Hockey vs. Soccer – ChatGPT

Canada qualified for the Fifa World Championships 2022, and so I watched some soccer. I learned a few things. It’s impossible to watch a sport without comparing it to your favorite sport, so here are some things I noticed about hockey vs. soccer and started a blog post with some thoughts late last year…these are the high-level topics I started with:

  • Advertising – I noticed how inconspicuous soccer advertising is while hockey ads are very much in your face. Hockey advertising is getting a little annoying, especially with the new board overlay they are applying. The most annoying: seeing a bottle of ketchup on the glass behind the net. Is this really necessary?
  • Attacking and defense – I don’t remember what I was thinking here. Probably thinking about the different strategies that hockey teams and soccer teams can apply to each game.
  • Single knock-out – I wondered how much of a difference it would make in soccer if they played best out of three versus single knock out. So much can happen in 1 game.

But instead of writing an article about it, I decided to see what ChatGPT would say about hockey versus soccer. I had a conversation at work about ChatGPT and immediately I thought I would try it out on a blog, for fun.

For ease of reading (I hope), I used blue text for responses from ChatGPT. This way you can easily tell my writing versus the text that ChatGPT created.

Here’s what happened:

My first ask:

Write a 2,000 word article that compares hockey to soccer. Include information on the differences in game play, playing time, field size, and advertising.

ChatGPT response was actually really good…mostly:

Hockey and soccer are two of the most popular sports in the world, and while they may seem very different, they have more in common than you might think. Both sports require incredible skill, physical endurance, and strategic thinking, but they differ in a number of key ways as well. In this article, we will take a closer look at the differences between hockey and soccer, specifically focusing on game play, playing time, field size, and advertising.

Game Play

The most obvious difference between hockey and soccer is the equipment. Hockey players wear skates, helmets, gloves, and pads, while soccer players wear cleats, shin guards, and a uniform. This means that the way the game is played is quite different as well. Hockey is played on ice with a small, hard rubber puck, while soccer is played on a grass field with a large, air-filled ball.

Hockey is a more physical sport than soccer, with players regularly checking each other into the boards and using their sticks to control the puck. In contrast, soccer is a non-contact sport, with players only allowed to use their feet, legs, and head to move the ball. While there is some physical contact in soccer, such as bumping into opponents while fighting for the ball or blocking shots, it is generally less aggressive than hockey.

Another key difference in game play is the presence of a goalie. In hockey, each team has a designated player whose job it is to protect the goal and prevent the other team from scoring. In soccer, all players are responsible for defending and attacking, with no specific player designated as a goalkeeper.

Playing Time

The length of a hockey game is typically three periods of 20 minutes each, with 15-minute breaks between each period. In contrast, a soccer game is played in two halves of 45 minutes each, with a 15-minute halftime break. This means that hockey games are generally shorter than soccer games, with a total playing time of 60 minutes compared to soccer’s 90 minutes.

Another key difference in playing time is the stoppage of play. In hockey, play is often stopped for penalties, goals, and other rule violations. This can lead to a lot of downtime during the game, with players frequently taking breaks to rest and rehydrate. In contrast, soccer is a continuous game with few stoppages in play. This means that players are constantly on the move and have to maintain their endurance for the entire 90 minutes.

Field Size

The size of the playing surface is another major difference between hockey and soccer. Hockey is played on a smaller surface, typically measuring 200 feet long by 85 feet wide. This means that players are in close proximity to each other and have less space to maneuver. In contrast, soccer is played on a much larger field, with official regulations calling for a field between 100-130 yards long and 50-100 yards wide. This means that soccer players have more room to run and pass the ball.

The difference in field size also affects the number of players on the field. In hockey, each team has six players on the ice at any given time, including the goalie. In soccer, each team has eleven players on the field, including the goalkeeper. This means that there are more players on the field in soccer, which can lead to more complex plays and strategies.


