Football and music are like nasi lemak
and sambal ikan bilis
, especially during the FIFA World Cup.
Over the years, many official World Cup songs have turned into anthems played in sporting events, parties, clubs and maybe even in the shower.
The songs are played on the radio weeks leading up to the biggest football tournament in the world, during the matches, for advertising campaigns and also as a chance to put some forgotten singers on the map again.
The anthems chosen are usually in multiple languages, namely English, the official language of the host nation, and most frequently in Spanish for some reason.
Sometimes, other artists would sing covers of the official versions in their own language to live up to the hype of the football season.
As we head towards more nerve-wracking games taking place in Russia in the next three weeks, football-inspired music is also making the waves around the world.
With hit after hit that is currently flooding the radio waves and music streaming websites, here are some of the most memorable World Cup anthems
we’ve heard in our lifetime and we believe you're already hearing them in your head.
#1 'We Are One (Ole Ola)' – Pitbull, Jennifer Lopez & Claudia Leitte
Come on, it's Pitbull and Jenny from the Block. It doesn't get more exciting than this. Produced for the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, this song fuses the addictive Brazilian samba to make sure that everyone is off their seats whenever it blasts through the speakers.
#2 'The Time of Our Lives' – Il Divo & Toni Braxton
When we consider football anthems, we didn't think that a ballad would make the cut, especially one by a classical vocal group. People usually want to dance, sing and cheer during the tournament, not stand with hands on our chest and tears in our eyes. But strangely, 'The Time of Our Lives' works for the 2006 World Cup in Germany. And Toni Braxton needs to further introduction.
#3 'Live It Up' – Nicky Jam, Will Smith & Era Istrefi
'Live It Up' is the newest addition to the list of World Cup anthems as the official song of Russia 2018 this year. Produced by Diplo, this track is still fresh in our minds, but it is already growing among football fans and non-fans worldwide. It also helps that the chorus is catchy and easy to remember.
#4 'Waka Waka' – Shakira
If you don't know this song, we're not friends. Shakira is practically queen of the World Cup since 'Waka Waka' still holds the torch as the most successful World Cup song of all-time. It doesn't matter if you're still clueless about what the chorus means, this 2010 South Africa anthem still gets an average of one million views on YouTube today, eight years later.
#5 'The Cup of Life' – Ricky Martin
If Shakira is the queen of World Cup, then Ricky Martin is king. First of all, why did they choose to release a Latin-inspired track for the 1998 World Cup held in France? Who knows? But it kick-started the whole Latin vibe in most official World Cup songs today. No matter what happens, 'The Cup of Life' will remain as the No. 1 football song in our hearts. Happy 20th anniversary to this song!
BONUS: 'Born to Love' – Syamel
We know that this isn't an official World Cup anthem, but we would like to make a special mention of this song. Local artist did a cover of Queen's 'Born to Love' and it is probably more emotional, moving and inspiring than the original rock version. The sound of piano and strings in the background are unlike the World Cup anthems we've heard so far!
Now, here's a golden opportunity for you. If you think you can do a better cover of 'Born to Love', there is a contest perfect for you!
All you need to do is record a one-minute cover of yourself singing Syamel's version of 'Born to Love'
, upload the clip on Instagram with the hashtag #soraksoraibola
and stand a chance to win an iPhone X and the official World Cup team jerseys
This contest ends on 15 July. So hurry with your covers now!
For more details on the 'Sorak Sorai Bola
' contest, click here