There are quite a few soccer teams around the world that wear yellow jerseys. At the club level, the most famous team to wear yellow is German giants Borussia Dortmund. Since 1913, Dortmund has worn yellow with black accents. As the nickname “Yellow Submarine” suggests, the Spanish La Liga team Villarreal also wears yellow. The color yellow is also the color of Watford FC, the London-based soccer team whose owner was the late British singer Elton John. Club America, Mexico’s most popular and prestigious soccer team, also wears yellow.
Which national teams wear yellow? Some fans might think of the Swedish or Colombian national teams. However, the true owners of the color yellow in world soccer are the Brazilian national team. Brazil is the only country to have competed in every FIFA World Cup since the first one in 1930. Brazil has 76 career World Cup wins, a comfortable lead over second-place Germany (68) and third-place Argentina (47).
Along with the New York Yankees’ pinstriped uniforms, Brazil’s yellow shirts are one of the most iconic and awe-inspiring uniforms in the history of sports, and they’ve become embedded in the minds of fans around the world. However, the Brazilian national team didn’t always wear yellow.
When Brazil joined FIFA in 1923, they wore white shirts with blue only at the collar of the neck. The trend continued, and Brazilian players wore white shirts until 1950.
The 1950 World Cup was a special tournament for Brazilians. It was hosted at home. Brazil built the Maracanã Stadium in Rio de Janeiro (Rio) in anticipation of winning their first title and to showcase their passion for soccer. The 1950 World Cup was unique in that the winner was determined by a round-robin format rather than a tournament. The four finalists – Uruguay, Brazil, Sweden, and Spain – played each other once, with the winner taking home the title.
After two games per team, Brazil had two wins, Uruguay had one win and one draw, Spain had one draw and one loss, and Sweden had two losses, so the final match between Brazil and Uruguay was effectively the final. Brazil needed only a draw against Uruguay to win the title, and Uruguay needed to beat Brazil to win the title.
At the time, few doubted Brazil’s victory. Brazil thrashed Sweden and Spain 7-1 and 6-1, respectively. Uruguay, on the other hand, drew with Spain and beat Sweden by one point. What’s more, the Maracanã Stadium was packed with a staggering 173,850 fans, including standing room only, who were lopsidedly in favor of Brazil.
Geopolitically, Uruguay sits between longtime regional rivals Brazil and Argentina. However, Uruguay is a cultural, political, and economic brother to Argentina. There’s also a history of Uruguay and Argentina forming an allied army to fight Brazil in the early 19th century when Uruguay fought for independence from Brazil.
So, in addition to soccer pride, politics and history dictated that Brazil could not afford to lose to Uruguay. The objectively superior Brazilians took the lead with a goal in the 47th minute, but after conceding back-to-back goals in the 66th and 79th minutes, Brazil fell 1-2 and finished as runners-up.
When the final whistle blew, there was a long silence in Maracanã. Medals, speeches, and celebrations had been canceled in anticipation of Brazil’s victory. Fans were frustrated, angry, and some wailed into the night. The “Tragedy of Maracanã” was the beginning of a national trauma that would haunt Brazil for years to come.
The Brazilian Football Confederation concluded that there was something wrong with the color of their jerseys. The team’s white shirts, blue collars, and white pants didn’t match the colors of the national flag. In 1953, a contest for a new uniform is organized by the federation and a Rio-based newspaper called Correo da Magna. The new uniforms had to include all four colors of the Brazilian flag.
Out of a total of 401 entries, 19-year-old newspaper illustrator Aldir Schley won first place. “There were no soccer jerseys with the four colors (at the time), and I was especially troubled by the fact that the four colors didn’t look good together,” he said. After experimenting with more than 100 color combinations, he says, he decided the shirt had to be yellow. Brazil’s legendary yellow shirt, also known as the “canary shirt,” was born.토토사이트
In March 1954, Brazil played its first match in yellow against Chile. The result was a 1-0 victory for Brazil. Four years later, in the 1958 World Cup final, Brazil defeated hosts Sweden 5-2 to win the tournament for the first time. Brazil would go on to win four more World Cups, for a total of five titles. Some say the yellow canary shirt changed the fortunes of Brazilian soccer.
In the mid-to-late 20th century, Brazilian legends like Pele, Jairzinho, Zico, and Socrates wore the yellow shirt and took the game to new heights. The yellow shirt symbolizes the colorfulness, creativity, and joy of Brazilian soccer, and will live long in the hearts of soccer fans around the world.