Popularity and visibility of freestyle football is spreading across the world with talent posing and posting their skills in amazing places around the globe. From North America to Europe and Asia, freestyle has given performers the chance to demonstrate their control, footwork, and creativity in some of the craziest and coolest locales on the globe. Here are 10 places that will make you want to pick up the ball and experience the sport for yourself!
10. Lecce, Italy
Kotaro Tokuda, also known as “Tokura,” participated in the 2012 Red Bull Street Style tournament in Italy. He and other competitors battled it out for a world championship title in Red Bull’s tournament which took place in Lecce, Italy. Tokura took first place. Tokura is a Japanese native who started playing soccer in the 6th grade. After a field injury, he took to freestyle and has competed in tournaments around the world.
9. Eiffel Tower, Paris, France
Freestyler Fernando Pitt performed for an interview in Paris, France, in 2012 where he showed off his unique moves. In this short video directed by Pedro Perestrello, Pitt can be seen freestyling all throughout the picturesque landscape of Paris, including the iconic Eiffel Tower. Pitt’s flamboyant style and routines, which incorporate dancing to Michael Jackson’s “Thriller,” are a stylish contrast to the classic and historic setting of Paris.
8. World Cup Rooftop
Proclaimed by soccer superstar Lionel Messi as the best freestyler in the world, Indi Cowie showed off her skills on a neighborhood rooftop in 2014 shedding 32 World Cup jerseys one at at time! Cowie’s original career in soccer was halted when an injury on the field caused her retirement from college ball. She has since turned her injury into one of the most successful contemporary freestyle careers to date.
7. Calgary, Shanghai & Melbourne, Australia
Every year the Freestyle Football World Tour goes to locations around the world to promote freestyle and hold a competition for the 16 best freestylers in the world. This year, tournaments will take place in Calgary, Canada (Sept. 23-24), Shanghai, China (Oct 22) and Melbourne, Australia (Dec. 2-3).
6. Madrid, Spain
World champ and freestyle veteran Szymo battles it out in the busy streets of Madrid, Spain, for an enthralled crowd. Gotta love busking!
5. Sacre-Coeur, Paris, France
Guinness World Record holder Iya Traore wows a crowd while performing tricks on the rooftop of the historic Basilica of the Sacred Heart of Paris. Traore, a native of Guinea, started out as a goalkeeper in his village before traveling the globe with ball in tow.
4. Oceanside, CA
F2Freestylers Billy Wingrove and Jeremy Lynch go around the world making freestyle and soccer tutorials and generally taking over the world with their stylish performances. The pair stopped by the crisp beaches of Oceanside, CA, to check out a beach soccer championship as well as show off their skills in the sand. They’re just two wild and crazy guys!
3. Dublin, Ireland
Irish Freestyle football champion Daniel Dennehy takes fans around Dublin, Ireland, where he shows off his seasoned skills. From inside a subway car to local markets and shopping centers, Dennehy wows onlookers and shows why he is one of the pioneers in the sport.
2. Times Square, New York, New York
In the bustle of New York City’s Times Square, Guinness World Record holder “Wass” shows why The Big Apple is one of the greatest places for street entertainment. He wows fans with amazing tricks, even battling Mickey Mouse as he entertains tourists. Wass has traveled internationally and incorporates freestyle moves with dancing and athletic feats.
1. Urban House, Holland
Freestylers from the Netherlands are notoriously technical, hardcore competitors, and this past April the Red Bull Street Style competition at Urban House in Holland showcased some of the best in the field. Those who qualified move on to the Red Bull Street Style world finals in London, England, this November.
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