13 World Cup travel facts you probably didn't know...
So it is the Monday after the Saturday that was England's first game against Italy at the World Cup in Brazil. I finished watching the game feeling disappointed but not despondent as I, as well as many other England fans, felt we showed a lot of promise, in particular from the younger contingent of the squad. But did you know that this is England's youngest squad at a World Cup since 1956 with an average age of just 26? This (the Italy defeat aside) bodes quite well for England with the average age of a World Cup winning squad over the last 16 tournaments, being just 26.4 years of age (source - Telegraph).
With Brazilian football fever gripping the world, I thought I would delve into a range of stats and travel information surrounding the World Cup in Brazil. So if you're a fan of football, travel and an interesting fact, then read ahead and make sure to comment with your own facts about Brazil 2014...
Travelling around Brazil
- Primarily due to the size of Brazil, the 2014 World Cup will see more pressure placed on the travel and climate demands of every participating nation since the World Cup in the USA in 1994.
- Most of the teams chose to setup their base in Rio De Janeiro or Sao Paulo, which would be convenient for fans were all the games being played there too... Unfortunately that isn't the case. England fans based in Rio would have had to have taken a 3 and a 1/2 hour flight across the 1,800 miles to get to the first game in Manaus against Italy.
- The USA will be the greatest travellers of the tournament - once they have finished their final group game and returned to their hotel in Sao Paulo, they will have completed a total of 8,866 miles in travel throughout Brazil - the average is 4,414 miles.
- Mexico are also making big travelling strides around the Amazon (8,468 miles), but out of choice... All three of Mexico's group games are being played in the North East of the country but they are choosing to setup camp in the South near Sao Paulo - answers on a postcard for that one please...
- This is the first time in the history of the World Cup that the competition has missed European hosting for two consecutive tournaments. The last host prior to Brazil 2014 was South Africa in 2010.
- In addition to this, the tournament will not be hosted by a European country for at least another 2 tournaments, with Russia hosting in 2018 and Qatar in 2022 (possibly...).
- Morocco are the unluckiest World Cup host nation bidders, having bid in 1994, 1998, 2006 and 2010, all unsuccessfully.
- France on the other hand, are the most successful bidders, having put their name in the hat only twice for the 1938 and 1998 tournaments, resulting in them hosting in both of those years.
- Mexico hold the title for having hosted the tournament twice in the quickest succession (if that can be called a title). They hosted the tournament in 1970 and then again in 1986. I can't see happening too often in the future.
Travelling to the Brazil World Cup
- Nations from the four corners of the earth have qualified for the Brazil World Cup in 2014 with Japan arguably travelling the furthest distance to Brazil - 11,530 miles...
- Uruguay and Bosnia & Herzegovina are the two countries with the smallest populations. 3.395 million and 3.834 million respectively.
- Bosnia & Herzegovina are taking part in their first ever World Cup and are the only nation at Brazil 2014 making their inaugural appearance.
- By contrast, Brazil are competing in their 19th World Cup and are the only country to have played in every tournament since its foundation in 1930.
Has that invigorated your thirst for World Cup travel knowledge? Whilst sometimes controversial, the World Cup is a truly amazing tournament that unites the world in the love for the 'beautiful game'.
So I am going to watch the second half of Germany v Portugal (not looking good for Ronaldo). If I have inspired your love for travel then feel free to check out some of our holidays.
Enjoy the World Cup!