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Adidas Telstar18 World Cup ball gets thumbs-up from Messi

Adidas have unveiled the official matchball for next year’s World Cup in Russia – the Telstar18.

The German sports giant has manufactured balls for the World Cup since the 1970 tournament in Brazil.

Recent designs, such as the Brazuca for Brazil 2014 and the infamous Jabulani for South Africa 2010 have drawn inspiration from the host countries, but Adidas has chosen to reimagine a classic design this time around.

The original Telstar, a 32-panel ball featuring 12 black panels on a predominantly white design in order to make it more visible to a growing television audience, was used as Brazil swept to glory at the 1970 World Cup in Mexico.

A similar design, the Telstar Durlast, was used in Germany four years later and it retains an iconic status among football fans.

Barcelona and Argentina superstar Lionel Messi has given the Telstar18 his personal seal of approval.

“I was lucky enough to get to know this ball a bit earlier and I managed to have a try with it,” Messi said. “I like all of it: the new design, the colours, everything.”