About Football Freestyler
Who's got the best skills?
Which country has the best football tricks and skills? Brazil, Germany, UK, Italy.....this action packed series attempts to find out!
Follow the antics of multiple world record holder Dan Magness, as he meets the world's best football freestylers and performs his own tricks and skills to put a smile on peoples faces!
As well as capturing the best football skills and tricks, including a triple around the world, Dan investigates all other arts of Football: from Edgar Davids' street football team to the football kids of Rio de Janeiro favelas; from the Thai sport of Sepak Takraw to the Vietnamese break-dance football freestylers.
Episode 1: Thailand & Vietnam
World champion football freestyler Dan Magness travels to Thailand and Vietnam to search out the best football tricks and skills.
In Thailand, Dan meets a team of Sepak Takraw players. Sepak Takraw is the national sport of Thailand and is a game played on a volleyball court with a small bamboo style ball using your feet. Teams consist of 3 players each and each side has three touches to return the ball. Its an explosive and fast game with the best guys throwing bicycle kicks to smash the ball.
Whilst in Bangkok, Dan hooks up with the original Football Freestyler from the 1980s: Kang Sung Min. Kang performed at the 1988 Olympic Games and even today still has some great skills.
Muay Thai boxing is known as the 'art of 8 limbs', as you can use your knees, fists, elbows and feet to hurt your opponent. Dan tries his luck in a spit and sawdust Bangkok Gym with some tough Thai guys who can really kick.
In Vietnam Dan travels to Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, where he meets the best football freestylers and examines how they have combined breakdance into their football skills.
Episode 2: Netherlands
Netherlands, the home of Street Football.
In Amsterdam Dan meets the infamous 'Lampost Juggler' Abdullah, who is a legend in Amsterdam, having performed his unique brand of football tricks for the last 10 years. As part of his show, Abduallah climbs a lamppost whilst juggling a football and then hangs off it doing tricks. This has made him an urban legend in Amsterdam and in Football Freestyler he gives his first ever interview to camera.
In Rotterdam, we meet the best Dutch Freestylers, including the current national champion: Daniel Rooseboom. The guys give Dan a lesson on the game of Panna, where the object is to knock the ball through the opponents legs - us Brits call it the nutmeg!
We also spend a typical day in the life of Dan: An live appearance at Ajax's Stadium, followed by a Rotterdam nightclub, its not all work work work!
Later on we also meet freestyle and street soccer legend Edgar Davids, who talks about freestyle and street soccer, and then takes on Dan Magness in a 5-a-side street game.
Episode 3: Brazil
Is Brazil home to the best tricks and skills?
This Episode starts on the beaches of Rio de Janeiro, where the locals have more than just samba skills and great sun tans. The freestylers include the brazilian champion Arthur Mansilla and Jonathas, who is one of the few freestylers who can perform the quite unbelievable 'triple around the world'.
As well as tricks, Rio is also home to the sport of Foot-Volleyball, which is Volleyball played with your feet (who would have guessed). This is a way of life for many Brazilians who play 7 days a week on the beaches of Copacabana and Ipanema. Dan meets two of the local legends who explain the rules to him as well as taking him on in a quick game.
Flamengo Football Club is one of the largest teams in Brazil and South America. They are based in Rio and have an academy that runs in the slums of the city, the areas that are called 'favelas'. Favelas are places where the police are not permitted and are frequented by problems of guns and drugs.
Dan is invited along to Mangueira Favela to see how the Flamengo football project is run and ends up performing a show for the areas colourful characters!
Football runs through the veins of Brazilians and there is no better example than the female football street entertainer 'Josenie', who has been performing her football show on the streets since she was 8 years old. She literally earns through football tricks enough money to sleep and eat.
After Rio, its off to Sao Paulo where Dan travels to the national stadium to meet the capitals number one freestyle crew: Show de Bola. They have a team of Freestyler that have some unbelievable tricks, at the end of the session there is also a guest appearance by a certain Brazilian Footballing Legend.....Could it be Pele?
Episode 4: Poland
Poland, the worlds best Football Freestyle country?
Believe it or not, Poland has emerged as one of the leading countries in Football Freestyle. This Episode begins in Wroclaw, with a freestyler called Skora who has taken football tricks to another level.
The freestylers have developed a new style which they call 'hardcore' or 'air moves', and involve some seriously fast feet tricks - blink and you really will miss it!
Poland is a country that is on the up, but like anywhere in the world there are still people in need of help. A project that uses football to help the countries homeless and drug addicts is called 'Street Soccer'.
In Poznan, Dan catches up with the organisers of Street Soccer and gets involved in a game with some tough Polish guys from the streets.
Poland is also famous for its passionate and sometimes fierce football fans. One of the firriest games is the Krakow derby: Wisla Krakow vs Cracovia. This is known locally as 'the holy war' and definitely not for the faint hearted. Now who would be crazy enough to perform the pre match show....yes cue Dan Magness, who puts on a Wisla Shirt and tries to entertain the volatile crowd with his tricks.
Episode 5: Germany
They have dominated the world at football, will their freestylers do the same?
To kick off Dan travels to the German city of Mainz, where he discovers that its all about tactics in the German game!
Next stop is Frankfurt, where Dan meets the German Footbag (Hacky Sack) Freestyle Champion, who shows him some amazing skills before comparing whether any of the techniques are similar to Football.
In Stuttgart Dan bumps into the legendary crutches football juggler Oliviera Valdir, who is disabled and has learnt how to juggle a ball using only his crutches, amazing footage. Stuttgart is also home to the leading German freestylers Daniel Korte & Rene Methusek who show Dan the abandoned warehouse where they train and talk about which countries have the best freestylers.
Any trip to Germany wouldn't be complete without sampling the local culture and that happens to be a traditional beer festival which serves up its own set of laughs!
Episode 6: UK & France
With the likes of Stuart Pearce and Tony Adams we may not be a country famous for skills, but what about out freestylers?
The first stop is Liverpool where we meet former World Champion and Dan's big rival John Farnworth. John is a former Freestyle World Champion and has 4 world records to his name.....Dan has five of course!
Liverpool is also home to Free Running (Parkour) World Champion Ryan Doyle. Ryan invites Dan to take part in a Free Running training session, that produces hilarious results.
Next stop is Glasgow, Scotland. Here Dan meets the best female freestyler in the World, Indi Cowie, who is also a Professional footballer for Celtic. She really is a skilful freestyler and shows the guys a trick or two.
The action continues as Dan nips across the channel to Paris, to meet the best French freestylers including current World Champion 'Sean Garnier'. The French have incorporated dance into their style and created a new type of Football Freestyle.
The Chinese have been producing circus foot jugglers for the last 1000 years. They train to balance and spin a variety of objects on their feet, including chairs, umbrellas and carpets. Dan meets 'Fei Wang', a travelling performer who can juggle up to 4 umbrellas with her feet!
Dan wraps up the series in London where he gets together with his old mates for plenty of freestyle tricks and banter.
Make sure you keep track of what Dan is up to by following his Facebook page at facebook.com/footballfreestylertvseries