Author Archives: Jonny Blair

About Jonny Blair

Jonny Blair is a wandering Northern Irish football fan who has travelled to almost 100 countries across all 7 continents in the last 10 years. Jonny has been to a few UFWC matches on his travels and has also visited the home of the first ever football World Cup in Uruguay. Aside from football, he writes about his travel lifestyle on his website Don't Stop Living.


The Smallest Countries to Win (and try to win) the UFWC

As yesterday little San Marino and giants Italy met in the latest UFWC contest, our guest author Jonny Blair took some time (and effort!) to reflect on some relatively “smaller” countries who have contested, and even won the UFWC down the years!

Did you know that more countries have been UFWC champions than World Cup winners? And it’s by 40. Officially, 9 geographical countries have won the FIFA World Cup. 49 FIFA recognised countries have won the UFWC.


Following the UFWC at the World Cup

During the past month or so, over the course of the World Cup, the UFWC trophy has changed hands four times. Along the way I’ve managed to watch the drama unfold from three different continents as a nomadic football fan. Starting off in Hong Kong, where I watched the World Cup get underway, I then flew to London for the first weekend of the World Cup before watching the rest of it in South America. The adventure began in the first weekend of the World Cup, when Uruguay’s surprise defeat to Costa Rica gave the Ticos the UFWC title, which they managed to take all the way to the quarter finals.


Uruguay 1-0 Northern Ireland

Uruguay retained the Unofficial Football World Championships title with a narrow 1-0 win over Northern Ireland in the Estadio Centenario in Montevideo in what was a tightly contested match. It was Northern Ireland’s first chance to contest the UFWC since 1997, when they lost to Germany in Belfast. Uruguay have been holders of the UFWC since beating Argentina in October 2013. Uruguay are also the current Copa America Champions, and if you’re old enough to remember the British Championships you’ll know that Northern Ireland won the trophy in its final year in 1984, thus getting to keep it. These two teams, with a combined population of around five million have a history of “punching above their weight” and they produced a good World Cup warm-up match and another UFWC tie for the records.