The FIFA World Cup is the main tournament among national teams which is held once four years. Currently 32 national football teams take part in the final tournament. At the 2018 World Cup the continent quotas are presented as follows: Russia will participate in the tournament as the host country, 13 teams will stand for Europe, Asia and Africa will be presented by five teams, four teams will go to the tournament from South America, three from Central and North America. Another team will be secured with the final tournament according to the play-off results.
2018 FIFA World Cup
For the first time in the history, the 2018 World Cup will take place in Russia. Russia acquired the right to host the tournament as against England, the Netherlands and Belgium (the joint bid), and also Spain and Portugal (the joint bid).
32 teams will participate in the tournament, the tournament draw will be held in December, 2017. At the moment, only one participant of the final tournament is known — the host country Russia.
The World Cup will take place from June 14 to July 15, 2018 in eleven cities of the country. The final list of the host cities covers: Moscow, Saint Petersburg, Sochi, Kazan, Samara, Saransk, Kaliningrad, Volgograd, Rostov-on-Don, Nizhny Novgorod and Yekaterinburg.
Teams will be divided into eight groups of four which will play the round-robin tournament. Two best teams from each group will go to the play-off. The tournament final and opening matches will be played in Moscow at Luzhniki Stadium.
The World Cup generates great interest of fans worldwide. The television audience of the final matches exceeds one billion people, total number of spectators of the last World Cups exceeds 3 billion people.
According to the tentative forecast, about 1.5 million foreign tourists, which is 500 thousand more than the previous tournament in Brazil, will visit the World Cup in Russia.
First, the World Cup was held in 1930 after the football was excluded from the Olympic Games 1930. The first tournament took place in Uruguay for 13 national teams only (that time it was very long and expensive to get to South America from Europe and Asia, therefore only two countries represented Europe at the tournament). The host won that tournament and became, thereby, the first World Cup Champion in the history of football. Since 1934 about 16 teams participate in the tournament. During the World War II, the World Cup wasn't held: the tournament restarted in 1950 after a 12-year break.
The next increase of participants of the final tournament happened in 1982. Then 24 teams took part in the final of the World Cup in Spain. Since 1998, about 32 teams participate in the World Cup.
Over the World Cups history only eight national teams won the tournament. The leader in victories number is the Brazil national team which have lifted the cup over their heads five times (1958, 1962, 1970, 1994 and 2002), the Germany team won four times (1954, 1974, 1990 and 2014) and Italy did in 1934, 1938, 1982 and 2006. The Argentina national team became the World Cup Champion of twice (1978 and 1986), as well as Uruguay (1930, 1950), England won once in 1966, France in 1998 and Spain in 2010. The current World Cup Champion is the German national team.