Olé, Olé, Olé, Olé!

Logo-01The FIFA World Cup, or often called the World Cup, is an international association football competition. Members of FIFA, the Fédération Internationale de Football Association, will compete in the World Cup. It is the most prestigious association football tournament in the world, as well as the most widely viewed and followed sporting event.

The World Cup is started in 1930 and has been held every four year since then, except on 1942 and 1946 because of the Second World War. The current champion is Germany, which won its fourth title at the 2014 tournament in Brazil. The World Cup begins with a qualification phase, which currently takes place over the preceding three years, to determine which teams qualify for the tournament phase, which is often called the World Cup Finals.

The host country of the World Cup is chosen in a vote by FIFA’s Council. This is done under an exhaustive ballot system. The decision on who will host the World Cup is usually made six or seven years in advance of the tournament. However, there have been occasions where the hosts of multiple future tournaments were announced at the same time.

Mascot-01The 2018 World Cup, or the 21st World Cup, will take place on 14 June to 15 July 2018 in Russia. Russia was awarded the hosting rights on 2 December 2010, making the 2018 World Cup the first ever to be held in Eastern Europe. 32 national teams will compete in it, consisting of 31 teams determined through qualifying competitions and the automatically qualified host team. The final tournament of the 2018 World Cup will take place on 15 July at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow.

For the 2018 World Cup, Russia has built and renovated 12 stadiums in 11 cities. The Volunteer Program for the tournament has set a new record: by 30 December when application period was over, the organizers received about 177,000 applications. Based on the result of the program, The 2018 World Cup will engage a total of 17,040 volunteers and more than 18,000 city volunteers in the 11 host cities.

The tournament logo was unveiled on 28 October 2014 by cosmonauts at the International Space Station and then projected onto Moscow’s Bolshoi Theatre during an evening television program. For the branding, a typeface called Dusha (from Душа, Russian for soul) was created by Portuguese design agency Brandia Central in 2014. The official mascot of the 2018 World Cup is Zabivaka—an anthropomorphic wolf dressed in the colors of the Russian national team. Zabivaka’s name is derived from the Russian word забива́ть, “to strike”, and his official backstory states that he is an aspiring football player who is “charming, confident and social”.

If your country is one of the 32 countries participating in the 2018 World Cup, make sure Balls-01to support them with your heart, mind and soul! If you are in Russia during the 2018 World Cup, make sure to head to one of the stadiums to watch the tournaments live. Also buy one of the 2018 World Cup souvenirs to commemorate the event.

If you do not have the opportunity to visit Russia for the 2018 World Cup, don’t be disappointed yet! The World Cup is one of the most-covered sporting events in the world. Just check with your local television broadcaster whether they will broadcast the 2018 World Cup, and you could enjoy the tournaments directly from your home!

Olé, olé, olé, olé!

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