|World Cup '94|
1994 FIFA World Cup official logo
|Host country||United States|
|Dates||17 June – 17 July 1994 (31 days)|
|Teams||24 (from 5 confederations)|
|Venue(s)||9 (in 9 host cities)|
|Champions||Brazil (4th title)|
|Goals scored||141 (2.71 per match)|
|Attendance||3,587,538 (68,991 per match)|
|Top scorer(s)|| Hristo Stoichkov
The 1994 FIFA World Cup, the 15th staging of the FIFA World Cup, was held in nine cities across the United States from 17 June to 17 July 1994. The United States was chosen as the host by FIFA on 4 July 1988. Brazil became the first nation to win four World Cup titles when they beat Italy 3–2 in a penalty shootout after the game ended 0–0 after extra time, the first World Cup final to be decided on penalties. The official match ball was the Adidas Questra.
The 1994 World Cup was the best attended in history, with average attendance of nearly 69,000. The total attendance of nearly 3.6 million for the final tournament remains the highest in World Cup history, despite the expansion of the competition from 24 to 32 teams (and from 52 to 64 matches) in the 1998 World Cup.
Greece, Nigeria, and Saudi Arabia qualified for the World Cup finals for the first time. Russia, competing independently for the first time after the dissolution of the Soviet Union, also qualified. The defending champions West Germany were united with their East German counterparts, representing the unified Germany for the first time since the 1938 World Cup.
Norway qualified for the first time since 1938, Bolivia for the first time since 1950, and Switzerland for the first time since 1966.
The qualification campaigns of both Czechoslovakia and Yugoslavia were affected by political events. The nation of Czechoslovakia dissolved in 1992, and the team completed its qualifying group under the name Representation of Czechs and Slovaks (RCS), but failed to qualify the finals. Japan failed to qualify after the Agony of Doha against Iraq. Yugoslavia was suspended from international competition in 1992 as part of United Nations sanctions against the country as a result of the Yugoslav Wars. The sanctions were not lifted until 1994, by which time it was no longer possible for the team to qualify. Chile's suspension from the 1990 FIFA World Cup, following the forced interruption of their final match against Brazil, extended to the 1994 qualifiers as well.
Among other teams who failed to qualify were Uruguay and England. Denmark, Hungary and France failed to qualify for the second successive tournament, while Scotland failed to qualify for the first time since 1970. This was the only World Cup finals since 1938 for which neither England nor Scotland (nor indeed any of the British home nations) qualified. The Republic of Ireland qualified for a second successive World Cup finals tournament. As of 2014, this was the last time that Bolivia qualified for a FIFA World Cup finals.
Three nations bid for host duties, United States, Brazil and Morocco. The vote was held in Zurich on July 4, 1988, and only took one round with the United States bid receiving a little over half of the votes by the Exco members. FIFA hoped that by staging the world's most prestigious football tournament there, it would lead to a growth of interest in the sport - one condition FIFA imposed was the creation of a professional football league; Major League Soccer, starting in 1996. The U.S. staged a hugely successful tournament, with average attendance of nearly 69,000 breaking a record that surpassed the 1966 FIFA World Cup average attendance of 51,000 thanks to the large seating capacities the American stadiums provided for the spectators in comparison to the smaller venues of Europe and Latin America. To this day, the total attendance for the final tournament of nearly 3.6 million remains the highest in World Cup history, despite the expansion of the competition to 32 teams at the 1998 World Cup. Germany, Brazil, Argentina, Belgium, Italy and the United States were seeded for the final draw that took place in Las Vegas, Nevada, on 19 December 1993.
The format of the competition stayed the same as in the 1990 World Cup: 24 teams qualified, divided into six groups of four. Sixteen teams would qualify for the knockout competition: the six group winners, the six group runners-up, and the four third-placed teams with the best records. This was the last time this format was used, due to the expansion of the finals tournament in 1998 to 32 teams. This World Cup was the first in which three points were awarded for a win instead of two. FIFA instituted this feature to encourage attacking football after the defensive display of many teams at Italia '90.
