Brazil 2014: Fuleco – An armadillo who sports a on white t-shirt with the words ‘Brazil 2014’ and green shorts. His name is a combination of Futebol (football) and Ecologia (ecology).
South Africa 2010: Zakumi – A South African leopard with green hair representing the national colours and a t-shirt saying ‘South Africa 2010’. His name ZA comes from South Africa and Kumi that means ‘ten’.
Germany 2006: Goleo - A lion with a jersey reading ‘06’ whose name is a combination of the words ‘Goal’ and ‘Leo’ which means lion
France 1998: Footix – A rooster with the worlds ‘France 98’ on his chest whose body is mostly blue. His name is a combination of the words ‘football and ‘ix’ derived from the popular character Asterix.
South Korea/ Japan 2002: Ato, Kaz and Nik – Computer generated creatures who sport the colours orange, purple and blue respectively. Ato plays the role of the coach while Kaz and Nik are footballers.
United States 1994: Striker – Known as the ‘world cup pup’, he wears a red, white and blue uniform and has the words’ USA 94’ printed.
Mexico 1986: Pique – A jalapeno peppered animated character whose name comes from ‘picante’ which means spicy pepper.
England 1966: Willie – A lion with a jersey that sports the union flag and has the words ‘World Cup’ on it
Posing as a symbol of luck for their country, mascots bring a new surge of excitement to the tournament. As we the FIFA World Cup month begins, we bring you eight of the finest mascots in the FIFA World Cup. (All Pics/ AFP)