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The world's largest, collective celebration of soccer comes to a close this Sunday during the 2014 FIFA World Cup final in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Two soccer-crazed continents will face off at the Maracanã Stadium: Europe, represented by Germany, and South America, by Argentina. During the past month, shiny stadiums (which cost the host country 3.6 billion dollars), played host to millions of fans who experienced the gut-wrenching gamut of soccer-spectator emotions -- despair, shock, and elation. Favorites disappointed, underdogs surprised. Careers were made, careers were devastated. Despite the recent fanfare, the world's favorite sport, widely known as football, is celebrated every day around the globe -- without the pomp, the glamor, and sometimes -- without a proper ball.

In June 2013, photographer Ian Allen traveled to Mozambique with Charity Ball, an organization that distributes new soccer gear to people living in developing countries. While there he documented the people of the beachside community of Mocimboa da Praia, located on the country's northern coast, as they gathered to play soccer -- if not in grand fashion at least in great numbers. Youths from the port town and surrounding villages play on the trampled grass of makeshift fields and scoring occurs between two wooden posts, often without a net. Many of the children run the field barefoot, dribbling a colorful ball made out of pieces of plastic and string. Here, away from the spotlight and the drama, it's all about the love of the game.

Above, a boy playing goalie jumps to block the ball, but misses. This net seen in this photos, brought by Charity Ball, was stolen immediately after the game.

Ian Allen

http://Without%20access%20to%20proper%20balls, players%20construct%20their%20%20own,%20often%20times%20using%20a%20blown-up%20condom%20as%20the%20ball's%20bladder%20--%20the%20part%20of%20the%20ball%20filled%20with%20air%20in%20the%20center%20--%20and%20wrapping%20it%20with%20%20layers%20of%20plastic%20bags,%20rubber%20bands,%20and%20yarn.%20%20%20%20%20%20Ian%20Allen 

Without access to proper balls, players construct their own, often times using a blown-up condom as the ball's bladder -- the part of the ball filled with air in the center -- and wrapping it with layers of plastic bags, rubber bands, and yarn.

Ian Allen 

http://After%20school,%20children%20are%20mostly%20unsupervised.%20Here%20a%20group%20watches%20a%20game%20from%20the%20bleachers%20of%20an%20abandoned%20sports%20club.%20%20%20%20%20%20%20Ian%20Allen 

After school, children are mostly unsupervised. Here a group watches a game from the bleachers of an abandoned sports club.

Ian Allen 

http://The%20players%20--%20who%20range%20from%204%20to%2015%20years-old%20--%20unable%20to%20afford%20shoes%20often%20play%20barefoot.%20In%20Mozambique,%20more%20than%2050%20percent%20of%20the%20population%20live%20on%20less%20than%201%20dollar%20a%20day.%20Here%20%20a%20teen%20wearing%20the%20Spanish%20FC%20Barcelona%20team's%20jersey%20stands%20on%20a%20downtrodden%20field.%20%20%20%20%20%20%20Ian%20Allen 

The players -- who range from 4 to 15 years-old -- unable to afford shoes often play barefoot. In Mozambique, more than 50 percent of the population live on less than 1 dollar a day. Here a teen wearing the Spanish FC Barcelona team's jersey stands on a downtrodden field.

Ian Allen 

http://A%20girl%20wearing%20a%20costume%20dances%20during%20a%20%20"warmup"%20performance%20before%20a%20final%20game%20of%20a%20local%20tournament%20organized%20by%20%20Charity%20Ball%20in%20Mocimboa%20da%20Praia.%20Members%20of%20the%20organization%20traveled%20to%20northern%20Mozambique%20handing%20out%20over%20500%20new%20soccer%20balls.%20%20%20%20%20%20%20Ian%20Allen

A girl wearing a costume dances during a "warmup" performance before a final game of a local tournament organized by Charity Ball in Mocimboa da Praia. Members of the organization traveled to northern Mozambique handing out over 500 new soccer balls.

Ian Allen

http://Spectators%20playing%20their%20"vuvuzelas,"%20plastic%20trumpets%20that%20%20were%20a%20staple%20of%20the%202010%20World%20Cup%20in%20South%20Africa. %20%20%20%20%20%20%20Ian%20Allen

Spectators playing their "vuvuzelas," plastic trumpets that were a staple of the 2010 World Cup in South Africa. 