The tournament saw the end of Diego Maradona's World Cup career, having played in the 1982, the 1986 — where he led Argentina to the World Cup title — and the 1990 World Cups, where he led them to the final. Maradona was expelled from the tournament after he failed a drug test which uncovered ephedrine, a weight loss drug, in his blood. Colombia, despite high expectations due to their style and impressive qualifying campaign, disappointed in the tournament, failed to advance from the round robin. The team was supposedly dogged by influence from betting syndicates and drug cartels, with coach Francisco Maturana receiving death threats over squad selection. Defender Andrés Escobar was a tragic figure of this tournament, as in the group stage match against the United States, he scored an own goal that eliminated his team. Escobar was shot to death outside a bar in a Medellín suburb only ten days later, apparently in retaliation for the own goal.
On the field, the biggest surprise of the tournament was Bulgaria. The Bulgarians had never won a match in five previous World Cup finals but, led by Hristo Stoichkov who eventually shared the tournament lead in scoring, they made a surprising run; Bulgaria won two of their three group matches to qualify for the second round, where they advanced with a 3–1 penalty shoot-out win over Mexico. Bulgaria then faced the reigning world champions, Germany, in the quarter-finals, where goals from Stoichkov and Yordan Letchkov gave them a 2–1 victory. Bulgaria went on to finish in fourth place after losing to Italy and Sweden, in the semi-finals and third-place match, respectively. Hosts United States advanced to the second round as one of the best third-place teams. They played Brazil and, despite a 1–0 defeat, the United States' performance was considered a great success in their footballing history.
Brazil's win over the hosts helped take them to the final against Italy. While Brazil's path was relatively smooth as they defeated the Netherlands in the quarter-finals and Sweden in the semis (it was the second game between Sweden and Brazil in the tournament, the first ending 1–1), the Italians had made hard work of reaching the final game. During the group stage the Italian team struggled and narrowly advanced to the next round, despite losing 1–0 to the Republic of Ireland. Roberto Baggio, who was expected to be the shining star, had not scored a goal. During the Round of 16 match against Nigeria, Italy was trailing 1–0 in the dying minutes when Baggio scored the equalizer forcing the game into extra time. He scored again with a penalty kick to send Italy through. Baggio carried the Italians from there, scoring the game-winning goal in the quarter-final against Spain, and both goals in Italy's semi-final victory over Bulgaria.
The third-place playoff was set between Bulgaria and Sweden, the team which scored more goals than any other in this World Cup. Sweden won convincingly with a 4–0 victory. One of Sweden's players — Tomas Brolin — was named to the All-star team.
The final match at the Rose Bowl was tense, but devoid of scoring chances. It was the second time in 24 years that both nations met in a final. Despite the strategies implemented by FIFA to promote offensive play, both teams failed to produce a goal. After 120 goalless minutes, the World Cup was decided for the first time by a penalty shoot-out. After four rounds, Brazil led 3–2, and Baggio, playing injured, had to score to keep Italy's hopes alive. He missed by shooting it over the crossbar, and Brazil were crowned champions for the fourth time, surpassing Italy's 3 reigns. After the match ended the then-Vice-President Al Gore hosted the awarding ceremony by handing Brazilian captain Dunga the prestigious trophy; the Brazilian national team dedicated the title to the deceased Brazilian Formula One champion Ayrton Senna, who had died two and a half months prior.
The tournament's Golden Boot went jointly to Bulgaria's Stoichkov and Oleg Salenko of Russia, who scored a record five goals in their match against Cameroon. Both players scored six goals in the tournament. Brazil's Romário, with five goals, won the Golden Ball as the tournament's best player.
The official mascot of this World Cup was Striker, the World Cup Pup, a dog wearing a red, white and blue soccer uniform with a soccer ball. Striker was designed by the Warner Bros. animation team. A dog was picked as the mascot because dogs are a common pet animal in the United States.
The games were held in nine cities across the country. All stadiums had a capacity of at least 53,000, and their usual tenants were National Football League or NCAA Football teams. The most used venue was the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, with eight games, among them the final, the third place match, a semifinal and a game of the Round of 16, followed by Giants Stadium in East Rutherford, which had one semifinal, a quarterfinal and a round of 16 match. The least used was the Pontiac Silverdome, the first indoor stadium used in a World Cup, with four Round 1 matches.
