Top five nations with most defeats in FIFA World Cup final

Top five nations with most defeats in FIFA World Cup final

These nations have not had the best experience on football’s grandest stage

A runner-up position in the FIFA World Cup is not a small feat by any means. Climbing all the way up itself requires a lot of effort and to win it all is just another thing. It is a sport and like every sport, here are also winners and losers, but what counts is the efforts. Since 1930, FIFA World Cup has had 22 editions and over the years it has become more thrilling and important for every nation to get their hands on this coveted trophy.

But with every winner there also is a team which lose. Runners up position might be good one for the fans but for the players who were just one step behind the prize it is effort worth rethinking.

Here we look at the top five nations with the most runners up position.

5. Italy (1970,1994)

Italy have managed to reach the finals a total of six time and have won it four times making them the joint second place holder in the total World Cup title. They managed to win their two consecutive World Cup titles in 1934 and in 1938, and the other two came in 1982 and 2006. The Azzurri have reached and lost the finals on two occasions, in 1970 and in 1994. In 1970, they were pitched against the Brazilian side, which had players like Pele and Jairzinho.

They defeated the Italian by 4-1 and Pele won his third and last World Cup title. The other time they managed to reach the final but lost was in 1994, when the Italians were led by their star Roberto Baggio. They lost this final again to Brazil but this time on penalties.

Also Read: Top five nations with most appearances in FIFA World Cup Final

4. Hungary (1938,1954)

Another side that has reached the final more than once but has never managed to win it is Hungary. They reached the finals in 1938 and 1954. In 1938, they were defeated by their Fellow European neighbour Italy and Italy won their second consecutive title, they became the first team to do so. Another time that they reached the final was in 1954 against Germany. This time they had players like Puskas. After leading with two goals in the finals, they conceded three goals to Germany and lost the final. This was the first World Cup title of German national team.

3. Argentina (1930,1990,2014)

Argentina are once again in the FIFA World Cup final

La Albiceleste were the finalist of the first FIFA World Cup. They were defeated by their South American neighbour Uruguay in the very first World Cup. They again reached the finals in 1978 and 1986 and won both. But since then, they have played in two World Cup finals and have lost both, ironically to the same team, Germany. In 1990, Maradona again managed to lead his side to another final since their 1986 win, but this time they were defeated by the German team led by Lothar Matthaus.

The other time when they reached final was in 2014 in Brazil, led by none other that the best player in the world Lionel Messi. But his efforts fell short, and they lost in the Final to Germany. Argentina have again managed to reach the final in 2022, and this time it is against France, it will be interesting to see whether Leo Messi will be able to lift eh only trophy left in his cabinet in this final which is probably his last.

2. Netherlands (1974, 1978,2010)

The Dutch have managed to play three World Cup finals but were unable to win any of them. They have termed as the best team to have never won any World Cup. They reached their first World Cup final in 1974, a team led by none other than the legendary player Johan Cruyff. In the final they were against the German with their leader another legendary player Franz Beckenbauer and striker Gerd Muller.

Netherlands lost that final and went home with the silver medal. They reached the final again in 1978, the very next tournament, but this time they were defeated by Mario Kempes led Argentina, which eared its maiden World Cup title. The latest time they reached the final was in 2010 in South Africa, they were against the Spanish Golden generation. They were again defeated in final, and Spain won its first and only World Cup title.


1. Germany (1966,1982,1986,2002)

The European giants have reached the finals four times without winning it. Interestingly, they have also won the title four time, recent one being in 2014. This makes them the team with most FIFA World Cup final appearances. They have been one of the most successful team at the World Cup. They reached their first World Cup final in 1954 which they won but have got defeated in finals various times. In the 1966 World Cup edition they lost to England which won their one and only title.

In 1982, it was by Paolo Rossi led Italian side which bagged their third title. Again in 1986 they reached the finals but were defeated by Maradona led Argentina for their second title. In 2002, they were defeated by the Brazilians, who won their fifth title. They played in three consecutive finals between 1982 and 1990, winning the title in 1990. A feat which is achieved by only Brazil other than Germany.

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