Ian Allen

http://To%20the%20players%20who%20devote%20a%20considerable%20amount%20of%20time%20to%20the%20construction,%20these%20makeshift%20%20soccer%20balls%20are%20almost%20as%20valuable%20as%20the%20"real"%20ones.%20 %20%20%20%20%20%20Ian%20Allen

To the players who devote a considerable amount of time to the construction, these makeshift soccer balls are almost as valuable as the "real" ones.  

Ian Allen

http://Mocimboa%20da%20Praia%20is%20sprinkled%20with%20many%20soccer%20fields%20--%20some%20are%20more%20%20official-looking%20than%20others.%20Above%20an%20organized%20game;%20the%20players%20wear%20matching%20jerseys.%20%20%20%20%20%20%20Ian%20Allen

Mocimboa da Praia is sprinkled with many soccer fields -- some are more official-looking than others. Above an organized game; the players wear matching jerseys.

Ian Allen

http://A%20coach%20of%20one%20of%20the%20teams%20in%20a%20local%20tournament%20enjoys%20%20having%20his%20picture%20taken%20while%20friendly%20spectators%20make%20fun%20of%20him. %20%20%20%20%20%20%20Ian%20Allen 

A coach of one of the teams in a local tournament enjoys having his picture taken while friendly spectators make fun of him. 

Ian Allen 

http://Mocimboa%20da%20Praia,%20located%20on%20a%20bay%20of%20the%20Indian%20Ocean,%20is%20a%20fishing%20town.%20%20After%20the%20work%20day,%20before%20dusk%20is%20when%20older%20men%20come%20out%20to%20play.%20%20%20%20%20%20%20Ian%20Allen 

Mocimboa da Praia, located on a bay of the Indian Ocean, is a fishing town. After the work day, before dusk is when older men come out to play.

Ian Allen 

http://A%20crowd%20of%20onlookers%20gather%20to%20watch%20a%20local%20tournament.%20%20%20%20%20%20%20Ian%20Allen

A crowd of onlookers gather to watch a local tournament.

Ian Allen

http://When%20the%20children%20here%20are%20not%20chasing%20their%20makeshift%20balls,%20%20they%20play%20on%20dilapidated%20old%20playgrounds,%20where%20the%20toys%20are%20rusting%20or%20falling%20%20apart.%20%20%20%20%20%20%20Ian%20Allen 

When the children here are not chasing their makeshift balls, they play on dilapidated old playgrounds, where the toys are rusting or falling apart.

Ian Allen 

http://During%20these%20pick-up%20games,%20the%20general%20rules%20of%20play%20are%20abandoned.%20Instead%20these%20boys%20chase%20the%20ball%20en%20masse,%20%20regardless%20of%20team. %20%20%20%20%20%20Ian%20Allen

During these pick-up games, the general rules of play are abandoned. Instead these boys chase the ball en masse, regardless of team. 

Ian Allen

http://Above%20a%20young%20man%20constructs%20a%20ball%20out%20of%20yarn.%20%20%20%20%20%20%20Ian%20Allen

Above a young man constructs a ball out of yarn.

Ian Allen

http://Shoes%20for%20sale%20are%20displayed%20along%20the%20coast%20in%20Mocimboa%20da%20Praia. %20%20%20%20%20%20%20Ian%20Allen

Shoes for sale are displayed along the coast in Mocimboa da Praia. 

Ian Allen

http:// %20%20%20%20%20%20%20%20%20%20%20%20A%20young%20man%20wears%20%20his%20sandals%20on%20his%20arms%20while%20he%20plays%20to%20avoid%20getting%20them%20stolen.%20%20%20%20%20%20%20Ian%20Allen

 

A young man wears his sandals on his arms while he plays to avoid getting them stolen.

Ian Allen

http://Spectators%20of%20all%20ages%20watch%20a%20game%20during%20a%20local%20tournament.%20%20%20%20%20%20%20Ian%20Allen

Spectators of all ages watch a game during a local tournament.

Ian Allen

http://A%20young%20man%20demonstrates%20his%20balancing%20skills.%20Because%20sometimes%20all%20you%20need%20is%20a%20ball. %20%20%20%20%20%20%20Ian%20Allen

A young man demonstrates his balancing skills. Because sometimes all you need is a ball. 

Ian Allen

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