(Los Angeles, California area)
(Detroit, Michigan area)
(San Francisco, California area)
|East Rutherford, New Jersey
(New York City area)
|Rose Bowl||Pontiac Silverdome||Stanford Stadium||Giants Stadium|
|Capacity: 91,794||Capacity: 77,557||Capacity: 80,906||Capacity: 75,338|
|Chicago, Illinois||Dallas, Texas||Foxborough, Massachusetts
(Boston, Massachusetts area)
|Soldier Field||Cotton Bowl||Foxboro Stadium||Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Stadium|
|Capacity: 63,117||Capacity: 63,998||Capacity: 53,644||Capacity: 53,142|
Squads were selected as usual following FIFA rules with 22 players.
|This section requires expansion with: summary of standalone squad article. (July 2010)|
The composition of the four pots was based on the FIFA World Ranking (established in 1993) and on the qualified teams' results in the three previous World Cups. The teams' pre-tournament rankings are shown in parenthesis.
|Pot 1 (Top 5 plus Hosts)||Pot 2 (Europe 1–6)||Pot 3 (Europe 7–10 + Asia)||Pot 4 (Africa + Americas)|
The opening ceremony of the World Cup was held on 17 June at Chicago's Soldier Field. Numerous dignitaries attended, including United States President Bill Clinton, Chancellor of Germany Helmut Kohl and President of Bolivia Gonzalo Sánchez de Lozada. The ceremony was emceed by Oprah Winfrey, who fell off the dais in introducing Diana Ross, who gave a musical performance. Ross was also supposed to kick a football into the goal from the penalty spot at the end of her performance, with the goal then splitting in two as part of a pre-orchestrated stunt. She kicked the ball wide to the left, missing the goal, but the goalposts were collapsed anyway in accordance with the stunt plans. In addition, Daryl Hall and Jon Secada also gave musical performances.
|Key to colours in group tables|
|Group winners, runners-up, and best four third-placed teams advance to the Round of 16|
Group A will be remembered for two historic moments in international football. First was that the match between the United States and Switzerland would be the first ever to take place indoors, having been played under the roof at the Pontiac Silverdome. The second was the murder of Colombian defender Andrés Escobar - shot dead on his return to Colombia, after his own goal had contributed to his country's elimination from the tournament.
Victories against Colombia and the United States (in front of a crowd of 93,869) were enough to see Romania through as group winners, despite a 4–1 hammering by Switzerland in between. The magnitude of that victory let the Swiss move past the Americans into second place on goal difference, although the hosts qualified for the second round as one of the best third-placed teams.
|18 June 1994|
|United States||1–1||Switzerland||Pontiac Silverdome, Pontiac|
|Colombia||1–3||Romania||Rose Bowl, Pasadena|
|22 June 1994|
|Romania||1–4||Switzerland||Pontiac Silverdome, Pontiac|
|United States||2–1||Colombia||Rose Bowl, Pasadena|
|26 June 1994|
|Switzerland||0–2||Colombia||Stanford Stadium, Stanford|
|United States||0–1||Romania||Rose Bowl, Pasadena|
Note: The scorer of the fourth Switzerland goal is a matter of dispute. Though the FIFA match report lists Knup as having scored a second goal, in The Complete Book Of The World Cup (HarperSport, 2006), Cris Freddi writes: "…and Bregy's free kick skimmed a defender's head on its way in (some sources, but not the Swiss, mistakenly credited it to Knup)".
Group B produced two of the four semi-finalists of this World Cup, and was also one of the two groups in which two, rather than three, sides would progress to the second round. Brazil and Sweden proved to be far stronger than Cameroon and Russia in every department. The match between the latter two broke two World Cup records. Oleg Salenko of Russia became the first – and remains the only – man ever to score five goals in a single World Cup match as Russia ran out 6–1 winners against their African opponents. The goals also ensured that Salenko finished the tournament joint-top scorer with six goals, having previously bagged one against Sweden. Cameroon left a mark too as Roger Milla, at the age of 42, became the oldest World Cup goalscorer of all time as he grabbed his side's consolation goal in the match. The result was not enough to take Russia through following heavy defeats at the hands of both Brazil and Sweden. Brazil overcame Cameroon with similar ease before a draw with Sweden confirmed top spot. The Swedes also progressed, finishing in second place with five points.
