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FIFA

The Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA ; English: International Federation of Association Football) is the international governing body of association football, futsal and beach soccer. FIFA is responsible for the organization of football’s major international tournaments, notably the World Cup which commenced in 1930 and the Women’s World Cup which commenced in 1991. FIFA was founded in 1904 to oversee international competition among the national associations of Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland. Headquartered in Zürich, membership now comprises 209 national associations. Member countries must each also be members of one of the six regional confederations into which the world is divided: Africa, Asia, Europe, North & Central America and the Caribbean, Oceania and South America. Although FIFA does not control the rules of the game, it is responsible for both the organisation of a number of tournaments and their promotion, which generate revenue from sponsorship. In 2013, FIFA had revenues of over 1.3 billion U.S. dollars, for a net profit of 72 million, and had cash reserves over 1.4 billion U.S. dollars. Reports by investigative journalists have linked the FIFA leadership with rapaciousness, corruption, and bribery, and alleged that vote rigging was involved in the election of president Sepp Blatter. FIFA’s choice to award the 2018 and 2022 World Cups to Russia and Qatar, respectively, have been widely criticised, with allegations of vote buying.