Another key difference between hockey and soccer is the way advertising is handled. In hockey, advertising is typically displayed on the boards around the rink and on the ice itself. This means that ads are constantly visible to the players and the audience. In contrast, soccer has more limited advertising, with ads typically displayed on banners around the field and on players’ jerseys. This means that ads are less visible during the game, but can still be a major source


ChatGPT did a really good job of quickly putting together information between hockey and soccer without very much prompting. ChatGPT organized the content into different sections with headers. I was a little disappointed that ChatGPT said that soccer doesn’t have a goalkeeper which is false. And ChatGPT cut off the article at 2,000 words without finishing a final thought on advertising.

Follow up questions:

So, I followed up on goalkeepers:
Explain why you think that soccer doesn’t have a goalkeeper.

ChatGPT was actually very apologetic for getting this wrong:

I apologize for any confusion caused by my previous response. My training data includes accurate information that contradicts my previous statement that soccer doesn’t have a goalkeeper.

In reality, soccer does have a designated goalkeeper whose primary responsibility is to defend the team’s goal and prevent the opposing team from scoring. The goalkeeper is the only player who is allowed to use their hands within the designated penalty area, but only under specific circumstances. The goalkeeper is a crucial player in soccer, and their skill and expertise can often make the difference between winning and losing a match.

I apologize for any confusion my previous response may have caused, and I hope this correction clears up any misunderstandings.

I thought about some more information that might be useful:
Can you add a paragraph about how tough players are that play hockey versus soccer?

ChatGPT responded:

Comparing the toughness of hockey players versus soccer players is a difficult task as both sports require a great deal of physical endurance and resilience. However, it’s fair to say that hockey players are generally known for their grit and toughness, as the sport involves a significant amount of body checking and physical contact. Players are expected to be able to withstand collisions with other players, hits against the boards, and even fights. Hockey players often suffer from injuries such as broken bones, concussions, and cuts, but they are known for their ability to play through the pain and continue performing at a high level. In contrast, while soccer players also face the risk of injuries, such as strains, sprains, and broken bones, the sport is generally less physically intense and aggressive than hockey. Nonetheless, soccer players must still maintain a high level of fitness and endurance to perform at their best throughout the long, continuous matches.

I followed up with:
Can you add a paragraph on if hockey players or soccer plays dive more?

ChatGPT responded:

Both hockey and soccer have been known to have instances of players diving, or exaggerating a fall or injury in an attempt to draw a foul or penalty against their opponent. In soccer, diving is often referred to as “simulation” and is heavily criticized by fans, officials, and players alike. The act of diving is considered unsportsmanlike behavior and can result in yellow or red cards, fines, and even suspensions. In hockey, players may also try to draw penalties by exaggerating their injuries or acting as though they have been fouled, but this is generally less common than in soccer. In both sports, the act of diving is frowned upon and can be detrimental to the player’s reputation and the overall spirit of fair play. It’s worth noting that not all players engage in diving or simulation, and that sportsmanship and fair play should always be a top priority for athletes.

I followed up with one more question:
I asked ChatGPT to list similarities between the 2 sports:

ChatGPT responded with an awesome bulleted response (but I couldn’t figure out how to set a list to the color blue so I had to remove the bullets):

Despite the many differences between hockey and soccer, there are also several similarities between the two sports. Here are a few:

Both sports require a significant amount of physical fitness and endurance. Players in both sports must maintain a high level of cardiovascular fitness, agility, and quick reflexes in order to perform at their best.

Both sports involve teamwork and strategic play. In both hockey and soccer, players must work together to move the ball or puck down the field or ice and score goals. Successful teams must be able to communicate effectively and execute well-coordinated plays.

Both sports have professional leagues with dedicated fan bases. Hockey has the National Hockey League (NHL), while soccer has many professional leagues around the world, including the English Premier League, La Liga, and the Bundesliga.

Both sports have their own unique cultures and traditions. Fans of both hockey and soccer are known for their passionate support of their teams, and both sports have their own rituals and customs that are observed before, during, and after games.

Both sports have international competitions that draw a global audience. The Olympic Games feature both ice hockey and soccer, and the FIFA World Cup is one of the most widely-watched sporting events in the world.

