1938 Soccer World Cup, France

The 1938 FIFA World Cup France was the third edition of the men’s world soccer championship organized by FIFA. It was held in France between June 4 and June 19, 1938.

The organization maintained for the last time the format of the 1934 edition, consisting of a phase of direct elimination to a single party. In the event of a tie, a 30-minute extension would be played, and if the result remained the same, a tie-breaker should be held the following day. As of 1938, the organizing country and the champion of the previous edition were classified directly.

The tournament was marked by the pre-war climate that existed before the Second World War. Only 15 countries participated because Austria, qualified for the final phase, had been occupied by Nazi Germany and its place became vacant. In addition, 12 of the 15 selections were European and there were only three participating teams from the rest of the world. South America turned its back on the event in protest of the election of a European state, with the outstanding absences of Argentina (aspiring to organize it) and Uruguay. The only American representatives were Brazil and a newcomer Cuba. In addition, the Netherlands East Indies (now Indonesia) was the first Asian country to participate.

In the final held at the Colombes stadium, Italy beat Hungary 4-2 and became the first country to win the bicampeonato. The coach Vittorio Pozzo was also the first coach (and to date only) who has won the World Cup twice.

When the Second World War broke out in 1939, the war events prevented FIFA from organizing the World Cup in its subsequent editions, and did not resume it until the 1950 edition in Brazil.

The choice of venue for the 1938 World Cup took place in Berlin (Germany) on August 13, 1936, at the Olympic Games, with the candidacies of France, Germany and Argentina on the table, the FIFA members elected absolute majority to the French. It was the second time that a European country would host this event, after the previous edition took place in Italy.

The Argentines took it for granted that they would be the organizers, after FIFA president and founder of the Cup, Jules Rimet, insinuated it to the leaders of the Argentine Football Association (AFA) during an official visit. According to their version, they interpreted that there would be alternation between the continents of Europe and America for each edition, however, several French football leaders such as Henri Delaunay and Robert Guérin (former president of FIFA) lobbied for France to present a project.1 Rimet was convinced, and the rest of the members decided in favor of the Europeans for the number of stadiums and transportation issues.

As there was no alternation, almost all the countries of the Americas renounced the qualifying phase. Uruguay was still upset with the weight of Europe in FIFA and its majority absence in the 1930 World Cup, so the Uruguayan Football Association did not sign up. In the same way, Colombia acted. The AFA only wanted to participate if they did not play eliminatory, and although FIFA raised it, the First Division clubs pressured the AFA because they did not want to give up their players. For this reason, Argentina missed the World Cup for the first time in its history, Brazil, interested in organizing the 1942 edition, did attend and was the only South American representative.

The 1938 World Cup was held in a context of political crisis at the end of the 1930s. Spain had been immersed in a Civil War for two years, and the totalitarian boom in Italy and Germany posed a threat to Europe’s freedom. Three months before the World Cup, the regime of Adolf Hitler had annexed the state of Austria as a province of the Third Reich, within its expansionist policy, which affected the organization because Austria, which was qualified for the final phase He left a vacancy in response, the French public was very hostile against Italians and Germans in their matches. In Asia the situation was also complicated due to the second Sino-Japanese war.

Developing the last phases of the world

Eighth finals

The 1934 World Cup did not have an opening game proper, because the round of 16 was played on the same day (May 27) and at the same time). Italy debuted at the National Stadium in Rome against the United States, still exhausted by their qualifier against Mexico three days before and with a combination of amateur players. The Italians got rid of their rival without hurry, with a convincing 7-1 The transalpine team was mostly made up of people from Juventus of Turin, but the star of that clash with a triple was Angelo Schiavio, from Bologna F.

