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FIFA World Cup
Founded 1906
Region International (FIFA)
Number of teams 16 (finals)
Current champions Flag of Brazil (1889-1960).svg Brazil (1st title)
Most successful team Flag of Uruguay.svg Uruguay
Flag of Italy (1861-1946).svg Italy (2 titles)
Soccerball current event.svg Current

The FIFA World Cup is a football tournament held every four years since 1906 except for 1914 and 1918 because of World War I, 1942 and 1946 because of the Second World War. The current champion of the World Cup is Hungary who won in 1954.

History

Early times

In the first two World Cups, the World Cup was an invitational tournament in which most of the nations coming from Europe with only Argentina and Uruguay being the two teams to initially come to South America. Everyone thought that the British teams would be strong in the competition as it was the birthplace of modern football. But in 1906 only England qualified through to the Semi-Final before getting knocked out by Uruguay who would later win the first World Cup.

But when Uruguay went into Civil War in 1907, it was a wide-open draw with England taking home the 1910 crown after defeating Belgium 2-1 in the final. The other British nations though struggled with only one making it through to the Quarter Finals. The third World Cup was the first to have qualifiers with Wrexham being the venue for the Scotland-Wales qualifier. Scotland, Norway, Chile and Italy would go through to the World Cup where Denmark shocked the world by defeating England in extra time while for Italy they would take the first third-place playoff defeating Belgium.

WC between the wars

After World War I, the World Cup was effected with the only suitable host for the 1922 FIFA World Cup. In December 1920, the Netherlands became the host of the fourth World Cup as they neutral during the war. For the hosts, they would make it all the way to the final where they would lose to Belgium 2-1. In 1926, Uruguay would create history by being the first multiple champions after defeating the Netherlands 3-2 in extra time. Then in the first World Cup held in South America, the Netherlands took home the trophy after two previous final attempts. They defeated first-time finalists, Argentina. While for Czechoslovakia they finished in 3rd place with wins over Uruguay in the quarter-finals being a shock upset.

Heading into 1934, everyone was predicting that the Netherlands could hold off the competition but after struggling in the WEFF Championship, an elimination in the group stage prove the difference with Italy taking the trophy at home. This also meant that they created history by being the first home team to lift the trophy as they defeated France 3-1. Italy then retook the trophy in Argentina with Portugal being the surprise packet after they defeated Switzerland and Brazil to finish in fourth place after losing to the United States in the third-place play-off.

Brief extension to 20 teams

After the Second World War, FIFA was trying to encourage the national teams to head back into football. In 1946, FIFA decided to expand to a twenty team World Cup with the groups having five teams in each group. Despite some people thinking that this was a bad idea, FIFA kept with the plan. During the congress, it was also decided to have the World Cup being held in Sweden. Before the tournament, two-time defending champions Italy was struck with the Superga Air Disaster which forced the nation to go by bus. The final would see Sweden take out the first title in a shock result against fellow first-time finalists Great Britain by a score of 2-1.

The competition would fall back down to a sixteen team competition in the next edition and much like the previous edition saw two different teams competing in the final with Sándor Kocsis becoming the first player to score a hat-trick in the final as he would lead Hungary to the title as they defeated Romania 5-1 at Santiago.

Results

Main article: List of FIFA World Cup finals
# Year Hosts Champions Score Runners-up Third place Score Fourth place Number of Teams
1 1906
Details
Flag of France France Flag of Uruguay.svg
Uruguay
4–0 Flag of Austria.svg
Austria
Flag of Argentina.svg
Argentina
[note 1] Flag of England.svg
England
12
2 1910
Details
Flag of Austria Austria Flag of England.svg
England
2–0 Flag of Belgium (civil).svg
Belgium
Flag of Argentina.svg
Argentina
[note 1] Flag of Austria.svg
Austria
15
3 1914
Details
Flag of England England Flag of Denmark.svg
Denmark
4–2 (a.e.t) Flag of England.svg
England
Flag of Italy (1861-1946).svg
Italy
1–0 Flag of Belgium (civil).svg
Belgium
16
1918 Edition not organized because of World War I.
4 1922
Details
Flag of the Netherlands Netherlands Flag of Belgium (civil).svg
Belgium
2–1 Flag of the Netherlands.svg
Netherlands
Flag of Italy (1861-1946).svg
Italy
1–0 Flag of Switzerland.svg
Switzerland
10
5 1926
Details
Flag of Spain (1785-1873 and 1875-1931) Spain Flag of Uruguay.svg
Uruguay
3–2 (a.e.t) Flag of the Netherlands.svg
Netherlands
Flag of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia.svg
Yugoslavia
2–1 Flag of Austria.svg
Austria
16
6 1930
Details
Flag of Uruguay Uruguay Flag of the Netherlands.svg
Netherlands
2–0 Flag of Argentina.svg
Argentina
Flag of the Czech Republic.svg
Czechoslovakia
2–0 Flag of Switzerland.svg
Switzerland
16
7 1934
Details
Flag of Italy (1861-1946) Italy Flag of Italy (1861-1946).svg
Italy
1–0 Flag of France.svg
France
Flag of Brazil (1889-1960).svg
Brazil
2–1 (a.e.t) Flag of Wales (1959–present).svg
Wales
16
8 1938
Details
Flag of Argentina Argentina Flag of Italy (1861-1946).svg
Italy
2–0 Flag of the Netherlands.svg
Netherlands
30x27px
United States
2–1 Flag of Portugal.svg
Portugal
16
1942 Edition not organized because of World War II.
1946
9 1950
Details
Flag of Sweden Sweden Flag of Sweden.svg
Sweden
2–1 Flag of the United Kingdom.svg
Great Britain
Flag of Norway.svg
Norway
1–0 Flag of France.svg
France
20
10 1954
Details
Flag of Chile Chile Flag of Hungary (1949-1956).svg
Hungary
5–1 30x27px
Romania
Flag of Yugoslavia (1943–1992).svg
Yugoslavia
3–0 Flag of Austria.svg
Austria
16
11 1958
Details
Flag of Switzerland Switzerland Flag of Brazil (1889-1960).svg
Brazil
4–1 Flag of France.svg
France
30x27px
Soviet Union
1–0 Flag of the United Kingdom.svg
Great Britain
16
12 1962
Details
Flag of Mexico (1934–1968) Mexico 16
Notes
  1. 1.0 1.1 There was no official World Cup Third Place match in 1906 or 1910

Records and statistics

Main article: FIFA World Cup records

See also

External Links