FIFA World Cup history: When two balls were used in the 1930 final

Today the IFA World Cup balls have an identity in their own right. With attractive designs rooted in the culture of the host country, it is a highly anticipated part of every World Cup.

Unlike now, where we have a standard ball with a standard design, there was no such thing in Uruguay 1930. It was not an issue till the final. Argentina refused to play the final with a ball provided by the hosts. Uruguay refused to accede to the demand and things stalled.

Eventually, FIFA intervened and decided that the ball provided by Argentina would be used in the first half and the ball provided by Uruguay would be used in the second half.

Before we get into the game, a word about the atmosphere. There was said to be 100,000 fans in attendance for the final. Dozens of Argentine fans, who arrived in boats, were checked for weapons at both the port and the stadium.

The referee for the final was not decided until a few hours before kickoff. John Langnus agreed to execute the game, only under the condition that his safety was guaranteed. It is said that he even demanded a getaway boat if things went wrong.

And finally, the first World Cup final began.

This is where it gets interesting.

At the end of the first half, Argentina were leading 2–1 using their own home ball.

But in the second half, Uruguay scored three goals on their own ball. Three goals were scored and Uruguay won the World Cup 4–2 for the first time.

Did the ball matter? Or was it just that it took a while for the Uruguayan to find a footing in front of his fans on such a big occasion? We’ll never know.