|19 June 1994|
|Cameroon||2–2||Sweden||Rose Bowl, Pasadena|
|20 June 1994|
|Brazil||2–0||Russia||Stanford Stadium, Stanford|
|24 June 1994|
|Brazil||3–0||Cameroon||Stanford Stadium, Stanford|
|Sweden||3–1||Russia||Pontiac Silverdome, Pontiac|
|28 June 1994|
|Russia||6–1||Cameroon||Stanford Stadium, Stanford|
|Brazil||1–1||Sweden||Pontiac Silverdome, Pontiac|
Holders Germany, and Spain progressed to round two. Coming from two goals down with four minutes left to snatch a 2–2 draw against Spain, the Koreans very nearly eclipsed that feat against Germany when they came from 3–0 down to lose narrowly 3–2. In spite of these comebacks, South Korea were held to a 0–0 draw against Bolivia in their other group match when a win would have seen them through. Instead, only two teams progressed; Spain's late implosion against the Koreans effectively decided that it would be Germany who won the group and not them. Germany, who defeated Bolivia 1–0 in the tournament's opening match, finished with seven points. Spain had to settle for second place despite leading in all three matches.
|17 June 1994|
|Germany||1–0||Bolivia||Soldier Field, Chicago|
|Spain||2–2||South Korea||Cotton Bowl, Dallas|
|21 June 1994|
|Germany||1–1||Spain||Soldier Field, Chicago|
|23 June 1994|
|South Korea||0–0||Bolivia||Foxboro Stadium, Foxborough|
|27 June 1994|
|Bolivia||1–3||Spain||Soldier Field, Chicago|
|Germany||3–2||South Korea||Cotton Bowl, Dallas|
Argentina collected a maximum of six points from their opening two matches after beating Greece 4–0 in Foxboro before coming from behind to overcome the feisty Nigerians 2–1 on the same field four days later, yet still only finished third. The match against Greece had been won in style thanks mainly to a hat-trick from Gabriel Batistuta, yet it was the other goal in the match – from Diego Maradona – that hit the headlines. Nigeria had been very impressive on their World Cup debut, and despite the narrow loss to Argentina, had emerged as group winners following comfortable victories against Bulgaria and Greece. The Bulgarians also surprised many. Having never won a single match at the World Cup finals prior to this tournament, their fortunes seemed unlikely to change in the aftermath of the 3–0 defeat by Nigeria in their first game. However a 4–0 demolition of the Greeks (who had suffered exactly the same fate five days earlier against Argentina) and a win against Argentina had seen them advance in style. Argentina had actually been winning the group going into injury-time, while Bulgaria played the last 25 minutes with ten men; however, a 91st-minute strike from Nasko Sirakov meant that they dropped two places and finished third.
|21 June 1994|
|Argentina||4–0||Greece||Foxboro Stadium, Foxborough|
|Nigeria||3–0||Bulgaria||Cotton Bowl, Dallas|
|25 June 1994|
|Argentina||2–1||Nigeria||Foxboro Stadium, Foxborough|
|26 June 1994|
|Greece||0–4||Bulgaria||Soldier Field, Chicago|
|30 June 1994|
|Argentina||0–2||Bulgaria||Cotton Bowl, Dallas|
|Greece||0–2||Nigeria||Foxboro Stadium, Foxborough|
Group E remains the only group in World Cup history in which all four teams finished with the same points. It began when Ray Houghton's chip ensured that Ireland would gain revenge on Italy by reversing a 1–0 scoreline the Italians had beaten them by in the quarter-finals of the previous World Cup. The next day in Washington, Kjetil Rekdal's goal five minutes from time proved decisive in an equally tense encounter as Norway beat Mexico. Mexico however was much more comfortable playing in Orlando, the setting for their next match against Ireland, where the heat proved to be a key factor. Garcia's double had them 2–0 up and in control of the game before a disagreement on the touchline resulted in fines for both Republic of Ireland's manager, Jack Charlton, and their striker John Aldridge. Fortunately for Ireland, Aldridge was able to re-gain concentration in time to score six minutes from the end of the game. Though Ireland still lost the match 2–1, Aldridge's goal proved crucial in the final group standings. The previous day in New Jersey, Italy's World Cup hopes seemed to be diminishing fast as goalkeeper Gianluca Pagliuca was sent off with the game still at 0–0. Yet despite this, Italy were still able to salvage an important 1–0 victory. Norway would ultimately pay a price for their inability to take advantage of Pagliuca's dismissal. With the four teams level on points, the final two group matches would each have to finish as draws for things to stay that way. Republic of Ireland made it through after a dreary 0–0 draw with Norway, whilst midfielders Massaro and Bernal traded strikes as Italy were held 1–1 by Mexico. That result meant that Mexico won the group on goals scored with Ireland and Italy also progressing having finished with identical records (Ireland finishing second on account of the fact that they had beaten Italy when the teams played one another). Norway's shortcomings in attack had ultimately let them down.
