The new Adidas ball set to be used at this summer’s World Cup was given it’s first run out in this weekends international friendlies and it’s fair to say that not everyone was impressed.
Speaking after the 1-1 draw between Spain and Germany, the trio of David De Gea, Marc-André ter Stegen and Pepe Reina shared their thoughts on the new ball.
“It does strange things, its flight is unpredictable and there is a lot of room for improvement on it.
I bet you as much as you like that we’ll see at least 35 goals from long range, because it’s impossible to work out. Goalkeepers are going to have a lot of problems.”
This isn’t the first time that an international tournament ball has been criticised before a big tournament, in fact – it’s becoming a pretty standard part of the tournament preparation – the Jabulani in particular came under heavy fire before the 2010 World Cup.
It seems that whilst goalkeepers like a ball that flies true and is easy to predict the movement of, Adidas love the idea of quite the opposite as it provides a much more exciting game with long range screamers.
Whilst Reina is keen for Adidas to re-think the ball, Ter Stegen seems resolved to the fact that there will be no changes before the tournament when asked:
“The ball could be better; it moves a lot.
But I think we’re just going to have to get used to working with it, and try to get to grips with it as quickly as possible before the World Cup starts.
We’ve got no other option.”
If nothing else, it will make for some exciting games – but might be worth bearing in mind the first time we see a keeper completely misjudge the flight of the ball in the World Cup.