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What is the Difference Between Football and Soccer?

The next World Cup will be held in Russia and is due to start on June 14, 2018. So, do you refer to this sport in your country as football or as soccer?

In fact, the world body “FIFA” has the word “football” in its title. But the sport’s governing body seems to be open to both options.

Football Soccer Stadium

History of the words football and soccer 

“In the mid 1800s in England, two styles of football were emerging and becoming codified. One, based on passing the ball with the hands, originated in the posh public school, Rugby, and took that name for its own. The other, based on dribbling the ball with the feet, came to be called “association” football after its parent body the Football Association.

Once the forms of football had their identities and official names, the English penchant for slang and abbreviation came into play. Rugby was often known colloquially as “rugger” and association football was shortened to “assoc”.” –Yell How To

“Soccer was initially referred to as football in the United States. In 1913 the United States of America Football Association was formed. In later years, it became the United States Soccer Football Association and today is known as the United States Soccer Federation.” –CNN


Non-English speaking countries translations of the word football

French: football

Spanish: fútbol

Portuguese: futebol

Romanian: fotbal

Galician: fútbol

Turkish: futbol

Albanian: futboll

Catalan: futbol

Hungarian futball

Russian: футбол (futbol)

Bulgarian futbol (футбол)

Ukrainian, Belarussian: футбол (futbol)

Serbian: fudbal (фудбал)

Czech: fotbal

Slovak: futbal

In Persian, the word football (فوتبال) is used.

In Thai, the word football (ฟุตบอล: fút-bon) is used.

In Lithuanian, the word “futbolas” is used.

In Japanese, because of American influence following World War II, use of the term Soccer is more common than that of the term football.


Interesting!? Enjoy the World Cup 2018! For more about the World Cup, visit the FIFA website.

Have a lovely weekend!

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