History of Foosball

History of Foosball

If you’re an American and have played Foosball before you might think that it’s a weird name; because you’re playing soccer and as far as you know, there are no foos in soccer. And you would be correct. Foos is not an English word. Foosball comes from the German word  Fußball which means football. If you are from any other part of the world, you recognize the game of soccer by the name football. Why does America have to be so different? Why do we use Fahrenheit and the Imperial system? Great question for another blog.

Foosball started in Europe around the 1880’s.
But no one is exactly sure who invented this game or why it was invented. There is speculation that it was to help one man’s grandchildren stave off boredom during the winter. There is also the theory that a wounded soldier came up with the idea on his hospital bed. Regardless of its start, it was patented by an Englishman named Harold Searles Thornton in 1923. The game that he patented looks very much like the game that we play today.


Foosball made its way across the pond around the 1960’s by Lawrence Patterson.

He discovered the game while being stationed in Germany and brought his favorite game home. He started running some tournaments, and the game found traction. But it blew up with E. Lee Peppard who created his brand of tables and tournaments based on his tables. He traveled around the country with tournament prizes ranging from $1,500 all the way up to $100,000. This lasted until the late 70’s when a rising new form of entertainment, the video game, overthrew foosball as king of recreation.


Foosball is still considered to be one of the most accessible and fun games to play.
It’s easy rules, and compact design allowed it to be understood and played by anyone who would want to have some fun. If you are looking into a foosball table, you may want to check out our online store. You can also visit our warehouse to see any of our products first hand. Happy Foosballing!
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