30 Fun Facts About Soccer
facts about soccer
Facts about soccer start with an interesting one.
- Soccer is called football around the world, except in the US, Canada
and few other countries where the word football was already taken by
- Soccer is distinguished from rugby and American/Canadian football in
that it is primarily played with the feet. Touching the ball with hands
is not allowed.
- Soccer was originally called association football. "Soccer" is a corruption of
"assoc" which is derived from "association", and the English
people tending to shorten their words.
- University of
North Carolina has won an incredible 16 national championships in
women's soccer, since the first US college tournament in 1982.
Cup is the biggest and most followed tournament in the world. It is held every
four years in a different host country. Billions of people watch
the televised games, as the national teams from around the
globe battle for soccer supremacy.
- United States Major League
Soccer made its debut in 1996, shortly
after the wildly successful 1994 World Cup was hosted by the United
States. USA agreed to start the professional soccer league if the FIFA
granted the World Cup host to be USA. Now we have MLS that is growing
every year. Thank you FIFA.
- Women's United Soccer Association
(WUSA) made its debut in 2001. Eight teams participated, and Brandi
Chastain's Bay Area CyberRays won the inaugural league championship over
Atlanta. The league disbanded in 2003.
- United States has more official soccer players than any other nation in the world - almost 18 million. Of
these, 78 percent are under the age of 18. In the 1990s, soccer was
recognized as the fastest-growing college and high school sport in the
- Funny fact about soccer is the 20 red
cards shown during a 1993 game between Sportivo Ameliano and
General Caballero in Paraguay.
- ASEC Abidjan of Cote D'Ivoire went unbeaten for 108 games between 1989 and 1994.
Caszely, from Chile, was the first player to get sent off with a red
card during a World Cup. The first red card in the history of World Cup
was shown to him on June 14, 1974.
- European Teams have reached the final of every World Cup tournament, except in 1930 and 1950.
Arthur Wharton was the first black professional soccer player. He was
born in Ghana (then Gold Coast). Arthur played his professional soccer
for English team Rotherham United, in 1889.
- In 1950, India withdrew form the World Cup because FIFA refused to let
their team play barefoot.
- Turkey eliminated Spain from the 1954 World Cup by drawing straws.
Blindfolded Italian boy Luigi Franco Gemma picked the straws to decide
the winner, as there were no penalty shots back than.
More Facts About Soccer
- In 1957, with only 30 minutes remaining in the game,
Charlton Athletic came back from a 5-1 deficit to defeat Huddersfield
Town 7-6. In the game of soccer, anything in possible.
- Penarol of Urugauy conceded only five goals in 18 games
on the way to an unbeaten 1968 season.
- In 1996, George Weah paid his teammates uniforms and expenses, so that Liberia could enter the African Nations Cup.
- In 1997 Nigerian international Celestine Babayaro broke his leg while
celebrating a goal in his Chelsea debut during a preseason game.
- Funny soccer fact is the English referee Martin Sylvester sending himself off in 1998, after punching a player during the game.
World Cup semifinal, Italian Guiseppe Meazza's shorts fell down as he
was about to take a penalty kick. He held his shorts up and calmly
scored past Brazil's Valter Zenga.
- Jean Langenus, of Belgium, wore a suit jacket, golfing pants and a red striped tie when he refereed the 1930 World Cup final.
- Luigi Riva once broke the arm of a spectator with one of his powerful
- Madagascan team Stade Olympique L'Emryne scored 149
own goals against champions AS Adema in 2002. They repeatedly scored own
goals in protest of a refereeing decision in their previous game. This
is one funny soccer fact, imagine watching a team repeatedly score on
themselves, 149 times lol
- Michael Laudrup appeared for
Real Madrid in a 5-0 win over Barcelona, and had also played for Barcelona
when they beat Real Madrid 5-0.
- Dutchman Dennis Bergkamp has a severe fear of flying, causing him
to miss many International and European games for Arsenal.
- Sir Alex Ferguson was fired by St. Mirren in 1978 for swearing at a
- Sir Stanley Matthews, from England, never received a booking in his 33 year long career.
- Under Herbert Chapman, Arsenal changed their name from "The Arsenal" to simply "Arsenal"
in order to appear at the top of the alphabetical list of old Division
- The first televised game was an Arsenal practice match at the Highbury ground in 1937.
This completes 30 interesting facts about soccer.
This game has a very long history with many more facts about soccer found in different countries, leagues, clubs, players, fans, cultures and others.
30 Fun Facts About Soccer
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