Difference Between Soccer and Ice Hockey

As far as similarities go, both games are team-sports and revolve around an object which a team tries to put through the opposition’s goal. In all other respects, the two games are as different as they can be, whether you look at their rules or appearances.

Soccer is known as football outside America and is played on a grass field with no protective clothing as such. Ice hockey on the other hand, is played on artificial ice, with the players wearing helmets and other protection as they skate on the rink. Soccer involves players using both feet to kick the ball, while in ice hockey the players use a hockey stick to move the puck.


  • 1


    Soccer, more commonly known as football, is a 22-player sport, with 11 players from each team. The whole purpose of the game is to shoot the ball in the goal of the opposing side.  The goalkeepers from both teams are the only players allowed to touch the ball with their hands, while the rest of the players use their feet or their heads to move the ball around. By touching the ball with their hands deliberately or unintentionally these players commit a foul.

    While the game is called soccer only in America, the word was first used in England in the 1880s as an “-er" abbreviation for "association".

    The game is divided into two halves of 45 minutes, after which both teams change their goal sides.

    Football governing bodies

    -Asia: Asian Football Confederation (AFC)
    -Africa: Confederation of African Football (CAF)
    -Europe: Union of European Football Associations (UEFA)
    -North/Central America & Caribbean: Confederation of North, Central American and Caribbean Association Football (CONCACAF)
    -Oceania: Oceania Football Confederation (OFC)
    -South America: Confederación Sudamericana de Fútbol/Confederação Sul-americana de Futebol (South American Football Confederation; CONMEBOL)

    It needs to be mentioned here that FIFA is only body responsible for international competition rules and arrangements of these competitions while it is the International Football Association Board which makes the actual Laws of the Game.

    Domestic competitions are arranged by the country’s football governing bodies, which run a league system. Football leagues are very popular, and while these competitions are domestic, they feature many international players from different countries playing together and against each other.

    Some of the world’s best players can be seen featuring in Europe’s top five leagues which include, the Premier League (England), La Liga (Spain), the Bundesliga (Germany), Serie A (Italy and Ligue 1 (France).

    Image Courtesy: scsa-soccer.org

  • 2

    Ice Hockey

    This sport is popular in Canada and the United States of America, where it is simply known as “Hockey”. The game involves 12 players, six from each side, including the goalkeepers. In this game five players from each team move the puck towards the opposition’s goal by skating. Except for the goalkeepers no one else is allowed to touch the puck with hands.

    Image Courtesy: amaizeinblue.com

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

three + = 8