Adidas Fracas: Euro 2016
Days after the Beau Jeu ball burst in the match involving hosts France and Switzerland, Adidas have announced that they will be introducing a new ball for the knockout stages of the competition. Given the name Fracas – which means clamor in French, this football will be on show for the first time on the 25th of June.
Looking at the history of European Championships, this is the first time ever that multiple balls will be used in a single competition. Adidas doesn’t mind this fact of course as they hope that this football could be able to bring the excitement back to the competition.
So far in 24 games at Euro 2016, 26 teams have been able to score only 48 goals. This goal count when compared with the 2008 and 2012 Euros presents a harrowing picture.
At exactly the same stage in Euro 2008, the first 24 games saw 57-goals. Euro 2012 was even better as it saw 60 goals in the first 24 games. Thus, as far as goals are concerned, Euro 2016 is lagging far behind its predecessors.
Fracas is an advanced version of the Brazuca ball which was used in the 2014 FIFA World Cup. With a better grip, improved during-flight visibility, and unique shape, Adidas says that this ball reflects the “winner takes all” mentality that will be prevalent in the knockout stages.
Another feature which differentiates Fracas from its predecessor is the pattern of lines that are drawn over it. In contrast to the Beau Jeu – which had clean lines on it, this football is decorated with a dynamic red and black pattern.
This fact of Fracas was acknowledged by Adidas themselves as they claimed that they wanted to be “bold with our design”.
“Fracas is a more disruptive design (than Beau Jeu). It represents the noise of the crowd and the excitement around a winner takes all mentality on the pitch”. Said Sam Handy, Vice President of Design.
Even though Fracas was officially inaugurated today, this ball has been employed previously in various Leagues across Europe. While it wasn’t given its name then, Fracas was used in Premier League, La Liga, and in a friendly involving Spain and England last November.
French midfielder Paul Pogba is serving as the brand ambassador of Fracas. The midfielder has a mixed Euro 2016 so far with his performances being in stark contrast to that of his teammates. With the likes of Dimitri Payet and Olivier Giroud in hot form in front of the goal, the Juventus midfielder has been booed by the French faithful at several occasions.
However, now that Fracas has been inaugurated, Pogba would hope that the new football could bring luck for him in the knockout stages.