A football player, often known as a footballer, is a sportsperson who participates in one of the several styles of football. The most common forms of football include association football, American football, Canadian football, Australian rules football, Gaelic football, rugby league, and rugby union. Association soccer is the most popular type of football.
It has been estimated that there are 250 million association football players in the globe, with many of them also participating in other forms of the game.
Jean-Pierre Papin has referred to football as a "global language" in his recent remarks. In virtually any country and at almost any level of competition, footballers are able to routinely draw big groups of fans, and players are often seen as the focal points of broad social phenomena such as association football culture.
Footballers often begin their careers as amateurs, with the greatest players progressing to the professional ranks as they gain experience. Normally, they begin with a young team (any local club), and from there, scouts give contracts to players depending on their ability and potential. Once signed, some players improve their football skills, while a few go on to play for the senior or professional clubs.