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Joga3 Futsal Tournaments Reaching 3 Million Kids in 39 Countries

Beaverton, OR (10 May, 2006) – Nike expects that the largest soccer tournament in the world will attract more than 3 million kids from 39 countries by the end of this summer, equal to the number of spectators anticipated at soccer’s world championships in Germany this June and July.

Nike Joga3 is a 3-on-3 soccer game inspired by the game of futsal, both of which are played with the smaller, heavier futsal ball on a small, hard-surface field. The smaller ball and field elevate the importance of foot skills, ball control, creativity and quickness.

Joga3 matches are played on a pitch that is no larger then half a basketball court. The goals are not protected by a goalkeeper and are only 5 feet wide by 19 inches high. Games last three minutes and there are no ties. As of April 1, Nike estimates that 1 million kids globally have played Joga3. Regional tournaments are increasing in size and frequency, building toward the global final that will take place in Brazil in August.

The U.S. final is scheduled for Los Angeles on July 9. Local and regional market tournaments are currently taking place every week from New York to Chicago to Los Angeles. The tournaments are free and open to boys and girls 19 years and under. In addition to digital and grassroots outreach to spread the Joga3 message, more than 100,000 kits that teach Joga3 have been distributed through soccer specialty retailers throughout the U.S.

Kids who participate in Joga3 are expected to play by a code of conduct that includes Skill, Heart, Joy, Honor and Team. The new game and the global tournament are part of the Nike soccer initiative, Joga Bonito (Portuguese for “Play Beautiful”), which is designed to inspire this same code of conduct across all levels of the game of soccer and among all players.

“Much the way the game of futsal has helped hone the foot skills of some of the world’s most talented players like Brazil’s Ronaldinho, Nike designed Joga3 to inspire quickness, speed, creativity, and commanding ball control,” said Don Remlinger, Global General Manager for Nike Soccer. “Most important though is ensuring that kids learn to play by the code and that they carry these characteristics forward.”

To learn more about Nike Joga3 and where to participate, visit and click on Joga3 Tournament at the bottom of the page.

Nike introduced Joga Bonito to the world in early February through a digital and broadcast television message from soccer legend Eric Cantona that reached more than 38 million people in its first weekend, February 10-12. In March Nike introduced, a social network dedicated to people around the world who share a passion for the joy and beauty of soccer. enables users to create profiles, pick their favorite players, post their own photos and videos and form global social networks to share, debate and celebrate the heart and soul of soccer. Currently, a new member joins every eight seconds.

In the U.S. specifically, Nike also introduced JogaTV, a new Internet TV channel that gives soccer fans a front row seat to exclusive video featuring some of the game's greatest players. Through technology created by Maven Networks, soccer enthusiasts can download a JogaTV icon which lives on a desktop for easy access. Each week, Nike delivers Joga Bonito content and automatically updates JogaTV directly on the user’s desktop.

About NIKE, Inc. NIKE, Inc. based near Beaverton, Oregon is the world's leading designer, marketer and distributor of authentic athletic footwear, apparel, equipment and accessories for a wide variety of sports and fitness activities. Wholly owned Nike subsidiaries include Converse Inc., which designs, markets and distributes athletic footwear, apparel and accessories; NIKE Bauer Hockey, Inc., a leading designer and distributor of hockey equipment; Cole Haan, a leading designer and marketer of luxury shoes, handbags, accessories and coats; Hurley International LLC, which designs, markets and distributes action sports and youth lifestyle footwear, apparel and accessories and Exeter Brands Group LLC, which designs and markets athletic footwear and apparel for the value retail channel.