Both the rich and the poor play soccer around the world as it is one of the most popular sports. Soccer is also one of the most inexpensive hobbies you can enjoy. But guaranteed, it may not be the cheapest sport in the U.S. if you want to play in official tournaments or when you go pro.
Now, I know that you do not have to purchase the most expensive ball to play soccer with your friends or coworkers. But I, for one, am a soccer fan. And for most soccer fans and soccer players, spending a few extra dollars for a soccer ball is just the right thing to do.
If the thought of buying an expensive soccer ball does sit well with you, I urge you to read through this article and know why soccer enthusiasts and players go the extra mile for the love of the sport.
Why Are There Expensive Soccer Balls?
Understandably, if Messi signed an inexpensive soccer ball and you sell it on eBay, the price you can sell it for may not be so cheap. But there are other reasons why a soccer ball costs a bit more than what you expect.
The prices of the soccer balls are usually based on the materials of their making. Expensive soccer balls from polyurethane offer better quality than cheaper ones, usually a mixture of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) and polyurethane.
A ball from polyurethane material has a sturdy grip on the ball and offers you a softer touch than the PVC ball.
In the 2010 South African World Cup, a soccer ball was estimated to cost around $2.58 million. However, it was not because of the polyurethane make. It was a 3,500-karat diamond-encrusted ball that the South African jeweler, Yair Shimansky, made.
But Are They Worth the Top-Dollar Price?
Players who join the FIFA World Cup or other leagues train extra hard to be better soccer players. And they spend extra energy in perfecting their power kicks. For the pro players, quality and durable soccer ball that offers a soft touch is a huge investment.
There are things you can do and skills you can develop with a pure polyurethane ball than with the mixed PVC ones. An expensive soccer ball retains its shape for a longer time and has better stitch and material quality, allowing you to maximize your performance.
Plus, expensive balls have better bladder—or the center-most part—as they use latex materials compared to inexpensive butyl. With latex, your ball has a better grip and touch while keeping the ball in shape.
Least to Most Expensive Soccer Balls You Can Find
A soccer ball is the most crucial key in playing soccer. Without it, there would be no game. So, whether you play an amateur match, professional tournament, or a weekend barbecue scrimmage with your friends, having a good ball is worth every penny.
Here’s a list of soccer balls from least to most expensive that will enhance your playing experience.
adidas Real Madrid Home Club Ball ($20)
For those who pledge to the team that runs the turf of the Santiago Bernabéu, this soccer ball may just be worth every dollar. Whether you buy it for collection or play, this ball has a 100% thermoplastic polyurethane cover with machine-stitched construction teamed up with a rubber bladder for durability.
However, this ball may require inflation upon receiving it. But surely, Madrid fans don’t mind.
Nike FC Barcelona Strike ($30)
The Camp Nou-inspired ball has a textured casing for a good touch and grooves to help you plunk the ball in the direction where you want it. It features Nike Aerow Trac grooves that allow the ball to spin consistently in the air. It has a rubber bladder to maintain the air pressure and shape of the ball.
In addition, the ball is made of 60% rubber, 15% polyurethane, 13% polyester, and 12% EVA. It may not have the best of the best quality, but Barca fans for sure will love it.
Nike Paris Saint Germain Strike ($30)
With the recent transfer of Messi to the Parc de Princes, PSG fans surely want some memorabilia of the team. The Nike PSG Strike soccer ball has a 12-panel design to provide accurate flight and a rubber bladder to help maintain its air pressure and shape.
It may not be the world’s most expensive ball, but it still costs a few dollars more than the regular inexpensive soccer balls.
Nike Futsal Pro ($40)
This futsal soccer ball has the design and quality to provide you with exceptional touch and control of the ball in the small-sided game. The textured casing of the indoor soccer ball has high-contrast graphics for easy visibility across the pitch.
Having the official futsal size and weight, the ball is also hand-sewn with tighter seams, making it durable.
Adidas UCL Competition Pyro Storm Ball ($60)
This FIFA Quality Pro-certified competition ball mirrors the official match ball look with the glitched design. The replica ball is bonded thermally, creating a seamless build to ensure reliable and predictable performance in big matches like the Champions League. This ball has a butyl bladder and 100% polyurethane cover.
adidas Tiro Pro Ball ($110)
The Tiro Pro Ball has a clean and classic design made to pass FIFA quality standards. This official match ball has a 100% polyurethane cover, butyl bladder for better air retention, and seamless construction. However, this ball requires inflation. But for the quality it offers, a minor inconvenience is nothing.
Nike Premier League Flight ($160)
For over eight years and thousands of testing hours, the Premier League Flight achieved a revolution of consistent and precise flight. The molded grooves disrupt airflow for less drag, and the grippy texture lowers the chance of unexpected movement in the air, giving you a more accurate ball movement.
It also has an all-weather touch, allowing you to get a consistent touch in wet and dry conditions.
Adidas Uniforia Pro Football ($160)
The Euro 2020 official match ball celebrates culture and football. Honoring the harmony and euphoria the sport brings, this ball is designed to celebrate quality and unity. Made with a 100% polyester cover and rubber bladder, the ball is seamless for better match play.
However, this FIFA Quality Pro-certified match ball requires inflation.
Nike Flight ($160)
Almost the same as the Nike Premier League Flight ball, they only differ in design. It also features a more stable flight with less drag for a more accurate ball movement.
Adidas Context 21 Pro Olympic Games Ball ($165)
The official match ball for the Olympic Games in Tokyo has the stamp of FIFA Quality Pro, proving that the ball has the highest ratings after tests on circumference, weight, rebound, and absorption.
The thermally-bonded seamless design offers a more predictable flight, softer touch, and lower water uptake. Made with 70% polyurethane, 20% recycled polyester, 10% viscose, and a butyl bladder, this match ball certainly lives up to its price.
Adidas UCL Pro Pyrostorm Ball ($165)
Being the official match ball for the UEFA Champions League, the Pro Pyrostorm ball has the stamp of FIFA Quality Pro. Made with 100% quality polyurethane cover and butyl bladder; the official match ball reflects how intense, and eminent the European club tournament is.
When your cleat and the ball make contact in a soccer game, magic happens. And most times, your ball quality is just as crucial as your soccer cleats. Whether it’s a training ball or a match ball, good-quality material will surely enhance your playing experience.