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Five names to have at your fingertips ...
by Mike Woitalla, April 28th, 2014 1:50AM

TAGS:  world cup


[WORLD CUP RETRO: 1930] Want to be a World Cup expert and impress your friends with your knowledge of the 1930 World Cup? Here are five names to have at your fingertips about the inaugural World Cup won by Uruguay.

Estadio Centenario. Uruguay, with a population of just 2 million, was named host of the first World Cup because it won the previous two Olympic tournaments and it offered to pay travel costs of all entrants. It also used the tournament to celebrate its 100th anniversary of independence, and commemorated it by building the Centenary Stadium. Uruguay still made a modest profit on the event.

King Carol. Complaining of the three-week ship journey or angered that they weren’t named host, key European nations refused to enter the tournament. Romania’s team went on orders of King Carol, who also picked the squad.

Lucien Laurent. France was one of four European teams to go to Uruguay, and Lucien Laurent scored the first-ever goal in tournament history, in the 19th minute against Mexico.

Bert Patenaude. The first World Cup hat trick was scored by an American. Massachusetts-born Bert Patenaude, then 21 years old, provided all the goals in the USA’s 3-0 win over Paraguay. He had also scored once in the opening 3-0 win over Belgium, and his four World Cup goals remained a U.S. record until Landon Donovan scored against Ghana in the round of 16 at the 2010 World Cup. The two wins sent the USA into the semifinals against Argentina, which thumped the Americans, 6-1.

La Celeste. Uruguay, nicknamed La Celeste (The Sky Blue), beat Yugoslavia, 6-1, to reach the final, where a dispute arose over whether a Uruguayan or Argentine ball should be used -- thus a different ball was used in each half. Argentina scored twice with its ball in the first half but Uruguay overcame the 2-1 halftime deficit by scoring thrice in the second half with its ball for a 4-2 win.

Highlights from the first World Cup final:

  1. Wayne Root
    commented on: April 29, 2014 at 9:24 a.m.
    So, was it the Great Depression that knocked the pins out of under U. S. soccer or what was it that did that?
  1. Andrea Hana
    commented on: April 29, 2014 at 3:06 p.m.
    Wayne Root: The decline of the popularity of soccer resulted from a combination of events. I found this website to be helpful in explaining, not only the history, but, when read with discernment, explains some of the reason for the decline. FIFA governing from Europe, showing some prejudice toward the U.S., losing good players to more wealthy and heavily sponsored teams in the U.S. had some play in it. Also, if you look at the networks, how they advertise, does not harmonize with the game as well as other sports, such as American Football or Baseball. (It's easier to throw commercials in between plays or innings.) See and discern for yourself:

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