10 seasons ago, Nike took over from Mitre as the official ball supplier to the Premier League. Now Nike have released a limited edition ball to celebrate 10 years and the fact that over 10,000 goals have been scored.
The weekend began with 9,995 goals having been scored in the Premier League with a Nike ball and the race to score the 10,000th was on. In the end, Frederic Piquionne’s winner against Tottenham Hotspur was the goal that made history.
It is interesting that the 10,000th goal was scored against Spurs, as it was Ipswich Town’s Mark Venus, who opened the scoring for Nike football’s against Spurs at White Heart Lane in August 2000.
Nike have produced 100 golden, limited edition T90 Tracer balls, which feature the same innovative technology as the one’s used by teams in the Barclays Premier League this season. It has been innovatively designed with geometrically precise panels that distribute pressure evenly across the balls surface, giving a more consistent, accurate and powerful strike.
The first goal scorer – Mark Venus’ name is featured on the ball. The ball also honors all eight of the Nike balls used in the Barclays Premier League since the sponsorship began. The ball details the names of the balls across the seasons from the first Nike Geo Merlin up until the current day Nike Total 90 Tracer, and comes in a specially crafted black and gold box, complete with football stand.
Nike have released some great looking balls over the last decade. Here is a quick look at the balls they have released:
2000-01 Geo Merlin
2002-03 Geo Merlin
2004-05 Total90 Aerow
2005-06 Total90 Aerow
2006-07 Total90 Aerow II
2007-08 Total90 Aerow II
2008-09 Total 90 Omni
2009-10 Total90 Ascente
2010-11 Total90 Tracer
Nike have given us a look behind the scenes at the development of the new Nike T90 Tracer ball that will be used in the FA Premier League, La Liga and Serie A.
NIKE have launched the Nike Total 90 Tracer ball, designed for unrivalled consistency, accuracy, touch and visual acuity. Developed in tandem with the world’s premier footballers and teams, the ball was meticulously engineered down to every detail including the bladder’s tension, hand-sewn seams and surface texture. The result is a ball that delivers superior playing benefits for players at every level.
The Total 90 Tracer ball will debut in August in the world’s leading football leagues including the English Premier League, Italy’s Serie A, and Spain’s La Liga.
During an extensive two-year testing process Nike worked closely with the Barclays Premier League, Spain’s LFP, Italy’s Serie A, with national teams including Portugal and the United States, and confederation matches throughout South America and Asia. The Nike design team also spent 18 months testing the T90 Tracer Ball at the Nike Equipment Innovation Test Lab in Oregon, USA.
“The world’s best leagues, federations and players demand the most innovative product on the market, that’s why our brief was very simple: to create the world’s best football,” said Chris Bond, Nike General Manager of Soccer Equipment. “As the game gets even faster and more competitive around the world, we’ve designed a product to exceed the demands of today’s players from the amateur to elite levels.”
The result is the Total 90 Tracer, which delivers enhanced consistency, accuracy, touch and visual science. It is the most pinpoint accurate ball in the world, helping players hit their targets with consistency. Testing shows that the Total 90 Tracer consistently hits a 3-foot in diameter bulls-eye while the leading competitor ball hits a bulls-eye approximately 6-feet in diameter, showing the Total 90 Tracer is more than twice as consistent as the competition.
“A great ball makes a real difference for a player, a team and potentially the outcome of a game,” said Sergio Agüero of Atlético Madrid. “The Total 90 Tracer always feels the same no matter where I strike it. It’s responsive and easily controlled in every situation. I can shoot with confidence, knowing it’s going to go exactly where I want it to every time.”
The Total 90 Tracer ball’s micro-textured casing regulates airflow equally across its entire surface, making it less prone to wobble and giving it a more direct, arrow-like flight. Rigorously tested at the University of British Columbia wind tunnels, the ball has less drag in flight than competitor balls and produces more precise and truer shots every time. Testing at the Nike Equipment Innovation Test Labfound that the Total 90 Tracer is the most aerodynamically efficient ball in the marketplace, meaning players expend less energy kicking the ball.
Consistent touch: Nike teams also focused on enhancing touch – often one of the most crucial elements for footballers. A unique five-layer casing and construction improves touch, giving players maximum control and greater command and presence on the pitch.
The Geo II configuration of the ball’s 32 panels evenly distributes pressure across the whole ball, offering more consistent movement and the same response wherever the ball is struck.
True control: The micro-textured casing material of the Total 90 Tracer is designed to equalize the flow of air over the ball during flight. This stabilizes the ball and allows it to fly truer – maintaining it’s intended flight path while ensuring greater control and accuracy shooting, sending or receiving a pass.
