The 2014 FIFA World Cup
The 20th FIFA World Cup, an international men's football tournament that is currently taking place in Brazil. It began on 12 June, with a group stage, and is scheduled to conclude with the final on 13 July 2014. It is the second time that Brazil has hosted the competition, the last one being in 1950. Brazil was elected unchallenged as host nation in 2007 after the international football federation, FIFA, decreed that the tournament would be staged in South America for the first time since 1978 in Argentina, and the fifth time overall.
The national teams of 31 countries advanced through qualification competitions that began in June 2011 to participate with the host nation Brazil in the final tournament. A total of 64 matches are being played in 12 cities across Brazil in either new or redeveloped stadiums. For the first time at a World Cup Finals, the matches are using goal-line technology, as well seeing the use of vanishing spray for free kicks.
With the host country, all world champion teams since the first World Cup in 1930 (Argentina, England, France, Germany, Italy,Spain and Uruguay) have qualified for this competition. Spain is the defending champion, having defeated the Netherlands 1–0 in the2010 World Cup final to win its first World title. The previous four World Cups staged in South America were all won by South American teams.
World Cup 2014 predictions: who will take the title?
Ever wondered what the World Cup is worth? When Italian sculptor Silvio Gazzaniga designed the current trophy in 1971, it was worth US$50,000. Now the trophy is estimated to be worth US$10m. The World Cup is, however, worth much more than two human figures cast in 18 carat gold.
The way nations battle to put on the tournament implies there is considerable worth to a country in hosting football’s biggest competition. Commonly used estimates indicated the past three World Cups would generate a positive economic impact of US$9 billion (Japan and South Korea in 2002); US$12 billion(Germany in 2006) and US$5 billion (South Africa in 2010).
For this year’s tournament in Brazil, various forecasters have identified the positive economic impact could range from US$3 billion to US$14 billion.
World Cup 2014 Fixtures
ROAD TO RIO DE JANEIRO
World Cup Fans