The Evolution of the Adidas World Cup Soccer Ball

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Since the World Cup is around the corner, here’s a glimpse of the WC Soccer Ball evolution since 1970.

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1970 Adidas Telstar
The design most soccer fans know best, the Adidas Telstar, which has 12 black pentagons and 20 white hexagons, made its debut at the 1970 World Cup in Mexico.

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1974 Adidas Telstar
Used at the 1974 World Cup in Germany, the ball looks much the same as its predecessor, but featured names and logos (a first at the games).

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1978 Adidas Tango
Featured at the 1978 World Cup in Argentina, the Adidas Tango was a radical design departure from the old model, using twenty triad panels delivering an optical illusion of 12 identical panels.

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1982 Tango Espana
Looking almost identical to the 1978 version, the Tango Espana model, used at the World Cup in Spain, added waterproof sealed seams, a feature designed to keep its weight down during wet weather matches.

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1990 Adidas Etrusco Unico
This ball, used at the World Cup in Italy, added an under layer of black polyurethane foam, a component that made the ball faster and even more water-resistant.
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1994 Adidas Questra
The Adidas Questra was the first World Cup ball to be completely covered in a layer of polystyrene foam, making it even faster off the foot of players.

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1998 Adidas Tricolore
Presented at the World Cup in France, this was the first multi-colored ball ever used and was layered in a new syntactic foam to improve its durability.

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2002 Adidas Fevernova
The 2002 Japan World Cup injected a new appreciation for the sport in the country and featured an eye-catching new gold ball with a design inspired by Asian culture.

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2006 Adidas Teamgeist
For the World Cup’s return to Germany in 2006, Adidas reduced the number of panel touch points in order to increase accuracy and overall control. Any trace of pentagon panels was erased in favor of the more futuristic design.

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2010 Adidas Jabulani
The 2010 Jabulani is perhaps the most controversial World Cup ball in that some players openly complained that the lightweight ball was unpredictable and difficult to control.

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2014 Adidas Brazuca
The Brazuca, set to be used during the World Cup in Brazil, is the most advanced Adidas World Cup ball yet. Featuring a new six-panel design, the ball was tested by over 600 top players and has received high marks for its speed and accuracy.

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