The coast of Dubrovnik, Croatia. Picture: Supplied

The #FIFAWorldCup Group D features former champions Argentina, Scandinavian newcomers Iceland, African nation Nigeria and Croatia. 

Here are a few facts on the 4 countries that are part of group D in the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia:

Argentina

1. Argentina is the second largest country in South America and the 8th largest country in the world. 

2. Argentina’s retired soccer legend Diego Maradona has his own religion createed by his fans.

3. Officials in current Argentine soccer star Lionel Messi’s hometown of Rosario have banned parents from naming their children “Messi” because they said it would lead to too much mass confusion.

4. There is a Welsh-speaking part of Argentina and it has its own dialect of Welsh.
Argentine footballer Lionel Messi. Picture: Reuters
Iceland

1. Iceland is the only country that is known to not have any McDonalds. You can find KFC and even Taco Bell in Reykjavik, but McDonalds does not exist. 

2. Beer was illegal in Iceland until 1989.

3. There are volcanic eruptions every few years in Iceland - most of which are small and magnificent to look at from afar.

4. Icelanders don’t have surnames in the traditional sense. The vast majority of Icelandic surnames simply record the fact that you are your father's (or mother's) son or daughter. Hence the surnames ending with the suffix "-son", like the names of the football players, Gylfi Siggurdsson or Thor Halldorsson.

An active volcano in Iceland. Picture: Supplied
Nigeria

1. Nigeria’s movie industry is known as “Nollywood” and it is one of the largest movie industries in the world.

2. Nigeria has over 500 indigenous languages in its society. 

3. It has been said that Nigerians operate on what has become known as “African time” - ie. they are rarely on time. The more high class a person is, the later they will be.

4. Nigeria's national soccer team have won the Africa Cup of Nations three times. 

Croatia

1. Dubrovnik has been described as “the pearl of the Adriatic”.

2. According to sources, Croatia is the home to the world's smallest town called Hum. According to sources it has a population of between 17 and 23.

3. The major hit HBO series ‘Game of Thrones’ was filmed on the Dalmatian coast in Split and Dubrovnik.

4. "Bog!" is a friendly and very common greeting among the Croats in Croatia and Bosnia-Herzegovina. The greeting stands for both "Hi!" And "Bye".

IOL