PART ONE

AZZURRI ALMANAC

1930 - 1934 - 1938 - 1950 - 1954 - 1958 - 1962 - 1966 - 1970
1974 - 1978 - 1982 - 1986 - 1990 - 1994 - 1998 - 2002 - 2006 - 2010

1930 - Hosts: Uruguay - Winners: Uruguay

Italian progress: Did not enter

Football Italia recounts Italy’s steps through the World Cup, tournament by tournament. Uruguay became the first World Cup winners in history in 1930 as Italy, who made an unsuccessful bid to stage the competition, chose to stay at home.

Italy stay away

Italy bid to host the first event – along with Holland, Hungary, Spain and Sweden – but it was Uruguay who were handed the honour. As a result of the month-long boat trip from the peninsula to South America, the Azzurri opted against taking part. An Italian international did play at the Finals, though, as Luis Monti represented Argentina before becoming an Oriundo in 1932.

Just 13 countries participated in the first ever World Cup and only four came from Europe. Uruguay, holders of the Olympic title, were celebrating the centenary of its independence. And it was certainly carnival time in Montevideo as they came back from 2-1 down to beat South American neighbours Argentina 4-2 in the Final.

Did you know?

The first goal ever scored in the World Cup belonged to Lucien Laurent when he netted for France in the 4-1 win over Mexico.

The Argentina-France game didn’t last the full 90 minutes as Brazilian referee Gilberto De Almeida Rego opted to blow his final whistle with six minutes still on the clock.

The third place playoff tie was not introduced until 1934. A FIFA technical committee later decided to rank America in third and Yugoslavia fourth.