The 2018 FIFA World Cup is upon us, and people all over the world are getting serious soccer fever. Friends gather together in pubs and bars to root for their national team and cross their fingers for that golden goal from their favorite player. The World Cup has generated many memorable moments over the years, and now, a new collection of coasters is celebrating those unforgettable gaffes, goals, and glories in a fun and frivolous way.
The project is the brainchild of British graphic designers Gordon Reid and Callum Stephenson, who came up with the idea when they were in the pub watching soccer one night after finishing a design project together. That night, the pair touched upon the subject of World Cup controversies throughout the ages. They decided that they would make the perfect theme for a collection of coasters during the then upcoming World Cup season, getting in touch with 20 different designers to see if they would be interested in contributing to it. Lucky for them, many of them said yes.
“We wanted to commission a heap of our favorite artists and ‘exhibit’ their work on [coasters] and have their work shown off in pubs whilst people were watching the games,” says Stephenson, adding: “The idea to have a range of designers responding to the brief was critical because every designer has a different favorite moment and a different design approach, and I think that is felt throughout the collection.”
They decided that the tone of the collection should be old school, representing glorious, stupid, and just plain ridiculous soccer moments from the 80s and 90s. Stephenson says of the project, “We really wanted to do something nostalgic. The World Cup is enjoyed by almost everyone. We wanted to do a project that reminded people of moments they loved in previous World Cups.”
Some of these unforgettable moments include Maradona’s famous “Hand of God” goal in the Argentina vs. England quarter-final game of the 1986 tournament in Mexico City, as depicted in graphic abstraction by Bratislav Milenkovic. Another design by Mason London shows French football ace Zinedine Zidane headbutting a cubic Marco Materazzi in Italian colors during the 2006 World Cup final in Berlin’s Olympiastadion. David Beckham is shown his famous red card after kicking Diego Simeone in an England vs. Argentina game during the 1998 World Cup on a coaster designed by Raj Dhunna, and the iconic vuvuzela makes an appearance after annoying fans during the 2010 World Cup in South Africa with its droning, stadium-filling sound.
Reid and Stephenson plan to give all proceeds from the collection to the charity Football Beyond Borders. They are currently being sold online at the Weird World Cup site. They’re perfect for watching the games with your friends and bringing a little bit of the jovial pub atmosphere, as well as a few iconic World Cup moments, into your home.