Table football, also known as table soccer, and known as foosball /ˈfuːzbɔːl/, is a table-top sport loosely based on Association football. The sport was developed in the UK, and later gained popularity in many other countries around the world.
A typical foosball table has eight rows of rotatable bars, and each bar is mounted with one or more solid figures called foosmen. Four rows, with a total of 11 foosmen, are part of a single team. There is a goal post at either end of the table. The objective is to move the ball along by rotating the bars and score a goal.
The sport can be played in singles or doubles format, though most major competitions are conducted for single players. In singles matches, a single player controls all the four rows. In doubles, the first two offense rows are controlled by one player and the defense rows are controlled by the other. Matches are played for a fixed number of goals, and a player (or team) to score that many goals first wins. The number of goals to win varies among competitions.
The sport is played on different types of tables. There are five different types of table that are approved for major competitions, which are, Leonhart, Bonzini, Garlando, Roberto Sport and Fireball.
The Single’s World Championship is the highest level of competition conducted annually for the sport. There are also annual Single’s World Championship competitions conducted on each type of table.
In 2017, the International Table Soccer Federation was given ‘observer status’ by the Global Association of International Sports Federations, paving the way for it to be considered officially a sport.
Table football is often played for fun in pubs, bars, workplaces, schools, and clubs with few rules. Table football is also played in official competitions organized by a number of national organizations, with highly evolved rules and regulations.
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