Host nation winning a big tournament is always considered to be a huge achievement. Take any sport and you will find that a host nation has very rarely won a big event like a World Cup. Same is the case with FIFA World Cup as well. Out of 30 Football World Cup only 6 times it has happened that a host nation has won the tournament. Want to know about those host nations? Just go through this article carefully then.
Uruguay in 1930
Uruguay started their 1930 World Cup campaign in a bit strange situation. Their first game against Peru was delayed for not less than five days as the stadium was not fully built. Uruguay won that match by 1-0 but still it was a poor performance according to its fans. In the semifinals of 1930 Football World Cup Uruguay defeated United States by 6-1 and met Argentina in the finals who defeated Yugoslavia with the same margin in the other semifinal. On 30th July 1930 the hosts Uruguay met their Latin American friends Argentina and won the game by 4-2 as Guillermo Sabile top scorer of the tournament scored the goals. Jules Rimet who was the 3rd President of FIFA presented the world cup trophy to the Uruguayan Football Association President Raul Jude.
Italy in 1934
In the very next World Cup Italy repeated what Uruguay did in 1930. In their first round match Italy thrashed USA by 7-1. Italy met Spain in the quarterfinals and the match was ended in 1-1. Hence, for the first time ever a replay was played and Italy defeated Spain by 1-0 in that game and then beat Austria by the same margin in the semifinals to reach the finals. In the final Italy competed against Czechoslovakia. Italy was trailing by 0-1 to the Czechs till 80 minutes of the match and then make a remarkable comeback by first scoring the equalizer to push the game into the extra time and then scored the match winning goal.
England in 1966
Strange enough England scored only four goals in this World Cup during the group stage and conceded only one as they were more reliable in defense rather than attack. England won their quarter-final against Argentina by 1-0 amidst controversy as the Argentinean press dubbed the solitary goal as ‘the robbery of the century’. In semis England beat Portugal by 2-1 to meet West Germany in the finals. The match was totally dominated by the hosts till 82 minutes, but then West Germany made a comeback, but finally England won their only World Cup till date by 4-2.
West Germany in 1974
Once again a host nation won the World Cup after another host won the last one like Uruguay and Italy did in 1930s. The West Germans were determined right from the start as they demolished all the way in the group stage, but then their then neighbors East Germany defeated them in the game which did not affect West Germany’s qualification for the second round but they were humbled none the less. In the finals West Germany met Holland and within two minutes to the play John Neeskens scored the first goal from a penalty. West Germany equaled it with another penalty and then Gerd Muller scored the winner.
This was the third time in a row that a host nation has won the FIFA World Cup. But it wasn’t easy for Argentina at all as they had in a tough group with Italy, Hungary and France and finished second in their group. In the second round there was only one place left for the quarter finals, which either Argentina or Brazil could pick up and it was Argentina who successfully did the job by thrashing Peru by 6-0. In the finals played at Buenos Aires, Argentina defeated Holland by 3-1 in the extra time with Mario Kempes and Daniel Bertoni scoring the necessary goals. This is Argentina’s only World Cup win till date.
France in 1998
After a huge gap of 20 years, France who was hosting that year’s World Cup became the ultimate champions. France had some scares, but they came out well against Paraguay by 1-0 in the extra time and then defeated Italy by 4-3 on the penalties in the quarter-finals. Croatia met France after defeating Germany in a surprising result. France beat Croatia by 2-1 to meet Brazil in the final. On 12th of July France met Brazil and Zidane’s goal gave France 2-0. Despite France was reduced to 10 men in the second half, Brazil failed to take advantage of it and Emmanuel Petit scored the 3rd goal to give the France their win.
Since then no host nation has won the World Cup till now, will it be Brazil’s turn this time? Can we add one more Facts of 2014 FIFA World Cup as Host country winner? Only time will tell.