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This is my World Cup op and I am here to tell you about it. So just in case you don‘t know...

What is the World Cup?

The World Cup is held every four years with 32 contenders. It all starts from two years before the actual World Cup, (called the World Cup finals) with the qualifying. It depends how well the many more than 32 contenders do in qualifying to who will compete. For just over 2 weeks from the start of the finals there is what is called the 'group stages'. The 32 contenders are split into 8 groups of 4, and everyone in the groups plays everybody else in that same group. A total of 3 matches are played by each team in the group stages. The top 2 teams of each group go through to the knock out stages. How do they do this?

They get to the top of their group by getting points. 3 for a win, 1 for a draw, and 0 for a lose. If 2 teams have the same amount of points their position will be decided by the highest goal difference: the number of gaols scored minus the number conceded (scored against). If this too is the same, the team that has scored the most goals is placed higher. In the knockout, lets say 'the winner of group H versus the runner up of group C', whoever loses goes out of the tournament. Round 16, the quarter finals, the semi finals, third place play off, and final, are all knockouts. So what happens if it is a draw at full time? You play ‘Golden Goal‘ time which is up to 15 minutes each way but if anyone scores in that time the match ends and they are the winner. If there are no goals then they go into penalties.

The History of FIFA

The first ever world cup was held in 1930 in Uruguay in which 13 nations took part. The first ever game in the World Cup was the opening match between France and Mexico in Montevideo. 2 weeks after this match of a new football era, was the final between rivals Argentina and Uruguay. Uruguay triumphed 4 -2 and were crowned the worlds first FIFA football champions.

So who has won the World Cup?

Well, the following teams have won before and including 1970.
Italy (twice). England (once). Germany (once). Brazil (3 times). Uruguay (twice).
The following teams have won after and including 1974, when the cup changed.
France (once). Italy (once). Germany (twice). Argentina (twice). Brazil (once).

Who qualified this year and what is their ranking?

From Europe...
France (1), Portugal (4), Italy (6), Spain (7), England (10), Germany (12), Sweden (17), Ireland (19), Denmark (19), Croatia (21), Belgium (22), Russia (23), Turkey (25), Slovenia (27), and Poland (36).
From Asia...
Saudi Arabia (34), Japan (38), Korea (41), and China (53).
From North and Central America, and the Caribbean...
Mexico (8), USA (13), and Costa Rica (26).
From Africa...
Cameroon (18), Tunisia (29), Nigeria (31), South Africa (33), and Senegal (45).
From South America...
Argentina (2), Brazil (3), Paraguay (14), Uruguay (22), and Ecuador (37).

(You may notice that there is no rating 5 amongst others. But this is because not all he countries are competing this year. Over 50 countries have competed in FIFA before.)

Of course this is just FIFA's rating. But, it is not brilliant - for example Senegal (rated 45) beat France (rated 1)!

The host nations - what do they have to live up to?

Well, in the world cup, no host nation has every failed to get into the second stage so that is a challenge to keep up the history. Secondly, 7/10 of host nations win the World Cup the year that they host.

What are the venues this year?

All the venues are in Korea (for groups A - D), and Japan (for groups E - H). So... what are they?

Incheon - Incheon Munhak Stadium. Capacity: 50,000
Seoul - Seoul World Cup Stadium. Capacity: 65,000
Suwon - Suwon World Cup Stadium. Capacity: 43,000
Daejeon - Daejeon World Cup Stadium. Capacity: 41,000
Jeonju - Jeonju World Cup Stadium. Capacity: 42,000
Gwangju - Gwangju World Cup Stadium. Capacity 43,000
Daegu - Daegu World Cup Stadium. Capacity: 66,000
Ulsan - Ulsan Munsu Football Stadium. Capacity: 43,000
Busan - Busan Asiad Main Stadium. Capacity: 54,000
Seogwipo - Jeju World Cup Stadium. Capacity: 42,000

Sapporo - Sapporo Dome. Capacity: 42,000
Miyagi - Miyagi Stadium. Capacity: 49,133
Niigata - Niigata Stadium Big Swan. Capacity 42,300
Ibaraki - Ibaraki Stadium. Capacity: 41,800
Saitama - Saitama Stadium 2002. Capacity: 63,700
Yokohama - International Stadium Yokohama. Capacity: 72,000
Shizuoka - Shizuoka Stadium Ecopa. Capacity: 51,000
Osaka - Nagai Stadium. Capacity: 50,000
Kobe - Kobe Wing Stadium. Capacity: 42,000
Oita - Oita Stadium Big Eye. Capacity: 43,000

Now for my section on...