Besides Italy, the countries with more options were those of Central Europe. The Austria team, led by Hugo Meisl, had only lost two games since 1931 and was known as Wunderteam, both for their offensive play style and their talented footballers, including Matthias Sindelar. he got to take the lead, Sindelar scored the tie and an extension was reached in which the Austrians prevailed by 3-2. The other favorite was Czechoslovakia, also with more troubles than expected. In their confrontation against Romania they had to come back with goals from Antonín Puč and Oldřich Nejedlý (2-1). Hungary needed four goals to break a competitive Egypt (4-2) and Switzerland qualified without trouble against the Netherlands (3-2) with a double by Leopold Kielholz, a forward who needed glasses to play.

Neither of the two South American teams could pass the round, although both were seeded. Argentina traveled to Italy with an amateur team, in which only two men (Devincenzi and Arcadio López) had international experience, and was not able to subdue Sweden, an opponent who did not play with professionals either. In a highly contested match, the Scandinavians ended up winning 3-2. The biggest surprise was the elimination of Brazil at the hands of Spain. The Spaniards played well and at the end of the first half they were winning 3-0 with goals from José Iraragorri and Isidro Lángara. And although the Brazilian star Leônidas da Silva cut distances in the resumption, it was not enough to avoid the defeat by 3-1. In addition, the goalkeeper Ricardo Zamora became the first to stop a penalty in the history of the tournament, thus all the qualifiers for the quarterfinals were European.

Quarter finals

The most exciting match of this phase was the one that faced Italy and Spain at the Giovanni Berta stadium in Florence. In an extremely tough and physical match, Luis Regueiro scored after half an hour and the transalpine Giovanni Ferrari equalized before the break. The extension did not resolve the score and with 1-1 it was necessary to break the next day, on June 1st. Seven of the eleven Spanish starters missed that match due to injury or fatigue, including Ricardo Zamora with two broken ribs. In the end Italy prevailed by the minimum with goal of Giuseppe Meazza. The Spaniards claimed a foul on goalkeeper Meazza and filed a complaint because the referee, René Mercet, canceled two legal goals to Regueiro and Quincoces.The controversy did not prevent the pass of Italy to the semifinals.

The rest of the crashes were resolved in the regulation time. The Italian rival in the semifinals would be Austria, who got rid of Hungary 2-1. Horvarth and Zischek put Wunderteam ahead and striker György Sárosi cut back from the penalty spot, but the Magyars were outnumbered by the injuries, as changes were not allowed at that time. In Milan, Germany defeated Sweden 2-1 with more difficulties than expected; It was not until the second half when Karl Hohmann scored two goals in three minutes, decisive to decant the situation. And finally, Czechoslovakia needed to go back to convincing Switzerland to eliminate it 3-2, at the Benito Mussolini stadium in Turin.

The first semifinal between Italy and Austria, held at the San Siro stadium in Milan, ended with a victory by the minimum of the transalpine (1-0). Austria arrived with a good run of form and, despite having more problems than expected, reached the semifinals with title options.9 However, Hugo Meisl could not count on his organizer Johann Horvath due to injury and told his friend, Italian coach Vittorio Pozzo, “we have no choice.” Azzurra scored nine minutes through Enrique Guaita, in a somewhat controversial situation because the Austrians claimed a foul on goalkeeper Peter Platzer. In a closely matched game, the hosts held on defense and qualified for the final of their World Cup.

The other game, between Czechoslovakia and Germany at the National Stadium in Rome, was resolved with Czechoslovakian triumph 3-1. The star who got rid of the German defenders was the striker Oldřich Nejedlý, author of a hat-trick that crowned top scorer of the competition.The Germans could not do anything against the technical superiority of his rival, and goalkeeper František Plánička shortcut the few occasions these could get.

Third place
The 1934 World Cup was the first in which a match was played for third place, which faced the national teams of Germany and Austria. The match was played at the Giorgio Ascarelli stadium in Naples on June 7, three days before the final. The Austrian star Matthias Sindelar did not appear in the starting lineup, although the spine of the Wunderteam remained. The Germans dominated from the first minute and thanks to the goals of Ernst Lehner and Edmund Conen arrived 3-1 at halftime. Despite the goal of Karl Sesta to cut distances, Germany was proclaimed winner of the consolation final.


The final of the World Cup between Italy and Czechoslovakia was held in Rome on June 10, 1934, at 5:30 p.m., with more than 50,000 spectators who filled the National Stadium of the Fascist National Party under intense heat. as a favorite for his role as organizer and for the innovations of trainer Vittorio Pozzo, who introduced the preparation rallies (ritiro), the defensive system with pyramidal position and a physical game.However, the national press was aware that the Czechoslovaks they had many options thanks to goalkeeper Plánička and his fearsome line of attack, President Benito Mussolini, obsessed with the organizational success and the sale of the achievements of Italian fascism, brought together the transalpine team before the initial whistle and urged them in a speech Win at all costs Some of the players came to feel threatened by the message: the Italian-Argentinean Luis Monti, the first man to He was contesting two finals of a World Cup, he came to declare years later:

Benito Mussolini was present in the box of authorities with his military uniform, the Italian players, as was customary, made the fascist salute in the center of the field, while the Czechoslovakians maintained the formation. The surprise came when Swedish referee Ivan Eklind also raised his arm, as was later known at the request of the authorities.After the anthems, captains Gianpiero Combi and Plánička shook hands and witnessed the field draw.

The game was very close and exciting, Italy tried to threaten Plánička’s goal with aerial balls, unable to surprise the goalkeeper. For their part, the Czechoslovaks did not overcome the ironclad Italian defensive line and reached the break without goals on the scoreboard. In spite of the increasing local hardness and arbitration permissiveness, Czechoslovakia dominated the second half and in the 71st minute went ahead with a goal from Antonín Puč on a personal play. He had to make tactical variations to overcome the bohemian defenders Finally, Raimundo Orsi got the tie nine minutes from the end With the opponent already exhausted, Angelo Schiavio made the final 2-1 in the 95th minute of the extra time. Italy proclaimed itself world champion for the first time in its history.

Rome lived a party atmosphere after the final whistle. The teams from Italy, Czechoslovakia and Germany appeared on the pitch as the top three qualified. The Italians received two titles on the turf: The Victory Cup, by Jules Rimet, and a trophy given by Benito Mussolini, the Coppa del Duce, six times bigger than the previous one, and a bonus of 20,000. lire per head and were named “Commendadores al Merito Deportivo”.


Competition format

The II World Cup was held between May 27 and June 10, 1934, shortly after finishing the European leagues. For the first time in the history of the tournament, a single-match direct elimination system was used. To solve the ties in the regulation time was played an extension of 30 minutes. And if the score was still matched, a tiebreaker game should be played the following day, all matches in each phase were played the same day, in different venues.

To set the qualifiers, the organizing committee established a “seed” that would not face each other in the round of 16. In this way, we wanted to ensure that the strongest selections reached the end. The last confirmed participant, the United States, met only three days before the inauguration.


The organizing committee had stadiums of recent construction such as the National Stadium of the National Fascist Party (remodeled in 1927), the San Siro Stadium (1926), the Littoriale Stadium in Bologna (1927) and the Giovanni Berta Stadium in Florence (1931). The National Stadium in Rome, home of the Grand Final, and the Luigi Ferraris Stadium were remodeled for the occasion.

On the occasion of the event, three more facilities were built. The most modern was the Benito Mussolini Stadium in Turin, named after the fascist leader, whose works began in September 1932 and did not finish until May 1933. Originally planned for 65,000 spectators, an athletics track was built on the lawn. that could host more competitions. When Mussolini lost power, he was renamed “Comunale.” The Littorio Stadium of Trieste opened its doors on September 29, 1932, while the Giorgio Ascarelli of Naples did not open until May 27, 1934, already in full Cup, in the match between Egypt and Hungary.

At present, only the stadiums of Milan, Florence, Genoa and Turin remain open. The field of Naples was destroyed by the bombings of the allies in 1942, and the rest were replaced by other facilities.

Participating teams Italy 1934

The organizing committee sent invitations to the federations of Europe, America, Africa and Asia to fill the 16 available places. When they reached February 28, 1933, the registration deadline, a total of 32 countries had signed up. For this reason, a qualifying phase was established for the first time among all the selections. The different groups were established by geographic proximity to save costs.

All teams were required to participate in the qualifying phase, including the organizing country. Italy played a two-legged tie against Greece, although they had no problems to pass; After defeating the Hellenes 4-0 in Milan, both countries reached an agreement and the return was never held. In addition, 11 other European countries were classified: Germany, Austria, Belgium, Czechoslovakia, Spain, France, Hungary, the Netherlands, Romania, Sweden and Switzerland.

The four associations of the United Kingdom – England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland -, at that time faced with FIFA, refused to participate in the World Cup and continued with their own championship, the British Home Championship.

The only representatives of South America were Argentina and Brazil, who did not dispute any match for the withdrawal of their rivals. The Argentines were on the verge of not traveling because they resigned in the first instance. His elimination rival, Chile, could have come directly but also did not want to participate. Having a vacancy, the Argentine Football Association (Amateurs and Professionals) rectified its decision. All in all, the professional clubs of the newly created Liga de Fútbol Argentina refused to give in to their professionals and the albiceleste traveled to Europe with a completely amateur team, but the most notable absence was that of Uruguay, current champion, in He protested because Italy had rejected his invitation to the 1930 World Cup. The Uruguayans are the only world champions who have not been able to defend their title.

In qualifying in Africa and Asia, Egypt won the classification after defeating a selection of Palestine consisting of nine British, six Jews and one Arab in a round-trip to the United States. and Mexico, was played in the Italian capital on May 24, 1934, just three days before the inauguration, and ended with a 4-2 American victory.

1934 Football World Cup, Italy

The 1934 FIFA World Cup Italy was the second edition of the Men’s World Soccer Championship organized by FIFA. It took place in Italy between May 27 and June 10, 1934. After the success of the 1930 edition in Uruguay, this was the first time that the championship was held in a European country.

Due to the number of federations interested in participating, FIFA established a qualifying phase to cover the 16 places available, in which even Italy participated despite being the host. Uruguay, winner in 1930, refused to participate because Italy did not want to go to its World Cup, being to date the only champion who has not wanted to defend his title. In fact, only four non-European states participated: Argentina, Brazil, the United States and Egypt, the first African country to take part. In total, ten countries debuted in the competition.

The organization eliminated the group stage and changed the format to a phase of direct elimination to a single match, something that would only be repeated in the 1938 edition. In the event of a tie, a 30-minute extension would be played, and if the result remained the same a tiebreaker game was to be played the next day. The great final between Italy and Czechoslovakia, held at the National Stadium of the National Fascist Party, ended with the hosts’ victory 2-1, and it was the first that needed an additional time to resolve.

Apart from sports, the 1934 World Cup was used by the dictator Benito Mussolini from a propagandistic and nationalist point of view, with the aim of selling abroad the achievements and ideals of Italian fascism. the title has been accused of enjoying favorable arbitrations during this tournament.


The success of the 1930 Football World Cup motivated FIFA to celebrate a second edition four years later, as agreed in the different congresses of the body. Given that Uruguay hosted the inaugural championship, it was accepted that a state of Europe welcomed the 1934.

At the XXI FIFA Congress, held in October 1932 in Stockholm, the executive committee announced that the 1934 World Cup would take place in Italy. Before reaching that decision there was an intense debate, it is known that Sweden wanted to present a candidacy, but they ended up withdrawing it because Italy had a more advanced project. On the other hand, Germany had asked FIFA for football to return to the 1936 Berlin Olympics after his absence four years ago. The event was again held but only with amateur players, leaving the World Cup as the professional tournament par excellence.

Behind the proposal of the Italian Football Federation was the government of the dictator Benito Mussolini, who used the event from a propaganda and nationalist point of view to unify the country. Once it was granted, Mussolini put pressure on the national sport’s managerial positions, coach Vittorio Pozzo and his players to win the title, as they later ended up recognizing some of them, Italy wanted to ensure success in their World Cup even before his concession, when in 1931 he authorized the arrival of South Americans with Italian ancestry (oriundi) such as the Argentines Luis Monti, Attilio Demaría, Enrique Guaita and Raimundo Orsi, and the Brazilian Anfilogino Guarisi, who were later nationalized. The organizing committee also spared no expense, allocating a budget of 3.5 million lire and up to eight venues with new or refurbished stadiums for the occasion: Bologna, Florence, Genoa, Milan, Naples, Rome (venue of the final), Turin and Trieste

champion of the first world cup


In this phase they met in the first match between Argentina and the United States. The first part ended 1: 0 with a goal by Monti for the Argentines. The Americans did not stand out that much in the second half and were finally defeated by 6: 1.

In the second semifinal, the hosts faced off against Yugoslavia, who managed to get ahead on the scoreboard thanks to a goal from Vujadinović. However, Uruguay reacted and managed to win 6: 1 with a triplet of José Pedro Cea.

Third and fourth place
The match for the third position was not established until the 1934 World Cup, so the 1930 edition is the only one in which it was not held. On some occasions, certain sources – such as the FIFA newsletter in 1984 – have erroneously quoted that this result was 3-1 for Yugoslavia, and some sources, such as a book by Hyder Jawad in 2009, cited the attempt to celebrate the said party, to which Yugoslavia resigned as a complaint for the arbitration of its previous party before Uruguay. A report by the FIFA technical committee in 1986 included a ranking of all the teams that had played a World Cup, in which the United States appeared in 3rd place and Yugoslavia in 4th. This position continues to be used by FIFA since then

In 2010, the son of Kosta Hadži, head of the Yugoslav delegation at the 1930 World Cup, announced that Yugoslavia had been awarded the bronze medal during that competition and that he himself and his family had kept it for 80 years. According to these data, Yugoslavia had obtained this medal for having been defeated by the champions in the semifinal, however, the origin and authenticity of said medal have not yet been recognized.


The final was played at the Centenario Stadium on July 30. The doors of the stadium opened at 8:00 am, six hours before the start of the game, and by noon it was full. The official attendance registered 93,000 spectators, due to the tension caused by the existing rivalry, the Belgian referee John Langenus demanded exceptional police precautions. It is estimated that between 10,000 and 15,000 Argentines made the trip to Montevideo to watch the final.Each team wanted to play with their own ball so the referee solved it by throwing a coin into the air. The final was played with the Argentine ball, but there are also sources that say that the first half was played with the Argentine ball and the second with the Uruguayan.

The referee was the Belgian John Langenus, who accepted the commission a few hours before and on the condition of having a ship in port one hour before the final announcement, in case of security problems.Uruguay made a change in its alignment with Regarding the semifinals and Castro replaced Anselmo, who was ill, the match ended 4: 2 in favor of Uruguay (who was losing 1: 2 at the end of the first half) and won the title of world champions. The day after the final was declared a national holiday in Uruguay, in Buenos Aires, on the other hand, the police had to shoot a furious crowd trying to assault the Uruguayan embassy.

The Argentine “Pancho” Varallo said some time after the final: “The Uruguayan fans made war on us since we arrived because they knew that the title was going to be between them and us. At night they would not let us sleep and they would insult us in training. ” Defender Luis Monti, one of the stars of the Argentine team, was threatened with death the night before, as well as his family, by two Italian spies of Mussolini’s fascist regime, if Argentina won. He was recruited by Mussolini for the Italian national team; he told a weekly magazine years later: “When we came back to play the second half there were about three hundred soldiers with fixed bayonets. They were not going to defend us. “Many Argentine players feared for their lives when, at the break of the World Cup final, they won 1: 2 against Uruguay. “We better lose, if not here we all die,” Fernando Paternoster said to his teammates in the locker room.

Varallo was also the youngest player who played the final and also the last survivor of the tournament, dying on August 30, 2010 at 100 years.

Tournament summary

Group stage

Group 1

This group was the only one with 4 selections: Argentina, Chile, France and Mexico. Two days after beating Mexico, the French clashed with one of the group’s favorite teams, Argentina. During the match the Gauls were reduced by the injuries of their players. Laurent, after a hard tackle from Luis Monti, was limping for most of the game. France resisted almost the entire match, but in minute 81 Monti scored a foul. With 6 minutes to go, referee Almeida Rêgo whistled the end of the match erroneously when Frenchman Marcel Langiller had a clear chance to score. France had played twice in 48 hours, while Chile still had not played its first game. The next day he faced Mexico, winning 3: 0.

In the next match of the group, between Argentines and Mexicans, the first penalty of the competition took place. Bolivian referee Ulises Saucedo scored up to five penalties, some of them doubtful, Guillermo Stábile scored a hat-trick on his international debut with Argentina and won 6: 3, despite the absence of his captain Manuel Ferreira, who had returned to Buenos Aires to take an exam The final classification was decided in the match that faced Argentina and Chile, since both had defeated Mexico and France. There were problems during the match due to a lack of Monti to Arturo Torres, but finally Argentina prevailed by 3: 1 and agreed to the semifinals.

Group 2

In the second group they faced Brazil, Bolivia and Yugoslavia. The Brazilians were the favorites to pass the round, but in the opening match they lost 1: 2 to Yugoslavia.Before the tournament, Bolivia had not won an international match yet, and the two matches they played were very similar: they made a promising start , but then they were thrashed (4: 0) and Yugoslavia went into the semifinals. The meeting between Bolivia and Brazil was disputed for the honor, since both were eliminated, and the result was identical with the victory of the Brazilians.

Group 3

The organizers, Uruguay, faced each other in the same group against Peru and Romania. In the opening match of the group was the first expulsion in the history of the World Cup, went to the Peruvian Placido Galindo in the match against Romania. The Romanians took advantage of this numerical superiority to prevail by 3: 1. This game is the one that has had the least public attendance in the history of the World Cup. The official attendance was 2459 people, although it is currently accepted that there were about 300 spectators.

Due to the delay in the construction of the Centennial Stadium, Uruguay did not play their first match until five days after the start. When it could finally be played, it was preceded by a great ceremony. The Uruguayan team had been the last four weeks in a training camp with strict discipline, which shows the fact that goalkeeper Andrés Mazali was expelled from the team after breaking the curfew to visit his wife. 100 years after the creation of the first Constitution of Uruguay, the team won in a game matched to Peru by 1: 0. The Uruguayan press said that it had been a poor presentation of their team. However, in the second game against Romania, they won by 4: 0.

Group 4

In this group dominated the United States, despite having several debutantes. In their first match they beat Belgium by 3: 0. This result surprised the country and the newspaper Imparcial said about it that “the wide marker of the Americans had surprised the experts.” The Belgian newspapers complained about the state of the pitch, the arbitration decisions and the fact that the second the second game of the group was played with a lot of wind, and in it the first hat-trick of the tournament was produced, scored by Bert Patenaude of the United States against Paraguay.

Until November 10, 2006 it was believed that the first hat-trick in a World Cup had been scored by Guillermo Stábile of Argentina. However, FIFA admitted on this date that the goal attributed to Tom Florie had actually been from Patenaude, and that it was already recognized by some specialized authors. After the United States had secured the first position, the final match between Paraguay and Belgium was played, which ended 1: 0.



