Brazuca: Lionel Messi helps Adidas unveil the official ball for World Cup 2014

Adidas consults with top players over 2014 football to avoid repeat of South Africa issues

Once the World Cup draw is over, the plastic capsules containing the teams will be forgotten and only one ball will matter. That is the Brazuca, the official ball for next summer's World Cup that has been revealed by adidas.

This new ball is the most intensely tested football of all time, having been worked on for the last two and a half years, and used by more than 600 players across 10 countries. After round after round of field and lab tests it was secretly used in an international game to test its suitability, as everything possible was done to avoid the problems that afflicted the Jabulani ball at the 2010 World Cup.

A disguised version of the Brazuca was used for the friendly between Sweden and Argentina in February and then for the Under-20 World Cup in Turkey last June and July, and the feedback from the players was positive.

All of adidas's biggest ambassadors have tried and endorsed it – Lionel Messi, Steven Gerrard and Robin van Persie went to the company HQ in Herzogenaurach to do so – though adidas have made it clear that of the 280 player interviews they conducted, 30 per cent were with players contracted elsewhere.

There is some hope that this ball will not go the same way as the Jabulani, which was widely criticised, especially by goalkeepers, by the end of the last World Cup. Iker Casillas described it as "appalling" while Gianluigi Buffon said it was "very sad" that the World Cup was played "with such a horrible ball" that many said did not fly true through the air. This time Casillas and Spain compatriot Pepe Reina have been involved in testing and helping to ensure the ball meets the criteria of fairness, consistency and reliability.

This is a different ball from the Jabulani, after all. It is closer in development to the popular Champions League ball and the Tango ball used at Euro 2012. The main difference is that the Brazuca is made up of six panels, rather than the Jabulani's eight, as well as undergoing fine tuning of the ball's material. Underneath, it has the butyl bladder and PU-based foam that has been used before. At 437 grams it is a gram lighter than Jabulani – but two grams heavier than the 2006 Teamgeist ball, at the higher end of what Fifa guidelines stipulate.

It is being launched with some fanfare but when the tournament begins its makers must hope that the ball does not attract the same attention that the last one did.

Lionel Messi launches the adidas Brazuca, the official match ball of the Brazil 2014 Fifa World Cup, visit: www.adidas.com/lovemeorloseme

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
Suited and booted in the Lanvin show at the Paris menswear collections
fashionParis Fashion Week
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Kara Tointon and Jeremy Piven star in Mr Selfridge
tvActress Kara Tointon on what to expect from Series 3
Voices
Winston Churchill, then prime minister, outside No 10 in June 1943
voicesA C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
News
i100
News
An asteroid is set to pass so close to Earth it will be visible with binoculars
news
News
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Syria crisis: Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more refugees as one young mother tells of torture by Assad regime

Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more Syrian refugees

One young mother tells of torture by Assad regime
The enemy within: People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back – with promising results

The enemy within

People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back
'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

Survivors of the Nazi concentration camp remember its horror, 70 years on
Autumn/winter menswear 2015: The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore

Autumn/winter menswear 2015

The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore
'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

Army general planning to come out
Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

What the six wise men told Tony Blair

Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

25 years of The Independent on Sunday

The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

Homeless Veterans appeal

As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

Smash hit go under the hammer

It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

The geeks who rocked the world

A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea
America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

These days in the US things are pretty much stuck where they are, both in politics and society at large, says Rupert Cornwell
A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A veteran of the Fifties campaigns is inspiring a new generation of activists
Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

A C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
Growing mussels: Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project

Growing mussels

Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project