who invented the soccer ball? (football history and evolution)

Know, Who Invented The Soccer Ball first? Charles Goodyear history’, football evolution (ancient to modern) & information of pig bladder ball.

Do you have soccer balls’ history test which include who invented the soccer ball? Or you want to flex your soccer knowledge about who created the soccer ball in front of your family? Or your girlfriend’s father is a soccer enthusiast and you want to flaunt your soccer knowledge so that you can win her daughter.

We bring you the most relevant and validated soccer knowledge so keep reading!

The history of soccer was long before we can imagine. It has been one of the favorite sports of many of us all around the world.

A lot of you might be wondering who invented football ball? There are a lot of speculations about it. Who was it who invented soccer balls? How did it all happen?

Who Invented The Soccer Ball? When Was the First Soccer Ball Made?

Who made the first soccer ball? This is the sheer point where you will get everything you want.

Charles Goodyear was considered the pioneer of the soccer ball in the modern age as he invented it in 1855.

Below you can find the illustration of Charles Goodyear which was published in 1891, in the Scientific American article. He doesn’t look like a typical soccer enthusiast.

Charles Good year was a self-taught chemist who was also a manufacturing engineer and was the inventor of the vulcanization of rubber.

The modern evidence suggests that the Mesoamericans made the stabilized rubber in 1600 BC. They have been used to make objects like balls and many other things.

Charles Goodyear Soccer Ball: What Was The First Soccer Ball Made Of?

Charles Goodyear found out about the natural rubber, which is also known as the gum elastic, between the two years, 1831 and 1832.

He gathered all the information about it by reading the newspaper article that mentioned natural rubber.

But in the meantime, Roxbury company major goods got the attention of the Good year’s attention.

When he made several visits to the Roxbury’s plant, he found out that the major products could be improved drastically. This includes the inflation tubes to preserve life.

He went back home and made tubes on his own. He showed it to Roxbury’s manager.

The company was facing a financial crisis at that time.

Many of the rubber products were sent back and the Roxbury was going to be closed. The rubber that was being used started to rot, which gave it a very little shell life to be used in major rubber products.

Goodyear’s life goal:

The major goal of the good year was to develop very stable and durable rubber, which can be used for the production of major rubber products.

This was the major moment in which Charles good year dedicated his efforts to develop a stable and durable rubber.

He tried many ways and combinations, along with many mixtures and processes, to make the rubber lose its stickiness and to make it more durable.

He also made rubber shoes and many other rubber goods. But he could not find any way to make a more stable form of rubber.

When Was The Soccer Ball Invented? What Did The First Football Look Like?

The year Goodyear developed vulcanized rubber:

After many years of experimentation with the Indian rubber (natural rubber) and many major fails, Charles Goodyear developed vulcanized rubber.

It all happened in a small factory, which was owned in Springfield, Massachusetts. It was run by his brothers Nelson and Henry

Charles Good year was the major force to perfect the vulcanization of the rubber. He filed a patent on it so that it can’t be stolen by its competitors. The patent was filed on June 15, 1844. (United States Patent Office patent 3633).

In the year 1855, Charles Goodyear was the first year who invented a round soccer ball in History.

Now we will tell you about the amazing factors of the soccer ball. We will tell you about how Charles Goodyear’s invention made it big.

Soccer Balls History Timeline (Evolution of the Soccer Ball)

As many people would describe the history of the Soccer ball.

Before soccer, there were many sports like soccer, which were played all over the world.

The game resembles soccer, where humans from different civilizations played with the soccer ball and wore different soccer-related gear.

Now we will travel back to the history of a soccer ball.

Ancient Soccer Balls

Over 3,000 years ago, ancient civilizations all over the world invented the soccer ball so that they can play it and enjoy the sport itself.

Chinese ”TSU CHU’

During the Ts’in and the Han Dynasties(225 BC-220 AD). Chinese used to play a game, which was called ”TSU CHU”

They used to use balls that were made of animal skin and were stuffed in a spherical form.

