Excitement has hit football fans today as the official 2022 World Cup ball has been unveiled.
With just 236 days until the competition starts in Qatar, the qualifiers are well underway and the much-anticipated draw is set to take place on Friday (April 1st).
Today, fans saw the official match ball for the very first time and its design has certainly got a seal of approval, but the name is causing a bit of confusion.
What does ‘Al Rihla’ mean? Read on to find out…
It’s the moment we’ve all been waiting for, the official World Cup 2022 ball has officially been announced, and it’s pretty impressive.
Designed by Adidas, who have produced the balls for the last 14 tournaments, the ball has a vibrant blue, red and yellow colour scheme which swoops across a pearlescent white background.
Aside from the cool design, it’s the quickest World Cup ball ever and provides the highest level of accuracy due to its brand new panel shape and surface textures.
Adidas Football Graphics and Hardwear Design Director Franziska Loeffelmann said: “The game is getting faster, and as it speeds up, accuracy and flight stability becomes critically important.”
“The new design allows the ball to maintain its speed significantly higher as it journeys through the air. For the biggest global stage in all of sport, we set out to make the impossible, possible with radical innovation by creating the fastest and most accurate World Cup ball to-date,” he continued.
The ball’s official name is ‘Al Rihla’ which means “the journey” in Arabic.
Arabic is the native language in Qatar, which is where the 2022 World Cup is being hosted.
The ball’s design is inspired by the nation’s architecture, iconic boats and national flag.
‘Al Rihla’ is environmentally friendly and made exclusively with water-based inks and glues.
‘This is a stunning, sustainable and high-quality official match ball from adidas that will be enjoyed by stars performing at the top of their game on the world’s biggest stage in Qatar, as well as grassroots players everywhere,” FIFA’s director of marketing, Jean-Francois Pathy said.
The official World Cup 2022 ball is available to buy on the Adidas website here.
It launched online on March 30th and will be available for just under two weeks until April 12th.
The ball retails at £130 and is available both in stores and on the website.
A mini ball inspired by the World Cup 2022 football is also available to buy for £15 here.
One percent of the ball’s net sales will go to the Common Goal, a charitable movement launched by Spanish footballer Juan Mata.
Common Goal encourages football players, coaches and other organisations to pledge at least one percent of their salaries to a collective fund that supports football charities around the world.