Congratulations To Bolivia, The New Unofficial World Champions

Lost in all the column inches about Lionel Messi’s four-match ban, Argentina’s horrific performance in their 2-0 defeat to Bolivia and their subsequent falling to fifth-place in CONMEBOL qualifying was the passing of the belt to Bolivia in the Unofficial Football World Championships.

I’m a big fan of this competition, and I think you should be too, especially with the 48-team World Cup shortly turning qualifying into a complete non-event. Basically, its a competition that calculates the world’s best international team in the same format used in boxing, beginning with England’s 4-2 defeat of Scotland in 1873.

Since then, the title has travelled around the globe, but it’s been largely contested by South American sides for the last three years. Chile held the belt until their recent defeat to Argentina in World Cup qualifying. But on Tuesday, Argentina capitulated to Bolivia, making them, unofficially, the greatest international team on the planet. 

You can see how much it means to them.

It’s Bolivia’s first time with the belt since 1994, and their first defense will be against Peru on August 31st.  

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