Thursday, May 13, 2010


World Cup Quiz, Part 7

The secrets of the sixth instalment can be found here. Meanwhile, TFT's severe bout of trivialitis continues below:

The Qualifiers

1. Which two countries fought a real-life war following a tense World Cup playoff match?

2. Which World Cup playoff match notoriously featured only one side taking the field, interpassing among each other, putting the ball in the "opposition" net and then leaving the field?

3. Which team, qualifying for only its second World Cup in 2010, once won a World Cup qualifier 5-0 away against a side that subsequently qualified for the tournament four times?

4. A World Cup host once actually had to qualify for the tournament. When?

5. In terms of World Cup qualification, what do the following coaches all have in common: Joao Saldanha, Gabriel Calderon, Jo Bonfrere, Carlos Queiroz?

6. What was unusual (to use a polite term) about the North/Central American qualifying series from 1974 through to 1982?

7. In 1958, the intention was to have a representative from Africa or Asia at the tournament. It didn't happen, for a bizarre reason. Why?

8. Which was the last team to qualify for the World Cup without playing a single qualifying match? (Hosts and defending champions aside, of course.)

9. France needed the hand of Thierry Henry to qualify for South Africa 2010, and avoid becoming a losing finalist from one tournament that fails to qualify for the next one. Which was the last team to suffer this fate?

10. Australia have truly been world travellers in World Cup qualifying. Of the following, which is the only team they have never faced in a World Cup qualifier: Canada, Hong Kong, Zimbabwe, North Korea, Israel, Saudi Arabia, Scotland, China, Argentina, South Korea?

1. Honduras and El Salvador... 1970
2. Chile v USSR... 1973 (Soviets protesting against Pinochet coup)
3. North Korea???
4. Italy 1934
5. They never took their countries to the World Cup (Saldanha 1970 Brazil threatened to shoot a journalist so the story goes)
6. All games played in one country (like a mini world cup...not that bad in my opinion)
7. The Jews?!! ... to paraphrase Seinfeld (Israel's presence in their joint group to be more precise)
8. Not sure... an invited team from the 1930's world cups?
9. Holland 1978 failed to qualify in 1982
10. Saudi Arabia?

Savvas Tzionis
I'd say most of the above answers are correct. Too quick.
1. El Salvador and Honduras
2. Chile vs. Soviet Union 1973
3. New Zealand against Saudi Arabia 1981
4. Italy 1934
5. They were all sacked before the WC after earning qualification
6. One of the competiting teams hosted all of the games
7. Africa and Asia withdrew in protest at not having a full spot each
8. I should know this!! I think it was back in the '50s but I can't remember
9. Netherlands 1982. Thinking back, every losing finalist since then has had a struggle qualifying for the next tournament, Germany 2002-2006 aside for obvious reasons.
10. Saudi Arabia
...I'd say most of the above answers are correct....

They are indeed. Brilliant stuff Savvas!
It helps having read the Cris Freddi book on the History of the World Cup numerous times.

It is a cross between a reference book and a review book.

One of the best!

It certaily helped with the Saldanha question!

Savvas Tzionis
The answers:

1. Honduras and El Salvador, after their playoff in 1969.

2. The match between Chile and an absent USSR in 1973. The Russians had stayed away in protest at the Pinochet coup and its bloody aftermath.

3. New Zealand, against Saudi Arabia in 1981.

4. Italy, in 1934.

5. They all took a team to World Cup qualification, but were sacked before the tournament itself.

6. All the matches in the final group were played in the one country...which tended to favour that country considerably!

7. The Arab nations boycotted games against Israel, who thereby made it through the group without playing a single qualifier. FIFA decided that it wasn't fair for a team to qualify for the World Cup in that way, so Israel had to enter a playoff against Yugoslavia - and lost.

8. Hungary in 1954 (their opponents Poland withdrew from the qualifying competition).

9. Holland in 1982.

10. Saudi Arabia.
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