Mexico 2018 Homeless World Cup

The 16th edition of the Homeless World Cup will take place in Mexico City’s iconic Zocalo, right at the heart of the Mexican capital, from November 13-18.

More than 450 players representing 42 countries will travel to Mexico City to attend the inspiring week-long festival of football, in what is promised to be one of the most spectacular Homeless World Cup tournaments yet.

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“It Doesn’t Matter What Background You Have, Trafficking Goes On”

Though the focus of Homeless World Cup was the action on the pitch, there was plenty happening off the field to further raise awareness of the issues surrounding homelessness. During the tournament in Mexico City, Stacey Hepburn of the Northern Ireland-based organisation No More Traffik (NMT) hosted a workshop outlining the work of the organisation […]

FIFPro Award Day 5: “I Am Not Used To Winning Medals—I Feel Like A Star”

We have seen some incredible acts of kindness, sportsmanship and camaraderie across the past five days of 16th edition of the Homeless World Cup’s, an event renowned as a professional international football competition but also a tournament that advocates empathy, solidarity and fair play. The Day 5 FIFPro award goes to the Slovenian team, with […]

Maravilloso Mexico Do The Double On Home Soil

A South American goalfest in the centre of Mexico City saw the hosts lift the Homeless World Cup men’s trophy after a thrilling end-to-end encounter against Chile and a 6–3 scoreline. In this 16th playing of the tournament, Mexico women had earlier delighted the home support with a 5–3 win over near-neighbours and first-time Homeless […]

“I Think I Can Be An Example For Anyone That You Can Do Anything If You Want To”

The men’s final of this year’s Homeless World Cup will represent not just a once-in-a-lifetime experience for the players participating from finalists Mexico and Chile, but for the man in the middle too. That man is Jaka Arisandy from Indonesia. His appearance at the 2018 tournament is his third as a referee, following on from […]

“Being Involved In The Homeless World Cup Has Been A Huge Eye-Opener”

The Homeless World Cup tournament delivers an inspirational week-long street football event that brings together more than 500 players representing countries across the globe. Players taking part in the tournament participate in purpose-built venues in the heart of each city, playing on professional-grade synthetic turf pitches thanks to the team from Act Global. The Texas […]

The Physios: Where Theory Meets Heartfelt Practice

The physiotherapy room at the Homeless World Cup site in Mexico City is a space of constant activity. Both current and future physiotherapist professionals from the University College Copenhagen in Denmark and Oslo Metropolitan University in Norway have been meeting, treating and building friendships with hundreds of players from around the world. Each year four […]

“The Greek Team Have Stolen My Heart”

On the last day of competition at this year’s Homeless World Cup, local volunteer Alfredo Segura Molina is bursting with pride at having been able to become part of the event in his home city. “It’s been a fantastic tournament. I see it as a brotherhood between the players where they buy into the concept […]

“There Is Always A Way Back”

The warmth of the Mexican people has rubbed off on Team Ireland captain Gavin Dowling during his participation in this year’s Homeless World Cup. “Ever since I came here I’ve just felt so welcome in the city. It’s a beautiful city, and the love we are getting from the teams and the support from the […]

Playing Football To Give

Play Soccer 2 Give’s (PS2G) National Director Caleb Olson believes he is one of the Homeless World Cup’s biggest fans. On hearing about the tournament through the South African documentary Kicking It, Olson went on to volunteer at the Paris Homeless World Cup in 2011. Enthralled by the event’s social mission, its unique opportunity and […]

FIFPro Day 4: “It Allowed Our Players To Identify This With The Other Team”

Tournament organisers nominated Team England for the fourth FIFPro award of the 2018 Homeless World Cup after the team showed great sportsmanship during their match against Team Hong Kong. While they were comfortably beating Hong Kong, England’s manager encouraged their players not to embarrass their opponents and instead provide them chances to score to lessen […]

Football is a Family Affair for Kamil

It’s 10 August 2013 in Poznan, Poland, and 48 countries have gathered to play in the 11th Homeless World Cup. Twelve-year-old Kamil Gzyl is excitedly running back and forth among the enthusiastic home crowd at the Lake Malta venue, trying to catch a glimpse of one very special player on the host team: his father. […]

“Being Here is More Than Perfect”

Few teams at this year’s Homeless World Cup tournament really buy into the carnival atmosphere and spirit of fair play of the competition as much as Team Greece does. It was no surprise to witness the women’s team, which is made up of street paper vendors, walk away with the first FIFPro award of the […]

The Referee Who Hung up his Boots to Pick up his Whistle

We wouldn’t have a Homeless World Cup without the volunteers who give their time to referee at the tournament. And it’s worth reminding ourselves that the referees who take part love the game as much as any player, coach or fellow volunteer does. Just ask 39-year-old Canadian referee Ed Kiwanuka. Kiwanuka participated in the tournament […]

FIFPro Day 3: “We Remember Not to Give up in Life”

Team South Korea were presented with the third FIFPro Award of the 2018 Homeless World Cup. Tournament organisers nominated Team South Korea for the award after they played hard right until the very end of their match despite being on the end of a heavy loss. The team kept positive throughout and supported each other. […]

“It is All About Today and Tomorrow”

“Myself and many of us say that something has to happen to you—for me it was a near-death experience, in the midst of a difficult father and son relationship. Falling through ice while skating on a frozen lake as a young boy is what made me decide that I wasn’t going to just be an […]

From the Vegetable Garden to the Football Pitch

With more than 450 players representing 42 countries at this year’s Homeless World Cup tournament, few will be as young as 16-year-old Paraguayan player Fanny Fretes. The youngster, who hails from the rural San Pedro Department, lives with her grandmother and speaks mostly in her native indigenous Guarani tongue. Fretes is among the many players […]

