In June, 32 nations gather in Russia for soccer’s most prestigious international event. Now, you can get the ball that will be used throughout the tournament—the adidas 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia Telstar Official Match Ball. The design is based on the original Telstar ball introduced in 1968, updated with pixelated detailing for a modern aesthetic and an all-new panel shape for superior performance. Step up your game with a Russia 2018 soccer ball today.
Despite the similarities with the Brazuca, the few differences between this ball and what players have gotten used to over the last four years will have an impact on play, says Firoz Alam, an aerodynamics engineer at the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology in Australia, who has also performed wind tunnel tests on the Telstar 18. “When the player is making a short pass, they have to push a little harder, because at less then 60 kilometers per hour [or 37 miles per hour]it has more flight resistance than the Brazuca,” says Alam. The mid-range passes and corner kicks that gave the Jabulani so much trouble have been resolved. Compared to the Brazuca, the Telstar 18 is also more aerodynamically efficient in the 40-50 mile an hour range, so Alam says players will actually have to kick a little softer or they’re likely to overshoot. Over 55 miles an hour the two balls will feel very similar.
The secret to the authentic movements on a rebound with this ball is the inclusion of an SBR foam layer underneath the PU cover. This allows the power of a pass or shot to be transferred with more accuracy. It keeps the ball somewhat soft to the touch, but creates a realistic movement which allows players to develop an ability to start reading the game with accuracy without the need to purchase an expensive premium match soccer ball. It comes in all of the standard sizes and offers 4 unique design options, allowing players of any age or ability to begin working on their soccer skills.
Every four years there’s a new ball for the World Cup—and every four years players are unhappy with it. Maybe it’s too light and has too much lift, like the 2002 Fevernova. Or maybe it wobbles unexpectedly in the air, making it harder for goalies to predict its motion, like the 2006 Teamgist. Or maybe the ball suddenly changes speed, dropping out of the air and causing accidental handballs, like the 2010 Jabulani.
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For those taking their game to the next level, it’s important to train with a ball similar to what is used for your matches. Your passing, shooting and general foot skills will be different for lighter soccer balls made with a premium bladder like latex. Try out an NFHS approved ball which is used for some club, high school, and college teams. To be NFHS approved, the soccer ball needs to: