This isn’t a very large article, because my internet was being absolutely terrible when I was trying to write it. I also got distracted doing research for a Knowledge article on The Guardian website.
Game of the Week – Melbourne Victory v Brisbane Roar
(sorry, family rules meant I didn’t have enough time to write stuff)
Mini-Article – Expanded World Cups
FIFA decided recently to expand the FIFA World Cup to 48 teams from 2026.
A media release from Tuesday began with the following:
The FIFA Council has unanimously decided in favour of expanding the FIFA World Cup™ to a 48-team competition as of the 2026 edition. World football’s supervisory and strategic body held its third meeting at the Home of FIFA in Zurich on 9 and 10 January, and decided on a new tournament format with the 48 national teams split into 16 groups of three. The top two teams from each group will then advance to a 32-team knockout stage.
…why point out that the FIFA World Cup™ is trademarked? Does that mean I’m not allowed to use it by name without paying FIFA royalties?
Anyway, we should look at how the format will be different.
The tournament will start with 16 groups of 3, the top 2 going through to a Round of 32, from which point it will be a knockout tournament. It’s yet to be seen how many qualification spots will go to each confederation. Asia is set to get nine, Europe 16, and Oceania will get a direct spot most likely (which has led to talk of Australia going back to Oceania).
More at some future point.
Chart/Table XV – Parents and Children Together In The Same Side
This chart/table isn’t very organised, but I was running out of time.
The Knowledge is a section of the Guardian website which answers completely pointless soccer questions. One of the questions was about father and son playing for the same team.
I saw that I could answer that, so I fired off this email to the column. Hopefully it ends up there on Wednesday.
I’m Nick Fredriksson, a fan of the column (I came up with the least successful tournament winner answer), and I have an answer for one of the current questions.
Your article from yesterday had the following:
“Charlton have just signed Jake Forster-Caskey from Brighton,” says Chris Lutton. “His stepfather, Nicky Forster, played 10 games for Charlton on loan in 2010. Would this be the shortest time between father and son playing for the same team (even allowing for the fact that Forster is his stepfather and not his actual father)?”
While I can’t provide any answers at club level, using the excellent RSSSF as a resource (http://www.rsssf.com/players/twogenerations.html), I have found a total of 15 occasions where a father/mother has played with their son/daughter at international level.
The first of them was in 1931, when Arthur Reynold ‘Kelly’ Foster (born December 14, 1890) played for Barbados alongside his son, Arthur Colin Foster (born November 25, 1910), in a 2-1 win over Martinique. The two would play together five more times over the next two years. The last match, against Trinidad in November 1933, not only had ARF and ACF, but ARF’s other son Lindsay Reynold Foster and two nephews, Seymour and Leon Foster. However, Barbados weren’t FIFA members until 1968.
There were no other matches until April 1996, when Arnór Guðjohnsen (born April 30, 1961) and his son, Eiður Smári Guðjohnsen (born September 15, 1978) in a 3-0 win over Estonia. There is a caveat for this one, though: Arnór was subbed off for Eiður, so the two never actually played at the same time.
2007 bought four matches with this duality, all women’s. Dr Irma L.M. Halaby (born 1960s) and Melissa R. Halaby (born July 22, 1990) both played for the Northern Mariana Islands, who aren’t FIFA members, in a 7-0 loss to Guam in April of that year. This is the same group of islands that contributed Chevy Kate Alipio, the most recently born international player.
Later that year, American Samoa (they of the 31-0 loss to Australia) played three matches against Papua New Guinea, the Cook Islands, and the Solomon Islands. These matches all contained Sandra Fruean Herrera (born August 23, 1968) and her daughter Ivette Herrera (born September 20, 1988), and the 1-1 draw with the Cook Islands was their first international point.
The most recent matches have been in 2012 and 2013, featuring Bára Skaale Klakstein (born March 24, 1973) and her daughter Eyðvør Klakstein (born September 5, 1995) of the Faroe Islands. Four matches against Luxembourg, Montenegro, Lithuania and Georgia featured this mother-daughter duo.
In summary, a list of matches, with asterisks indicating they were not FIFA members, not against FIFA members, or weren’t actually on at the same time:
1*: February 12, 1931 – Barbados v Martinique – Arthur Reynold ‘Kelly’ Foster, Arthur Colin Foster
2*: February 12, 1931 – Barbados v Martinique – Arthur Reynold ‘Kelly’ Foster, Arthur Colin Foster
3*: March 16, 1931 – Barbados v Trinidad – Arthur Reynold ‘Kelly’ Foster, Arthur Colin Foster
4*: March 20, 1931 – Barbados v British Guiana – Arthur Reynold ‘Kelly’ Foster, Arthur Colin Foster
5*: October 26, 1933 – Barbados v British Guiana – Arthur Reynold ‘Kelly’ Foster, Arthur Colin Foster
6*: November 6, 1933 – Barbados v Trinidad – Arthur Reynold ‘Kelly’ Foster, Arthur Colin Foster/Lindsay Reynold Foster
7*: April 24, 1996 – Iceland v Estonia – Arnór Guðjohnsen, Eiður Smári Guðjohnsen
8*: April 1, 2007 – Northern Mariana Islands v Guam – Dr Irma L.M. Halaby, Melissa R. Halaby
9: August 25, 2007 – American Samoa v Papua New Guinea – Sandra Fruean Herrera, Ivette Herrera
10: August 28, 2007 – American Samoa v Cook Islands – Sandra Fruean Herrera, Ivette Herrera
11: September 1, 2007 – American Samoa v Solomon Islands – Sandra Fruean Herrera, Ivette Herrera
12: November 28, 2012 – Faroe Islands v Luxembourg – Bára Skaale Klakstein, Eyðvør Klakstein
13: April 4, 2013 – Faroe Islands v Montenegro – Bára Skaale Klakstein, Eyðvør Klakstein
14: April 6, 2013 – Faroe Islands v Lithuania – Bára Skaale Klakstein, Eyðvør Klakstein
15: April 9, 2013 – Faroe Islands v Georgia – Bára Skaale Klakstein, Eyðvør Klakstein
Hope this is good for you!
-Nick Fredriksson (@NickTheStatsGuy)
I got three last week, so I’m on 35 out of 69. I can now get just two and still be at halfway (but I want to do better than that!).