The second and final application phase for the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil™ Volunteer Programme closed this week with an increase of 20 per cent in the number of candidates, and a large number of applications from outside the 12 host cities. The 26,561 candidates who applied to take part in the world's greatest football tournament took the total number of applications during the 2012 and 2013 phases to a record total of 152,101. That represents more than double the number of applicants for South Africa 2010 (70,000) and more than triple the total for Germany 2006 (45,000).

The second phase of applications for the Volunteer Programme opened on 9 September and ran until 2 October. The state of Sao Paulo received the highest number of applications (4,262), with the majority of these coming from outside the city and not the state capital itself (2,409). It was not just Sao Paulo that had large numbers of candidates from outside the city. A total of 48 per cent of the applicants from the two phases have come from outside the 12 host cities.

"The high number of applications from outside the host cities shows the entire country wants to contribute and take part in this historic moment for Brazil. Like last year, we’re delighted with the numbers from the second phase," said the head of the Local Organising Committee (LOC) Volunteer Programme, Rodrigo Hermida.

Rio de Janeiro came second in number of applications during the second phase (4,003) with Ceara in third (2,105). Taking into account the total number of candidates from the two phases, the top five states were Sao Paulo (35,738), Rio de Janeiro (21,785), Minas Gerais (14,492), the Federal District (9,706) and Bahia (8,741). With 2,139 candidates, Goias was top of the list of states that will not host Brazil 2014 matches.

Of the 3,980 foreigners from 137 countries who applied during the second phase, Colombia again supplied the largest group, this time with 534 candidates. Including the candidates from the first phase, the ten countries providing the most applications to the Volunteer Programme were: Colombia (1,427), USA (772), Spain (760), Mexico (742), Argentina (731), Poland (495), Peru (481), Germany (352), China (335) and Russia (314).

"We believe that we achieved our main objectives: to attract people who speak foreign languages, the elderly, and Brazilians who live outside host cities. The percentage of candidates aged 60 or over more than doubled from the first to the second phase. We want to broaden the experience and the legacy of volunteering as much as possible," said Rodrigo Hermida.

Over the two application periods, the number of candidates aged 60 or over was 2,750. There were more female than male candidates among younger volunteers (6,752 compared with 6,481), something which also happened in the first phase. In total, there were 72,242 candidates aged 25 or under; 56,307 in the 26 to 40 age group; and 20,802 aged between 41 and 60.