The World Cup is the globe’s most prestigious national football award; probably the biggest award in the entire sport. Even when they have achieved everything there is to achieve with their clubs, football stars always feel like there is a gap left if they have not won the world cup.
The quadriennial tournament brings together 32 teams from all around the world. The 32 finalists are picked through a qualification process that is carried out in each confederation- Concacaf, Uefa, CAF, AFC, and CONMEBOL.
21st Century World Cup
The competition has been hosted in Europe (Germany 2006, Russia 2018), Asia (Korea/Japan 2002), Africa (South Africa 2010) and South America (Brazil 2014) since the turn of the 21st Century. European countries have had a telling dominance in this period, winning three of the four editions (Italy in 2006, Spain in 2010, Germany in 2014, and France in 2018). Brazil is the only non-European team to win it in recent times, having triumphed over Germany in 2002.
The competition will be heading to Qatar in 2022 as nations once again attempt to achieve world glory. World football governing body FIFA under current president Gianni Infantino has mooted plans to expand the tournament from 32 to 48 teams.
Best players miss out
The world’s greatest stars across generations have been crowned champions in the World Cup- think Pele, Maradona, Zinedine Zidane, Ronaldo, and Ronaldinho. However, both of the current highest regarded players have continuously missed out on this feat. Cristiano Ronaldo’s Portugal is not considered a football powerhouse; Lionel Messi’s Argentina has continuously fallen shorts, coming closest in 2014 when they lost 1-0 in the finals.