A LOT of football fans – which means roughly half the world – are currently focusing on the UEFA Euro Championship 2016, a great event that brought together two dozen teams from countries across Europe. This makes it a good time to look at some apps that can help fans keep up to date with sports news, understand leagues, and get a feel for what it’s like to play football.
For direct news from the Euro 2016 championship, the official UEFA app is the first place to look. It aggregates news and is a social media portal and source of official information about the championship. The app provides information on upcoming matches, scores of previous matches and data on individual players and their history.
The app is easy to navigate. But if you’re new to soccer, there’s little to explain what’s going on and not a lot of emotional content to pique your interest. The app is free at least, and available on both ios and Android.
For a more entertaining overview of Euro 2016 news and other football data, check out the Unfootball application. It is a richly pictorial program that collects football reports in a drop-down list. Tapping on a link takes you to the entire story and the app has a live section that updates match information as it’s played and offers analysis. in real time.
The app sometimes lacks finishing, and if you use it on a larger device like an iPad, the menus can look small and the images sometimes look poor. But for an up-to-date and dynamic news source that includes video, this app – which is free on iOS and Android – is the one. The iOS version of the app also has an Apple Watch app so you can see the latest news on your wrist.
Like Forza Football, another football app which is free on iOS and Android and which is well known as a source of information for the sport, Onefootball will probably come in handy after the Euro 2016 matches are over, continuing to bring news from football leagues around the world.
This is a third person soccer simulator. You watch a football game from the same point of view as a TV camera and move your players using an on-screen joystick and three simple buttons to control how they kick or pass the ball or intercept opposing players. The game automatically swaps players for you so you only have control of the one closest to the ball, making things easier to manage.
The app makes football surprisingly real and captures the flow of the game. The players are displayed as 3D graphics and are well animated, and when you score a goal you have the option to see a replay from many different angles. There are even compelling crowd noises and commentators, who mention details of the action, including the names of the players.
There are plenty of options to control the layout of any squad you want, improve player skills, add custom logos, and even change the stadium design. You can choose to progress through the layers of a championship or just play a quick game. In short, this app is sophisticated enough to keep your attention for hours or to satisfy cravings to play soccer if you only have a few minutes.
One thing Dream League doesn’t have is some sort of female representation in the game. Although women’s football has grown in popularity, the game is still reserved for men.
For a less serious, but nonetheless fun and oddly realistic simulated soccer game, check out the Stickman Football 2016 application ($ 1 on iOS and free with in-app purchases For android). This game looks a lot like Dream League, but with slightly simpler controls and fewer team management options.
It has a 3D cartoon look and faster playing pace; the games only last a few minutes. It still manages to incorporate compelling football tricks like slips, dive stops, goal celebrations and neat tackling moves, as well as the ability to replay some recent games.
The only quirk is the appearance of the game, which, as the title suggests, lets you control stick figures – animated 3D versions of the line-drawn human shapes we all know. It takes a little getting used to.
Food52 has been a popular recipe website and is now officially packaged in an app. Called (Not) Recipes, the app brings together its ever-growing list of user-submitted menus in one place. You can search for ideas by ingredient, upload your own recipes, and even see how popular they are with others. The application is free on iOS.