For many, football is a passion that begins shortly after we take our very first steps on this Earth. Medicine is another passion, however, this journey usually begins later in life. These two passions often compete ferociously and usually one prevails. It is with great pleasure that The World Medical Football Federation seeks to carry on the tradition of uniting Medicine and Football.
This tradition has been incubated by Dr Ferran Morell in the form of The World Medical Football Championship for Medical Teams which for 10 years saw various Medical Teams come together in Barcelona. The training fields and Football Estadi of F.C. Barcelona embraced the coming together of many doctors from all parts of the globe but primarily from around Europe in the form of regional and international football teams of doctors. Football, friendship, sharing of medical knowledge through a structured lecture format and celebration amongst like-minded professionals has created for many, a trip of a lifetime.
In 2004, Dr Morell cut the umbilical cord and set his baby free to travel the globe. Rio de Janeiro under the guise of Dr Carlos Figuiredo hosted the XIth World Medical Football Championship for Medical Teams. 6 regional teams from Brazil and 5 teams from abroad competed in a very successful tournament in a heartland of football passion.
Dr Clemens Vogel took a great opportunity in hosting the following year’s championships the week prior to the World Cup in Mainz, Germany. Out of necessity, the number of teams was restricted and as such the flavour of the tournament moved more toward truly international teams. Catalonia/Spain, Germany, Brazil, Australia, Sweden, Lithuania, South Korea, Hungary, Great Britain and Austria competed with Brazil ending up eventual winners against Catalonia/Spain in the final. The conference hosted numerous experts in their respective fields of medicine with a lecture program of the highest quality. The social highlight involved a cruise down the Rhine river followed by dinner and raucous singing in the dungeon of a castle.
Since Germany, the competition has been hosted in Australia, Lithuania, South Korea, Austria, England, Sweden, Hungary, Brazil and United States. This year the tournament will be hosted by the Catalonian Medical Team in Barcelona. All the best to the teams taking part, and may the best team win! Welcome to Barcelona 2016!