Five innovations that have helped to transform football
Today, football is seen as one of the most cutting-edge sports around, embracing technology whenever it needs to. Over the years, since it first became popular towards the end of the 19th Century, the sport has changed immeasurably, with some new rules and technology making it a little easier for players, coaches, officials and, most importantly of all, the fans.
Here are five examples of new rules and innovations which have had a significant impact on football over the years:
The offside rule
First introduced back in 1863, it has confused and angered football folk in equal measure. How it works is that a player cannot receive the ball when starting his run ahead of all the opposing team’s outfield players. Recent tweaks to the rule made in 2005 have made it easier to understand, as well as allowing for better play.
The back pass rule
Although not introduced until 1992, this rule has helped to change the way in which teams try to keep hold of the ball from defence. It works by prohibiting goalkeepers from catching a ball directly from a throw-in from one of their teammates and by stopping them from collecting a ball with their hands from a pass by a teammate.
Back in the 1980’s, the advent of synthetic surfaces was seen as detrimental to football. As time has passed, the quality of artificial grass has improved so much that many clubs have them inside their home grounds. As a spokesperson from Hitechturf.co.uk says:
“Technology in artificial grass has come a long way since the late 80’s and artificial grass pitches are now manufactured from polyethylene rather than nylon, this has meant that these new turfs have been approved by FIFA and UEFA.”
After endless debate over whether it was realistic to bring it into the game, clubs in the English Premier League introduced it at the beginning of this season. The reason why goal-line technology was brought in was to try and put to bed decisions over contentious decisions in relation to goals being allowed or disallowed.
After a series of high-profile incidents concerning crowd safety in the 1980’s, a report suggested that all Football League clubs convert their grounds into all-seater venues. Many of them obliged, making their stadiums safer places for fans to be, reducing the risk of accidents caused by overcrowding which had become common on old-style terraces.