Worried about the football season coming up because you just don’t know what to talk about? Whether your girlfriend is a sports buff, your boyfriend just can’t keep away from the screen or you simply want to be aware enough to have a simple conversation about the current sports affairs, we’ve got you covered!
1. No European team has ever won the Fifa world cup in the Americas. In fact, Spain is the only European team to win the world cup outside of Europe (in South Africa in 2010)
2. Franz Beckenbauer is the only player to win the world cup as both a player and as a manager , having won in 1974 as a player and in 1990 as a coach.
3. Hakan Sukar holds the record for the fastest goal in world cup history – in 11 seconds!
4. Funny fact – FIFA prohibited players from swapping shirts after the game in 1986 because they didn’t want players to “bare their chests” on the field lol.
5. Norman Whiteside is the youngest player to ever take the field at a World Cup. He was just 17 years, one month and 10 days when he played for Northern Ireland against Yugoslavia at the ’82 World Cup in Spain. That fact is pretty well known. What isn’t so well know is that when he got back home, his ma’am grounded him for a week for not calling her to let him know he’d arrived safely in Madrid.
6. In the year 1950, India qualified for the World Cup in Brazil. However, they could not make it to the big event as they were accustomed to play barefoot, and FIFA required all players to wear shoes during matches.
7. Probably the most bizarre incident in world cup history, Andres Escobar, a Columbian defender had scored an own goal against the USA in 1994, which led to the elimination of his team from the world cup. Six days after the game, Andres was shot 6 times which led to his death in his home town Medellin.
8. Brazil’s Ronaldo (not to be confused with the Portuguese Ronaldo) is the highest goal scorer in world cup history with 15 goals.
9. Australia defeated American Samoa 31-0 (yes, you read that right) in 2001, the largest margin of victory ever in a World Cup qualifying game.
10. Italy travelled by boat rather than plane to the 1950 World Cup, a journey of three weeks from Naples to Santos.
11. For 7 days, the World Cup trophy went missing when it was stolen prior to the 1966 Cup in England. A dog named Pickles, being taken out for a walk by his owner in South London, discovered the trophy wrapped in some newspapers at the bottom of some bushes a week after it was taken.
12. Luis Monti is the only person to have played in two World Cup finals for different countries, representing Italy in 1934 after playing for Argentina four years earlier.
Feeling more confident? 🙂