World Cup 1950


Winners Uruguay
Teams 13
Host Brazil
Teams in qualifiers 34
Notable absentees France, Germany, Hungary
Surprises Bolivia
Golden Boot Ademir (Brazil) - 9
Stats A total of 88 goals were scored (4.00 per match); Brazil (22) scored the most
Format Four groups, with the winners of each progressing to a four-team round-robin final group. Withdrawals meant there were two groups of four, one of three and one of two
Number of matches 22

Innovations
• The British Home Championship was the qualifying tournament for England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland. Scotland, runners-up to England, qualified but refused on the grounds they were not champions of Britain

Controversies
• Germany and Japan, defeated in World War II, were barred
• India qualified for the finals but refused to travel after FIFA banned them from playing barefoot
• France withdrew after Brazil had refused to reschedule their two first-round matches, which were 3,000km apart
• The organisers refused to geographically seed the groups, meaning some teams had arduous traveling between matches

Trivia
• The tournament had originally been scheduled for 1949
• Two players - Erik Nilsson of Sweden and Alfred Bickel of Switzerland - appeared in the finals either side of the war
• The trophy was officially renamed the Jules Rimet Trophy to mark Rimet's 25-year tenure as FIFA president. It had spent the war under a bed after Dr Ottorino Barassi, an Italian sports official, smuggled it from the bank in Rome in 1940
• Eight of the Italian national side had died in a plane crash in May 1949 when Torino's entire side was wiped out
• Yugoslavia's Rajko Mitic had his head badly gashed by an iron girder as he left the dressing room before the game against Brazil. The referee refused to delay the match, and Yugoslavia kicked off with ten men
• The final round-robin game was played in front of an official crowd of 199,850, the largest attendance at a football match

Source: FIFA, ESPN, AllSports & Getty

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