In Croatia, Nazi Sympathizers Are Welcome to Join the Party
The national soccer team celebrated its strong World Cup showing alongside a singer who glorifies the country’s fascist past. But it shouldn’t have come as a surprise.
How a WWII-Era Chant Found Its Way to World Cup 2018
Symbols have power, even in soccer. Just ask Croatia.
Putin Doesn’t Care about Sex Trafficking
Russia could have done something to prevent sexual exploitation of foreign women during the World Cup. It chose not to.
Peru’s National Identity Was Bound Up With Conflict and Corruption for Decades — Then It Qualified for the World Cup.
On our podcast, how a country scores two goals in the soccer tournament and finds redemption.
Croatia’s Soccer Stars Should Be Heroes. Instead, They’re Hated.
A corruption scandal involving the country’s top club and the national team’s captain has enraged Croatian fans.
Captain Erdogan Can’t Help the Turkish Soccer Team
With so much political, social, and financial capital invested in its national squad, why can’t Turkey qualify for a World Cup?
Xi Jinping Is the World’s Most Powerful Soccer Coach
China's team is a national embarrassment — but the party chairman has big plans for the game.
For Serbs, Switzerland Isn’t Neutral
Serbia’s nationalist soccer fans hoped to restore their national pride by beating a Swiss team led by Kosovar stars. Instead, the Kosovo-born Xherdan Shaqiri handed them a humiliating defeat.
Russia’s Muslim Strongman Is Winning the World Cup
Ramzan Kadyrov is using sports diplomacy to bolster his image.
Russia’s World Cup Isn’t as Safe as It Looks
The Kremlin has prepared for the soccer tournament by cracking down on terror threats — the wrong kind.
If Trump Tears Up NAFTA, Sports Will Keep North America Together
The joint 2026 World Cup is yet another sign that Canada, Mexico, and the United States are becoming increasingly culturally and economically interdependent.
Can China Buy Its Way Into Becoming the World’s Next Soccer Powerhouse?
Breaking transfer records is one thing. Fielding a quality team is another.
FIFA Says It Will Delay Vote for 2026 World Cup Amid Corruption Scandal
FIFA's secretary general also defended himself against allegations of corruption.
Will FIFA’s Sepp Blatter Be Shown the Red Card?
As corruption indictments swirl, soccer’s governing body prepares for a vote of confidence in its CEO.