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Is the World Cup made of gold?

Photo by Rhett Lewis on Unsplash

Introduction

Football fever has once again swept the nation, with the 2022 FIFA World Cup in full swing. The football World Cup is one of the most famous sporting events in the world, but did you know that the trophy itself is made from real gold? In this guide, we’ll explore the history of the distinctive trophy and share some fascinating facts about the competition. We’ll also find out how the one-of-a-kind, orb-shaped cup came to be.

Is the World Cup made of gold?

One of the most common questions about the infamous World Cup trophy is ‘What is the World Cup made from?’ The World Cup is predominantly made of 18-carat gold and it weighs approximately 6.18kg. The trophy features two athletes, who are stretching to hold the world in their hands. It is thought that part of the trophy is hollow. Although the World Cup is not solid gold, it contains a staggering 4,900 grams of gold. The base of the cup is made from green malachite.

The history of the World Cup trophy

Many of us are familiar with the trophy pictured in advertising campaigns and TV trailers and held aloft by footballing heroes in years gone by, but the World Cup trophy we’ve come to know and love isn’t the original. The current trophy was designed by Italian artist, Silvio Gazzaniga and it was produced in 1971. The previous trophy, known as the 1930 Jules Rimet Cup, was presented for the final time in 1970. The three-time victors, Brazil, were allowed to keep the trophy, which was made from gold-plated Sterling silver.

The 1930 cup was stolen while on display in London before the 1966 World Cup but it was later discovered wrapped in newspaper by a dog called Pickles while out on his daily walk. In 1983, it was stolen again, this time from an exhibition case in Rio de Janeiro. It is believed that it was melted down and sold.

How much is the World Cup worth?

It’s difficult to put a value on a trophy as magnificent and unique as the World Cup. In terms of its weight and gold content, the trophy would be worth around £173,000 at an average price of £35 per gram. The World Cup, however, is much more than a mass of 18-carat gold. Estimates put its value at over $20 million (£16.8 million).

Do the World Cup winners get gold medals?

There’s no feeling like lifting the World Cup for a professional footballer, but the tournament winners don’t get to keep the trophy. FIFA keeps the trophy under tight security at the World Football Museum in Zurich. The squad that scoops the title is awarded a replica trophy, which is made from gold-plated bronze. Each qualifying squad member also receives a gold-plated medal.

World Cup fast facts

To get you in the mood for the 2022 tournament, here are some fast facts:

  • Brazil is the most successful World Cup nation, winning 5 tournaments
  • Pelé is the most decorated World Cup player, winning 3 trophies
  • The 2018 World Cup was watched by over 4 billion people
  • Only a handful of countries have hosted the tournament twice (Mexico, Italy, Brazil, Germany and France)
  • Only 8 countries have won the World Cup (Brazil, France, Italy, Germany, England, Uruguay, Argentina and Spain)
  • The goals record is held by Just Fontaine of France. He scored 13 goals in 6 matches in 1958

Summary

World Cup fever is well and truly upon us as 32 nations compete for the title of the best footballing nation on the planet. The winners will make dreams come true when they lift the iconic gold trophy high in the air to rapturous applause from crowds in Qatar and cheers from pubs, squares and living rooms across the world. Made from 18-carat gold, the iconic World Cup trophy, which will be presented on December 18th, is one of the most expensive and valuable cups of all time.



Article Last Updated: Wednesday, November 23, 2022