Advice
|23 May|4 mins

The Rookie’s Guide to the World Cup

5 Things you should know ahead of soccer’s biggest tournament
THE ICONIC
23 May
Share:

The FIFA World Cup is set to be taking over screens near you next month, so here are the basics to get you through the sports bar banter.

Advice
|23 May|4 mins

The Rookie’s Guide to the World Cup

5 Things you should know ahead of soccer’s biggest tournament
THE ICONIC
23 May
Share:

The FIFA World Cup is set to be taking over screens near you next month, so here are the basics to get you through the sports bar banter.

1. It’s being held in Russia

… For its 21st competition, the world’s biggest sporting event is heading to the world’s biggest country for the first time. Putin’s Russia will be glad of the few billion likes and smiley-face emojis from the rest of the world. Expect sleek new stadiums spread across 11 host cities, which include the capital Moscow, picturesque St Petersburg and sunny Black Sea resort, Sochi.

2. 32 teams will battle it out

… split into eight groups of four fighting their way to the knockout stages. Brazil and Germany are the favourites, naturally, (Brazil have won five times and Germany four), while you could do worse than pull out France, Spain, Belgium or Argentina in the office sweepstake – they’ve all got more than half a chance. The Socceroos meanwhile have quite a bit less than half a chance, at least according to the bookies, where we’re down with the likes of Costa Rica and Iran as rank outsiders.

3. It's your chance to see the best players in the world

… including two of the greatest to ever kick a ball in Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo. Representing Argentina and Portugal, the freakishly good duo have broken just about all the records there are to break in the club game and will be carrying their countries in Russia. Keep an eye out for the planet’s priciest dribbler, Neymar, too. The $350 million Brazilian is hoping to shake off an injury in time, while France’s Paul Pogba, Belgium’s Kevin De Bruyne and Uruguay’s Luis Suarez will all be sure to produce the kind of skills that pay the bills.

4. Most of the kits are retro AF

… seriously. The World Cup is promising Stranger Things levels of nostalgia - just check out Germany’s throwback to their 1990 shirt. Or Spain’s replica of their 1994 number. Or Nigeria’s glorious, silky, chevron-y effort, which recalls the Super Eagles’ mid-90s strip. Likewise Belgium and Japan will be sporting super-cool numbers, with vintage diamond patterns and ‘80s-style dotted pinstripes thrown into the mix.

5. Impressively, this is the Socceroos’ fifth World Cup finals…

… but we’ll need to do better than four years ago, where we were dumped out of Brazil 2014 pointless after three defeats. With France first up and Denmark and Peru the other members of Group C, prayers will need to be said for a successful campaign, but weirder things have happened. Whatever the case, back veteran Timmy Cahill to find the net. The legendary midfielder, an Aussie international since the dawn of time, could equal Pele as one of only a select few to score at four World Cups.

Feeling inspired to go for a kick about? Find the kit for the job right here.

THE ICONIC
Fashion Team
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