Previously the Football Association(FA) had been the world’s only governing body, though codified football was being played only in the United Kingdom at this stage.With the increase in number of inter-nation matchs as the football spread,the need for a global governing body was highly required.Thus, the FIFA came into existence.The Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) was founded at the Rue Saint Honoré 229 in Paris on 21 May 1904.FIFA is responsible for the organisation of football’s major international tournaments, notably the World Cup.
The foundation act was signed by the authorised representatives of the following associations:France,Sweden,Netherlands,Denmark,Belgium,Spain and Switzerland.When the idea of founding an international football federation began taking shape in Europe, the intention of those involved was to recognize the role of the English who had founded their Football Association back in 1863.
The first president of FIFA was Robert Guérin. Guérin was replaced in 1906 by Daniel Burley Woolfall from England, by then a member of the association. The first tournament FIFA staged, the association football competition for the 1908 Olympics in London was more successful than its Olympic predecessors.The success of the Olympic Football Tournament intensified FlFA’s wish for its own world championship. Questionnaires were sent to the affiliated associations, asking whether they agreed to the organisation of a tournament and under what conditions. A special committee examined the question, with President Jules Rimet the driving force.Ahead of positive response from national associations,Uruguay had chosen to be the host country.
Despite the number of participating nations were less,The first FIFA World Cup opened at the brand-new Estadio Centenario in Montevideo on 18 July 1930. It was the beginning of a new era in world football and the inaugural event proved a remarkable success, both in a sporting and a financial sense.The hosting country were perhaps the first World Champions.
International football was rare during World War One and FIFA nearly collapsed after Woolfall’s death in 1918; It was Hirschmann, almost acting alone, who saved FIFA from extinction, and in 1919 convened an assembly in Brussels. However, the British Associations were not very interested in re-establishing ties with former enemies, and effectively boycotted FIFA until the end of World War II. In 1920, Jules Rimet of France was elected Chairman, becoming President in 1921.
Post World War 2, in 1946 the four British nations returned. On 10 May 1947 a ‘Match of the Century’ between Great Britain and ‘Rest of Europe XI’ was played at Hampden Park in Glasgow before 135,000 spectators – Britain won 6–1. The proceeds from the match, coming to £35,000 were given to FIFA, to help re-launch it after World War Two. This was followed by FIFA’s first post-war World Cup in 1950, held in Brazil. FIFA, meanwhile, continued to expand so that by the time of its 15th anniversary it had 84 members.
In 1961 Sir Stanley Rous, a former referee was elected as President.During Rous presidency,the game continued to spread,along with World Cup being telecasted on television for the first time.Hevelange,the president followed by Rous turned the administrating-oriented institution to a dynamic enterprise brimming with new ideas and the will to see them through.He was instrumental in increasing the number of teams from 16 to 24,and 32 in the next World Cup.
In May 2011,after Qatar being elected as the hosting nation for 2022 World Cup,allegations on bribery on two members of the FIFA Executive Committee were imposed by FA.There allegations were based on the information provided by a whistle blower in the Qatari’s bid.FIFA has set up an inquiry into this matter,and a re vote will take place,in case this allegations are found true.
FIFA has been served by eight Presidents since its foundation in 1904.It has expanded to include 208 member associations. FIFA,coming into existence at a very hindering period with an aspiration to unite nations and spread this beautiful game of football across the globe is what makes them the largest and oldest NGOs in the world.
– Vatsal Doshi
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