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World Cup winners to receive $35 million in prize money, what did the US get?

Jul 10, 2014, 12:54 PM EDT

Sepp Blatter AP

With the 2014 World Cup tournament almost over, now is a good time to have a look around and see how much money teams have won for their performances during the tournament.

That’s right, Sepp Blatter has got his checkbook out. Happy days.

As set out by FIFA back in December 2013 the winners, either Germany or Argentina, will receive $35 million in prize money from soccer’s world governing body. The total amount of prize money rose by a whopping 37 percent to $576 million for the 2014 tournament from the $420 million handed out during South Africa 2010.

[ RELATED: WC final set, Argentina-Germany ]

Even the runner up will bag $25 million, while Brazil and the Netherlands will battle it out in the third place match for a cool $22 million… the loser, and subsequent fourth place team, still get $20 million.

So, what about the USA? What did Jurgen Klinsmann’s men earn after their hard-fought journey to the round of 16?

$9 million.

Every team who got knocked out of the round of 16 made $9 million. As for those teams who made the quarterfinal stage, they each received $14 million. So, in theory, the U.S. were a Chris Wondolowski chance away from bagging an extra $5 million in prize money. Too soon?

$9 million isn’t bad though, right? Coupled with the $1.5 million FIFA gave all 32 nations for ‘preparation costs’ I’d say that the U.S. Soccer Federation certainly did okay out of qualifying for the 2014 World Cup. Plus, look at all the sponsorship deals the U.S. signed and everything else that comes with enhanced exposure after the record TV numbers.

However, here is where it gets interesting. The 16 nations who were knocked out at the group stages, how much do you think they got? The answer is $8 million.

So even if the U.S. felt like they made a monumental leap forward, prestige wise, in qualifying from the ‘group of death’ and making the knockout rounds, they only received $1 million more than Cameroon, Honduras or Australia who all finished bottom of their groups without a single point in the tournament.

Does that seem a little unfair? Perhaps. Regardless, if FIFA is dishing out prize money, it don’t see any teams complaining.

Anyway, here is the list in full as to how much money each team made from the 2014 World Cup. Do you think this is the fairest way of splitting up the humongous pot of money? Any other suggestions?


1. TBD – $35 million

2. TBD – $25 million

3. TBD – $22 million

4. TBD – $20 million

5. Colombia – $14 million

6. Belgium – $14 million

7. France – $14 million

8. Costa Rica – $14 million


9. Chile – $9 million

10. Mexico – $9 million

11. Switzerland – $9 million

12. Uruguay – $9 million

13. Greece – $9 million

14. Algeria – $9 million

15. USA – $9 million

16. Nigeria – $9 million


17. Ecuador – $8 million

18. Portugal – $8 million

19. Croatia – $8 million

20. Bosnia – $8 million

21. Ivory Coast – $8 million

22. Italy – $8 million

23. Spain – $8 million

24. Russia – $8 million

25. Ghana – $8 million

26. England – $8 million

27. South Korea – $8 million

28. Iran – $8 million

29. Japan – $8 million

30. Australia – $8 million

31. Honduras – $8 million

32. Cameroon – $8 million

  1. silkysmoke - Jul 10, 2014 at 1:41 PM

    “So even if the U.S. felt like they made a monumental leap forward, prestige wise, in qualifying from the ‘group of death’…they only received $1 million more than…”

    Joe, if you measure your success by the amount of prize money you win, you’re playing for the wrong reasons. Stop covering all sports immediately because you miss the point. Go write about blue-chip stocks or something.

  2. granadafan - Jul 10, 2014 at 2:11 PM

    Joe makes a good point. Surviving group play is more deserving of just 1 million more considering the quarterfinalists received 5 million more.

    • dougwaterman - Jul 10, 2014 at 3:10 PM

      Perhaps, but the random draw of the groups makes the round of 16 less of an accomplishment than getting to quarterfinals. Ghana, for example, was stronger than at least three of the final 16 teams, and they finished last in their group.
      IMHO, winning that initial knock out game is worth much more than getting to the round. And the reward goes up with each round.

  3. nicenirish - Jul 10, 2014 at 4:23 PM

    “if FIFA is dishing out prize money, it don’t see any teams complaining.”

    Seriously? Does somebody proof this before it goes out?

  4. clem1980 - Jul 10, 2014 at 4:50 PM

    This amounts to “participation trophies” for the teams that failed to even advance out of the group stage. FIFA is always politically correct (anti-racism, anti-matchfixing, anti-whatever, except they’re not anti-getting-drunk-in-the-stadium as long as Anheuser-Busch is paying their way), but it’s time to incentivize WINNING over SHOWING UP. After all, why call it a tournament if it doesn’t really matter if you win?

    • beagle77 - Jul 10, 2014 at 10:22 PM

      Actually it is a qualification award. Over 200 countries tried to qualify for the 32 spots available. In fact the US did not qualify for any of the world cups between 1954-1986 (9 world cups total)

      Its good to have facts rather than make assumptions.

  5. fgjerez - Jul 11, 2014 at 9:19 AM

    The US fared well because they received 1 million more than Portugal who was actually the team that qualified the US to the next round, since the US couldn’t make it on its own.

  6. wildmora - Jul 11, 2014 at 1:30 PM

    So, could somebody please tell me if the money goes to the players and coach or it stays with the team to use for expenses….?

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