The Origin of FIFA Tricks and Skills

  • Every new FIFA game comes with the tacit expectation that it will inch a little bit closer to the real thing. From the Rabona to the elastico, we take a closer look at some of FIFA’s exotically named feats. By the way, if you need fifa 17 coins, welcome our site.

    Elastico (aka flip-flap)

    The elastico, seen in FIFA as early as 2007, is so-named because of the crazy contortion skills required to execute it, but it's one of the skill's alternative names that paints the more vivid picture: the flip-flap. This dribbling skill involves the player prodding the ball one way with the outside of their boot, before quickly wrapping the same foot around the opposite side of the ball in a single fluid movement.
    Perhaps the most famous (though far from exclusive) practitioner in recent years has been the Brazilian legend Ronaldinho, but the trick was first brought to the world's attention in the 1960s by another Brazilian with a name beginning in 'R,' Rivellino. Knock it out in the latest FIFA by rotating your right stick 180 degrees backwards, either right to left or left to right.

    Cruyff turn

    Perhaps the most iconic dribbling skill of them all, the Cruyff turn is also one of the simplest to execute. Despite this, its best practitioners tend to be among the most technically accomplished dribblers around. Named after the legendary Dutch player of the 1970s, Johan Cruyff, the Cruyff turn is a feint that involves dragging the ball back behind your standing foot. The great Ajax and Barcelona playmaker famously executed the move during the 1974 World Cup, completely bamboozling Swedish defender Jan Olsson on the left wing to work space for a cross.
    Skilful players will routinely flick the ball back behind their standing leg during normal dribbling in the latest FIFA titles, but if you really want to to really sell the dummy, perform a fake kick (B then A or O then X) whilst holding LT/L2 and pull away from the direction you're facing on the left stick.

    Rabona

    Both in FIFA and in real life, the rabona is a showboating technique that can only be employed by the most skilful players (those with the ‘Flair’ attribute). Appearing in FIFA 09 as an advanced free kick technique, it involves a player wrapping their kicking foot around the back of their standing leg in order to make contact with the ball – often from an advanced crossing position when the ball is on the player's 'weak' side. Most of the time it would be more effective for a player to simply use their other, weaker foot.
    The origin of the rabona name is suitably convoluted. It was first reported to have been executed by Ricardo Infante in an Argentinian league game back in 1948. One headline the next day could be translated as "Infante played hooky" – and the Spanish word for skipping school is 'rabona'. If you want to make your kicks look especially over-the-top in FIFA 16, a standard rabona shot or cross is as simple as holding LT/L2 whilst shooting or crossing (you’ll need to experiment with the timing), but only Ronaldo can take rabona free kicks. When fouled near or within the 'D', line up the left post just left of centre, hold the left stick right, and tap X / Square.

    Roulette (aka Marseille turn)

    This trick goes by a number of names, but one of the most common – not to mention the most descriptive – is the roulette. As the name suggests, when executed properly it involves a near-full rotation of the body. The dribbler drags the ball to the side with one foot while starting to turn away from the tackler, then brings their other foot around to drag the ball forward and completed the body's rotation. In FIFA it can be an excellent way to manoeuvre out of a tight space, and has been a mainstay as early as FIFA 99.
    Another name for the roulette is the Marseille turn. It's so named because former French great Zinedine Zidane – currently the manager of Real Madrid and Marseille native – was a master practitioner of the trick during the '90s. Those old enough to remember football in the '80s may call it the Maradona turn, as the Argentinian maestro also made excellent use of the skill. It’s fairly easy to perform in FIFA though: simply pull the right stick back and rotate it 270 degrees in either direction.

