10 July 2020 – Global football lovers have gone on a memorable journey to mark a decade since the African continent hosted the FIFA World Cup for the first time in 2010.
South African football fans, football lovers from the rest of the African continent, as well as around the world, have recalled and shared their #my2010memories of the tournament that saw Spain finally lift football’s holy grail.
“Ten years on, the 2010 FIFA World Cup proudly remains a benchmark of African football excellence. We thank all those who shared their tournament memories and helped us mark a decade since the tournament in such a special way. We again thank FIFA for entrusting Africa with world sport’s biggest showpiece, and we are proud we repaid their faith by hosting a tournament African football can be immensely proud of. We also thank the Confederation of African Football and all its members for their support and co-operation in ensuring the tournament ran seamlessly as a fitting symbol of the African continent’s rich contribution to the global game,” says South African Football Association President, Dr Danny Jordaan.
Fans this month reminisced about a tournament that saw Africa come within a penalty kick of ensuring its best performance at a FIFA World Cup, with Ghana agonizingly falling to Uruguay at the quarterfinal stage.
It was a tournament that attracted world football’s superstars, including Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo, Robin Van Persie, Thierry Henry, Miroslav Klose, Steven Gerrard and Neymar, but which eventually saw Andres Iniesta’s extra time winner in the final breaking Dutch hearts to seal Spain’s first FIFA World Cup title.
This month fans also remembered some of the tournament’s unique attributes, such as the noisy vuvuzelas, the Jabulani match ball, tournament mascot Zakumi, and reflected on the fantastic stadiums and host cities that staged the tournament.
But most of all visiting fans remembered the warm and welcoming spirit of the African football fans they encountered, which was so integral to the tournament’s success.
Some of the world’s biggest artists were in South Africa for the tournament, most notably Shakira, whose tournament anthem Waka Waka with Freshlyground has been viewed over 2.5 billion times since the tournament.
Other artists who performed at the tournament included John Legend, Alicia Keys, Dave Matthews Band, Black Eyed Peas, K’Naan, Femi Kuti, Hugh Masekela, Angelique Kidjo and Khaled.
But it was the football that mattered most, as Spain and Holland met at Soccer City on 11 July 2010, with the stakes extremely high as both famous football nations went in search of their first ever FIFA World Cup title.
Spain prevailed to ensure Johannesburg and South Africa will forever remain integral to Spanish football history.
“We again congratulate Spain on creating their own piece of history on the African continent. We hope to host Spain on our shores again as soon as possible, when it is again possible for live international football matches to resume safely. In these uncertain, extremely difficult global times, we thank fans for participating in a virtual celebration of the 10 year anniversary of the 2010 FIFA World Cup, and we again urge football fans to be safe and responsible as the world battles the devastating effects of the global Coronavirus pandemic,” added Dr Jordaan.