Flip flap (association football)

The flip flap (also known as the elástico, akka, snakebite and la culebrita) is a dribbling move, or feint, in football, used to fool a defensive player into thinking the offensive player, in possession of the ball, is going to move in a direction they do not intend to. Players perform it by using the outside of their dominant foot to push the ball towards their dominant side, then quickly move the dominant foot around the ball and using the inside to push the ball to their non-dominant side. Although the footwork is the most distinctive aspect of the flip-flap, its success as a feint also relies heavily on the attacking player having an explosive acceleration from a stationary position.[1]

Flip flap


"He (Sérgio Echigo) says now that he invented it, but I perfected it."

Rivellino on the "flip flap"[2]

The move was invented by the Japanese-Brazilian football player Sérgio Echigo.[3] In 1964, Brazilian playmaker Rivellino learned the move from Echigo, who was his Corinthians teammate in the youth team, and performed it to a global audience during the 1970 FIFA World Cup.[1] Interviewed on the television series Football's Greatest in 2012, Rivellino states; "He [Echigo] says now that he invented it, but I perfected it".[2]

Rivellino was an idol to a number of Brazilians, and the trick was popularized early 1980s by peruvian Julio César Uribe; late 1990s and 2000s by high-profile players such as Romário, Ronaldo and Ronaldinho among others.[1][4][5] In recent years, Portuguese footballer Cristiano Ronaldo has also been a known proponent of the move.[6]

In Africa, especially Nigeria, the move has been referred to as a "Snakebite" or "Zigima" because of the in-and-out feet movement of the perpetrator. However, it is now more commonly called "The Gaúcho" – after Ronaldinho (Gaúcho).[7]

In futsal, freestyle and street football, an aerial variation of the flip flap moves has been referred to as a "Akka". The "Akka" has several variations, and can be used in combos with pannas and other ground moves for doling out maximum punishment.[8]

See also


  1. David Goldblatt (2009). "The Football Book". p. 129. D Kindersley Ltd,
  2. "Football's Greatest - Rivelino". Pitch International LLP. 2012. Retrieved 8 May 2014
  3. "Exclusive interview: Rivellino". footballqatar.com. 20 June 2014. Retrieved 20 June 2014.
  4. Smyth, Rob (17 September 2016). "Ronaldo at 40: Il Fenomeno's legacy as greatest ever No 9, despite dodgy knees". The Guardian. Retrieved 9 September 2018.
  5. "Paul Pogba, Rivellino and a short history of the elastico". The Guardian. Retrieved 9 September 2018.
  6. "WATCH: Ronaldo's elastico nutmeg!". Sky Sports. 20 February 2017. Retrieved 8 April 2020.
  7. Anka, Carl (22 October 2018). "Noughty Boys: Ronaldinho was a magician, we just stood there gawping". BBC. Retrieved 27 October 2018.
  8. "Akka or Elastico Football - YouTube".