At Clubline we know football, and footballs to be more precise. Whether you’re looking for match balls, training balls or a bag of mulibuy footballs for your team, we’re sure to have the choice you need at discounted prices. Let’s talk about how these things differ so that you can make the right decision before you buy.
Which size football is best?
If you play in a league, you may find that it has certain regulations regarding ball size. You also need to check the size regulations when it comes to youth or school football, but we would follow Mitre’s own advice and use the following as a guide;
If you are unsure you may wish to contact your local league representative who will be able to provide the regulation size for your league.
Which is the best material?
While leather footballs are traditional, with the advancements in material manufacturing, you will find that synthetic footballs will serve you better in the wonderful British weather, (we all know most football is played on a rainy Sunday), as leather tends to become waterlogged. The majority of our balls have a synthetic construction which is hard wearing, and keeps its shape well in poor conditions. Cheap footballs will usually (and understandably) not last quite so long as their more costly counterparts but if you have a budget in mind we can advise you on which we know are the best balls for your price range.
Which brand of football should I go for?
Many of the top manufacturers like adidas, Nike and Mitre are official match balls of organisations like FIFA, UEFA, the Premier League or the English and Scottish football leagues, and as such they’ve been thoroughly tested and meet their various stringent requirements. However, there is no doubting that some of the so-called lesser sports equipment manufacturers also make outstanding footballs. As a result of this we are seeing more clubs at an amateur and lower pro levels using a wider range of these brands.
Is it best to go for a bladder or no bladder?
A bladder is comparable to an inner tube on a bicycle tire and is like a balloon inserted into the inside of footballs. This helps the ball retain its shape and hardness. Rubber and plastic balls are often made without bladders and can often develop a slight bulge where the valve is situated. Some of our balls are even provided with a size and shape guarantee to give you peace of mind.
How hard or soft should the ball be?
This can be down to personal preference but, as with size, can be determined by rules of any league that you play in. Children generally prefer a softer ball because a hard one can hurt their feet if they’re not wearing proper boots. A softer ball is easier to control and of course helps to introduce young players to the art of the header. If you buy a ball with a valve, then it’s up to you how hard the ball should be. Leather balls can become hard with age and wear.
How heavy should the ball be?
As with size and firmness, this can be down to your league regulations. A heavy ball can be tricky when used outside in soggy conditions and is usually more difficult for younger or newer players to get used to. It can easily get bogged down and refuse to roll properly.
Is it worthwhile buying an indoor football?
While we appreciate that training indoors doesn’t usually last forever, if the game has moved indoors temporarily, you can get away with an indoor ball that’s slightly cheaper and of lesser quality. The indoor game doesn’t have so much wear and tear. However, if you are going to be using the ball outdoors, in possibly rough surface conditions and in all weathers, it’s important to get a good quality ball.
How much should I spend on a football?
This comes down to the sort of ball you need. Very cheap footballs are likely to be rubber or plastic and not too durable, but may be fine for light or infrequent use. If you play in a senior league, then you will want to get the best possible quality football so that you get the best flight, bounce and control. For recreational use, a mid-price ball should be fine.
What about sewn panels vs no panels?
Go back to 1978 and the first of the sewn balls with hexagon or pentagon shapes appeared. Then fast forward to today and we have something like Mitre’s Hyperseam, which fuses the panels together. They no longer have regular shapes either. The manufacturers have come up with a range of new techniques of stitching shapes to, improve the flight of the ball.
Of course, you can still get moulded rubber and synthetic balls which are generally cheaper. They tend to be longer lasting for hard surfaces like cement or tarmac.