The 1970 FIFA World Cup, the ninth staging of the World Cup, was held in Mexico, from 31 May to 21 June. The 1970 tournament was the first World Cup hosted in North America, and the first held outside South America and Europe. In a match-up of two-time World Cup champions, the final was won by Brazil, who beat Italy 4–1. With their third World Cup triumph, Brazil were allowed to keep the Jules Rimet Trophy permanently.
The Brazilian team, led by Carlos Alberto, and featuring Pelé, Clodoaldo, Gérson, Jairzinho, Rivelino, and Tostão, is often regarded as the greatest World Cup team ever. They won all of their 6 games on the way to the title, and had also won all of their 6 qualifying games on their way to Mexico. This tournament saw the return of free-flowing, attacking play after the physical battles of 1962 and 1966, and is considered by many to be the finest World Cup in history.
Mexico was chosen as the host nation by FIFA in Tokyo, Japan on 8 October 1964, over opposition from Argentina.
A total of 75 teams entered the qualifying tournament. Those who failed to qualify included France, Portugal, Hungary, Argentina and Spain. Meanwhile, Morocco became the first African nation to