By Jonathan Lewis | 13 JAN 2021
If you were to mention the word “football” in front of an American, they would immediately think of the NFL, which is the country’s favorite sports competition. Most Americans refer to football as soccer, but that doesn’t mean they have no love for it. They are reminded of the greatness of this sport every four years when the FIFA World Cup arrives. After all FIFA World Cup is the most popular sports competition in the world and is watched in hundreds of countries. Football competitions like the English Premier League, Champions league might not attract a lot of Americans, but when the world cup arrives, they take great interest in it, especially if their own team is taking part in it.
If you are a sports fan who has recently started taking an interest in European football, then you have clicked on the right blog. In this article, I have mentioned some interesting things about the FIFA World Cup that you might not have heard of before. If you are a sports buff and want to keep up with your favorite sports, you can also visit Lines.com for the latest updates. Let’s take a look at a few things that most Americans don’t know about the FIFA World Cup.
When it comes to lifting that beautiful FIFA trophy, no nation has done it more times than Brazil. As of today, Brazil holds the record for winning the most World Cups with five trophies in its cabinet. They lifted the trophy for the first time in 1958, and their most recent win came in 2002 at the beginning of the 21st century. Apart from Brazil, seven other nations have had the privilege of winning the Fifa World Cup. Germany and Italy wore the crown of champions four times each. Uruguay, Argentina, and France won the world cup twice, and both England and Spain were successful in lifting the trophy once.
When it comes to the super bowl, there is no arguing that it is the most-watched competition in the United States of America. However, when you compare the global viewership of the super bowl with a world cup final, it is not even a competition. The last super bowl, played between Los Angeles Rams and the New England Patriots, had a viewership of 98.2 million. On the other hand, the last world cup final played between France and Croatia had an astonishing viewership of around 1.2 billion. Fifa world cup attracts many people from every corner of the world, which is a testament to the fact that you are missing out on something great if you are not watching it.
It is not just the TV and online viewership of the games that amaze people; it is the stadium attendance as well. Most football stadiums in the world have a huge capacity, and they can manage tens of thousands of people at the same time. To put things in perspective, the highest attendance recorded at a Fifa world cup game is 173,850, which was recorded in Maracana in Brazil in 1950. What is crazy about this fact is that if you were to put two people in every chair of MetLife stadium, you still wouldn’t beat the world cup record. Despite being huge, football stadiums are jam-packed during world cup games, and the atmosphere it creates gives you an experience that is hard to forget.
Football is a sport that is played worldwide and has a huge fan following in every corner of the world. As of today, there are 211 countries that are official members of the FIFA world cup. It is not practical for Fifa to hold a world cup with 211 counties, which is why the participants are chosen on the basis of rankings and playoffs. This is the reason some great players have been denied privilege of participating in a world cup match in the past. A big example of this is the Ryan Giggs of Manchester United, who is considered a legend of the game. He never got to participate in a world cup game because he was from Wales, a country that has only participated in the World Cup Finals round once. Another example from the same country is Gareth Bale of Real Madrid, who has plenty of Champions League titles to his name but has only played the world cup at the qualifying stages.
The upcoming world cup will be held in Qatar in 2022, and it is going to be something we have never seen before. The Gulf country is hosting the world cup for the first time, and they have been preparing for it for a long time. Qatar has invested in modern stadiums that no one has ever built before, and we will be able to enjoy football in an atmosphere never witnessed before. Qatar is the first Arab country who has been awarded the privilege of hosting a FIFA world cup. Many people are excited to see what Qatar has to offer, a lot of people have criticized this decision. However, by letting an Arab country host the world cup, FIFA is opening its doors to even more nations.
The road to the FIFA world cup is not an easy one. There are a lot of challenges a team has to face in order to qualify for the final stage of the competition. That is why there is only one country that has participated in all 21 world cups, and it is none other than the five-time world champion Brazil. The South American country is crazy about football, and they take a lot of pride in their national team. Other countries with the most number of appearances include Germany with 19 appearances, Italy with 18, Argentina with 17, and Mexico with 16 appearances.
Jonathan Lewis is an MFF Sports Writer