After seven years of preparation and $14 billion in Brazilian government expenditures, the samba-fueled football fest, which is the 20th FIFA World Cup finally kicks off.
Four Asian, five African, four North and Central American, six South American and 13 European teams vie to clinch the reputable Jules Rimet trophy.
The World Cup means many different things for people around the world. Hosts Brazil, who are the most successful team ever, hope to claim their sixth trophy in history. For new-comers Bosnia and Herzegovina, the tournament is an excellent opportunity to showcase the nation's talents whilst building national pride.
Though the sporting event promises to be one of the largest parties in history, the organization has not gone without problems. Stadium collapses, public protests against exorbitant spending and fears of possible outbreaks of dengue fever have drawn attention to the way in which football's governing body, FIFA organizes world cup tournaments.
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