    Rainbow (aka sombrero)

    Despite its name, the only colourful thing about the rainbow tends to be the opponent's language as an attacking player executes it. This is perceived as the showiest of showboat moves, both in FIFA and in real life, and only the likes of Neymar would even consider employing it in the modern game – and it’s been a difficult skill trick to employ since FIFA 99.
    The rainbow requires the dribbler to roll the ball up the back of their standing leg with their kicking leg, then use the standing leg to flick the ball up over their (and their opponent's) head. The arc of the ball is where the trick earns its 'rainbow' name, but it's known in certain quarters as the Sombrero and the Ardiles flick – the former after the large-brimmed Mexican hat and the latter after the Tottenham and Argentina player who performed the trick in the 1981 soccer movie classic, Escape to Victory. Dazzle your opponents in FIFA 16 by simply flicking the right stick down then up twice – and while it sounds simple, it’s a lot harder under pressure.

    Scorpion kick

    Less a pre-planned trick and more a moment of inspired improvisation, the scorpion kick involves a player throwing their torso forward and bringing their heel up to meet a cross that's fallen slightly behind them. The inspiration behind the name is obvious – the player resembles a scorpion bringing its tail over to strike. If you squint, at least.
    In terms of real life players who have executed this flamboyantly acrobatic shot, by far the most high profile in recent times is new Manchester United signing Zlatan Ibrahimovic. One of the best examples came in the 2012/2013 Ligue 1 season, when Ibrahimovic acrobatically turned home a cross to help PSG to a 3-0 victory over Brest. Those with longer memories will no doubt remember the extraordinary dual-heeled scorpion kick Columbia goalie René Higuita performed in a 1995 international match against England. If you want to sting your opposing team, cross the ball to a player with the 'Flair' trait, then aim for goal and hold LT + B / L2 + O.

    Panenka

    The Panenka requires as much nerve to execute as it does skill, because it's a penalty-taking technique. It involves shaping to hit a regular penalty into the corner of the goal, but instead chipping under the ball so that it delicately lifts over the (hopefully) diving goalkeeper into the centre of the goal.
    It's named after the first player to execute the move on the world stage, Czech player Antonín Panenka. What made this initial effort all the more extraordinary is that it was used to decide the 1976 European Championship final for Czechoslovakia against West Germany. The Panenka is actually extremely easy to execute in FIFA, but it will leave you looking foolish if the opposing 'keeper stands their ground – rather like the real thing. Make fools of your mates by holding LB/L1 and tap shoot in a penalty situation.

    Puskas (aka pullback V)

    Ferenc Puskas was a legendary Hungarian forward, who became one of Real Madrid's all-time greats during the '50s and '60s. Puskas was renowned for his outrageous technique, and his signature move has become a staple of the modern game. Others may know the Puskas by its rather more clinical moniker, the pullback V. That alternative name says it all really – the player steps on the ball (ideally after feinting to kick) and drags it back away from the defender before pushing it off at a 45-degree angle. If you want to use it against your mates, while standing still, hold RT/R2 and press B then A or O then X to fake a kick and pull the ball back, then set off sprinting at the appropriate angle.

    Heel chop

    What sounds like a violent tackle is actually a high-speed, high-skill turn that many of the best wingers now employ. The main proponent of the heel chop in modern times, however, has been Cristiano Ronaldo. Ronaldo started his career as a flying winger with an eye for goal, and would frequently employ the heel chop to cut inside an opposing fullback and work space for a shot or pass.
    Think of the heel chop as an aggressive, 45-degree Cruyff turn executed at nearly full running speed. The player typically runs down the wing with defender in pursuit, then abruptly chops the ball inside using their heel, behind their standing foot – which often needs to be pushed forward at the last moment. Pull it off by first performing a fake kick (B then A or O then X) whilst holding LT/L2, and then tapping left or right on the left stick.

    Hocus Pocus

    What do you get when you combine a Cruyff turn, an elastico, and a Rabona? Why, the hocus pocus, of course. This uber-trick is so technically advanced that it only tends to be done from a standing start, yet it's capable of completely bedazzling an opposing defender – hence the name.
    The trick starts by a player dragging the ball behind their standing leg, as if to pass or set off at a 45-degree angle, but at the last minute they flick their kicking leg around the other side of the ball and push it forward. It's a trick that's beloved of Brazilians such as Anderson, Neymar and, of course, the one and only Ronaldinho. Rinse through the opposing defence by rotating the right stick 90 degrees from down to left, then 180 degrees to the right.