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Football World Cup

The Football World Cup is the most important competition for international football. It is also the most widely viewed sporting event in the world. It is organised by FIFA, the main governing body for football.

The World Cup is held every four years, and there is a three-year qualifying process for the teams. The qualifying process involves tournaments that are held within the six FIFA continental zones. FIFA gives a certain number of places to each zone. Teams in these zones take part in qualifying matches against each other to decide which of them will have these places to compete in the World Cup. The host country's team are automatically given a place in the World Cup. The qualifying teams then compete in the World Cup tournament in the host country.

Usually 32 teams in the world qualify and compete in the World Cup. The host country usually uses more than one stadium to host the event. The World Cup winners are awarded the FIFA World Cup trophy and are recognised as world champions in football.

Did you know?...

  • The World Cup was held in South Africa in 2010 and it was broadcasted to 204 countries. 12.2 million watched the final Over three million people went to watch the 64 matches, an everage of 49,670 per match
  • England won the World Cup in 1966 in the final against West Germany at Wembley Stadium. The Queen and Prince Phillip attended the game, amongst 93,000 spectators
  • The Jules Rimet trophy was the original world cup trophy, which was named after the French FIFA President Jules Rimet, who passed a vote in 1929 to bring the world's strongest national football teams together to compete for the title of World Champions
  • Shortly before the 1966 World Cup Final in England, the Jules Rimet trophy was stolen during a public exhibition at Westminster Central Hall. It was found just seven days later, wrapped in newspaper at the bottom of a garden hedge in South London, by a dog named Pickles
  • The Jules Rimet cup was given to Brazil to keep in 1970, after they won the trophy for the third time in 1970 and FIFA thought they should be rewarded
  • Over the years, the World Cup's qualification has evolved, from having no qualification at all in 1930, to a three-year process in 2006

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