Eastern NY & Futsal
The origins of futsal can be traced to Uruguay in 1930, where, amid the euphoria that greeted that country’s victory at the inaugural World Cup on home soil, there was a soccer ball seemingly being kicked on every street corner in the capital of Montevideo. Juan Carlos Ceriani, an Argentinian physical education instructor living there at the time, observed many youngsters practicing soccer on basketball courts because of the shortage of soccer fields. It was there and then that the idea for a five-a-side variation of soccer came about and futsal was born.
The term “futsal” was adopted in the 1980s as a contraction of “fútbol de salón,” literally translated as “hall” or “lounge” soccer. After decades of growth, the first international rules and confederations were recognized in the 1950’s, culminating in FIFA’s recognition, sanctioning and governance of the sport in 1989, presenting the first Futsal World Cup in that year.
Futsal players are constantly put in situations where they must pass, receive, dribble, and move, while under pressure in a confined space, and they utilize those skills when they return to playing soccer outdoors. Many of Brazil’s best players ever such as Pelé, Zico, Socrates, Bebeto, Ronaldinho, and Marta all played a version of futsal as children.
Unlike outdoor soccer or some other forms of indoor soccer, futsal is played on a hard-court surface defined by lines as walls or boards are not used. Futsal is also played with a smaller ball with less bounce than a regular soccer ball.
Eastern New York has a vibrant futsal program with approximately 1,000 futsal games being played annually in our sanctioned leagues: