15 fun facts about football

football and a pair of flip-flops in sand

As the world hots up with Brazil fever, here are 15 facts to get you in the mood for the biggest football tournament in the world 

1. An estimated 6.15 million ticket requests were made during the first phase of ticket sales for Brazil’s tournament. 

2. Japan have requested a Jacuzzi in every room during their stay in Brazil. 

3. The official instrument for this year’s games is the Caxirola – it’s like a maraca that makes a rattling sound when shaken. 

4. This tournament will be the first that uses goal-line technology. 

5. Everybody loves hot dogs at the games. Around 390,600 hot dogs were sold at official venues in South Africa 2010.

6. With a flair for football, the hosting nation Brazil has won the tournament five times. 

7. All hail Pickles – the dog who found the 1966 trophy after it was stolen three months before the finals. 

8. A record for the most defeats by a nation is held by Mexico with 20 losses – an unfortunate losing streak! 

9. This is the 20th tournament, making the tournament 84 years old. Only two tournaments that didn't go ahead in the past – once in 1942 and then again 1946, both due to WWII. 

10. The official balls used during this year's event will be the Adidas Brazuca. 

11. The official song for the games is We Are One (Ole Ola) by Pitbull, Jennifer Lopez and Claudia Leitte. 

12. The Brazilians love their footie so much that the banks will shut down three hours before each match. 

13. India withdrew from the 1950 games when they realised regulations stated players had to wear football boots and would not be allowed to play barefoot. 

14. It’s estimated that 1.1 billion people will tune into watch the tournament this year.

15. The quickest goal ever scored was at 11 seconds into the match. Turkey’s Hakan Şükür made history against South Korea in the 2002 games.
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