The coach: Sven-Goran Eriksson
Goal Keepers: David Seaman, Nigel Martyn, David James
Defenders: Sol Campbell, Ashley Cole, Rio Ferdinand, Martin Keown, Gary Neville, Philip Neville, Gareth Southgate
Midfielders: Nick Barmby, David Beckham, Steven Gerrard, Steve McManaman, Paul Scholes
Forwards: Robbie Fowler, Emile Heskey, Michael Owen, Teddy Sheringham

How did they do in their 2002 qualifiers?

I'll give you the date that they played, whether they played home [H] or away [A], the score to England, the opposition and whether the opposition are in the World Cup [Y] or not [N] this year

07/10/00 [H] 0-1 Germany [Y]
11/10/00 [A] 0-0 Finland [N]
24/03/01 [H] 2-1 Finland [N]
28/03/01 [A] 3-1 Albania [N]
06/06/01 [A] 2-0 Greece [N]
01/09/01 [A] 5-1 Germany [Y]
05/09/01 [H] 2-0 Albania [N]
06/10/01 [H] 2-2 Greece [N]

What formation do they employ?
They often employ a 4-4-2 formation which means 4 defenders at the back, 4 midfielders, 2 forwards (mainly goal scorers), but sometimes go with a 4-3-4. Note - goal keepers are not included in formations even though they are very important in the match.

About the coach
Name: Sven-Goran Eriksson
Date Of Birth: 05/02/48
Place Of Birth: Sweden

In February 2001 he became the 13th manager in England's history and the first ever non-Brit to hold the post. He is the team's 6th manager in 5 years.

England's FIFA World Cup record
I will tell you the relevant year(s), where the World Cup was held, and how well England did.

1930-1938... did not enter
1942-1946... no World Cup held
1950... Brazil... group stage
1954... Switzerland... quarter finals
1958... Sweden... group stage
1962... Chile... quarter finals
1966... England... Champions!!!!
1970... Mexico... quarter finals
1974-1978... did not qualify
1982... Spain... second group stage
1986... Mexico... quarter finals
1990... Italy... 4th
1994... USA... did not qualify
1998... France... last 16
2002... Korea/Japan... quarter finals :O(

Well, that's the England section, but now is something special. The nest section is part of an official interview with Zinedine Zidane!

"Q. As the playmaker, you are always marked by the opposing team. Are there any specific markers you find it difficult to play against?

A. Generally speaking, I am not too fond of individual markers but there is no particular markers I find it tough to play against. If I had to pick one defender who is particularly difficult to beat it would be Patrick Vieira - but luckily he is in my team!

Q You have achieved a great many things already - fame, fortune, and admiration. What drives you in football today?

A. Love of the game is what drives me above all else.

Q What are your strengths and weaknesses on the pitch?

A. It goes without saying, but my biggest weakness is defence. For every 25 times Vieira takes the ball off the opposition, I only take it once. It's not that I don't try, but I'm just not very good at winning the ball off an opponent.

Q. Do you have a favourite ball skill?

A. I like the step-over"

Thank you for that Zidane. Ok, now it is a section where I tell you about my favourites

My Views

Best 3 stadiums

Suwon World Cup Stadium.
Why? It basically appeals to me because of the colours and the coloured seats. On one side of the stadium, you have some nice patterns made by the seats, and on the other, there are different blocks of colour. It really does look great!

Sapporo Dome
Why? Because it has a moveable grass football pitch that they can move outside to reveal a baseball stadium. It's also the only Japanese FIFA venue not to have a rainy season in June.

Jeju World Cup Stadium
Why? Well, you should see the stadium from outside at night. It looks wonderful, brightly lit and very spectacular. Korea calls it their 'own Hawaii'.

Best 3 teams taking part this year

Why? Well, they have won the World Cup 4 times - the most times won, and they have been the Copa America winners 6 times. They usually play a 3-5-2 formation - one of the strongest formations there is... and they put England out, so they must be good!

Why? They are rated 1st by FIFA, have won the World Cup once before, have been European Champions twice, and have got rock solid defence, creative midfield, and a top line of strikers.... who cares that they lost to Senegal (quite a few people I expect!!!)

