As any child of the ’90s knows, Sunday afternoons meant a bit of back garden Swingball. Even your neighbours were fans, given the increased likelihood of their windows staying intact. And now footballers and window owners alike can rejoice, because ex-Barça legend Xavi has created Tocball, a football version of the tennis classic.
“When people think about me, they think about the pass,” Xavi tells FFT. “I’m not physical, I’m not quick; Tocball perfectly reflects the Xavi way.”
It’s a gloriously simple idea: a football swings from side to side with every kick, while mounted on a weighted base.
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“You can kick the ball with any part of your foot and put some spin on it,” says Xavi, shortly before giving us a demonstration. “You can spot a mishit straight away. You have to concentrate – even I struggle sometimes. It’s tough, but brilliant for your technique.”
After a number of less-than-perfect attempts, FFT agrees – it is tough – but Xavi reckons academies around the world will be keen to buy into the idea.
“We’re taking it to clubs now,” says the Spain legend. “I just hope it can improve players. Sergio Busquets saw a photo of it and rang me up asking about it, maybe for his back garden!”
Well, if it’s good enough for Xavi and Busquets, put us down for 12.
To buy one (RRP €125), visit tocball.com