The World Cup by numbers

With the World Cup finally over, it's time to crunch the numbers that matter (and some that don't) from what was a memorable tournament in Brazil.


- 64 matches were played to determine the winner, all of them providing some form of excitement except for the three involving Russia, whose poor campaign led to manager Fabio Capello being branded a "greedy thief" by a Russian politician.

- 32 nations reached the finals, each with their own super-cool Twitter hashflag. The tournament also lasted 32 days, with seven painful rest days over the course of the tournament.

- 12 host cities across the country helped stage the tournament. No more will the world confuse Cuiaba with Curitiba or mispronounce Belo "Orizonch."


- 171 goals were scored in Brazil -- including Robin van Persie's memorable diving header against Spain -- a joint tournament-high.

- 22 of those goals were scored in the 90th minute or later, easily surpassing the previous World Cup record of 13, set in 2006.

- James Rodriguez won the Golden Boot by scoring 6 goals -- the same as the number of legs that whatever it was that landed on his arm had.

- 35 goals were scored by players from Bundesliga -- more than any other league.

- 18 goals were scored by players from Bayern Munich -- more than any other club.

- Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo -- the only two men to win the Ballon d'Or since 2008 -- scored 5 goals between them. Messi scored four times for Argentina, all in the group stage, while Ronaldo only netted once, in Portugal's final group game against Ghana.

- 30 seconds is all it took for Clint Dempsey to open the scoring goal for the U.S. against Ghana, the quickest goal of the 2014 tournament and the fifth-fastest in World Cup finals history.

- 16 goals became the new World Cup goal-scoring record when Miroslav Klose scored Germany's third goal in their 7-1 semifinal mauling of Brazil. The striker also became the first player to appear in four World Cup semifinals.

- 12 goals were scored by Colombia, and there was an uplifting dance routine to celebrate each of them.


- Germany became first team to bring up a century of World Cup matches, and pushed their total up to 106 with their final appearance.


- 300 ESPN staff were on the ground in Brazil including 29 English-language on-air commentators (hosts, match commentators, analysts, reporters) and 80 Spanish-language on-air commentators covering the World Cup for ESPN Deportes (U.S.), and ESPN International networks in Mexico, Argentina, Colombia, et al across TV and audio platforms.

- 290 hours of original World Cup programming across ESPN's English-language television networks.

- 34 million -- the number of viewers who watched Germany win, making it the most-viewed television event in the nation's history.


- 10 red cards were shown, just two more than at the 1986 World Cup. The one shown to Alex Song for elbowing Croatia's Mario Mandzukic in the back brought the total of World Cup red cards for the Song family to three -- his older cousin, Rigobert, was sent off at both the 1994 and 1998 editions.

- 187 yellow cards were shown in Brazil, leading FIFA to deny allegations of a secret directive sent to referees to promote leniency.


- 9 players who started the 2014 Champions League final failed to make it out of the group stage at the World Cup.

- 3 former world champions -- Spain, Italy and England -- were sent home after the group stage.

- 6 days after their first match, England were eliminated. In all, 16 teams had only played one game at the World Cup by the time the Three Lions had been knocked out.

- Spain captain Iker Casillas was 40 minutes short of breaking Walter Zenga's record of 517 minutes for a goalkeeper not conceding of a World Cup when the defending champions opened their defence against Netherlands. He went on to concede five goals against the Dutch.

- Zero marks out of 10 were awarded to each Brazil player and boss Luiz Felipe Scolari by O Globo following their loss to Germany.


- 87 Chile fans were arrested for storming through the Maracana press area in order to see their nation's round-of-16 defeat to Brazil.

- Uruguay striker Luis Suarez scored his brace in the 2-1 win over England just 28 days after he left hospital in a wheelchair following knee surgery. Suarez was banned for 9 international matches and "all football-related activity" for 4 months for biting Italy defender Giorgio Chiellini.

- Ghana sent home 2 players -- Kevin-Prince Boateng and Sulley Muntari -- for disciplinary reasons before their final group match against Portugal.

- Colombia goalkeeper Faryd Mondragon made history as the oldest player ever to appear at a World Cup finals when he appeared against Japan five days after his 43rd birthday, beating Roger Milla's record by almost a full year. Mondragon had been in Colombia's squad at the 1994 World Cup in the U.S.


- 115 players who starred in Brazil plied their trade in the Premier League at the time -- more than any other league.

- 31 MLS players had to go right back to their day job after their respective World Cup campaigns ended. Tim Cahill made his return for New York Red Bulls 10 days after scoring his stunning volley against Netherlands.

- All 23 players in Russia's final squad were contracted to clubs in their domestic league -- the only entirely home-based side in Brazil.

- 15 members of Algeria's final squad were born in France -- almost two thirds of their entire playing staff.


- 15 saves were made by Tim Howard vs. Belgium, almost causing the internet to break under the weight of all the memes.

- 1 minute's silence was held for the late Alfredo Di Stefano -- arguably the greatest player never to play at a World Cup -- before Netherlands vs. Argentina.

- 2 national anthems were sung by German coach Jurgen Klinsmann when his U.S. side took on his home nation. Conversely, no anthems were sung by anyone at France's match against Honduras due to a prematch mix-up.

- 3 CONCACAF nations made it out of the group stage, with only Honduras not reaching knockout phase. They joined six sides from UEFA, five from CONMEBOL, two from CAF and none from AFC.

- The temperature pitchside for Netherlands vs. Mexico in Fortaleza was 103 Fahrenheit (39 Centigrade) -- the hottest at any match during the tournament.

- There were 21 World Cup final appearances shared between the four semifinalists (prior to this year's final).

- Three is the number of U.S. players Cristiano Ronaldo left bamboozled with a series of turns and tricks.

- According to FIFA's official statistics, Lionel Messi completed 242 passes during the tournament -- two fewer than Germany goalkeeper Manuel Neuer

- 9.5 marks out of 10 is what FIFA president Sepp Blatter gave the tournament at a news conference where he also answered one question by saying: "Listen lady, when you speak about corruption then you have to present evidence."

- 0.5 is the amount of the final Germany midfielder Christoph Kramer can remember after he sustained a blow to the head and had to be substituted.

- Netherlands forward Arjen Robben was accused of diving 3 times against Mexico by El Tri coach Miguel Herrera during their round-of-16 match. Robben admitted he dived on one of those occasions.