The players in the ”TSU CHU” players had to dribble the animal-skin balls through gaps and between the net tied between the two poles.

Egyptians Rites:

The Egyptian rites were like that of soccer. They used balls on which seeds were wrapped in linen.

This made the soccer ball bounce higher. The Egyptians used catgut or skin of other animals.

Maya Indians and Aztec:

It is being reported that many Aztec and Maya Indians used a light elasticized ball. The same ball was used by many American civilizations.

The ball was made from latex, which was found in the rubberwood.

Romans and greeks:

The ancient Roman greeks played a major role in making a vital role in their contribution to how the first soccer ball was made in history.

If we talk about the ancient version of soccer, it consists of kicking and carrying a ball.

It was like that of Egyptian greeks. They heavily used balls that were made up of hairs(instead of seeds). They were then wrapped in linen.

Soccer Pig Bladder Ball:

It is reported that the soccer ball, which was made from pig bladder, was very popular in medieval times.

People used their hands as well as feet to make the ball bounce in the air.

Due to the increasing importance of the game. There came a custom where a pig bladder was used heavily and it was inflated to make soccer balls out of it.

Pig bladders became a huge hit in the middle ages because it was the most common material for the soccer balls.

A very good example of the pig bladder was used by the Italians back in the 17th century.

These big bladders couldn’t maintain their shape, so they were bound to rupture in no time. These big bladders started to have leather covers so that they can be used better.

With the advent of leather covers, these pig bladders lasted longer than and gave more pleasure. These pig bladder soccer ball gave more depth to the soccer ball that it has been long longing for.

The birth of the Modern Soccer ball:

By the 1800s, football started to be seen as a recognized sport. This was the time of professional football.

After soccer got professional status, it became very important for soccer manufacturers to develop professional balls.

Vulcanized Rubber:

Charles Goodyear in 1844 developed and invented vulcanized rubber. The invention of the soccer ball has more control over to the shape and the size of the soccer ball.

First Round Soccer Ball:

The evolution of the Soccer ball reached a remarkable mark in the year of 1855.

Charles Goodyear was the first person who invented the first soccer ball. He got a lot of praise for it.

Before this ball was invented, the entire shape and the size of the soccer ball were extracted from pigs and they were not entirely round in shape.

Natural rubber was not entirely used to make the soccer balls because it deformed quickly in hot and wet conditions. It got sticky with time, so it was not a good idea to play with it.

The self-taught American invented this masterpiece and is considered the modern father of soccerball. He solved major problems with his new method of treating and making rubber.

The process of vulcanization of the rubber made it more durable and solid. This also made it possible for it to maintain its bouncing characteristics.

First-ever inflatable Soccer Ball Bladders:

Richard Lindon, who was an English Leatherworker from England Rugby, was made a leader to develop a replacement for the pig bladder. These balls were inflatable as well as deflatable. People became ill due to the frequent blowing of the pig bladders.

His wife got lung cancer due to the frequent blowing of too many infected pig bladders.

In 1863, Richard Lindon found a great alternative to pig bladders when he significantly developed bladders, which were made from Indian rubber(these were called natural rubber and were called caoutchouc.)

These rubber bladders were too hard to be inflated from the mouth and Lindon was greatly inspired by the medical ear syringe. He also made a larger version to pump up his soccer balls.

Lindon rejoiced that he came up with the first inflatable bladder that would be used heavily by masses.

These bladders were very hard and they significantly maintained their shape.

It was not before the 20th century that these rubber bladders became part of most of soccer balls.

Original Soccer Balls: First Official Soccer Ball Size and Its Shape:

The first matric that was used in the international game was highly dependent on the size and the shape of the pig bladder. There were no rules, which were set on the dimensions of these soccer balls.

In many football matches, many countries tried to come up with their favorite version of soccer balls.

