World Cup 2014 Commemorative Program

World Cup 2014 Commemorative Program

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FIFA estimated that about 1 billion people watched the 2010 World Cup final between Spain and the Netherlands. It also says the match was broadcast in every country and territory in the world. On average, about 188 million people watched each 2010 FIFA World Cup match on TV.
There’s no doubt the World Cup is the biggest sports event focused on an individual sport. Only the Summer Olympics could stake a claim to a similar level of popularity as a sporting event.
But forget about the statistics and the superlatives for a moment.
What the World Cup is really about goes beyond what mere numbers could convey. It’s about triumph and loss, joy and heartbreak. It’s about what happens when the underdog takes on the favourite and wins. It’s about those moments of genius that live on in the memory for generations to come.
It’s been about those things since the first tournament in Uruguay, 84 years ago.
All the national football associations affiliated with FIFA at the time were invited to participate. Thirteen countries accepted the invitation and promptly booked places on steamships and ocean liners for journeys that could take weeks or even months to reach their destination of Montevideo.
As it turns out, Uruguay, which as host obviously didn’t have to travel, ended up beating neighbour and keen rival Argentina in the final 4-2. While the final was played in front of a crowd of 93,000, the group game between Romania and Peru was estimated to have only attracted 300 people.
It’s a measure of how much the tournament has grown that it would be close to impossible to imagine a World Cup match attracting so few fans in this day and age.
But even that match, watched by only 300 people and certainly not broadcast to millions across the globe, has its stories.
Adalbert Desu scored Romania’s first goal in their 3-1 win that day, among the very first goals scored in the World Cup. Desu went to the World Cup against the wishes of the chairman of his club, who refused to pay Desu’s salary while he was in Uruguay on national team duty.
Desu played only one more game for Romania, the next group game against Uruguay. He quit his club when he got back to Romania and quit football three years later at the age of 24 due to a severe case of pneumonia.
Desu is far from a household name. He’s not Pelé, Beckenbauer, Cruyff, Maradona, Zidane or Messi. But his story is part of the fabric of the World Cup, another episode in the grand narrative that continues to capture the imagination of people worldwide.
We’re proud to present Soccer International’s 2014 World Cup special and hope the magazine can help you appreciate the big and little stories that make the World Cup such a special event.
Frequency 1 Issue per year
Genre Outdoor Sports
Weight (kg) 0.0000

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