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World Cup Winner Statistics by Sun Bet

The World Cup is almost here, the domestic football seasons are drawing to a close and attention will soon turn to the stadiums in Russia. Germany have the chance to become only the third nation in the history of the World Cup to win it in successive tournaments.

With no further ado, here’s everything you need to know about World Cup winners of yesteryear.

Which nation has won the World Cup the most times?

Although the nation’s reputation took a hammering at its home World Cup four years ago, Brazil are still at the summit in terms of World Cup wins, with five to date. Germany will equal that tally if they honour their standing as favourites in Sun Bets’ World Cup winner betting markets, and successfully defend their title in Russia this summer.

World Cup Winner Statistics by Sun Bet

Which confederation has the most World Cup wins?

With eleven wins, UEFA has produced the most world champions. CONMEBOL, the South American confederation, has produced a winner on seven occasions. In practice, this means that there are still four confederations – CONCACAF (North American), CAF (African), AFC (Asian) and OFC (Oceanic) – that have yet to produce a runner-up, let alone a winner.

How many times has a World Cup winning nation also had the tournament top scorer in their team?

The winning nation has scooped the title, alongside recognition as a producer of a top-scorer or golden shoe/boot winner. The first occasion came in 1962, when Brazil won the World Cup for a second time. Jointly, Garrincha and Vavá finished as top scorers, alongside four others, with four goals.

It would be another sixteen years until Argentina’s Mario Kempes became the first man to lift the World Cup, and do so as a top scorer without equal. For him to do so in his home World Cup was a dream come true. He was, however, four years too early to claim the golden boot as a physical trophy alongside his winner’s medal.

Four years later, Italy’s Paolo Rossi became the only man thus far to have taken a winner’s medal and the (inaugural) golden boot to go with it. Rossi had the distinction of scoring in every round, and while scoring Italy’s first in the final (a 3-1 win) was crucial, it was his hat-trick in the group stage that really established his as the MVP of the moment.

When was the last time a nation won the World Cup two tournaments running?

1962 is the last time a nation successfully defended its title. As already noted, it was a Brazil side benefitting from the ‘golden generation’ to top them all, which did so. It was, however, Italy that did so first, winning the tournament in 1934 and 1938.

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The last non-seeded side to win in the post war era was Argentina in 1982.

Between 1958 and 1974, teams were placed in pots based on geography. Outside that period in the post-war era (1950-54 and 1978-present), the FIFA rank of a nation has determined the structure of the draw. Back in 1986, the Argentina squad was not among the top-ranked teams, and thus arrived in Mexico with the odds against them.

The rest is history, but the accolade of being the first winners not drawn from pot 1 belongs to Germany (as West Germamy). In the group stage, the West Germans had been thrashed 8-3 by a Hungary side many believed to be invincible. They met again in the final, and in a match that would become known as the ‘Miracle of Bern’, Germany won 3-2 to lift the trophy for the first time.

Three out of the last four World Cups have seen the reigning holders bow out at the group stage.

Since the turn of the millennium, the World Cup appears to have become something of a poisoned chalice. In 2002 and 2010 respectively, France and Italy both finished bottom of their groups en-route to elimination. Spain were spared that same fate after beating fellow losers Australia 3-0 in the final round of group games in 2014.

2006 is the anomaly where post-millennium World Cups are concerned, but for a title-holding Brazil side containing Ronaldinho and Kaka, even a failure to make the final was almost as galling as being eliminated at the first hurdle.

No nation has won the World Cup with a foreign manager.

In the age of foreign managers bringing their own brand of football to a nation, it seems hard to believe that no manager away from the shores of the team they manage has ever won the World Cup. Whether this is because the change in styles, between managerial regimes, often comes with unpredictable effects is unclear, and opinions will differ. Regardless of what people may think, facts are facts. It is this quirk of World Cup history which may have provided the reasoning for the F.A’s decision to appoint Gareth Southgate.

As a general rule, head coaches making their first World Cup will need to inherit a good squad, while also sharing a common philosophy with his predecessor. In the eyes of the vast majority, Roy Hodgson (as Southgate’s predecessor) is an exception to this. However, a consistent game plan, with direct and positive play in a relatively easy group is a must from the off for Southgate and his current crop.