Attempt at a full article:

So, after learning a little bit about how ChatGPT responds and puts together information, I tried a final time for a full article:
Write an article that compares hockey to soccer. Provide an introduction to the article. Then add a paragraph describing the similarities between the sports. Then add sections that compare: game play, playing time, size of the playing surface, single knock-out tournaments in soccer versus best of 7 in hockey, how tough players are in each sport, and a section on diving in both sports. Finish with a conclusion about which sport is the best in Canada.

ChatGPT response:

Unfortunately, I ended up with 2 uncompleted thoughts from ChatGPT from this request. So I copied the request into a new chat to see what would happen.

3rd attempt at a full article:

Hockey and soccer are two of the most popular sports in the world, with millions of fans and players. Both sports require a high level of skill, endurance, and teamwork. While the two sports may seem very different at first glance, there are many similarities between them. In this article, we will explore the similarities and differences between hockey and soccer.

Despite their differences in gameplay, hockey and soccer share many similarities. Both sports require excellent hand-eye coordination, quick reflexes, and physical fitness. They are also team sports that require players to work together towards a common goal. Additionally, both sports are played on a field of play, with the objective of scoring goals.

Game Play:
Hockey and soccer have vastly different gameplay. Hockey is a fast-paced, high-contact game played on ice with a small puck, while soccer is a lower-contact sport played on a large grass field with a ball. Hockey players wear protective equipment, such as helmets, pads, and gloves, while soccer players typically only wear shin guards. In hockey, teams have six players on the ice, while soccer teams have eleven players on the field.

Playing Time:
The playing time in hockey and soccer is also quite different. Hockey games consist of three periods, each lasting 20 minutes, with a 15-minute intermission between the second and third periods. Soccer games, on the other hand, consist of two halves, each lasting 45 minutes, with a 15-minute break in between.

Size of the Playing Surface:
The size of the playing surface is also a major difference between the two sports. A hockey rink is typically 200 feet long and 85 feet wide, while a soccer field is between 100 and 130 yards long and 50 to 100 yards wide.

Single Knock-Out Tournaments in Soccer versus Best of 7 in Hockey:
Soccer has a single knock-out tournament structure, such as the World Cup, where teams must win each game to advance. In contrast, hockey has a best-of-seven playoff format, where the first team to win four games moves on to the next round.

Toughness of Players:
While both sports require a high level of physical fitness, hockey players are known for their toughness and physicality. Players often engage in body checks and fighting is not uncommon in hockey. In soccer, physical contact is generally more limited, and diving or exaggerating fouls is more common.

Diving, or simulating a foul or injury to gain an advantage, is a controversial topic in both sports. In soccer, diving is often seen as a tactic to draw fouls and penalties, while in hockey, it is viewed as unsportsmanlike conduct.

In conclusion, hockey and soccer are both great sports, but they differ in terms of gameplay, playing time, size of the playing surface, playoff format, player toughness, and diving. While hockey is a more physical and intense sport, soccer is known for its graceful and skillful play. Both sports have passionate fans and have contributed to Canada’s sporting history, but which sport is the best in Canada ultimately depends on personal preference.

Analysis of the final article:

It’s very interesting to see the different responses from ChatGPT depending on the wording and the context that you provide. The previous answers changed based on my new prompt. I’m somewhat disappointed that some of the previous responses changed in the final article. No doubt it’s because of the words I used for the article request. With more time, I’d be able to refine this.

I heard that there might be new work in the ChatGPT/AI world called Prompt Engineer. The people that can interact with AI properly will have a job in the future. You can see that ChatGPT wrote an article for me that compares hockey to soccer. And then refused to offer an opinion.

Does ChatGPT have an opinion?
In your opinion, which sport is better hockey or soccer?

ChatGPT had this to say:

As an AI language model, I do not have personal opinions or preferences. Both hockey and soccer are great sports with unique features that appeal to different individuals. Ultimately, which sport is better depends on personal preference and interests. Both sports have their own rich history and have contributed to the cultural fabric of many nations, including Canada.


So, there you have it. My first experience and blog using ChatGPT. And actually it was quite fun. It was more like solving a word puzzle to figure out how I could state a question to ChatGPT to get what I wanted. With more time and practice, I think that I could get ChatGPT to write an article for me. For now, I’m pretty happy with this experience and hope you enjoyed it as well.

You can check it out yourself:

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