You can be sure that it’s a record that’s never going to be beaten because we are talking about the most popular game on Earth – football. The last World Cup held in Germany had a global viewership of 26.3 billion.
If you match it with the number of nations participating, the FIFA World Cup 2010 matches the last Olympics. That’s counting the qualification process that involved 204 countries in all. The 2010 World Cup, a month long football carnival will have kicked off in South Africa by the time you read this.
Just to gauge its popularity, popular media is going to be filled to the front pages with football World Cup news. If you scan papers, you won’t even have to come online to get your daily fix of World Cup news.
If you do decide to switch on, here are ten places to visit to catch everything that happens between the first whistle and the last.
That’s where I will go if I am a total football ignoramus who gets caught in a bar argument. One long page helps you to get familiar with what’s what on the World Cup in particular and football in general. I am pretty much in the know on football, but I did learn that Sony would be capturing 25 of the matches in 3D. Wow!
We all head there with a browser launch. But Google is sure to reserve something special for the football event. Type “˜World Cup’ into the search bar and you will get the day’s schedule fixed for your local time. Google updated its search with Caffeine, so expect better (and fresher) real time results with any search on the football World Cup.
Google is in no way going to be caught left footed at the FIFA World Cup. We had a Doodle for the last Cup. For this one you get a long “˜Goooooal!’ when you type “˜World Cup’ into the search. Head down to where the page numbers for the search pages are.
I am sure there will be others too as the Doodle 4 Google competition is on.
You can end up going around South Africa like a virtual tourist. All ten stadiums and the nine host cities are covered on Google Earth and Google Maps. You may not have the tickets to the matches, but you can go right down to the ten stadiums, thanks to the 3D imagery on Google Maps and Google Earth.
On Google Earth, turn on the 3D buildings layer.
Football fever is on at Google. Check out the ways you can add football colors to your photos. All 32 nation colors are covered. Take your pick with Picnik.
YouTube isn’t broadcasting live streams of the FIFA World Cup, but there are some places to go and catch the World Cup fever. Here’s a selection. Feel free to add your own favorite YouTube links in the comments –
- Mashable has a good nostalgic post on the 10 Best World Cup Goals on YouTube.
- is a football sweepstakes announced by VISA who are sponsors of the World Cup. You can participate for free by viewing and uploading great World Cup moments. Winners get a trip to see the next World Cup in Brazil. The competition is open to residents of the United States, Japan, Mexico and Brazil.
- Nike ads really pump up the adrenalin. Catch the Write the Future video and get football inspired.
- Waka Waka (This Time for Africa) is the song that will flag off the World Cup. Tune in to Shakira and the South African band Freshlyground. Watch it in full HD glory.
- Street Soccer Tour is kind of a World Cup sideshow but it’s fun to watch on YouTube. Edgar Davids (a Dutch professional footballer) takes his team across Europe and Africa to battle the best local teams in rounds of street soccer.
ESPN is providing umbrella coverage to the 2010 World Cup. The other things on its extensive sports menu are live streaming via its broadband network for live sports programming. You will be able to catch it if your ISP carries ESPN3 in your area. ESPN also has an iPhone app but it’s not free. So the SoccerNet website is the place to be for free updates.
Goal.com provides a free toolbar for download which delivers soccer news straight to your browser. You get the latest with the help of a news ticker. You have a large forum which already has nearly 3,000 posts. That’s all apart from the website’s regular fares and live scores.
LiveSoccerTV.com lists soccer TV schedules available in the US, Canada, and the UK. Web viewers across the world can catch live streaming football matches on the browser. If the live broadcast is available for your region, you can learn the schedule and watch it on LiveSoccerTV. I couldn’t yet check out the site in live action as the World Cup is yet to start but it seems like a good free deal.
As the About page says – it started off with the World Cup in 2002 when “˜three intrepid football fans stayed up until the middle of the night writing about the games they were watching and the player haircuts that horrified and amused them’. So we can expect the same daily dose of offbeat football news this time too.
It’s the mouthpiece for everything that’s football around the world. Be sure to catch breaking World Cup news here. As the tournament goes on, check out the popular videos and photos sections for some exclusives. Stay updated on how’s each team is doing from the @fifaworldcuptm.page. FIFA’s official Twitter account is
Ok, this one is a bonus competition from Waze (Free turn by turn navigation application for mobile). Like in the regular worldcup competition, the users will be competing tournament style, in different phases of the game. Soccer balls will be distributed all over the map and the countries that munch the most soccer ball road goodies will advance to the next round. Three iPads will be given out to the final winners. The game sounds interesting and fun, and there’s no reason not to give it a shot.
So, where will you be for the next month? Let us know the web places you might visit if the TV goes on the blink. In the meantime, I will leave you with this cool FIFA World Cup 2010 calendar to stay on track for the next month.