The first FIFA World Cup tournament, hosted by Uruguay in 1930, featured four teams playing in one unfinished stadium. Now, 84 years later, 32 countries compete in 12 new or redeveloped stadiums, and World Cup fever reaches the far corners of the globe.
Here, two Brazilian boys in Varjao on the outskirts of Brasilia watch the match between their home team and Mexico on June 17, 2014. Brazil, which holds five World Cup titles, is currently ranked third in the tournament.
PHOTOGRAPH BY UESLEI MARCELINO, REUTERS
Men in a camel market in Daba, Saudi Arabia, gather around a laptop to watch the Netherlands and Australia Group B soccer match on June 18, 2014.
PHOTOGRAPH BY MOHAMED ALHWAITY, REUTERS
Soccer on the Solstice
Celebrating the summer solstice on June 21, 2014, attendees of the Sonnwendfeuer (Midsummer) Festival at Mount Kampenwand in the Bavarian Alps divide their attention between a blazing bonfire and an outdoor projector displaying the Group G soccer match between Germany and Ghana.
PHOTOGRAPH BY LUKAS BARTH, REUTERS
High in the hills of Las Canas, Chile, fans cheer following the country’s 3-1 victory over Australia on June 13, 2014. These viewers watched the game outside the makeshift tents that serve as their temporary homes following a fire that killed 11 and destroyed 500 homes. This match, in which Chile had possession of the ball 63 percent of the game, played a crucial role in the country’s advancement in the tournament.
PHOTOGRAPH BY ELISEO FERNANDEZ, REUTERS
Peaceful Play in War-Torn Syria
Rebel fighters in Aleppo, Syria, catch a screening of the Brazil vs. Croatia match on June 12, 2014. FIFA’s protocol states that beginning with the Brazil vs. Croatia match, every World Cup match will begin and end with the Handshake for Peace, “a gesture of friendship and respect intended to inspire the world to unite in peace, solidarity, and fair play.”
PHOTOGRAPH BY ZEIN AL-RIFAI, AFP/GETTY IMAGES
Shopper’s Soccer Fix
Although China doesn’t have a team in the 2014 FIFA World Cup, this home appliances store in Wuhan, a town in Hubei Province, didn’t miss out on the action. It broadcast June 20’s Group D match between England and Uruguay on multiple screens so shoppers could keep up with the action.
PHOTOGRAPH BY DARLEY SHEN, REUTERS
Fans al Fresco
Residents of a remote village deep in the Brazilian Amazon gather around a television that lost power repeatedly during the Brazil vs. Mexico match on June 17, 2014.
PHOTOGRAPH BY MAURICIO LIMA, THE NEW YORK TIMES
Watching giant screens in the streets of Algiers, crowds celebrate Algeria’s win over South Korea on June 22, 2014.