B-sports brought the Bubble football game to Egypt recently. It is revealed as a hilarious new game that puts soccer players inside bouncing, inflatable suits.
We have all dreamt of flying inside a soap bubble but we never thought we could be a bubble with two legs! This new brand of the Beautiful Game (football) brings a whole new meaning to ball control because players compete inside giant BUBBLES. The game sees 12 players encased in zorb-like inflatable bubbles and then encouraged to bounce into each other as they fight for possession of the ball.
“It started out as a joke by Henrick Elvestad & John Gold, hosts of Golden Goal, the Norwegian comedy sports show. They posted a video of them playing on YouTube at the end of 2011 as a gag, then its popularity spread across Europe like wildfire,” said Mohamed Hassan, 31, general manager of the project, adding that bubble football is the creation of Lee Moseley, 30, who used to work as an asbestos surveyor but packed in his day job to set up his dream company.
“When I first watched it on YouTube being played in the French school leagues, it really grabbed my attention. As a man who graduated from the faculty of physical and education sports and knows that the field of sports entertainment in Egypt is very narrow, I wanted to give it a try as it’s an easy, funny and safe game. So, I started the spark and I’ve been supported by three of my friends and partners,” Hassan recalled.
It’s a new version of the game of football, where players wear a huge transparent plastic ball that covers from above the head to the knees, then start bumping into a competing team to score a goal. “You are strapped to the ball by specific belts and you hold on to the ball by two hand-holders,” he added.
Players are split into two teams facing each other with a football in the middle and when the referee blows the whistle they all run to reach the ball and try to score. According to Hassan, the rules of the game are the same as football; team members consist of 4-6 players each team. Duration is 30 minutes including instructions.
“We weren’t all aware of bubble football, so the organising team met us prior to the match and gave us simple instructions and precautions for our safety. It was real fun and a great experience,” said Pakinam Adel, 26, a tour operator, who knew about bubble football from her younger brother, then decided to go with her friends to try it. “We played it at Al Tanmia club in Sheraton but there are a couple of people who got the idea though working with a limited number of balls and no strategy.”
It wasn’t easy to launch the game. B-sports first started searching and negotiating with producers of bubble football in Europe, who were looking for a location for their headquarters. “We worked on an attractive brand name and logo, then spread flyers and created our Facebook page. Then we rented a dodge van with the logo and one bubble football in the truck for demonstrations,” said Hassan. People’s interest in the game actually surprised the team. The numbers of players increased and fans turned out to be from all ages and genders – especially females!
Bubble football is the first in several ideas coming from B-sports who have a new game hitting Egypt this summer. “Our goal is to lead the field of entertainment sports in Egypt and the Middle East. We have already launched in Kuwait a couple of months ago and we are planning to open in four other countries by the end of this year,” Hassan ended up.