A replica of the FIFA Soccer World Cup Trophy pictured at the FIFA headquarters in Zurich on January 23, 2014. REUTERS/Thomas Hodel
CAIRO –16 November 2017: The 2018 World Cup qualifiers ended on Thursday, when Peru became the 32nd country to qualify. There are some things happening for the first time this World Cup, which also marks a few world records that have lasted for decades.
The following 10 paradoxes monitored by Sky News will be borne by the World Cup 21 next summer:
-Two countries will participate for the first time in the World Cup, Iceland and Panama. Iceland and Panama had come close to qualifying in recent years, but failed in the last few steps. Iceland and Panama have finally secured direct qualification weeks ago in a historic achievement that could paint a picture of football success for years.
-Brazil is participating in the 21st tournament, the only historically elected team that has not missed a World Cup since its inception in 1930. On the other hand, Germany did not fail to qualify, but the International Federation did not invite it to the World Cup in 1930, and was banned from participation in the World Cup in Brazil in 1950 because of the consequences arising at the height of Second World War.
- The tournament will see a historic absence for Italy, an unbelievable absence to generations accustomed to seeing Italy in the World Cup. The last time Italy didn’t participate was in Sweden's 1958 World Cup. Ironically, Sweden itself was responsible for taking the Italian team out of qualifying this year.
- Seven former champions: Brazil, Argentina, Uraguay, Germany, France, Spain, and England, will participate in next summer's World Cup.
- In addition to being the main sponsor of the World Cup, German company Adidas sponsors the largest number of the World Cup teams. Twelve of the 32 team will wear Adidas shirts during the tournament.
-For the first time in the history of the World Cup, three Scandinavian teams are participating together. Sweden, Denmark, and Iceland will participate in 2018 World cup.
It is also the second time that Sweden and Denmark are playing together in the same tournament. Both teams participated in the 2002 World Cup in South Korea and Japan.
- For the first time in history, four teams represent the Arabs in the World Cup. Egypt, Tunisia, Saudi Arabia, and Morocco qualified for the World Cup after a superb performance during the qualifiers.
- Another participating team in the World Cup is the United States. The United States has never missed the World Cup since its participation in the 1990 edition in Italy.
- The Peruvian team has the strongest return to the World Cup, after a long absence of 36 years, since its last participation in 1982. This is the longest absence among the participating teams in the 2018 World Cup.
- European teams have dominated championships held in Europe, a situation that could be repeated in the 2018 World Cup in Russia.
-It was only once that a non-European team won the title in Europe. In 1958 in Sweden, Pele led Brazil to a historic title.