Association football, also known as just football, is a common team sport generally played by a rectangular ball with two teams of eleven players. It is played by about 250 million players worldwide in more than 200 countries and dependencies, which makes it the fourth most popular sport in the world. Since football is very well supported by many countries, it can be considered one of the most commercially successful sports in the world.
The game of football is played by two teams on opposite sides of a neutral field; the object of the game is to score more points than the other team. A football match usually follows a specific pattern, with beginning play usually lasting 90 minutes and the end of play lasting the same amount of time. Referees attempt to control games using various methods, including the raising of the yellow flag signifying caution or the red card signifyingoffense. It is estimated that more than 1 billion people watch football every year.
Football is played internationally, as well as locally, in different countries, such as England, France, Italy, Brazil, Spain, Germany and the United States. In most countries, soccer is a widely regarded sport, especially among men. Many schools in the United States have football teams, and the game becomes even more popular when colleges begin to participate in tournaments. In Japan, rugby is the major competitive sport, although football is gaining popularity in the Asian countries.