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Count Down to FIFA WORLDCUP BRAZIL 2014

The much anticipated Fifa world cup kicks off in a few days from the 12th June- 13th July in Brazil. The 2014 FIFA World Cup will be the 20th FIFA World Cup, It will be the second time that Brazil has hosted the competition, the previous being in 1950.

The national teams of 31 countries advanced through qualification competitions that began in June 2011 to participate with the host nation Brazil in the final tournament. A total of 64 matches are to be played in twelve cities across Brazil in either new or redeveloped stadiums, with the tournament beginning with a group stage.

The 32 participating teams are to be drawn into the eight groups of the group stage. In preparation for this the teams are organized into four pots with the seven highest-ranked teams joining host nation Brazil in the seeded pot .This draw took place on 6 December 2013 at a Costa resort in Bahia, during which the teams were drawn by various past World Cup-winning players.

In March 2013, FIFA published a list of 52 prospective referees, each paired with two assistant referees, from all six football confederations for the tournament. On 14 January 2014, the FIFA Referees Committee appointed 25 referee trios and eight support duos representing 43 different countries for the tournament. The Gambia Football Federation (GFF) announced that the world football governing body, FIFA, has finalized the approval of the 2014 referees for The Gambia. The list that has 12 candidates is topped by Bakary Papa Gassama, widely regarded as the best in the continent and one of the 25 referees selected to officiate at this summer’s world cup in Brazil.

The total prize money on offer for the tournament was confirmed by FIFA as $576 million before the tournament, each of the 32 entrants will receive US$1.5 million for preparation costs. Once at the tournament, the prize money will be distributed as follows:

• US$8 million – To each team eliminated at the group stage (16 teams)

• US$9 million – To each team eliminated in the round of 16 (8 teams)

• US$14 million – To each team eliminated in the quarter-finals (4 teams)

• US$20 million – Fourth placed team

• US$22 million – Third placed team

• US$25 million – Runner up

• US$35 million – Winner

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