The Free Press, Mankato, MN


June 18, 2014

US and World Cup soccer are worth our attention

Was in the Fort Myers, Fla., area for about four days over this past weekend on a family matter when I realized I had a few hours to kill right about the time the U.S. was scheduled to play Ghana in the opening round of the World Cup.

Found a local watering hole and decided to cool off while watching the game. The outside patio (or the inside seating for that matter) was not very full, which came as a surprise. I figured there might be a few more soccer fans out and about who wanted to watch the "big" game.

Got a primo seat right in front of a big screen, but, as luck would have it, I arrived an instant too late and missed the U.S. goal in the opening 30 seconds. "No big deal," I thought. "There's plenty of game left."

A couple of blokes (that's what European soccer fans call their buddies) to the right of me obviously had a little more soccer knowledge than I did, but the disparity between us wasn't great. The hooligans (those are blokes that are considered bad apples who tarnish the reputation of soccer fans) on the other side of me were kind of interested in the game, but not very much.

At halftime a debate ensued about the popularity of the sport and the positives and negatives of watching it on TV. It's a debate that breaks out occasionally, even when the World Cup isn't being played.

The hooligans, of course, maintained soccer was barely worth a second thought. Me and my blokes, however, said it should not be dismissed so easily. One guy probably put it best when he argued that it may not be something Americans want to watch all the time, but, at the minimum, every four years it's fun to get behind the U.S. players and cheer them on at the World Cup.

Text Only | Photo Reprints

Latest auto racing news
Featured Ads
Live Moondogs coverage
Shane Frederick's Twitter updates
Chad Courrier's Sports Report
Latest NCAA basketball news
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
NDN Video
Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted Byron Scott Reportedly New Head Coach Of Los Angeles Lakers - @TheBuzzeronFox SportsNite: Botched play Gruden: Full-speed practices key for fundamentals Italy's Nibali Set to Win First Tour De France College Football Playoff Prognosis: Notre Dame Fighting Irish College Football Playoff Prognosis: Nebraska Cornhuskers Jake Peavy traded from Red Sox to Giants Browns wants Johnny Football to buckle down How Losing Joe Bergeron Affects Texas What will Pierzynski bring to St. Louis? Cristiano Ronaldo -- TEAMING UP WITH LIL WAYNE ... Rapper Starting Sports Management Biz McNabb: Two games is not acceptable for me Ortiz, Price Feud Is Upsetting To Children - @TheBuzzeronFOX MLB Trade Deadline Talk: Price, Stanton, Kemp Tony Romo will be a full-go for camp Teammate's Advice For Johnny Manziel & Josh Gordon - @TheBuzzeronFox Helfrich praises Mariota's commitment to improve World Cup Hero Mario Gotze -- HALF-NAKED MUD BATH ... With Hot Model GF RG3 answers critics, grateful for coaches' support