History of the game

History of the game

The history of the game, from the original invention and patent registration in 1929, following the centuries up to todays modern sports table football.

Flick to kick – the three (3) well known and famous words, printed on millions of boxes and catalogues. showing how the game is played.

1929 – 2029 will experience the 100 year jubilee of this fantastic table top game, which featured millions of sold sets and millions of fantastic championship- and cup matches played on the classic green cloth, all over our blue planet.

Come in and join us in our glorious time travel journey from the last millenium up to the main entrance of modern sports venues.



Timeline Abbreviation Historical fact Important Person Other information
1893 Newfooty Mr William Lane Keeling was born (around) September. (b.1893 – d.1976) William Lane Keeling Birth
1916 Subbuteo Mr Peter Adolph was born.  (b.1916 – d 1994) Peter Adolph Birth
1925 Newfooty Table football/soccer invented from Mr. William Lane Keeling for his children. The Development began until the patent was able to be registered. William Lane Keeling Development
1929 Newfooty Newfooty Company founded and invented table football / soccer material. The figures where flat version with a plastic base and lead at the bottom of the base. The patent for Newfooty was registered. William Lane Keeling Patent registration
1934 NPA The ‘Newfooty Players Association’ (NPA) was founded. In England people could become member to participate in Leagues and Cup competitions. It was the world’s first “players association” organized by Newfooty Company. There was also a Newfooty player of the Year Trophy. The Newfooty handbook “Libro Oficial” was also available in Spanish language with “Instrucciones y Reglamentos” for “Futbol de Mesa”. NPA  
1939 Newfooty Newfooty Patent ran 1929–1934, and a second period of 5 years, 1934–1939. William Lane Keeling ..
1947 Subbuteo Subbuteo Sports Games Ltd was founded by Mr. Peter Adolph. New material and flat cardboard figures came into sales. Peter Adolph Flat figures
1948 FBFTS The first national association was founded in Belgium (FBFTS). Mr. Beliard becomes the first Belgium champion. The world has its first  table football/soccer champion. Mr. Beliard Belgium
1950 TSPA Peter Adolph founds the ‘Table Soccer Players Association’ (TSPA) in England. Peter Adolph TSPA
1953 Newfooty Newfooty brings the first 3D plastic figurine into the market. William Lane Keeling 3D
1954 NTVB The Dutch federation (NTVB) was founded in Haarlem (NED). NTVB ..
1957 Subbuteo Subbuteo Sports Games Ltd. takes over rivals Newfooty Company from Liverpool. 1957–58 the first team championship was played in Belgium. Subbuteo Club Jemeppe became the first team champion. Peter Adolph Company takeover
1960 FBFTS The first international match (National Teams) was played in Bruxelles (BEL) on 7 February 1960, between Belgium and the Netherlands. Belgium won. The foundation of an international federation was in line. Later in Oct./Nov. 1960, England lost 1–2 vs. Belgium in Tunbridge the 2nd International match. .. International match.
1961 UES The “Union Europeene de Subbuteo (UES)” was founded in Schiedam (NED) by Mr. Ling (NTVB), Mr Kroonberg (FBFTS) and Mr. Feuerlein (DSTFB). He was the first president of the DSTFB (GER), which was founded shortly before the creation of the UES/UNEFTA. The UES was the predecessor of the ETF. UES Foundation
1963 ETF The motivation was set to found a real European table football/soccer federation, for all European countries. The ‘European Table Soccer Federation’ ETF / ‘Union Europeene de Football de table’ UNEFTA’ was founded in 1963 by the three active nations: Belgium, the Netherlands and Germany. The BTSA (British Table Soccer Association) was founded and invited, but showed no interest in joining the ETF. .. ..
1964 ETF The 1st ETF Europa Cup was played in Rotterdam (NL), which saw Marinus Schild became the first International Champion. .. ..
1965 ETF BEL, NED, GER, ENG and FRA participated in Bruxelles at the 2nd Edition of the ETF Cup. The first French player at the ETF Europa Cup was Mr.de Smet (FRA). The BTSA was changed into BSTSA with the S standing for Subbuteo. xxx ..
1967 BSTSA The British Subbuteo Table Soccer Association (BSTSA) splits into separate independent associations, with free choice of material and not regulated by Subbuteo. The foundation of the English Table Soccer Association (ETSA), Scottish (STSA) and Welsh (WTSA) were based on democratic elections. .. ..
1969 WSSG Waddingtons take over Subbuteo Sports Games (SSG). The SSTFB (later SSTV) was founded in Switzerland by Mr. Dieter Brechbühl. SSG Company takeover
1970 SSG The 1st Subbuteo World Cup was played in London (ENG). Subbuteo Sports Games. Peter Adolph World Cup.
1973 EÖTV The EÖTV was founded in Vienna, Austria by Mr. Gustav Adler. Gustav Adler ..
1975 FISCT The Italian championships are organized. In March the ‘Federatione Italian Calcio Miniatura Subbuteo’ FICMS is founded. The FICMS is affiliated with the ETF, the European federation, where all materials are permitted. FICMS plays only with the 3D-Subbuteo figures and not with the flat traditional figures. Edilio Parodi FICMS
1976 Newfooty William Lane Keeling departed William Lane Keeling departed
1979 FISA FISA (Subbuteo company controlled) was founded as an alternative to ETF (democratic sports federation). .. ..
1980 FISA The 1st FISA European Championship (National teams of 1 Senior and 2 Junior) where played in Rome (ITA). .. ..
1983 ETF The ETF Nations Cup made a comeback on behalf of DSTFB German initiative . Horst Becker ..
1985 ETF-FISA The Europa Cup for club teams was born (in-official event). The Nations came closer. Eric Naszalyi  
1987 FICMS The FICMS was closed and the Associationi Italia Calcio in Miniatura Subbuteo (AICiMS) was founded. The name was changed, because it was necessary to remove the word “Federation” (replaced by “Association”), it was a bureaucratic issue, due to the relationship with ‘Comitato Olimpico Nazionale Italiano’ (CONI). Curiously the same problem arose again in 2013 in FISCT. AICIMS  
1992 FISTF FISTF was founded in Hamburg, Germany, 16 June 1992. On the same weekend the Subbuteo European Championship was held in Hamburg. Laurent Garnier Willy Hofmann
1993 FISTF-ESTF The 1. FISTF European Championship was played in Verviers (BEL). The 30th Edition of the ETF (ESTF) Europa Cup was played and ESTF defunct in Farehem (ENG) with the democratic votes of the participating nations (ENG, WAL, SCO, MAL, AUT, GER, SUI, NED). Belgium and France did not participate. The FISTF Europa Cup for clubs had its official debut edition played. Defunct  
1994 FISTF-FISA The 1st FISTF World Championship was played in Paris (FRA) and the 7th FISA Subbuteo World Cup was played for the first time outside Europe, in Chicago, (USA). In the same year Hasbro (USA) take over Waddingtons Sports Games section (UK), including Monopoly and Cluedo. Mr. Peter Adolph, the founder of Subbuteo Sports Games departed. Two world cups

