Hitting a goal in any football game during the World cup could probably be likened to striking gold in the early days of prospecting and mining in several parts of the world. With the discovery of a mother lode, the indescribable rush that would have surged through one’s very soul would have been so intensely, deliriously pure, one could have died then and there in the dark shadows of a cavern and not minded it at all, for after all, they say … one would have lived only for that moment. It is no exaggeration to say that nothing short of such emotion will be seen and felt by millions of people when WORLD CUP 2014 is declared open in Brazil on June 12. So Its all about Football World Cup 2014.
Running till July 13, expect anything and everything in the streets of this hot, passionate country as World Cup 2014 hugs the Sports page headlines with the shrills and thrills of the games, the what-could-have-been-a-goal-but-was-not, the sad, long faces of players who lost and the resounding joy of the winners.
This is Football World Cup 2014’s Theme song. We Are One (Ole Ola) (The Official 2014 FIFA World Cup Song). Enjoy it too .
World Cup 2014 (The 2nd Staging in Brazil)
The final touches in the last few days of preparations for the WORLD CUP 2014 are at fever pitch. Grouping of the 32 participating countries have been drawn. The 64 matches that will be played in 12 cities spread out over Brazil are all set. Close to 3.5 million tickets have gone on sale as early as August of 2013. The logo, mascot (“FULECO”), official song and even a 2014 World Cup Brazil (video game) have all been created, approved by Brazilians and launched amidst a frenetic excitement in the air. 25 sets of referee trios, with 8 supporting duos from 43 different countries have been identified and given respective game assignments. Sponsorships and broadcasting rights have been distributed among various media networks and groups in their individual areas. All the other nitty-gritties of the over-all audio-video system to bring each spill and thrill of the games to an expected, anticipating billion viewers, listeners and followers of The World Cup have been snipped, trimmed and precisely propped up. All is set but the pushing of the START button.
The Participating country-teams:
Pretty much as in World Cup 2010, each squad’s make-up should comprise of 23 players, three of whom must be goal keepers. All these players must be confirmed 10 days before the tournament’s start. Replacements, however, in cases of severe injury may be done no less than 24 hours before the start f their first match.
The Tournament Format
In the first round of skirmishes, known as the group stage, the 32 teams will be divided into 8 groups of 4. They will slug it out via the round-robin method. The first and second top finishers in each group get elevated to the knock-out stage.
During the knock-out phase, four rounds of matches will be played, with each round determining and eliminating the losing team.
The subsequent schedule of matches then is the round of 16, the quarter finals, the semi-finals and then comes the climactic finals with a play-off for third place.
When the game ends in a draw two (2) 15-minute overtime will apply. Should the score still be even after these two periods of extra time, a penalty shootout will determine the winner.
A brief look at some of the teams;
Host country Brazil is one of the top favorite teams to win the cup. On their home Brazilian soil, they enjoy the reputation of being unbeaten in 11 years. They will be playing under the intense coaching of 2002 World Cup-winner/coach, Luis Felipe Scolari. With the Brazilians’ passion and obsession with football to inspire and goad them to “get the gold”, it may just be a cinch for them to do so.
USA team is looking at reaching the knock-out stage as their least, minimum goal. In 2013, they had a national track record of 16 wins including one over top-rated Germany. As a whole, it’s known as a group who plays to win.
This Spanish Team is the defending champions and would no doubt aim for back-to-back titles. Andres Iniesta, their 2010 World Cup hero and idol will continue to play a key role for this star-studded team Spain as they remain focused on another World Cup win that could see their country’s streets flowing with vino.
Japan, the Asian Champions could very well be the dark horse in World Cup 2014. Technically gifted and playing consistently with a strong defense, this team has been known to have a flare for doing the unexpected.
Englandhas again joined the World Cup. Thanks to Roy Hodgson, the first English coach to lead Team England to this mother of all football tournaments for 16 years.
Switzerlandis one of the top-seeded teams in this year’s World Cup and it’s coming in with a lot of new, exciting and young win-oriented talents who played and won the under-17 World Cup of 2007. Having also reached the finals of the 2011 European under 21 championship, Switzerland could be the team the other competitive countries should look out for.
Getting into the World Cup is certainly nothing to sneeze at. It would take everything a team has got to get in. With all the World Champions since the first World Cup of 1930 qualifying this year (Brazil, Argentina, England, France, Germany, Italy, Uruguay and Spain), “it’s going to be one hell of a tough fight”
Here is Football World Cup 2014 Schedule. Click to enlarge more.