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How to play table football

Table football, more commonly known as football or table football, is a popular table game played at bars and other facilities. This game is fairly simple, but there are some simple rules you should keep in mind before diving into a new game or tournament. Take a few minutes to review the game or update your memory so you can impress both friends and acquaintances during your next match!


[[[[Edit]Understand the rules and the game

  1. Examine the different parts of the table. Note that the table looks like a mini soccer field, with 8 poles running across the field. These are marked by the number of mini “players”
    ; on each rod. Each team has 2 striking poles, known as a 5-pole and a 3-pole, together with 2 defensive poles, so-called 2-poles and goalkeeper rod. Along the sides of the table you can find a serving hole where the ball goes to start the game.[1]
    Play table football step 1.jpg
    • When the ball enters the goal, it rolls into the table cabinet. There are slots or openings along the sides of the table where you can find and reuse the cut balls.
  2. Plan to score 5 goals before your opponent does. As the name of the game suggests, table football is similar to a real football game or football. You use both hands to maneuver the sticks and control your “players”, who kick and pass the ball along the table. As in a real football game, your goal is to kick the ball past the goalkeeper and get a point for your team. When you have scored five goals, you have won the game![2]
    Play table football step 2.jpg
    • You can also set your own game conditions. If you play a quick match, the first person to 1-2 goals can be the winner.
  3. Decide if you want to play alone or with a team. You control all four poles if you play yourself, or you can split your team’s poles among other players. In this format, one player will control the offensive 3-bar and 5-bar, while the other player will control the defensive 2-bar and the goalkeeper. You can also split the sticks between 3 or 4 people, depending on how you want to play.[3]
    Play Table Football Step 3.jpg
    • When playing with multiple people, you can only control your assigned stick, as no switching is allowed during the game.[4]
  4. Serve the ball so the game can begin. Block the serving hole with your left hand and then slide the ball into the hole. Lift your left hand away from the cover and move it to the handle on the 5-bar striking pole. At this time, you spin the hand that holds the ball so that the ball lands on your side of the table.[5]
    Play Table Football Step 4.jpg
    • You can flip a coin to decide who gets to earn first.[6]
  5. Make your bets within 10-15 seconds after you get the ball. Keep a mental clock running in your head as you play the game. Countdown from 10 as soon as the 5-bar receives the ball. If your 3-bar, 2-bar or goalkeeper bar gets the ball, you have 15 seconds to play.[7]
    Play Table Football Step 5.jpg
    • If you do not play the ball within ten seconds, the game is reset and your opponent is allowed to serve.
  6. Reset the ball when it is “dead”. Grab the ball if it flies from the table. Place the ball near the server’s 2-stick so that they can restart the game. If the ball rolls into a dead zone near the goalkeeper, move it to the nearest corner. If the ball dies on another part of the table, you can place the ball in front of the original server for the round.[8]
    Play table football step 6.jpg
    • The ball goes to the opponent of the one who kicked the ball from the table or forced it into a dead zone.
    • If the ball spins, it is not dead.
  7. Change pages after each game if you play multiple games. Play through your first football match until 1 team gets 5 points. At this time, switch sides so that you use the bars and players on the opposite side of the table. You have 60 seconds to switch, otherwise you will be penalized for slowing down the game.[9]
    Play table football step 7.jpg
    • You can punish someone by letting the other team serve first or by choosing another similar punishment.

[[[[Edit]Plays seizures

  1. Fold your hand around the handle without touching your thumb and fingers. Try not to squeeze or grab the handle too much – instead wrap your hand gently, with the palm on top of the handle and the thumb and fingers on opposite sides of each other. Grasp the handles so you can make stable, stable games.[10]
    Play table football step 8.jpg
    • Try not to keep your thumb on top of the handle, otherwise you will not have much control over your swings.[11]
    • You do not want white knuckles while playing.
  2. Hold out your game sticks so you can make clearer pictures. Keep your two offensive play sticks separate, leaving a large gap to pass and serve successfully. Keep your players lined up so you can send the ball clean and tidy, allowing you to make more effective shots on goal.[12]
    Play table football step 9.jpg
    • Try to shoot your offensive players so that they are placed between your opponent’s defensive players.
  3. Send the ball to your player line with 3 sticks. Secure the ball under your 5-bar post after serving. Rotate the bar so that the player’s foot is at a 90 degree angle behind the ball. Move the player forward to “kick” the ball, but continue to swing the player up to follow the kick. “Receive” the pass with your 3-bar row by holding your 3-bar player at an angle of 30 to 45 degrees behind the ball.[13]
    Play Table Football Step 10.jpg
    • Like real football or soccer, passing is a valuable strategy that can help you keep the ball moving.
  4. Try an open grip when making offensive shots. Loosen the grip and allow the bottom of the palm and the top of the wrist to touch the handle. Push your wrist and hand up to create a powerful offensive kick. Try to pull your wrist while doing this so that your movements can be as fluid as possible.[14]
    Play table football step 11.jpg
    • Avoid spinning the rod in a full circle, as it is illegal.

[[[[Edit]Plays defense

  1. Combine your defensive rods to make more effective play. Slide your defensive bar so that your goalkeeper and one of your defenders are shoulder to shoulder. Keep these players close to each other so that your opponent does not have as many clear opportunities to shoot at your goal.[15]
    Play Table Football Step 12.jpg
    • The ball should not be able to pass through your goalkeeper or your defender.
  2. Block your opponent’s game with your 2 defensive sticks. Shoot and twist your two rods that are closest to your target, which will help you block and defend your target. Keep an eye on the ball and then shoot your defenders and goalkeeper so that the ball stays away from your goal.[16]
    Play table football step 13.jpg
    • While the goalkeeper and defense can be used to score, they are usually used to defend and clear the ball.
  3. Clear the ball from your goal with one of your defensive bars. Put a lot of force in your “kick” when the ball ends up in your defensive area. Pause the ball with your player before passing or kicking it forward. If you send a rolling ball towards your opponent, you can give them a free kick on your goal.[17]
    Play Table Football Step 14.jpg
    • The main focus of clearing the ball is to keep your goal safe and not collect points.
  4. Bend bad shots from your opponent to their goal. Keep your eyes open for weak shots that your opponent evens out, allowing the ball to roll towards your players. Take these opportunities to kick the ball with your own players. Depending on the lineup, you may be able to make your opponent’s bad play an unlikely goal![18]
    Play Table Football Step 15.jpg


  • Try not to make any drastic movements with your players. Instead, keep them close to the ball at all times.[19]
  • Create unique, unpredictable patterns throughout the game so your opponent can’t guess your next move.[20]
  • Stay focused during all aspects of the game, even when your players have no control over the ball.[21]
  • You can play a 1v1 football match or play with several players. If you play with multiple team members, players cannot change sticks in the middle of the game.[22]


  • Do not be rude or unsportsmanlike to your opponent during a game.[23]
  • Avoid spinning the rods at all costs! This is illegal and makes you look like a bad player.[24]
  • Do not force or move the table while playing.[25]
  • Refrain from distracting your opponent to your own advantage.[26]
  • Do not touch the ball unless you are resetting it for serving.[27]



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