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adidas EUROPASS: Field-Testing the official Euro 2008 Football


Images courtesy of adidas.

As is their custom, adidas designed a new football for Euro 2008.

“Like +Teamgeistâ„¢, the official match ball of the 2006 FIFA World Cupâ„¢, the adidas “EUROPASS” is constructed out of 14 panels using revolutionary Thermal Bonding Technology. This combined with the new PSC-Textureâ„¢ surface structure gives the “EUROPASS” its perfect handling characteristics and allows the players exceptional ball control. The unique outer skin improves power transmission, creates greater swerve and increases accuracy on the pitch, in all conceivable weather conditions. And for the goalkeeper too, providing a much better grip between glove and ball, substantially improves his catching of the ball.

The ground-breaking performance features of the adidas “EUROPASS” have been demonstrated in comprehensive comparison tests at Loughborough University in England and in countless checks in the adidas football laboratory in Scheinfeld.”

Source: adidas Press Room: adidas Europass- the match ball with “goose bumps.”

Video from the adidas Factory

Please note the craftmanship that goes into the production process.

Field Test

I made a visit to a sporting goods store that sold a replica of the EUROPASS. The salesman was kind enough to let me take it out of the box, and attempt to imitate Patrick Vieira. :-)

Patrick Vieira.

For me, the ball had a slick, slippery-like texture to the bare hand. It is seamless, and very light weight. When I put it on the carpeted floor, it had a sticky feel as I moved it around with my feet. When tossed a few times in the air, it seemed to have a very true bounce.

There were adidas gloves nearby (Fingertip E7S), and I tried them on. In my opinion (I am not a keeper), the ball was easier to grip with gloved hands.

Goalkeeper Complaints

As Eddie Griffin reported the other day, Jens Lehmann does not like the new ball:

“I have had a few problems with the official balls, I only started working with them a week ago, but they are very different from the ones used for the 2006 World Cup. During the first half, I went to catch the ball and it started to float a bit… I hope that in the days to come, when I have found a little bit of freshness, I shall be able to have time to train with shots coming in from a distance.”

adidas Europass: The official football of Euro 2008.

From the Azzurri training camp in Coverciano (near Florence), Gianluigi Buffon and Marco Amelia voiced their opinions:

“Maybe we just have to get used to it. But it won’t matter, I’ll get the ball anyway.” Buffon

“It changes direction. To not make a mess trying to stop it, it’s better to beat it away.” Amelia

Source: Another Day, Another Keeper Dislikes the Ball.

I would be curious to learn the opinions of Liviu Bird and John Stevanja. Along with other goalkeepers in our audience.

Steve Amoia is the author and editor of World Football Commentaries. He writes for Soccerlens and Keeper-Skool.

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Comments (5)

  1. Steve, you will get my response in the form of another article you have just inspired me to write.

  2. Liviu:

    Thank you.

    And if you run into Hope Solo in Seattle, ask her opinion. :-)

  3. Steve pretty hard to comment without actually trying the ball out myself…any retailer who frequents the site would be more than welcome to send it out to Keeper Skool so we can have a test run.


  4. Good article Steve. Every time they introduce a new ball, a few players seem to have problems. It’s just a matter of getting used to it I think.

    In any case, all these new balls lately are designed for one thing only: improving the scoring ratio (just look at the weird trajectory that players like Pirlo and Cristiano Ronaldo can give the ball on free kicks).

  5. I’ve got one of these balls, pretty much soon as they came out and they are very nice to kick, and have a very nice look – I think all this about Jens Lehmann and stuff complaining is just typical, they are all Nike/Puma/Reebok sponsored guys complaining.. boo-hoo for ‘keepers.

    But when will a ‘keeper benefitial ball’ be created though…