There was a controversy that took place between Argentina and Uruguay. Both of these countries made it to the final, but they could not decide which ball should they use.

There was a consensus that was made between the two teams. In the first half, the ball that was used was provided by the argentian team, while in the second half the ball that was used was provided by the Uruguay soccer team.

When the half-time was reached, Argentina was winning by 2-1 but in the second time Uruguay turned the tide and the match was won by 2-4.

This showed that the Soccer ball greatly benefited different teams based on the fact that which soccer ball did they used by playing soccer ball.

After-effects of the World War 2 Soccer Ball Enhancements

During World War, when the world was facing global war soccer ball was majorly involved.

The strong cloth was used to make a carcass that was significantly added between the bladder and the outer cover, which gave more control over the ball, and the shape of the ball was not ruined. It made it stronger and provided the required damping.

Despite the whole effort, the soccer ball started to burst because there was not a standardized material that was being used to make those soccer balls. It greatly affected the outcome of the game.

The reason was simple! Poor quality of the leather was used to make those soccer balls after World War 2.

The cowhides which were used directly affected the quality of the soccer balls, which made them burst in no time.

Soccer Ball Material

Waterproof and color soccer Balls:

Leather soccer balls, which were very heavy and very painful because they used to absorb all the water in them due to heavy rainfall. The hand stitching of the lace made it very difficult for the players to play with them during the soccer matches.

Many players got injured because these heavy, wet leather soccer balls caused various injuries.

In the 1950s, synthetic paint along with non-porous materials were being heavily used to coat the outer surface of the leather. This greatly lowered the soccer ball’s absorption.

Meanwhile, due to the advancement in technology, the soccer ball’s slit was removed and a new kind of value was invented that allowed the soccer ball to have more control. This made the surface of the soccer ball more regular, rounder, and smoother. The soccer ball became easier to control.

For night matches, floodlights were introduced so that soccer players can play. To solve this problem, white-colored soccer balls were also introduced. This helped to create a visible ball that could be used by anyone to enjoy the game of soccer.

White-colored soccer balls were usually used since 1892. But it was unofficial. Before that cover leathers were simply whitewashed to make them look like white soccer balls.

There was another progress regarding soccer balls. By the first time in the 1950’s. The soccer balls were made to be orange so that they could be made visible during snowy matches.

Use of Synthetic Balls

In the 1960s the soccer ball that was entirely made of synthetic material was introduced.

Leather balls had a very better flight other than that any other soccer ball. It had better bounce and a consistent flight, which made it the right fit for any kind of soccer match. In the late 1980s, a typical new technology was introduced which replaced the entire leather-covered balls.

In today’s world, entire soccer balls are made up of synthetic materials. This gives better control to the soccer balls. This also gives them better cell structure and overall better, lower water absorption.

Advent Buckminster Type Soccer Ball

Famous American architect Richard Buckminster Fuller came up with a new type of soccer ball design when he was looking for a new way to construct buildings from minimum materials.

His design was named after his name or it was known to be A Buckminster ball. It was sewed in a series of hexagons and pentagons or triangles patches, to create a round shape.

Thermal bonding was also introduced in 2004 with the Roteiro soccer ball. The Buckminster soccer ball had around 20 hexagonal and 12 pentagonal surfaces, which were made to be sewn together and it gave it a perfect sphere shape.

White Buckminster balls with the black spots helped players to notice theirs swerves on the ball. It became very popular in the sport.

Modern Soccer ball

In today’s world, FIFA world cup competitions are mainly responsible for many innovations that happen in soccer balls. They file trade patents and only a few manufacturers are authorized to make those soccer balls.


From the article” Who Invented the Soccer Ball” we can easily conclude that Charles Goodyear was that who made football ball.


We have learned who invented the soccer ball first, Charles Goodyear history’, football evolution (ancient to modern) and information of pig bladder ball.

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