What Is The Difference Between American Football and Soccer?

Are Football and Soccer the same? Yes and no, in America, the two sports differ greatly. So what’s the difference between American Football and Soccer? Let’s find out.
What Is The Difference Between American Football and Soccer

Linguistically speaking, Football is an ambiguous term.

Consider it this way: when you ask who is the most important player in football, Americans will answer ‘the Quarterback’ and Europeans will answer ‘the Striker or Forward.’ 

Confusing, right?

There is no Forward in America’s version of football and there is no Quarterback in Football that is played in the European nations. So, the term soccer is more apt at times to refer to Association Football.

This is why it is important to learn and understand the difference between American Football and Soccer, which also goes by the name football, or you might get caught up in the constant linguistic tug-of-war on the usage of the two terms. 

In case you are wondering, here is the reason why football is called soccer.

So, let’s begin.   

Difference between American Football and Soccer. 

Football or Soccer is the most watched and well-liked sport in the world, drawing in over a billion spectators worldwide. 

All You Need To Know About The History Of Football (Soccer).

However, in America, there is another which takes the crown of the most popular sport. Yes, you guessed it right. It is American football. 

This is getting confusing now, let’s dive straight into the differences between the two sports. 

American Football


American Football is also known as Gridiron.

Soccer is known as Football in many parts of the world. 

It is played only in America and Canada. 

Played in a number of different countries. 

The football has an elongated spheroid design. Its center measures 56 cm in diameter, its length is 28 cm, and it weighs 0.875 pounds.

The shape of a soccer ball is spherical. Its circumference ranges from 68 to 70 cm and weighs around 410 to 450 gm.

Points are gained by scoring goals using either hands or feet.

Touching the ball with hands is strictly prohibited. Players can only use their feet, chest, and head. 

The most important player is the Quarterback who scores goals by running with the ball. 

The most important player is the Goalie, whose job is to stop the opponent’s ball from entering their goalpost. 

Carrying the ball past the opposition and the touchline results in points. Players can carry the ball in their hands. 

Goals can be scored through field goals, corner kicks, free kicks, or penalties when the ball crosses the goal line. Goals cannot be scored or the ball passed with the hands.

The game is broken into four 15-minute quarters. The second quarter ends with a halftime break.

The game lasts 90 minutes in total, with the first and second halves lasting 45 minutes each. There will be a 45-second break in play after the first half.

There can be an infinite number of substitutions.

It has only 3 substitutions. 

The most popular American Football league is the NFL (National Football League), which is also the most profitable professional sports league in terms of revenue. 

The Champions League, English Premier League, Spanish La Liga, Bundesliga, and Serie A are the top soccer leagues.

The governing body is the International Federation of American Football (IFAF), which was established in 1998. 

The governing body is FIFA(Federation Internationale de Football Association), which was established in 1904 and has over 200 association members. 

The bottom line is that Football is a catch-all word for a variety of sports in which goals are scored with the foot or hands. The most popular sport in the world, football, also known as association football, is referred to as soccer in America, Canada, and Australia. 

While American Football or Gridiron is the most popular sport in America, which is nothing like Soccer. 

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