25 surprising facts about soccer

12. Chinese volunteers play the role of North Korean soccer fans, as they are not allowed to travel; there were a few North Koreans selected by the government to watch the World Cup.

13. Greenland is not allowed to be a part of FIFA because they are unable to grow the grass for regulation pitches.

14. Norway is the only country that has never lost a match to Brazil, though they have drawn twice.

15. Germany’s birth rate went up by 30% after they hosted the World Cup in 2006; it has been attributed to the team’s performance.

16. You may have seen medics spray players with an aerosol spray before providing care to them, in most cases, this is just air freshener to help players smell better so that the medics can work efficiently.

17. Before the year 1908, Irish prisoners that had been executed had their stomach tissues harvested to make soccer balls.

18. Soccer cleats are commonly referred to as “hooves.”

19. Soccer fields are sloped, with each team playing half of the match uphill.

20. Lars Gustafsson, a Swedish politician, nominated the sport for a Nobel Peace Prize back in the early 2000s.

21. All 11 members of the Democratic Republic of Congo team were killed by a single lightning strike during a match.

22. Even though soccer has limited popularity in the United States, they have more official soccer players than any other nation at 18 million.

23. India declined to participate in the World Cup in 1950 because they weren’t allowed to play the game barefoot.

24. The Beatles inadvertently provided the nicknames of over 27 football clubs around the world.

25. The youngest professional soccer player ever signed was not even two years old yet.

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