Company takeover.


1995 ZEUGO Zeugo playing equipment was introduced. The Emilio Parodi company (Genoa, ITA) created their own table football sets and material. Edilio and Giovanni Parodi  
1996 FISA FISA was defunct in London (ENG) after the last edition. Hasbro fails to supply good playing material for the world players. Many new manufacturers arose to supply good quality playing material. ..  
1998 GSS Global Sports Games (Lichtenstein), The ‘Toccer’ figure was invented by Willy Hofmann (SUI). Willy Hofmann  
2000 FISTF The FISTF World Masters was installed.    
2010 FISTF The Europa Cup for clubs was rebranded into the FISTF Champions- and Europa League.    
2011 WASPA World Amateur Subbuteo Players Association founded from Mr. Vincent Coppenolle (Belgium). Vincent Coppenolle  
2014 NSVB 60 years of Sports table football in the Netherlands (NSVB). Jubilee  
2017 FISTF, Subbuteo 70 Years Subbuteo trade mark. 25 Years FISTF. Jubilee  
2017 CASTFA The Confederation of Asian Sports Table Football Associations (CASTFA) was founded in Tokyo 11 June 2017 by executives of NOSKSJ (Japan), TFAS (Singapore), ATFA (Australia), and FISTF Vice President, Stephen Dettre. Kenzo Koi was named first president of CASTFA ..  
2018 FISTF World Cup in Gibraltar, the smallest country as FISTF member will be host to the main Event. GTSA  
2018 FBFTS 70 Years FBFTS-Belgian Association. 1. WASPA World Cup in Budapest, Hungaria Vincent Coppenolle  
2019 SSTV, Newfooty 50 Years SSTV-Swiss Association. 90 Years Newfooty invention. The European Youth Champions League, 1st Edition William Lane Keeling  
2020 CONASTF The Confederation of North American Sports Table Football was founded 8th February 2020 in Ontario (Canada). Founding members are American Subbuteo Association and Subbuteo Canada. The foundation fell during the time when the Corona Virus Covid-19 emerged world wide and several FISTF tournaments had to be cancelled. The World Cup 2020 in Rome, Italy was postponed until 2021. Horst Deimel Mike Sgro, Bryan Arnold
2022 FISTF 30 Years FISTF Laurent Garnier  
2023 EÖTV, DSTFB 50 Years EÖTV-Austrian Association. 60 Years DSTFB-German Association. Jubilee  
2025 FISCT 50 Years FISCT-Italian Association (formal FICMS and AICIMS) Jubilee  
2029 STF 100 Years Sport Table Football, from Newfooty to modern Sport Table Football/Soccer. 100 Years  
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Last update: 2020 April 10