Saturday, November 18, 2017

Soccer: Official Olympic Event

At first the World's championship of football was the Olympics with the winners considered the World Champions. After the First World War more and more players turned professional, which meant the better teams, could not complete. Many countries fielded professionals under the guise of being amateurs, which caused much concern at the time. Initially soccer was viewed as a demonstration sport but later accepted as part of the official Olympics. A summary of the men's Olympic Championship winners is given below.

Unofficial Tournaments Demonstration Sport
1896 Denmark
1900 England
1904 Canada
1906 Denmark

World Championship Official Olympic Event
1908 England
1912 England
1916 No Event
1920 Belgium
1924 Uruguay
1928 Uruguay
Professionalism was Spreading rapidly

1932 No event
Soccer was dropped from the 1932 Summer Olympics, held in Los Angeles, this was in part due to due to the low popularity of football in the United States, but also because of the rise of professionals in the game.

1936 Italy
Many nations sent under strength teams

No games were held during the War Years 1940 No event
1944 No event
1948 Sweden

World Championship Official Olympic Event
1952 Hungary
1956 Soviet Union
1960 Yugoslavia
1964 Hungary
1972 Poland
1976 East Germany
Open to professional players not involved in the World Cup
1980 Czechoslovakia
1984 France
1988 Soviet Union
Open to Under 23 National World Championship
1992 Spain
1996 France
2000 Cameroon
2004 Argentin
2008 Argentina
2012 Mexico

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