Math in Soccer

Topics: Association football, Association football terminology, Laws of association football Pages: 3 (1046 words) Published: January 6, 2013
Mathematics Applied to Life
The mathematician S. Gudder once stated, “The essence of mathematics is not to make simple things complicated, but to make complicated things simple.” Although it seems extremely complex, the idea of mathematics seeks to simplify the unpredictable occurrences of life. Mathematics, the study of quantity, structure, space, and change, exists throughout the entire universe. It attempts to provide some solid explanation for the seemingly random chaos in the world. Mathematicians search for patterns that are present in life and that apply to the numerous laws of math. There are several fields of mathematics, some of the simpler ones being algebra, geometry, trigonometry, and calculus. One subject in particular that illustrates mathematical concepts is the game of football, or commonly known as soccer.

I have been playing soccer for almost ten years, and it is my passion. I chose this particular topic to explore the mathematical relevance of the sport, to attempt to further my knowledge of the game, and possibly improve my play through mathematical research. Football, also known as “the beautiful game”, is the most popular sport in the world, played by people of all ages and countries. It requires two teams of eleven players, including one goalkeeper, a regulation size field, a standard soccer ball, and an officiating team for official play. The objective of the game is to score the ball into the opposing team’s net, and with the exception of the goalkeeper and throw-ins, the players are not allowed to use their hands. Players use the rest of their body to dribble, pass, and shoot to drive toward the other opponents’ goal. The team with the most goals at the end of the match is declared the winner.

One aspect in which soccer relates to the mathematical concept of geometry is the dimensions and mechanics of the field, also known as the pitch. A FIFA-regulation field is a rectangle, measuring 100 yards by 60 yards, divided in the...
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