7 fun things you might not know about the World Cup in Brazil

Do you have World Cup fever? If you don’t then it can seem like the rest of the world has gone mad for an entire month. But even if you’ve never taken interest in the biggest sporting event on the planet, this might be the year to start paying attention (we’ve got 8 really good reasons to watch with your kids.

And in case those aren’t enough here are 7 more fun things to know about the World Cup.

1. 32 countries will play in the World Cup

There are between 3 and 4 games every day from now until June 26, when the playoffs begin, for a total of 64 matches.

They’ve been organized into 8 groups of 4 teams (exactly how requires some kind of advanced mathematics degree, we think).

Each team plays the others in its group, and the 2 top teams in each group advance to the “second stage”, which is a single-game knockout tournament ladder (the top team from Group A plays the second best team from Group B, for example).

FIFA World Cup Brazil 2014

June 12 – July 13
Championship game:
Rio de Janeiro
Sunday, July 13,
4 p.m. local time
(3 p.m. ET, noon PT)

2. The trophy is cool

The FIFA World Cup Trophy is made of 18-carat gold and shows two people holding up the Earth. It’s actually the second World Cup trophy. The first was given to Brazil permanently in 1970 because they were the first country to win the World Cup 3 times.

3. Brazil has a history of victory

There have been 19 tournaments since the World Cup started in 1930, and Brazil has won 5 times. Will they win again this year?

4. Getting the kids involved

In every match, Brazilian children aged 6-18 will be participating. Nearly 4,000 will be escorting players and acting as flag bearers as part of the FIFA youth program. What an awesome way to engage the next generation of soccer players!

5. Awesome official slogan

“All in one rhythm” makes us think of samba, the percussive Brazilian dance and musical genre.

6. Awesomer official theme song

“We Are One (Ole Ola)”, performed by Pitbull; it was written, co-produced by, and featuring Jennifer Lopez and Claudia Leitte. This theme song can’t help but inspire, unite, uplift, and get everyone dancing.

7. Canada’s getting in on the action

Later this summer, the U-20 Women’s World Cup takes place in Canada. There are 16 teams in 4 groups of 4, and Canada is in Group A with Ghana, Finland, and Korea DPR (Democratic People’s Republic, also known as North Korea). Games will be played in Edmonton, Moncton, Montreal, and Toronto between August 5 and August 24.

 

And next summer is the FIFA Women’s World Cup, starting on June 6. Games will be played in Edmonton, Moncton, Montreal, Ottawa, Vancouver, and Winnipeg, and the championship game is in Vancouver on Sunday, July 5. Qualifying has already begun and will be complete by the end of 2014. Canada, as host, qualifies automatically.

Being able to watch World Cup soccer on our own soil will be thrilling, even for reluctant soccer enthusiasts. Don’t wait to get into the spirit of soccer.

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