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Non-FIFA international football

FIFA is the international governing body of association football, charged with overseeing football globally and with running international representative matches. However, some international football takes place outside of its ratification. This often consists of matches involving sub-national entities such as islands, colonies or autonomous regions. Representative matches also occur involving states with limited international recognition who are unable to qualify for FIFA membership. There are also a limited number of states whose representative teams are not affiliated to FIFA. Historically, a number of competitions occurred outside of FIFA's auspices.

"National" teams

Broadly-speaking, there are five categories of Non-FIFA national team:

Regional associations

The first, and most common, are teams which represent the regional associations of established footballing nations. These oversee local football in their respective regions, and are part of a network of associations that contribute to the national association as a whole. A good example of this would be Jersey, whose members are also members of the FA. These regional associations often enter representative teams into international non-FIFA matches.

Autonomous (or autonomy-seeking) regions and unrecognised states

A second category encompasses regions of larger nations which have a history of autonomy. They may have already achieved a degree of autonomy (Catalonia, Galicia or Basque Country, for example), or be seeking it. However, it is necessary to distinguish Basque Country from the others, as it represents all Basque Country, and not only the Autonomous Community of the same name Basque Country. Alternatively, some unrecognised states may have national teams. Some established members of UEFA once fell into this category, such as the Faroe Islands and Moldova. Current non-FIFA heavyweights Northern Cyprus are the best example of this category of non-FIFA football team. Also included are the representative sides of the Spanish autonomous regions, which currently play just one game a year, traditionally at Christmas. Another country with semi-international recognition, that is not affiliated with FIFA, is Kosovo.

Stateless people

The third group of teams features representative sides drawn from ethnic groups that have yet to gain significant control over a home state, or drawn from an ethnic diaspora. The Sami people of Lapland live in a distinct area of northern Scandinavia, yet fall under the control of four states. Nevertheless, they have organised a football association, and a representative team. Similarly, the Romani people have been strewn across Europe for centuries, has a fledgling footballing organisation to represent them in international competition. Other stateless nations, such as the Palestinians who, despite having no recognised state, have been welcomed into FIFA and the AFC. Also Esperanto Football Team (Tutmonda Esperanto Futbala Asocio) it's the team that represents the world community of esperanto speakers.


Nine sovereign states (Federated States of Micronesia, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Monaco, Nauru, Palau, Tuvalu, United Kingdom and the Vatican City) are not affiliated to FIFA. The United Kingdom is represented through its four constituent countries, and the other eight countries (except the Marshall Islands) have or have had national teams that have played matches outside of FIFA.


Another group of teams is composed by ethnic minorities in a state.


  • NF-Board New Federations Board: a football association established in 2003. It is made up of teams that represent nations that are not recognized as sovereign states and which are therefore not eligible to become members of FIFA, football's world governing body. The NF-Board organises the VIVA World Cup and the UNPO Cup. CSANF is its first continental confederation, for South America.
  • CONIFA Confederation of Independent Football Associations: from confederations homepage: CONIFA is a global umbrella organization for all the football teams outside FIFA. There are more than 5,500 ethnicities around the world and hundreds of sportingly isolated regions that doesn´t have an international arena to play international football. CONIFA welcome all registred Football Associations and teams to play. We organize the official World Championship for teams outside FIFA, Continental Championships, International tournament and Cups combined with Cultural Events and Youth Exchanges. The Football World outside FIFA is fast growing and millions of dedicated fans follow the scene - this is happening now...[1] 2013. CONIFA have a 10 members: Darfur United, Kurdistan, Occitania, Northern Cyprus, Quebec, Tamil Eelam...
  • IGA Island Games Association: formed in 1985, this is an organization with the sole purpose to organise the Island Games, a friendly biennial athletic competition (including football) between teams from several islands and other small territories.
  • MFA Micronational Football Association: a football organisation established in 2009. It is made up of teams that represent different micronations. The MFA is planning several competitions including a World Cup in 2015.

Non-FIFA competitions

Football tournaments at international multi-sports events, such as the Olympics, Pan-American Games and Francophone games are without FIFA's jurisdiction, but are, for the most part, operated with the acknowledgement of that body. These events typically involve age restricted teams, to avoid direct competition with the World Cup and continental championships.

Men's Tournaments


ConIFA World Football Cup

Main article: ConIFA World Football Cup

Host Nation Year Winners
23x15px Sweden 2014 23x15px County of Nice
The FIFI Wild Cup

The FIFI Wild Cup was organised by the German football club St Pauli in the summer of 2006. It took place while the FIFA World Cup was being played in Germany, and aimed to raise awareness of stateless nations. Five nations took part, along with a team representing the St Pauli district of Hamburg. Northern Cyprus beat Zanzibar on penalties to win the trophy.

Host Nation Year Winners
23x15px Germany 2006 23x15px Northern Cyprus
The UNPO Cup

The UNPO Cup was organised by the Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organization and NF-Board, and took place in The Hague in June 2005. The tournament, which coincided with UNPO's 7th General Assembly, and featured four teams. The South Moluccas won the cup, beating Chechnya in the final.

Host Nation Year Winners
23x15px Netherlands 2005 23x15px South Moluccas
The VIVA World Cup

The first VIVA World Cup, organised by the NF-Board,[2] took place in Occitania in November 2006. Six nations initially accepted invitations, but eventually only 3 took part, the hosts, Monaco and Saami, the eventual winners. The second edition took place in Lapland in 2008 and Padania emerged as winners, as the third in 2009 where Padania won the tournament at home.