Innovative visual science: The Total 90 Tracer also features a brightly colored graphic designed to deliver visual performance benefits to players. Up to 99% of a person’s eye sight is via their peripheral vision, under 1% is considered foveal, or focused vision. Based on this, Nike designers and visual scientists explored how the human eye locates and responds to the color and design of a football while in motion. The result is Total 90 Tracer’s high-contrast asymmetrical graphic designed to generate a strong visual signal, which captures peripheral vision and focuses central vision more rapidly.
The World Cup has seen both players and coaches have much to say about the Adidas Jabulani ball. With that, we wait to see how they react to the new ‘Finale’ – the official ball of the 2010/11 UEFA Champions League season.
The ball returns with the Champions League star motif – this time in what Adidas call ‘White/Satellite/Night Sky’. It is the eleventh ball Adidas have created for the UEFA Champions League and boasts technology such as “revolutionary Thermal Bonding Technology” which means it has no stitching nor seams.
The Champions League has provided some very entertaining football over the years and we hope that with the new Finale 11 we will see plenty of goals come the new season.
Recently we revealed the new Adidas ball that will be used in the UEFA Champions League Final; the Finale Madrid.
Bayern Munich’s Arjen Robben and Inter Milan’s Diego Milito hold aloft the official adidas final match ball “Finale Madrid ” ahead of the 2010 UEFA Champions League final on Saturday 22nd May 2010.
Umbro introduces their new ball the: NeoPro. Constructed from 14 panels and cut using laser technology to create a true flight – the NeoPro will be used for the first time in the FA Cup Final tomorrow.
Adidas proudly presents the new Official Match Ball for the UEFA Champions League Final in Madrid on May 22nd: the “Finale Madrid”. This is the tenth consecutive time that an adidas ball has been used in the group phase and the Final of the UEFA Champions League. The design of the “Finale Madrid” ball, presented today at Real Madrid CF’s Santiago Bernabéu Stadium, pays tribute to the exciting history of the UEFA Champions League competition.
adidas celebrates each of the ten most recent UEFA Champions League Finals with a unique and distinctive design positioned inside each of the characteristic star panels of the ball, including the upcoming Final in Madrid. Each design features the exclusive motif from the ten most recent Finals drawn in gold. The red borders of each star pay homage to the national colour of the Spanish flag while the base of the ball is inspired by the immaculate white of royal Madrid.
Alongside the traditional design elements of the ball, new technology is introduced. Under the motto “design becomes technology”, adidas has succeeded in integrating the technology of the ball into the star panel design, making the adidas Finale ball and the UEFA Champions League logo inseparable, while providing the truest possible ball flight. The panel structure is completed by 20 pentagonal panels. The “goose bumps”, a PSC-Texture™ known from previous editions of the ball, have been kept, guaranteeing ideal ball control under all conditions. David Taylor, CEO UEFA Events, said: ”Once again we think adidas has done a great job with the design and the technology of the ball. It’s a special ball for a special game and it’s fitting for the tenth anniversary of the adidas partnership.”
”The UEFA Champions League Final is where the very best in football meet and therefore it is a natural place for adidas to be. We are proud to celebrate our tenth birthday as the Official Supplier of the competition and look forward to a fantastic weekend in Madrid,” says adidas Vice President Football Global Sports Marketing Claus-Peter Mayer.
”Designing this ball was really good fun and very special for our team,” says adidas designer Janneke van Oorschot. ”The star panel is an ideal shape for us to give the legendary Finals from the recent past the attention they deserve. The special colours of Spain and Madrid, which have been used in the design, make the ball look stylish and definitely fitting for another legendary UEFA Champions League Final,” she continued.
adidas ball technology comprises the unique experience portfolio of almost 50 years of football production. As a result, sales figures confirm adidas’ position as the most successful football manufacturer in the world.
adidas will continue to use innovative technology to extend its leading position in global football. This, in turn, will further strengthen adidas’ position as the market leader in high-performance sports equipment for professionals and amateurs alike. The adidas Innovation Team will continue its development of more revolutionary match ball technologies, which will be introduced at future UEFA, FIFA and CAF competitions.
Quotes about the new ball:
David Taylor, CEO UEFA Events: Once again we think adidas has done a great job with the design and the technology of the ball. It’s a special ball for a special game and it’s fitting for the tenth anniversary of the adidas partnership.
Claus-Peter Mayer, adidas Vice President Football Global Sports Marketing: The UEFA Champions League Final is where the very best in football meet and therefore it is a natural place for adidas to be. We are proud to celebrate our tenth birthday as the Official Supplier of the competition and look forward to a fantastic weekend in Madrid.
Janneke van Oorschot, adidas designer: Designing this ball was really good fun and very special for our team. The star panel is an ideal shape for us to give the legendary Finals from the recent past the attention they deserve. The special colours of Spain and Madrid, which have been used in the design, make the ball look stylish and definitely fitting for another legendary UEFA Champions League Final.