Adidas Has Used New Tech In Footballs To Show That Cristiano Ronaldo Did Not Score Against Uruguay

Ronaldo claimed he got the faintest of touches with his head on Bruno Fernandes’ cross to give Portugal the lead as he celebrated jubilantly, but FIFA later awarded the goal to Fernandes. The Manchester United midfielder, however, credited Ronaldo with the goal, as he told reporters afterward: “The feeling I had was that Cristiano touched the ball.”

But, thanks to a sensor inside the ball, Adidas has now proven that the 37-year-old never touched Fernandes’ cross. An Adidas statement read: “Using the Connected Ball Technology housed in Adidas Al Rihla Official Match Ball, we are able to definitively show no contact on the ball from Cristiano Ronaldo for the opening goal in the game.” No external force on the ball could be measured, as shown by the lack of a “heartbeat” in the measurements and in the attached graphic. “The 500 Hz IMU sensor inside the ball allows for a high level of accuracy in the analysis.”

A highly tuned motion sensor is embedded within the match balls at the Qatar World Cup in order to help the VAR with offside calls. The technology allows data to be collected for every touch at a rate of 500 times per second. The sensor is powered by a rechargeable battery. It was rigorously tested at the grassroots level to make sure it was match-ready for the World Cup, including a blind test in the FIFA Arab Cup and FIFA Club World Cup. Johannes Holzmüller, Director of Football Technology & Innovation at FIFA, said: “This technology is the culmination of three years of dedicated research and testing by FIFA and our partner Adidas.”

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