For the tournament, the intention of the organizers was that all the matches were played in a single stadium, the Centennial Stadium, built especially for the celebration of the World Cup and as a celebration of the centenary of Uruguayan independence. It was designed by Juan Antonio Scasso, and Rimet called it the “soccer temple.” With a capacity for 90,000 spectators, it was the largest stadium in the world outside the British Isles.

However, the heavy rains that occurred in Montevideo before the inauguration prevented its construction from being completed on time, due to this situation the organizers were forced to look for other stadiums for the first matches: the Great Central Park and the Pocitos Stadium, scenarios where the first two games in the history of the World Cup were played simultaneously. The Centenario Stadium was officially inaugurated on the sixth day of competition and from that moment all the games were played there.

As an impact of the participating venues, on July 18, 1983, FIFA declared the Centennial Stadium as a World Football Historical Monument, the only construction of its kind anywhere in the world. In addition, FIFA also awarded the Gran Parque Central Stadium for hosting the first match in the history of the World Cups (a commemorative plaque is exhibited on the stage).


Due to the refusal of European countries to travel, the competition reduced the number of participants from 16 to 13. The original idea was a tournament by direct elimination, but with 13 participants the organizers decided that the teams would be divided into four groups, through of a league system, of which the champion of each group would qualify for the next phase. Curiously, the draw to define them was made when all participants landed on Uruguayan land. The reason was to be sure that all the drawn teams would participate in the World Cup. Also wanted to ensure that none of them gave up competing at the last moment if the draw was not favorable.

In each game, the winning team would be awarded two points, the loser none, and in case of a tie both would receive a point. If at the end of the phase two teams were tied to points in the first place, a tiebreaker game would be played. The four winners of the group went through to a final phase with direct elimination to a single match, in which extra time was expected in case of a draw. Two criteria were taken into account for the formation of the groups: maintaining the greatest interest of the championship and granting the other teams the possibility of making good matches.


Rapidly, several European countries submitted their candidacy (Italy, Hungary, the Netherlands, Spain and Sweden), along with Uruguay, in South America Jules Rimet, president of FIFA in those years, was in favor of the proposal South American Uruguay would be on the date of the World Cup celebrating the centenary of the Constitution Jura (July 18, 1830), had obtained consecutively the gold medal in the Olympic Games of 1924 and 1928, had plans for the construction of a new stadium, and the country’s authorities had offered to pay the expenses of the participants, and the consequences of the First World War had not yet completely dissipated in the European continent, so the preference for Uruguay would also serve to encourage world peace.

Seeing that the tournament would probably be awarded to the small southern country, the European candidates declined their candidacy favoring Italy. However, the speech of the Argentine delegate Adrián Béccar Varela, promoting the candidacy of his neighboring country, forced the withdrawal of Italy, Uruguay was unanimously chosen as the venue for the tournament and confirmed at the FIFA congress of Barcelona in 1929. To reward the champion, the French sculptor Abel Lafleur created the trophy “Goddess of Victory”, later called the Jules Rimet Cup.

Participating teamsAfter the award of the tournament to Uruguay, the Organizing Committee distributed the invitations of the 16 places for the tournament. It has been the only edition of the World Cup without a qualifying phase. All countries affiliated to FIFA were invited to compete, with the deadline for their response on February 28, 1930. Eager to show their interest in the competition, the American countries of Argentina, Brazil, Bolivia, Chile, Mexico, Paraguay, Peru and the United States accepted the invitation. In total there were 7 South American countries, more than in any other edition.

However, there was a notable rejection among European countries. They argued his absence due to the high costs involved in the trip across the Atlantic Ocean and the strong economic crisis that had plagued him in the last year.The Uruguayans even offered to pay all the expenses involved and compensate the professional football teams. for the absence of its players. Despite this, the majority continued to reject the invitation and attended the Nations Cup between clubs in Switzerland.The Uruguayan Football Association sent a letter of invitation to the Football Association of England, but their committee rejected the proposal. November 18, 1929. Two months before the start of the tournament, no European team confirmed its presence.

