Is It Soccer Or Football

Is It Soccer Or Football?

Ask a British person whether they watched the soccer game and they will likely answer “Don’t you mean football?”. Ask an American if they watched the football game and they will think you are talking about a completely different sport. So, which one is it? Is it soccer or football? Well, the answer is it’s both. Some countries call this popular sport soccer and some countries call it football. In this post, we will take a look at which countries call football soccer, which countries call soccer football, and why some countries call it soccer instead of football. Let’s get started.

Which Countries Call Football Soccer?

Most people know that in the United States, we call football soccer. But did you know other countries also refer to this game as soccer? Here’s a list of countries that call football soccer.

The United States

In the U.S.A, football actually refers to a completely different game. Football in America is often referred to as American football and the game which is referred to as football in the U.K is simply called soccer in America.


Australia is another country that calls football soccer. Just like America, Australia uses football to refer to a different sport. In this case, it is ‘Australian Rules Football’ and is a game significantly different from soccer. So, in Australia, they call football soccer.


As you can imagine, in Canada, American is football is much more popular than soccer. So, in Canada, they refer to football as soccer.

New Zealand

New Zealand is another country which calls football soccer. Although the most popular sport in New Zealand is rugby, they still call association football soccer.


With Ireland being so close to the U.K you would imagine they would use the word football just as they do in Britain. However, Ireland has ‘Gaelic Football’ which is their own kind of football game. So, in Ireland, they call football soccer.

South Africa

South Africa calls association football soccer and is the country’s most popular team sport.

Which Countries Call Soccer Football?

As you can see, there are not many countries that use the word soccer to refer to association football. I fact, most countries use the word football. Here is a list of countries that use the word football to refer to association football, A.K.A, soccer.

  • Albania – futboll
  • Andorra – futbol
  • Angola – futebol
  • Anguilla – football
  • Antigua and Barbuda – football
  • Argentina – fútbol
  • Austria – Fußball
  • Azerbaijan – futbol
  • The Bahamas – football
  • Barbados – football
  • Belgium – football
  • Belize – football
  • Benin – football
  • Bolivia – football
  • Brazil – futebol
  • Cameroon – football
  • Central African Republic – football
  • Chad – fútbol
  • Colombia – fútbol
  • Comoros – football
  • Congo – football
  • Congo DR – football
  • Costa Rica – fútbol
  • Cote d’Ivoire – football
  • Cuba – fútbol
  • Czech Republic – fotbal
  • Demark – fodbold
  • Djibouti – football
  • Dominica – football
  • Dominican Republic – fútbol
  • Ecuador – fútbol
  • El Salvador – fútbol
  • Equatorial Guinea – fútbol
  • England – football
  • France – football
  • Gabon – football
  • Germany – Fußball
  • Grenada – football
  • Guatemala – fútbol
  • Guinea – football
  • Haiti – foutbòl
  • Honduras – fútbol
  • Hong Kong – football
  • Hungary – futball
  • Jamaica – football
  • Latvia – futbols
  • Liechtenstein – Fußball
  • Malaysia – phutball
  • Mali – football
  • Malta – football
  • Mexico – football
  • Monaco – football
  • Morocco – football
  • Mozambique – futebol
  • Namibia – futebol
  • New Caledonia – football
  • Nicaragua – fútbol
  • Niger – football
  • Norway – fotball
  • Panama – fútbol
  • Paraguay – fútbol
  • Peru – fútbol
  • Poland – futbol
  • Porugal – futebol
  • Romania – forbal
  • Russia – futbol
  • Rwanda – football
  • Scotland – football
  • Senegal – football
  • Seychelles – football
  • Slovakia – futbal
  • Spain – fútbol
  • St Kitts and Nevis – football
  • St Lucia – football
  • St Vincent and the Grenadines – football
  • Sweden – fotboll
  • Switzerland – football
  • Tajikistan – futbol
  • Thailand – fút-bol
  • Togo – football
  • Trinidad & Tobago
  • Turkey – futbol
  • Ukraine – futbol
  • Uruguay – fútbol
  • Uzbekistan – futbol
  • Vanuatu – football
  • Venezuela – fútbol

Why Is Football Sometimes Called Soccer?

As you can see above, football is much more commonly used to refer to association football. So why is football sometimes called soccer?

Soccer is often used to refer to football in countries where a sport with a similar name exists. For example, in the United States there is ‘American Football’, in Australia there is ‘Australian Rules Football’, and in Ireland, there is ‘Gaelic football’. The term soccer is used in these countries to distinguish association football from other sports.

The word ‘soccer’ actually derives from the term ‘Association Football’ which was used in Britain over 200 years ago to distinguish it from another type of football, ‘Rugby Football’. Over time, ‘Rugby Football’ was shortened to ‘Rugger’, and ‘Association Football’ was shortened to ‘soccer’.

Even though the term soccer was coined in Britain, ‘Association Football’ is simply referred to as ‘football’ in the United Kingdom and in many other countries, and ‘soccer’ is used in only a few countries that already have a popular sport named ‘football’.

Thanks for reading. I hope it is now clearer as to whether it is called soccer or football. Before you go, be sure to check out our free soccer resources, including Soccer Skills Guides, Soccer Coaching Resources, and Soccer Drills.