Football and Technology

Deutsches Patent- und Markenamt



Why write these pages?

In many countries worldwide football is the number one popular sport. A wealth of inventions and a long history of technology are behind this "beautiful game". However, only very little has so far been published on its technical development. Since its foundation the DPMA has accompanied inventions related to football. Here you can find the ideas and developments that have led to the products of modern times.

This presentation by the DPMA was first published for the 2006 World Cup in Germany. Since then it has been continuously updated. Now you can find an overview showing the latest developments added to the originally presented treasures.

What is presented on this site?

From shin guards to the referee whistle, from goalkeeper gloves to the ball, from innovative blood quick tests to the VAR there is so much to discover! Surely, this overview does not claim to be exhaustive. Not every invention led to a patent, and not every patent was turned into a product. The world of inventions relating to football is simply too big.

How is the topic presented?

In the menu item "Technology" you will find a list with separate chapters about individual areas describing the historical developments, illustrated by patent documents, eg. the development ranging from the wobbly, hand-sewn leather ball to the sensor-equipped, fully synthetic football. At the end of each section you will find a list of relevant patent documents that can be viewed in PDF format. In addition, you can find a selection of - in our view - typical patent documents on the respective topics, in the menu item "Documents".

What other options are available for you to access patents? You may search for yourself in the DEPATIS patent database of the DPMA (not only with regard to football!). Anybody can access the world of patents at It also provides a detailed guide on how to search.