There have been a number of complaints about the ball being used for the World Cup, particularly that its trajectory is unpredictable, long passes being made more difficult.
The ball being used is the Jabulani (from the Zulu ‘to celebrate’) and was actually made available in February and was used at this year’s Africa Cup of Nations as well as by a number of domestic leagues, including Germany, Argentina and the United States.
The ball was tested at Loughborough University in England but it was not used in the Premier League. Why not? Because the Premier League has a contract with rival manufacturer Nike.
Adidas say that altitude is the main factor affecting the way the ball behaves in flight and have blamed players for not practising enough with it before the tournament.
It is the same ball for everyone and it is not as if it was a sudden ‘surprise’ on the day. England goalkeeper Robert Green has apparently refused to blame the ball for his handling error but says that it did move unexpectedly after Dempsey hit his shot.
Mmm. The shot was a worm-burner, hardly affected by altitude sickness. It was an unfortunate gaffe, get over it and move on rather than trying to find non-existent ‘reasons’.