Between May 27 and June 10, the second World Cup of football was held in Italy. After a qualifying process that involved 36 teams, 16 teams were chosen to compete. The host nation was also required to participate in the qualification. Uruguay, on the other hand, was automatically qualified but refused to compete in protest of several European teams refusing to fly to South America four years ago when Uruguay hosted the World Cup. Since the United Kingdom had agreed not to join FIFA, they were not represented by either squad.
Italy, the host country at the time of the FIFA World Cup 1934, was ruled by Benito Mussolinis fascism faction. Il Duce, who had formed Seria A (the Italian football club league) just a few years before, would use the opportunity to promote political propaganda, and according to some reports, he may have had some control over the result. He had dinner with Swedish referee Ivan Eklind the day before Italy’s match against Austria, and there were circumstances in the subsequent match when the referee may have favoured the Italians.In the end, Eklind will take over as referee from the Belgian referee who had been elected earlier. Also in this match, it may be suggested that the referee favoured the Italians.Uruguay’s decision to reject participation was also based on political considerations. Argentina was also hesitant to participate, and in the end, they would compete as an inexperienced band.
Since the first World Cup in 1930, the competition’s structure had improved, and the group stage had been replaced by a knockout tournament format (the group play would be reintroduced again in 1950). If the match is still tied after normal match time, a 30-minute extra time period will be played. If the match was still undecided after extra time, a replay will be scheduled for the next day (penalty shoot-out was not introduced until 1978).
Cities and arenas
The matches will be held in eight cities and eight stadiums (for a complete list, see the “Cities and Stadiums” box). The final will take place at the 47,300-seat Stadio Nazionale PNF in Rome. PNF was an abbreviation for Partito Nazionale Fascista, the stadium whose name was synonymous with fascism.
Some matches were sparked by ruction on the ground, much as they were during the previous World Cup tournament. The most scandalous scenes occurred after the Hungarian players surrounded the referee and blamed him for their defeat against Austria. The Quarter-final match between Italy and Spain was another incredible spectacle, combining intense brutality (including many fights) with world-class football. After a tie, there will be a rematch, which Spain will lose. Due to the Italians’ mistreatment in the first match, Spanish goalkeeper Zamora was unavailable for the second match.
All of Uruguay’s teams used the 2-3-5 formation in 1930. Two different methods will be used in this World Cup: W-M and the Metodo. The method, which uses a 2-3-2-3 formation, was designed by Italian coach Vittorio Pozzo and has proven to be very effective.
Italy and Czechoslovakia battled it out in the final. In the second half, Czechoslovakia took the lead, but Italy equalised and the game went to extra time. Angelo Schiavio scored for Italy five minutes into extra time, bringing the game to a 2-1 tie.