Measuring Cups

December 13, 2010

Last Thursday, Russia and Qatar were awarded the 2018 and 2022 FIFA World Cup Finals, respectively. Here, the tale of the tape on the largest and smallest nations to host the world's most popular sporting event.

[originallink:10871331:1006846]

RUSSIA 2018 QATAR 2022
WORLD CUP SELECTION
In two rounds of voting Russia edged the joint bid of soccer powers Spain and Portugal. Took four rounds to beat U.S. bid backed by Morgan Freeman, Landon Donovan and honorary chairman Bill Clinton.
CAMPAIGN SLOGAN
"Ready to Inspire" "Expect Amazing"
AREA (SQ. MILES)
6.6 million World's largest country, only slightly smaller than U.S. and Australia combined. 4,416 Smaller than Connecticut, or roughly the size of 1.6 million soccer fields.
POPULATION
140 million Ninth-most populous in world; roughly equal to total head count at all regular-season MLB games in 2009 and '10 combined. 841,000 Barely one fourth the 3.2 million total attendees of the 2010 World Cup Finals in South Africa.
AVG. JULY HIGH TEMPERATURE (°F)
74° (Moscow) On July 29 temperatures hit 100.8°, the first triple-digit reading ever in Russian capital. 106° (Doha) On July 14, mercury at capital city airport iclimbed to a record 122.7°.
OLYMPIC MEDALS WON
1,752* Since dissolution of U.S.S.R., Russia has medaled in 31 winter and summer sports, including 144 golds. 2 Qatar's medals, both bronze, were won by Somalia-born Mohamed Sulaiman in men's 1,500-meter run in 1992 and Bulgarian expat Said Saif Asaad in 2000 heavyweight weightlifting.
MOST FAMOUS ATHLETE
Alexander Popov, Evgeni Plushenko (above), Maria Sharapova, Andrei Kirilenko, Sergei Fedorov, Alexander Ovechkin, the Soviet hockey teams of the 1950s through the '80s.... Saif Saaeed Shaheen Born Stephen Cherono in Kenya; changed name and became Qatari citizen in 2003 just before winning steeplechase world championship.
ALLTIME WORLD CUP APPEARANCES
9* Last qualified in 2002. Zero trophies, with best showing of fourth in England, 1966. Ranked as high as no. 3 by FIFA, in '96. 0 Has never appeared in World Cup Finals but finished second in the 1981 FIFA under-20 World Cup Final. Currently ranked No. 113 in world.
SOCCER SCENE
Russian Premier League has been dominated by Spartak Moscow, with its nine titles in the 19-year history of the circuit. Captained by Brazilian free-kick ace Juninho, Al-Gharafa won third-straight (seventh overall) Qatar Stars League title in April.
STADIUMS
Plan includes the use of 16 stadiums—13 yet to be constructed—at a projected cost of $3.8 billion. $4 billion earmarked for nine new stadiums and three renovations. All will feature air conditioning.

*Including U.S.S.R. and 1992 Unified Team

PHOTOPHILLIPPE DESMAZES/AFP/GETTY IMAGES (MAN HOLDING TROPHY) PHOTOPETER DAZELEY/GETTY IMAGES (CAMEL) PHOTOMATTHEW STOCKMAN/GETTY IMAGES (PLUSHENKO) PHOTOEPA/STR/LANDOV (STADIUM) TWO PHOTOS

HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
OUT
HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
IN
Eagle (-2)
Birdie (-1)
Bogey (+1)
Double Bogey (+2)