Uruguay 1930: The First World Cup


When FIFA gathered back in 1929 to decide where to start the first World Cup, only Uruguay was able and ready to foot the bill. The government there wanted to celebrate the centenary of the country’s constitution and this is how the Estadio Centenario was built.

The Uruguayan FA sent invitations to all the countries, but many of them turned it down, countries such as Germany, England, Sweden and more. The countries that accepted were Argentina, Chile, France (without their coach), Mexico, Yugoslavia, Brazil, Bolivia, Romania, Peru, USA, Paraguay, Belgium and of course Uruguay (13 teams in total).

These 13 teams were split into 4 groups from which only the team conquering the 1st place would qualify. Group 1 was formed by Argentina, Chile, France and Mexico, with Argentina getting the first place.

The second group was consisted of Yugoslavia, Brazil and Bolivia, from which Yugoslavia finished in the 1st place. The third group was consisted of Uruguay, Romania and Peru, from which Uruguay got the ticket for the Semi Finals.

The fourth and last group was formed by Paraguay, USA and Belgium from which USA got the first place.

In the Semi-Finals Argentina faced USA and won 6-1 and Uruguay faced Yugoslavia and won with the same score. Uruguay and Argentina faced each other in the Final.

No one knows the exact number of how many Argentinians went to the Final, but rumors say that they were more than 15.000. It was an intense Final, Uruguay scored first with Dorado (12’) and 8 minutes later Argentina scored too with Peucelle (20’). 17 minutes Argentina was getting the lead with 1-2 with Stabile, but Uruguay with three goals in the second half with Cea (57’), Iriarte (68’) and Castro (89’) won the first World Cup.

It is also important to note that only 3 stadiums were used for this World Cup and were the Estadio Centenario for 10 matches, Estadio Pocitos for 2 games and Estadio Parque for 6 games. Top goalscorer of the tournament was Guillermo Stabile with 8 goals (Argentina) and Jose Nasazzi from Uruguay was the winner of the Goldern Ball.