The Wolf has every angle of Russia 2018 covered. From previews and betting tips to history and stadiums, make The Wolf’s guide your home for Russia 2018.
When does the 2018 World Cup kick off?
In Russia from June 14th – July 15th, 2018
The most anticipated football competition on the global calendar is the FIFA World Cup, which will take place for the 21st time this year in Russia, beginning on Thursday 14th June and coming to its conclusion at the final on Sunday 15th July.
The final 32 countries will play 3 group matches apiece before advancing to the finals. There are 8 groups of 4 teams, who will play in 11 cities across Russia in 12 different venues, with the final taking place at the 81,000 capacity Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow.
The first of the FIFA World Cup Winners was Uruguay, who were also the hosts of the inaugural tournament back in 1930. Just 13 nations took part that year, with the number bumped up to 16 for the 1934 soccer World Cup. This structure stayed in place until 1982 when the number was increased to 24. In 1998 the number of competing teams increased again to 32, where it has remained since.
*WHAT: The 2018 FIFA World Cup – 21st Edition
*WHEN: June 14th – July 15th, 2018
*WHERE: Russia (11 different cities and 12 different venues)
*WHO: 32 countries teams competing
*HOW: 64 football matches
*DEFENDING CHAMPIONS: Germany (2014)
Soccer World Cup Teams
The World Cup 2018 tournament will see 20 teams returning after competing in 2014, while Panama and Iceland will be making the debut at the football World Cup.
The returning sides are Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Costa Rica, Colombia, Croatia, England, France, defending champions Germany, Iran, Japan, Mexico, Nigeria, Portugal, host nation Russia, South Korea, Spain, Switzerland and Uruguay.
The remaining 12 sides are Denmark, Egypt, Iceland, Morocco, Panama, Peru, Poland, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Serbia, Sweden and Tunisia.
FIFA World Cup Winners
Brazil has won the most Cups with 5, followed by Germany (including West Germany) and Italy who both have 4. Argentina and Uruguay have won twice while England, France and Spain all have a title apiece.
|1942||No World Cup staged due to World War II|
|1946||No World Cup staged due to World War II|
|1966||England||England||West Germany||4-2 (E.T.)||16|
|1974||West Germany||West Germany||Netherlands||2-1||16|
|1994||United States||Brazil||Italy||0-0 (3-2 Pens)||24|
|2002||South Korea & Japan||Brazil||Germany||2-0||32|
|2006||Germany||Italy||France||1-1 (5-3 Pens)||32|
|2010||South Africa||Spain||Netherlands||1-0 (E.T.)||32|
|1938||Austria withdrew from the tournament before it began.|
|1950||There was no official final. The top 4 sides after group matches played each other once, Turkey and Scotland withdrew from the tournament before it began. France were called up but withdrew also, along with India.|
World Cup Betting
Betting markets for the 2018 FIFA World Cup are currently open for all matches, while options for player awards, such as the Golden Boot for highest goal scorer, Golden Glove for the best keeper and Bolden Ball awarded to the player of the tournament. Check out our guide to betting on the 2018 FIFA World Cup.
FIFA World Cup Odds
In the early years, host nations more often than not reached the final, however that feat has not happened in any of the last 4 World Cups. Defending champions Germany and Brazil will be joined by France and Spain as the genuine heavyweight contenders with a host of nations lining up right on their tails. The 2018 FIFA World Cup is set to be an entertaining, exciting and enthralling tournament. Click here see the latest Soccer World Cup Odds at William Hill.