other sporting event captures the world's imagination like the
FIFA World Cup. Ever since the first tentative competition in
Uruguay in 1930, FIFA's (Fédération Internationale de Football
Association) flagship has constantly grown in popularity and
A group of
visionary French football administrators, led in the 1920s by the
innovative Jules Rimet, are credited with the original idea of
bringing the world's strongest national football teams together to
compete for the title of World Champions. The original gold trophy
bore Jules Rimet's name and was contested three times in the
1930s, before the Second World War put a 12-year stop to the
it resumed, the FIFA World Cup rapidly advanced to its undisputed
status as the greatest single sporting event of the modern world.
Held since 1958 alternately in Europe and the Americas, the World
Cup broke new ground with the Executive Committee's decision in
May 1996 to select Korea and Japan as co-hosts for the 2002
Since 1930, the 16
tournaments have seen only seven different winners. However, the
FIFA World Cup has also been punctuated by dramatic upsets that
have helped create footballing history - the United States
defeating England in 1950, North Korea's defeat of Italy in 1966,
Cameroon's emergence in the 1980s and their opening match defeat
of the Argentinean cup-holders in 1990....
the FIFA World Cup holds the entire global public under its spell.
An accumulated audience of over 37 billion people watched the
France 98 tournament, including approximately 1.3 billion for the
final alone, while over 2.7 million people flocked to watch the 64
matches in the French stadium.
After all these
years and so many changes, however, the main focus of the FIFA
World Cup remains the same - the glistening golden trophy, which
is the embodiment of every footballer's ambition.
World Cup Summaries