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7 Ways to Begin Enjoying Soccer

7 Ways to Begin Enjoying Soccer

7 Ways to Begin Enjoying Soccer

Soccer is almost universally known as the beautiful sport. And although many people struggle to get acclimated to the pace of the game, once you do, it is hard to ignore the sheer brilliance, teamwork, and unpredictability of the sport.

Coupled with some of the sports all-time greats, including Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo, and Neymar still being active and in their prime, now is as good a time as ever to start watching and enjoying the sport.

Below, we are going to list 7 ways to begin enjoying soccer. This is a great list for newer fans and casual onlookers, many of whom may be hesitant to get started on the game and who may not fully understand the sports cultural and societal impact.

Learn the Basics of the Sport

As with nearly any sport, understanding the basic rules will help to make you an even better fan and one who truly appreciates the artistic brilliance on the pitch. And soccer is no different, while the basic rules are simple, some of the more in-depth ones help to explain the mechanics, play calls, and sequences in a game.

We’ve listed a few basic rules of the game below to help you get started:

  • Scoring in soccer happens when the ball goes into the opponent’s net. According to the International Football Association Board (IFAB) Laws of the Game, the ball must be under the crossbar between the goalposts and the entire ball must cross the plane of the goal line. In addition, the goal will only count if the scoring team has committed no penalties during the sequence of the goal.
  • Soccer is, strictly speaking, a no hands sport. That means that save for the goalie and during a throw-in, no player is allowed to touch the ball with their hands at any point during the game. In soccer, hands refer to anything from your fingers to your shoulders.
  • When the soccer ball crosses the plane out-of-bounds, a player will throw-in the soccer ball to their teammate to resume play. The throw-in requires a player to have their feet planted on the ground and to utilize both hands to throw the ball straight overhead and back into play.
  • Corner kicks, so called as they are taken from the corner of either side of the soccer pitch, occurs when the ball is kicked out of bounds from behind the goal line. In such an occurrence, an offensive player will resume play by kicking the ball back into play from the corner.
  • Offsides is one of the most common infractions in a soccer game. Relatively simple to spot once understood, an offside violation occurs when a player is nearer to his opponents’ goal line than both the ball and the second last opponent, with the last opponent being the goalkeeper. However, the violation will only be assessed at the same time the ball is being passed forward to the player that is offside.

Pick a Team to Root For

Similarly, while understanding the basic rules of the game is important to enjoying the sport, to do so even more you really have to choose a team to root for. And whether you choose one of the MLS teams based in America or a Premier League team in England, you’ll be sure to begin enjoying the game once you have done so.

We love CBS Sports detailed guide on how to choose a Premier League team to root for.

Go to a Game at the Stadium

While there are many different soccer leagues across the world, you’ll likely want to choose one closer to home. And with MLS teams playing 34 games in a regular season, with games typically being held on the weekends or later on in the day during the workweek, you should have plenty of options and games to choose from.

In addition, we suggest going with family and friends to make the experience more enjoyable and to allow them to help you understand the intricacies of the game as they occur.

Purchase Some Team Gear and Merchandise

A true and real fan will have some of their favorite team’s merchandise or gear with them.  Doing so not only helps to support your team, but also signifies to others your fandom and support of the team.  And while most big-box retailers will sell local team merchandise, you can also purchase authentic MLS, Premier League, and other soccer league merchandise and gear online.

Become Familiar with Your Team’s Starting Lineup

The starting lineup consists of the initial 11 players to start a soccer game.  A true fan and one who enjoys watching the game is familiar with their team’s starting lineup.  And while you don’t need to know their exact numbers and percentages, you should at least be familiar with their names and basic details.

Doing so will create a stronger emotional bond and connection to the team and players and is a great way to further enjoy the game.

Watch Soccer Documentaries

Soccer, so called the beautiful sport, is one of the most widely discussed and documented sports in the world.  And if you want to enjoy the game even further, then take some time to watch some documentaries on the sport to better help you understand the history and significance of the game.  We highly recommend watching some of the below documentaries and highlights to help you get started.

Have Fun

Soccer is, after all, just a game.  And while being a fan can make the experience more enjoyable, you should always try to just have fun and enjoy rooting for your team.  Through the wins and losses, soccer is a great sport to watch and play.  And with many games in the regular season, becoming a fan and watching the games will help you to relax and enjoy the company of friends, family, and loved ones.