On March 30, 2022, Adidas.com began selling the FIFA World Cup ball for the year 2022. From April 13, 2022, as per the reports, it started being offered everywhere, even independent retailers. Since the first competition in Uruguay in 1930, the balls used in football’s greatest games have seen significant evolution. In many aspects, the World Cup’s history narrates the development of professional football in general.
The latest Al Rihla 2022 World Cup football was recently formally unveiled by Adidas, who also confirmed that it would only be accessible through Adidas stores until April 12, 2022. Therefore, April 13 will see the entire release, which includes independent merchants.
The Balls and the Evolution
The evolution of the World Cup ball, from a leather-furnished pig’s bladder to the high-tech, synthetic ball we see sold in stores and promoted worldwide today, demonstrates this.
⚽ Tiento & T-Model were the first balls to be introduced (1930)
For the inaugural World Cup, which was played in Uruguay in 1930, there was no officially recognized ball. Argentina and Uruguay fought about who would provide the ball before the final, so they decided to switch it at halftime. It might have had a big impact on how the game turned out.
Before the Uruguayans’ bigger, heavier ball was utilized, Argentina held a 2-1 lead at the half. The hosts then scored three consecutive goals to claim the title of world champions.
The ball used by Argentina was known as the “Tiento” (seen above without laces), whereas Uruguay used a “T-Model” (pictured with laces). However, since they were stitched and pumped by hand at the time, even identical balls had individual characteristics. In the rain, they would also become heavier.
⚽ The ball used in the previous FIFA: Telstar 18 (2018)
The Telstar 18 from Adidas, the official tournament ball of the 2018 World Cup in Russia, was released in November 2017.
It was the first competition ball to primarily be black and white since 1994, and it was a reproduction of the first Adidas ball played at a World Cup—the vintage 1970 Telstar.
Only one color on the Telstar 18 was the gold World Cup, Telstar, and Adidas emblems that were printed on the ball’s white surface and gave the black areas a gradient, mosaic appearance.
The Telstar 18 had merely six panels, like the Brazuca, but they were placed in an altogether different shape, giving the impression that it was more like the 32-panel 1970 ball. The “Telstar Mechta,” a significantly modified variation, was presented for the competition’s knockout round.
The color scheme for the Mechta, which in Russian means “dream” or “ambition,” featured red and black on a white base.
Prior to the event, the ball underwent a thorough testing process and was used in a number of young tournaments (with a different design), including that of the Under-20 World Cup.
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The first official match ball ever produced with liquid glues and inks, the ball was built with sustainability as a top priority.
Al Rihla, the name of the ball, is Arabic for “the journey” or “the expedition.”
“Al Rihla” is the name of the 2022 World Cup ball from Adidas (Adidas 2022 World Cup Al Rihla Official Match Ball). The Arabic term for a voyage or the travel journal that describes it is rihla.
- Traditional dhow boats have served as inspiration in the making.
The panel shape on Adidas’ 2022 World Cup ball is brand-new. Traditional dhow boats, notably the distinctive triangular sails they use, are the source of inspiration for the design of the panels. Twenty panels together make up the ball. The Doha, Qatar skyline is NOT the inspiration for the color palette. “Colours of the Qatari flag and traditional white Arab clothing” are used.
- Another important feature is that of the speed shell.
Speed shell is one of the ball’s key improvements. The goal of the speed shell is to accelerate the ball’s spin and flight speed to produce superb aerodynamics and a flawless shot. Adidas has made an effort to ensure that the ball meets the demands of a growing, fast-paced game with a CRT Core and patterned “Speedshell” skin.
The Speciality of Al Rihla
The World Cup’s history has also been shaped in part by the ball ” Al Rihla was created following extensive research in Adidas labs, wind labs, and on-pitch.
In part because of its novel panel form and surface texturing, Al Rihla offers the greatest level of precision and dependability on the playing field.”
“The ball’s polyurethane (PU) skin showcasing micro and macro layers and a new 20-piece screen shape improve aerodynamics to boost the flight stability and swerve of shots,” the company said in a statement.
“A creative core inside the ball is tuned to improve precision and consistency, facilitating fast, accurate play with the highest shape and air retention.”
Contribution to Goodness
According to a press release, Al Rihla represents the first World Cup ball in the 92-year tradition of the competition to directly raise money to improve lives around the globe. One percent of Al Rihla’s net sales will go to the Common Goal campaign.
The ball received criticism despite this, with David de Gea and Pepe Reina of Spain’s national team calling it “weird” and saying it was harder to handle than other balls. Goalkeepers will just have to get accustomed to it, Marc-Andre ter Stegen of Germany, who had similar worries, said.