Why? They've won FIFA 3 times before, been the runners up twice, and been 3rd and 4th once. Some of the most reliable footballers in the world are in the Italian squad. They also have a very good goalie.... a bit of a surprise - South Korea did beat them!

Top 3 players

Beckham - England
Why? Oh, come on! Do I really need to tell you why? He is the best right footer in the world, recovered from a broken toe in next to no time; do I need to go on? he's the work of a miracle... he IS a miracle!

Del Piero - Italy
Why? He has brilliant technique and vision, and plays some excellent curling shots with his right foot. He always concentrates hard on what he is doing.

Rivaldo - Brazil
Why? Because he is brill when he gets into the game. It is his gaols in particular that make him special. He has a large variety of shots with his famous left foot, but let's not mention play acting!!!!

Top 3 forwards

Owen - England - Speedster
Why? I think that Michael is a really good forward because he usually gets past the opposing defenders with no trouble when he has the ball, and has great chances to score.
He's always looking for a chance to get in behind opposing defenders. He uses explosive speed to sprint clear of the defence, and he's pretty good at goal scoring too.

Vieri - Italy -Target man
Why? I like Vieri because he has a big responsibility - He is always being passed to by other members of the team, who give him the chance to score.
As well as being a great goal scorer, he receives passes, providing an outlet for through balls from the midfield and defence.

Henry - France - Marksman
Why? Henry is a top forward because the position of where he is on the field doesn’t worry him; He has a go from anywhere.
He stays well forward and will attempt to shoot from any location. He pays little attention to defensive duties.

Top 3 midfielders

Rui Costa - Portugal - Play maker
Why? I like this player because he is fast, and produces perfect chances for his players upfront to score.
He often orchestrates attacks, with very intricate passing of the ball, often ending up playing the final killer ball through to a forward.

Beckham - England - Winger
Why? Because he is excellent with his right foot, taking free-kicks, penalties and corners. It doesn't matter that much that he is not very fast.
He tends to stay near the side of the pitch and provides crosses for the forwards. But he is also a great goal scorer, and will take/make chances for himself too.

Veron - Argentina - All-rounder
Why? He can play in a lot of different positions, playing as good as at his normal one. He helps his team mates with the essential task of winning.
He has a pretty good goal shooting ability, but more often builds attacks and does it very well.

Top 3 defenders

Desailly - France - Libero
Why? Because he is the source of defence, helping others at the back as well as concentrating on himself and his own duties.
He plays in the centre of defence, directing the back line. He joins an attack when the chance arises.

Maldini - Italy - Full Back
Why? He is a good player because he is always there when people need him. He wins the ball back from many sneaky players on the opposition that try to bring the ball down the far side.
He positions himself toward the side of the field, and concentrates more on defence than attack.

Carlos - Brazil - Wing Back
Why? He can do a lot. he stays defending his area, but when he gets the ball he can play well in forward. But, as soon as he passes, crosses or loses possession of the ball, he rushes back to take his duties in defence.
He plays near the side of the pitch, guarding against opposition attacks down the field. Given the chance he also joins an attack.

Top 2 Goalkeepers

Chilavert - Paraguay - Unorthodox
Why? he aggressively rushes forward for the ball, often leaving his penalty area open in order to get the ball.

Kahn - Germany - Orthodox
Why? He doesn't stray from the goalmouth area. He literally keeps goal.

So, there you have it. My views. So, what do I think about the FIFA World Cup overall? Well, it gives you something to do. It's interesting to watch and I like to support a favourite team in every match.

I wish I didn't have to be at school while a lot of the matches are on, and I wish England hadn't got beaten, but I'm still enjoying watching it!


You have come to the end of my op. Hope you enjoyed it!

Thanks for reading,


Igggly 2002
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Comments about this review »

dbirse 03.04.2007 19:54

Very good.

libido 08.12.2003 18:42

Wicked review igggly. definately exceptional

Benniash 03.12.2003 19:49

What can I say about that!? - other than a great review. I just came across your name and what an opinion to start with. Personally I agree with basically everything you've said, roll on the Euro championships next summer! Benn

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This review of The 2002 World Cup has been rated:

"exceptional" by (2%):

  1. Volvagia

"very helpful" by (98%):

  1. dbirse
  2. ilusvm
  3. Benniash

and 50 other members

The overall rating of a review is different from a simple average of all individual ratings.