|Republic of Ireland||3||1||1||1||2||2||0||4|
|18 June 1994|
|Italy||0–1||Republic of Ireland||Giants Stadium, East Rutherford|
|19 June 1994|
|Norway||1–0||Mexico||RFK Stadium, Washington|
|23 June 1994|
|Italy||1–0||Norway||Giants Stadium, East Rutherford|
|24 June 1994|
|Mexico||2–1||Republic of Ireland||Citrus Bowl, Orlando|
|28 June 1994|
|Italy||1–1||Mexico||RFK Stadium, Washington|
|Republic of Ireland||0–0||Norway||Giants Stadium, East Rutherford|
Morocco lost each of their matches only by a single goal. Belgium's campaign went the same way as Argentina's; finishing third despite winning their first two matches. After 1–0 victories against Morocco and the Netherlands, Belgium were ultimately beaten after Saudi player Saaed Al-Owairian ran from his own half through a maze of Belgian players to score the game's only goal. Both teams went through. For the much-fancied Dutch however, progression to the second round was a somewhat nervier experience. The opening 2–1 victory against Saudi Arabia was followed by defeat against the Belgians before another 2–1 victory – this time at the expense of Morocco – eventually saw them win the group. Winger Bryan Roy scored the winner a mere twelve minutes from time.
|19 June 1994|
|Belgium||1–0||Morocco||Citrus Bowl, Orlando|
|20 June 1994|
|Netherlands||2–1||Saudi Arabia||RFK Stadium, Washington|
|25 June 1994|
|Saudi Arabia||2–1||Morocco||Giants Stadium, East Rutherford|
|Belgium||1–0||Netherlands||Citrus Bowl, Orlando|
|29 June 1994|
|Belgium||0–1||Saudi Arabia||RFK Stadium, Washington|
|Morocco||1–2||Netherlands||Citrus Bowl, Orlando|
|Round of 16||Quarter-finals||Semi-finals||Final|
|3 July – Pasadena|
|10 July – Stanford|
|3 July – Dallas|
|Sweden (p)||2 (5)|
|13 July – Pasadena|
|4 July – Orlando|
|9 July – Dallas|
|Republic of Ireland||0|
|4 July – Stanford|
|17 July – Pasadena|
|Brazil (p)||0 (3)|
|5 July – East Rutherford|
|10 July – East Rutherford|
|Bulgaria (p)||1 (3)|
|2 July – Chicago|
|13 July – East Rutherford|
|5 July – Foxborough|
|9 July – Foxborough||16 July – Pasadena|
|2 July – Washington|
2 July 1994
|Völler 6', 40'
2 July 1994
Luis Enrique 74'
Begiristain 86' (pen.)
3 July 1994
|Al-Ghesheyan 85'||Report||Dahlin 6'
K. Andersson 51', 88'
3 July 1994
|Dumitrescu 11', 18'
|Report||Batistuta 16' (pen.)
4 July 1994
|Netherlands||2–0||Republic of Ireland|
4 July 1994
5 July 1994
|Amuneke 25'||Report||R. Baggio 88', 102' (pen.)|
5 July 1994
|García Aspe 18' (pen.)||Report||Stoichkov 6'|
9 July 1994
|D. Baggio 25'
R. Baggio 88'
9 July 1994
10 July 1994
|Report||Matthäus 47' (pen.)|
10 July 1994
|Răducioiu 88', 101'||Report||Brolin 78'
K. Andersson 115'
13 July 1994
|Stoichkov 44' (pen.)||Report||R. Baggio 21', 25'|
13 July 1994
16 July 1994
K. Andersson 40'
17 July 1994
|Golden Shoe Winners||Golden Ball Winner||Yashin Award||FIFA Fair Play Trophy||Most Entertaining Team|
| Hristo Stoichkov
The All-star team is a squad consisting of the 11 most impressive players at the 1994 World Cup, as selected by FIFA's Technical Study Group.
After the tournament, FIFA published a ranking of all teams that competed in the 1994 World Cup finals based on progress in the competition, overall results and quality of the opposition.
3rd and 4th place
Eliminated in the quarter-finals
Eliminated in the round of 16
Eliminated at the group stage
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