Soccer became modernized in 1863 by the English Football Association. It is important to realize that soccer is called football in the United Kingdom. This sport was mostly played by those that were in a higher class in England. They played in their boarding schools and their private clubs. Eventually, due to how easy it was to play and obtain the equipment it expanded across classes.
In 1863, the London Football Association was founded. This association came up with the rules and by 1883, there were several professional teams playing. This game caught on throughout all of Europe. By 1900, soccer had been added to the Olympics despite the fact that professional players could not take part in it.
The World Cup came about in 1930, thanks to FIFA. Teams would compete every four years. 200 teams look to compete and only 24 are allowed to. In the United States, the U.S. Soccer Federation was formed in 1913. At that point, Americans were more interested in Americanized football. A Brazilian soccer player came over to join the New York Cosmos and his name was Pele. He changed what the sport meant to Americans and it became more and more popular. He retired 2 years later in 1977 and that is when most people lost interest. The North American Soccer League lost support and dissolved in 1985.
In the 1994 World Cup, American youth became interested in the game again. The year before that, The Major League Soccer association was founded. Three years later, they started playing games with 10 teams and 32 games in a season. In 1991, women were free to compete in soccer, also.
Considering the history, there is a long one. Many civilizations had their own version of it. In Rome it was called “Harpastum”, in Iceland it was called “Knattleikr”, and in Japan it was called “Kemari”. When FIFA was formed, there were rules to make sure there were proper regulations internationally. It was formed in Paris and regulated the following countries: Belgium, the Netherlands, Sweden, Spain, Switzerland, and France. As with most sports during the Depression and World War II, soccer had to stop during those years. By the time we hit 1950, FIFA had over 50 member countries.
As of today, there are at least 208 teams nationally that are actually recognized by FIFA. Some widely known soccer players include Roberto Baggio, Pablo Aimar, Michael Ballack, David Beckham, and Franz Beckenbauer. These men have popularized soccer at different aspects of the history. For example, Beckbauer was born in Munich and started playing soccer for SC Munich back in 1954. He spent years hopping from team to team until he was 19 and then landed with the Bayern Munich First Squad. This man inspired several youths back during his time. He stopped playing in 1983 when he was playing for the Cosmos at the age of 38 giving him a career that spanned many decades.
The most famous soccer player known now is David Beckham. He was brought up to love Manchester United and eventually started to play with their youth team. By the time he was 19, he still did not play with the professional team and eventually took a break to play for Preston North End. He went back to Manchester United in 1994.