“I Think That my Dad, Wherever he is, Will Feel Very Proud of Me”

This year’s Homeless World Cup welcomes a women’s team from Peru for the first time, and among the players chosen to represent the side is Eva Llacta Triveños from Cuzco. The circumstances surrounding her upbringing are among the most traumatic that any child could have possibly had to face. Yet her story, and her journey […]

“When I Have a Ball at my Feet I am Happy”

As hosts of this year’s Homeless World Cup, Team Mexico feel the support of Mexico City behind them as they participate in the 16th edition of the tournament. And for Team Mexico player Omar Flores, getting off the mark in his side’s opening fixture helped settle his pre-tournament nerves. “I was nervous before the first […]

FIFPro Award Day 2: “I Feel Like We Have Won The World Championship Already”

Team Denmark were presented with the second FIFPro Award of the Homeless World Cup here in the iconic Zocalo Square in Mexico City. Tournament organisers nominated Team Denmark for the award, which recognises players who showed great sportsmanship or outstanding behaviour at the tournament. In response to the award, manager Lene Knudtzen said: “I am […]

FIFPro Award Day 1: “We Play Football To Become Better People”

The Greece women’s team have deservedly been awarded the first FIFPro Award of the Homeless World Cup 2018 event in Mexico City. The team bravely mastered the opening match of the women’s competition against Mexico, and although they took a defeat, this team demonstrated resilience, camaraderie and sportsmanship by never giving up. With that, they […]

Championing Women’s Football

“I make things happen—on the pitch and off! On the pitch, when I was a player, I tried to make things happen, and that’s what I’m doing in my life. I fight for what I believe in.” Co-founder and first ever captain of the Palestinian Women’s National Football Team, Corporate Communications Manager at FIFA, Champion for […]

Success is the Name of the Game for Team Slovenia

Four coaching sessions separated the Slovenia players from being chosen to represent their nation at this year’s Homeless World Cup and setting foot on the park for the first time wearing their country’s jersey. But that hasn’t stopped 42-year-old Robert Andrejaš and 39-year-old Primož Klarer from enjoying every minute of their time in Mexico City […]

“Replacing my Drug Addiction with a Football Addiction”

Day 2 of the Homeless World Cup: the temperature has dropped, the rain is relentless, but energies stay high, especially those of 22-year-old footballer Linnea Blomberg from Stavanger Norway who is ecstatic after her team’s most recent win. Blomberg’s journey here, however, hasn’t been without its challenges. Over a hot ‘kakao’, the young Norweigan goalkeeper […]

Being Female No Barrier

“This time zone makes me confused about when I should be taking my medicine. By the way, I am HIV positive.” Eva gives me a beautiful smile, a big thumbs up and, as if I am the one who needs comforting, says: “It’s okay!” Needless to say I am already in awe of this woman. […]

Meet the Volunteer for Whom Language Barriers Don’t Exist

With 56 teams representing more than 40 nations competing at this year’s Homeless World Cup, it gives players, staff and volunteers opportunities to practise their language skills off the park. This has especially been the case for local Mexican volunteer Eduardo Sebastian Alarcon Hernandez, who is able to speak an incredible 23 languages. Eduardo studies […]

“We can become more than just a young person living on the street”

With the exception of hosts Mexico, the players from Team Guatemala have had the least distance to travel to this year’s Homeless World Cup tournament in Mexico City. And for 19-year-old Petronila Xiquin Ordoñez, her formation as part of their mixed team is an experience she is hoping to use much to her advantage after […]

Zimbabwe’s Manager Revelling in Challenge

The Zimbabwe team stands out from most of the other nations competing at this year’s Homeless World Cup more than just for the team’s colourful strips. That’s because the men’s Zimbabwe team have a female manager in the form of Harare-born Pearl Gambiza. Managing the team is a new experience for Gambiza, but it’s one […]

Turning a four-year-old’s dreams into a 21-year-old’s reality

“Though we gave our best from the beginning, at first we had a struggle. Then when we figured things out and took our chances, it started going well.” 21-year-old Nisvet Skejic from Bosnia & Herzegovina may have been reflecting on his team’s opening match at this year’s tournament, but could just as easily have been […]

Mexico City Welcomes the World to the Homeless World Cup

Mexico City welcomed the world today as teams from 56 nations took part in the opening parade for the 16th annual Homeless World Cup in the city’s iconic Zocalo square. Departing from Avenida Francisco I Madero, the teams brought a sea of colour, noise and movement to the historic centre street as they marched round […]

Mexican super fan travels 9000km to cheer her team

As the Mexican’s men’s and women’s sides took their bow at the inaugural matches of the 2018 Homeless World Cup in Mexico City, there was one voice that screamed louder than the others in the packed stands in the city’s iconic Zocalo square. The cheering voice belonged to Laura Flores, a native of Mexico City […]

Homeless World Cup Joins Mexico 1968 Celebrations

2018 marked the 50th anniversary of the 1968 Summer Olympics in Mexico City, commonly known as Mexico 68. To celebrate the five decades since the event, every major sports, arts and cultural event that took place in Mexico City during 2018 recognised the anniversary. The aim of this initiative was not only to celebrate Mexico […]

Mexico City to Host 2018 Homeless World Cup

Mexico City has been officially named as the host city for the 2018 Homeless World Cup. The Mexican capital will welcome more than 450 players from over 40 countries for a week-long festival of football. The inspirational tournament will return to the venue of the sucessful 2012 event, the iconic Zocalo, right in the heart […]