Host Nation Year Winners
23x15px Occitania 2006 23x15px Sápmi
23x15px Sápmi 2008 23x15px Padania
23x15px Padania 2009 23x15px Padania
23x15px Gozo 2010 23x15px Padania
23x15px Iraqi Kurdistan 2012 23x15px Iraqi Kurdistan
The ELF Cup

The ELF Cup, organised by the KTFF, took place in November 2006, in Northern Cyprus. Eight teams accepted invitations to take part, and the hosts emerged as winners.

Host Nation Year Winners
23x15px Northern Cyprus 2006 23x15px Northern Cyprus
Football at the Island Games

The Island Games, which are held every two years, features a competitive football tournament, won on the first two occasions by now-established UEFA and FIFA member, the Faroe Islands, and again in 2007 by now UEFA members, Gibraltar. Many of the competing nations are affiliated to larger national FAs - the Jersey Football Association, for example, is governed by the FA.

Host Nation Year Winners
23x15px Faroe Islands 1989 23x15px Faroe Islands
23x15px Åland 1991 23x15px Faroe Islands
23x15px Isle of Wight 1993 23x15px Jersey
23x15px Gibraltar 1995 23x15px Isle of Wight
23x15px Jersey 1997 23x15px Jersey
23x15px Gotland 1999 23x15px Ynys Môn
23x15px Isle of Man 2001 23x15px Guernsey
23x15px Guernsey 2003 23x15px Guernsey
23x15px Shetland 2005 23x15px Shetland
23x15px Rhodes 2007 23x15px Gibraltar
23x15px Åland 2009 23x15px Jersey
23x15px Isle of Wight 2011 23x15px Isle of Wight
23x15px Bermuda 2013 23x15px Bermuda
23x15px Jersey 2015


European Football Cup

The ConIFA Europen Football Cup will be played in Douglas, the Isle of Man. Place the tournament was moved to London, England, and then to Székely Land, Hungary. The tournament will take place from the 13th till the 21st of June, 2015. It will be the first ever European Championship between representative teams outside FIFA. The 12 representative teams: Ellan Vannin, County of Nice, Abkhazia, Nagorno Karabakh, South Ossetia, Occitania, Romani People, Franconia, Sapmi, Northern Cyprus, Szekely Land and Padania.[3]

Host Nation Year Winners
23x15px Székely Land 2015
The Europeada

The Europeada is a football tournament for indigenous and national minorities in Europe, and is organized by the Federal Union of European Nationalities. The first edition was played in 2008 in Surselva, Switzerland.

Host Nation Year Winners
23x16px  Switzerland 2008 23x15px South Tyrol
23x15px Germany 2012 23x15px South Tyrol
23x15px Italy 2016

The Copa CSANF is a football tournament for football federations not admitted to FIFA in South America. Is organized by the Consejo Sudamericano de Nuevas Federaciones. The first edition was played in 2011 in Chile.

Host Nation Year Winners
23x15px Chile 2011 Juan Fernandez Islands

The Campeonato Nacional de Futbol Pueblos Originarios (Copa ANPO) is a football tournament for indigenous in South America, and is organized by the Asociación Nacional de Pueblos Originarios. The first edition was played in 2012 in Chile. Campeonato de futbol Pueblos Originarios Asociation Andina de Futbol[4] played between Native Peoples of Chile in 2012 - the first time. The tournament is among six teams. Three teams come from the Mapuche people – the largest indigenous population in Chile. There is a Mapuche team, a Pewenche team (which is the term used for Mapuche populations living in the mountainous regions of Chile), and a Warriache team (composed of Mapuche individuals from the city). In addition, there is one Aymara team, one Lican Antay (or Atacameño) team, and one Rapa Nui team.[5]

The N.F.-Board's South American governing body CSANF have announced a preliminary date for the second Indigenous Peoples' Championship. Set for Santiago in Chile from August 5–10, 2013, the sides hoped to compete are: EasterIsland (holders and pictured), Mapuche, Aymara, LikanAntay, Diaguita, Kolla, Quechua and a combined Yaghan-Kawesqar team.[6]

Host Nation Year Winners
23x15px Chile 2012 23x15px Easter Island
23x15px Chile 2013 Williche[7]
23x15px Chile 2015 Mapuche[8]

Other tournaments

Some non-FIFA teams play in other tournaments generally played by FIFA members, including the CONCACAF Gold Cup, Indian Ocean Games, CECAFA Cup, South Pacific Games, Coupes des Caraibes, Shell Caribbean Cup, CFU Championship and many more.

Moreover, many teams, before obtaining FIFA membership, played friendlies and international tournaments - for example Faroe Islands.

Women Tournaments

Across a discreet number of minor tournaments the only two main international football tournaments for women are the Women's VIVA World Cup and the Island Games. Still does not exists any continental tournament.

Island Games

A women's football tournament to the Island Games is played from 2001 edition:

Host Nation Year Winners
23x15px Isle of Man 2001 23x15px Faroe Islands
23x15px Guernsey 2003 23x15px Faroe Islands
23x15px Shetland 2005 23x15px Faroe Islands
23x15px Rhodes 2007 23x15px Åland Islands
23x15px Åland 2009 23x15px Åland Islands
23x15px Isle of Wight 2011 23x15px Åland Islands
23x15px Bermuda 2013 23x15px Bermuda
23x15px Jersey 2015

VIVA World Cup

A women's football tournament to the VIVA World Cup is played from 2008 edition:

Host Nation Year Winners
23x15px Sápmi 2008 23x15px Sápmi
23x15px Gozo 2010 23x15px Padania

Youth Tournaments

A big number of friendlies are played between youth selections with different restrictions (U-21, U-18, or U-16 for example) but still does not exists any international or continental tournaments. Only a little number of minor tournaments are played for youth selections: one of them, and probably one of the most important, is Muratti Vase who is played for U-21, U-18, U-15.

Club Tournaments

Despite the fact many non-FIFA associations have their own league, there are no international or continental club tournaments.

See also


External links