BY REED SHALLUE
With less than one month away, soccer players from all over the world are preparing for the greatest event in their sport. The World Cup involves countries from all over the world to compete for the title as the number one soccer country, well at least for the next four years.
The home for the World Cup this summer is Rio De Janerio, Brazil and the Brazilians themselves are the favorite to come out on top as the champions. Even though the World Cup is quickly approaching, some of the stadiums used for this summer’s event are not completed yet. Riots from protestors and violent acts have delayed some of the construction, which caused some concern that Brazil would not be ready in time for the World Cup.
There was heavy consideration to change the location to London, however the World Cup Committee recently released a statement saying that they will stick with Brazil and they will make sure they are ready for the opening game.
In the United States, soccer isn’t as popular as other sports, but for some foreign countries it is their national sport. I interviewed two students on campus and asked them to provide information about how the country they live in celebrates the World Cup.
For the 2014 World Cup, the United States was assigned to the toughest group, which includes Germany, Portugal and Ghana. Kandice Sanders ‘16 believes that the United States will hopefully “pull off a win or two” to possibly advance into the next stage. When asked about the overall feeling in the United States during the World Cup, Sanders said that the event “brings a sense of camaraderie amongst the fans.” Also, if citizens don’t even care for the sport of soccer they should still “show support by waving the American flag and stop to watch the event some of the event” said Sanders.
As much as Americans think they are super fans of soccer, nobody celebrates and shows more passion than other foreign countries. Nigeria is another country in this summer’s World Cup and thanks to Hamza Abdurrahman ‘17, he provided information to compare between U.S. celebrations and Nigerian celebrations. The overall feeling that Abdurrahman would use to describe the World Cup would be “excitement” because it is an extremely important competition for the country to take part in. Abdurrahman also claims that town squares, restaurants and other places around the country always have the soccer game on because people are busy shopping or working. Some of the bathrooms also have televisions screens installed in them so people “don’t miss a minute of the game.”
To show national pride, citizens of Nigeria “wear their country’s jersey and paint their faces to show passion” said Abdurrahman and they sometimes go to the extreme of getting the country flag tattooed on themselves. As for a prediction for the World Cup this summer, Abdurrahman is a realist and doesn’t believe Nigeria can win it all this summer. However, he is content with Nigeria winning the Africa Cup Nations, but still hopes that Nigeria “puts on a decent performance and reach the knockout phase.”
It is obvious that people cheer on their country in many different ways and hope for the best for their country in the World Cup. Passion is what sports is all about and there will be a lot of it come this summer in Brazil for the 2014 World Cup.