Understanding the mechanics behind the 2014 World Cup tournament isn’t easy – it’s a global event that brings together millions of fans all over the world. In this article, I’ll try to clarify some of processes/things you need to understand about the games and the classification to be able to follow along. After all, you’re going to be there with Adventures in Brazil in 2014…right? Then you’ve got to learn everything about the World Cup!
The World Cup is organized by FIFA – Fédération Internationale de Football Association, located in Zurich, Switzerland. The first World Cup took place in Uruguay in 1930 and with the exception of 1942 and 1946 – because the WWII – it’s taken place every 4 years. The tournament originally started with 16 teams, expanding to 24 in 1982 and to 32 in 1998. Due to the number of countries that want to participate (there are roughly 200+), countries are required to compete in qualification tournaments for a chance to play in the World Cup games.
FIFA – Qualification – is divided by 6 continental zones: Africa, Asia, North and Central America (plus Caribbean), South America, Oceania, and Europe. The tournament that USA is a part of is organized by CONCACAF – Confederation of North, Central American and Caribbean Association Football. The qualification tournament is required to reduce the number of 200 participants to 32. Out of the 19 Word Cup games since 1930, USA participated 9 times. Since 1990 the USA team has qualified for every World Cup since, up to and including the 2010 World Cup.
USA is in Group A, competing for 1 of the 4 spots reserved for CONCACAF confederation for the 2014 World Cup. The first game will be USA x ATG (Antigua and Bermuda) on 8, June 2012. The second game will be Guatemala x USA on 1, June 2012 – note that all the location is to be announced.