When the World Cup kits are released, it’s kind of a big deal. An overwhelming amount of attention is paid to the details of the jersey such as the color, fabric, collar, badge, and typefaces. With 32 teams represented, there are a variety of jerseys, each one designed with specific reasons in regards to the team’s identity. However, there’s a one-minute characteristic that you may or may not have noticed. Some World Cup jerseys have stars and you’re probably wondering why.
Not every team will sport a star on their jersey. This symbol is instead reserved for those who have previously earned a World Cup title. The first team to start the tradition of including stars was Brazil in 1970. After their third World Cup win, Brazil took it upon themselves to add three stars above their badge. In the following years, other World Cup victors hopped on the bandwagon. The placement of the star is up to the team’s discretion, but usually, the symbol is found in or beside the badge.
The latest team to add another star was Germany in 2014 after they won their fourth World Cup tournament. In this current World Cup, eight teams are donning the look, including Argentina, England, France, Spain, Brazil, Australia, and Uruguay. While Argentina has two, England, France, Spain and Australia all have one. Brazil, with no surprise, has accumulated the greatest number of stars after winning the tournament five times.
Uruguay has four stars which at first doesn’t seem to fall in line with FIFA guidelines. As it’s stated in FIFA’s equipment regulations: “Those Member Associations that have won the FIFA World Cup may put a symbol on the playing shirt representing this accomplishment and the number of times won.” If you look at Uruguay’s history, the team has only won two World Cup tournaments, one in 1930 and the other in 1950. So where do the two other stars come from?
The World Cup was created in 1930, so prior to that, the Olympic games were recognized as the FIFA world championship tournament. It just so happens that Urguary scored two Olympic wins in 1924 and 1928 so technically, the four stars hold up. The more you know.