Soccer: World Cup Interesting Facts

Soccer: World Cup Interesting Facts

 

Since the World Cup is right around the corner—beginning June 14th, I decided to take the time in collecting some o the most interesting facts based on the world tournament throughout the years.

 

Here are some facts and fun things to know about the World Cup:

  • Russia will host the even for the first time ever this year, in history.
  • This year’s event will be the 11th appearance in the world tournament ever. The highest they ever finished was 4th place back in 1966.
  • Last World Cup—back in 2014, 3.2 billion (that’s about half of the entire world) had watched the tournament.
  • Statistically, there have been 20 World Cups. Brazil has five of those titles (a quarter of all of them recorded), Italy has four and Germany also has four.
  • In the World Cup back in 2002, the tournament was held in two different countries, Japan and South Korea, which was the first time in the history of the sport and the tournament.
  • In 1994, Roger Milla scored a goal for Cameroon during the World Cup to become the oldest goalscorer in the tournament’s history.
  • When the 1950 tournament rules came out, India withdrew from it since they weren't allowed to play without shoes.
  • The first ever World Cup was held in Uruguay in 1930. Not only was that country the host of the first World Cup, they also won it—being placed as the first ever winner of the World Cup.
  • The trophy was stolen back in 1966 right before the tournament and was missing for a whole week.
  • In Russia this year, there are two host cities that span over 1500 miles apart. Ekaterinburg and Kaliningrad—which are the easternmost and westernmost host cities. This distance is about the same as the one from Moscow to London.
  • Back in 2014, each game would have an average of 53,000 fans.
  • Back in 1954, Austra defeated Switzerland 7-5, which became the highest scoring game in the history of the tournament.
  • Italy is known to have their games end in a draw—holding the record for the most ties in the tournament—with 21.
  • Indonesia has the least number of games in the World Cup (from all the countries who have ever appeared) with just one game in 1938.
  • Of all the countries that have appeared in the World Cup, Mexico has the record for the most number of losses, with 25 to tally.
  • In 2026, it has been rumored that the number of teams to qualify for the World Cup will be 48 instead of the original 32.
  • Oleg Salenko of Russia has the record for the most goals scored by one player in a World Cup Match with five goals.
  • Interestingly enough, once a country has won the World Cup, it has been proven as a fact that there will be a recorded baby boom 9 months after the winning game.

 

Written By: Adriana Rodrigues is a professional soccer player and a coach. She has over twenty years of experience in soccer after having played in a Division 1 University and has represented two national teams, both Brazil and Portugal.

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