Random Factfile on the 32 nations competing in this winters World Cup to impress your mates down the pub!
The World Cup is here and it starts TODAY! Qatar v Ecuador open the tournament and we for one can’t wait. If you’re looking for a spot to watch the World Cup, then click here to find a venue and book your spot.
Of course, it’s brilliant watching England, Brazil and the other big nations that we’re all familiar with, but the World Cup also gets people so excited that they’ll even spend time watching countries like Iran and Qatar who you don’t really have any knowledge about.
With that, we want to give the most random fact we could find about each competing country, completely irrelevant to football, that you can share with your friends when you’re at the pub!
The Netherlands – Dutch men are the tallest people in the world (on average).
Qatar – The weekend in Qatar is Friday and Saturday, not Saturday and Sunday.
Ecuador – The Equator runs right through Ecuador, meaning that it is light and dark exactly 12 hours day, all year round.
Senegal – There is a lake in Senegal that is naturally bright pink.
England – It is actually ILLEGAL to get drunk in pubs in England.
Wales – Wales has the most castles out of any country on the planet.
Iran – Whilst putting your thumb up to someone in the UK is normally good, in Iran it is the same as putting up your middle finger.
USA – Americans eat 100 acres worth of pizza PER DAY.
Argentina – Fingerprinting for identification first happened in Argentina in 1892.
Saudi Arabia – When Winston Churchill was determining the Saudi & Jordanian border, he was drunk on brandy, hiccupped as he was drawing and went off course, thus giving Saudi Arabia more land than originally planned, known as “Winston’s Hiccup”.
Mexico – The meteorite that wiped out the dinosaurs actually hit the land of Mexico (before it was called Mexico, obviously).
Poland – Foreign TV in Poland is dubbed by one man. Whether that be Bart Simpson or Homer Simpson, Jeremy Clarkson or Joey Tribbiani, one man is every single voice on dubbed Polish TV.
France – The croissant is NOT French. It originates from Austria.
Australia – Australia is known for its crazy wildlife, but 80% of all animals in Australia are unique to the country and cannot be found anywhere else.
Denmark – Bluetooth is named after King Harold Bluetooth, who unified Denmark in the 10th century. The symbol for bluetooth is actually King Harold’s initials in the Viking runes.
Tunisia – There has only ever been two Tunisian presidents.
Spain – Everyone knows Spain as a very religious, Catholic country, however it was a Muslim country for over 500 years.
Costa Rica – There is no army in Costa Rica, it was abolished after the civil war.
Germany – Fanta was created in Germany after Coca-Cola syrup was prevented from being imported into the country during WW2.
Japan – Christmas isn’t an official holiday in Japan, but on 25th of December, KFC is eaten by a lot of the population as a Christmas tradition. Orders are often put in weeks in advance.
Belgium – Light beer was served at school lunches to children all the way up until the 1970s.
Canada – The travesty known as the “Hawaiian pizza” was actually created by a Canadian.
Morocco – The left hand is considered “unclean”. It should only be used in the bathroom and for chores.
Croatia – Croatia is home to an original sphinx. The Ancient Egyptians loved the area and moved 12 over. Only one remains though.
Brazil – Rio de Janeiro was named in error. A Portuguese explorer thought it meant ‘the mouth of a river’ when in fact it means ‘January River’.
Serbia – The most expensive cheese in the world is made from donkey milk in Serbia called Pule. It costs $576 for 1lb of cheese!
Switzerland – Switzerland has a tunnel that lasts 57km, the longest in the world. For perspective, the channel tunnel between England and France is 50km.
Cameroon – The country is named after shrimps. Cameroon is the Anglicized way of spelling Camarões meaning “shrimp”. When the Portuguese first arrived, they were surprised with how many shrimps were in a river they named “Rio de Camarões” – River of Shrimp. The river changed it’s name though.
Portugal – No matter what, the maximum prison sentence is 25 years. No matter how many crimes you commit, no longer than 25 years.
Ghana – There is only one natural lake in Ghana – Lake Bosumtwe – a meteorite impact crater formed over a million years ago.
Uruguay – Uruguay only have two gold medals in the Olympics ever. 1924 and 1928 where they won gold in football.
South Korea – When you’re born, you’re automatically one year old. There is no specific reason for this. Current year – your birth year + 1 = your age in Korea.