Finally only France, Belgium, Yugoslavia and Romania attended the meeting in Montevideo. France was practically obliged to attend due to the pressure exerted by Jules Rimet, although Manuel Anatol, one of the most outstanding sporting figures of that country, and coach Gaston Barreau did not attend, Rimet also requested help in person from King Charles II of Spain. Romania. The monarch forced the participation of his players, who were chosen at random personally by the King in a Romanian oil company.The Belgians, for their part, participated at the insistence of the FIFA vice-president, Rudolf Seedrayers. from Egypt he signed up for the tournament, but asked that they change the start date as they did not arrive on time due to the boat trip. FIFA did not accept the request and Egypt was not able to participate.The Romanians embarked in Genoa (Italy), in the SS Conte Verde. The French did it in Villefranche-sur-Mer on June 21 and the Belgians in Barcelona (Spain). The Conte Verde also took Rimet, the trophy and the three appointed European referees: Jean Langenus, Henri Christophe and Thomas Balway. The Yugoslavia traveled on the Florida steamer from Marseille (France), during the trip by boat there was nothing noteworthy, except some complaints from the players for not being able to train normally, since the ship’s gym and the bridge were The Brazilians boarded in Rio de Janeiro on June 29 and arrived in Uruguay on July 4. Uruguay requested assistance to its neighboring countries to organize the tournament. Even though he invited all countries, many refused to pay the sum of money requested in support of the organization. The other referees were Uruguayan Ricardo Vallarino, Anibal Tejada, Francisco Matteucci and Domingo Lombardi, the Argentine José Macias, the Brazilian Gilberto de Almeida Rêgo, the Bolivian Ulises Saucedo and the Chilean Alberto Warnken.

World Cup History, World Cup 1930, Uruguay

Football World Cup 1930

The 1930 FIFA World Cup Uruguay was the first edition of the FIFA World Cup organized by FIFA. It was developed in Uruguay between July 13 and 30, 1930. FIFA decided to hand over the organization of the tournament to Uruguay in commemoration of the centennial of the Constitution Jura, which the nation celebrated during July of that year, among other reasons.

In the tournament 13 national teams participated (12 guests plus the organizer), divided into 4 groups: 3 groups of 3 teams and a group of 4 teams. The first two matches in the history of the World Cup took place simultaneously on July 13, the date on which the United States beat Belgium 3: 0, while France beat Mexico by 4: 1. The first goal of the competition was scored by the French player Lucien Laurent.

The selections of Argentina, United States, Uruguay and Yugoslavia acceded to the semifinals after prevailing in their respective groups. In the final, the host Uruguay beat Argentina by 4: 2, before more than 68,000 spectators, winning his first world title organized by FIFA.


Since the founding of FIFA in 1904, the possibility of holding a tournament worldwide has been raised. However, the newly formed organization did not have the resources and infrastructure necessary for such an event. Thus, they asked for support to the International Olympic Committee, which in 1906 accepted the inclusion of football in its sporting events. In 1914, FIFA officially recognized the tournament held at the Olympic Games as a “football world championship for amateurs”, taking responsibility for organizing it during the following three Olympic events: from 1920 to 1928. Until that date, the organization of the Olympic football competition was in charge of national associations, such as the Football Association of England in 1908 and the Swedish Football Association in 1912.

The preliminary list of sports in the Olympic Games of Los Angeles 1932 did not include soccer, reason why FIFA and the International Olympic Committee disagreed until the point of which finally it was not included. On May 26, 1928, a FIFA Congress was held in Amsterdam, which voted to create a specialized tournament, independent of the Olympic Games, open to FIFA members and in which professionalism was allowed. The proposal went ahead with 25 votes in favor and 5 against, so it was necessary to choose the venue.This was also the only World Cup in which there was no elimination process to participate.