting tangent: though collectively the British were excellent proselytizers (going as far inland as St. Louis, Missouri, USA, whence came the nucleus of that 1950 US National Team that eliminated England at the World Cup), Scottish players brought modernity and professionalism to the game by developing the passing game to counter the physical style of English teams, which played to an ideology of imperial machismo. Too bad Scotland has forgotten/forsaken its heritage. The current iterations of that effective passing, dribbling style are FC Barcelona at club level and Brazil at national-team level.

    Anyway, rugby, along with crew, was taken up by American Ivy League students (Harvard, Princeton, Yale, Cornell, Brown, Columbia, Dartmouth and Pennsylvania) and students from nearby universities. Soon, there was an American variant to rugby football, although not until after the 1870s. In fact, it is difficult to decide nowadays if the first football game in the US, between Princeton University and Rutgers, was played under definite rugby rules or the proto-rugby, foot-and-hands freestyle game. At any rate, the American variant is today’s American football, with a version of the rugby-shaped oval ball and the emphasis on ball-hand contact.

    Today, I propose that it would be much more helpful, while less polemically entertaining, to call these different sports Rugby football, Soccer football, American football and Australian-rules football. Just being pragmatic about it.

  12. Emme says:

    I have just found your post through Google and I’ve wondered the same thing–about the usage of football when is not even touched by the players’ feet. I like your name options, I pyrposedly call it handball since it’s more in their hands then on the ground.

    And to the commentor who said FIFA should use cameras–and although I doubt he’d read this comment–the bad ref calls are what make the blood pump. Yeah, sometimes a call socks and it stings like chili in the eye, but it’s what makes football football. If FIFA were to stry using replays like sissy NFL, I’d boycott football because then it’d be just as sissy as the NFL. I rather the chili in the eye any day.

  13. Trots says:

    HAHAHAHAHA, why am I not suprised the world “football” players pictured above are shown in their underwear and in the shower together. Fitting I’d say. Oh yeah, soccer sucks!

  14. Jacory says:

    You are just mad because American football (real football) is more popular than soccer. I have played football seince I was five. The kickers (they are also soccer players) on my high school football team agree that football is much harder than soccer and and requires you to be in better shape and stronger. Football is much more challenging and dangerous. So by making this article you don’t make people like soccer. You just make yourself sound angry and ignorant. You went to find the worst picture of football players you could find and post it. Try posting a picture of some NFL players which would be the equivalent to your FIFA soccer players. Your article just shows jealousy and ignorance.

    • How stupid are you. Football(soccer) is the most popular sport in the wold, you know the thing that America is part of. American football is a game for idiots who run into each other and pile on top of each other for a ball that isn’t even a ball or handled with the foot. And seeing as the vast majority of Americans are idiots anyway it fits them perfectly

  15. Nate says:

    Wow Elias do some research before you make ignorant comments about a sport. You have no clue how complex and strategic american football is. Go and look at a playbook and try to learn the terminology. It would sound like spanish to you. That’s how complex it is. Stop being childish and go back to your wussy soccer. Leave the manly physical sports to us Americans.

  16. just me says:

    what i find so dumb is that american football fans and supporters always say how strong and man;y players have to be… go on youtube and find rugby games. NO pads, NO helmets, NO stopping every 5 seconds to come up with a new play, NO fat players, NO idiots, NO f@gs.

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