Soccer Mania in the United States reached fever-pitched levels Wednesday, in bars across the country, after the U.S. Men’s soccer team avoided elimination by defeating Algeria 1-0 in a decisive group-qualifying match, winning its group and advancing to the round of 16 teams, in the 2010 FIFA World Cup, South Africa.
People who didn’t care for soccer before are now hugging the Sport tightly in their hearts. “I started following three or four month ago and…now, I am obsessed; yeah, I am obsessed. Now I am a big soccer fan. I can’t wait to see the rest of the World Cup,” said Katherine Whelan, in what seemed to be a Manhattan soccer bar, inundated with giant-sized plasma screen TVs on walls, in every crevice and corner imaginable, Daily News Video.
These soccer bars are known to open their doors long before dawn, according to one bar owner who was interviewed by an ESPN reporter, leading up to the start of a 2010 FIFA World Cup soccer match. The bar owner said he opens his bar early in the morning because that is when most of the soccer matches are on TV.
Indeed, soccer matches come on early in the morning, starting at 7 AM, Eastern Standard Time. At most soccer gatherings, people come out in droves, flocking to the closest establishment that calls itself a bar, filled with wide-screen televisions.
Bunches of people jam-packed together like sardines with bottles of beers in hand are common occurrences at these soccer gatherings. It doesn’t matter the age or the gender of the patrons; they nevertheless tucked themselves away in a corner of the bar while glued to a mammoth-sized TV screen.
People in traditional soccer countries worship the game as if it is god. However, at a time in the not so distant past, Americans could not relate to the passion toward soccer as did people of other traditional soccer nations, and that was due in part to the fact that U.S. soccer was non-existent. The team was anemic, week, and pathetic. So no one watched games the team played. Nobody cared! The team was trash!
Now, the team wins games. So, people embrace it. This phenomenon raised an important point about Americans. That point is that Americans reject losers and accept winners. This is why the U.S. soccer team is on the tips of the tongues of most Americans today, regardless of their affiliation with or understanding of soccer. We heard that first-hand from the mouth of Katherine, our quoted new soccer fan, who suddenly became a soccer fan four months ago.
This new fondness of soccer in the United States bodes well for the country. In what way, we may ask? Well, soccer brings revenue to businesses in the United States. ESPN and ABC, network television stations that shows World Cup games, experienced increase ratings during the times soccer games are broadcast. With increase ratings, comes increase advertisers and with increased exposure, advertisers rake in huge profits. This is only one example out of many possibilities.
The sight of former U.S. President, Bill Clinton at the recent U.S.A vs. Algeria 2010 FIFA World Cup Soccer game in South Africa, further support our claim that soccer means a lot to the United States. For one thing, it takes away the negative perception of America by some countries. For once, in these times of war and strife peoples of the world can see America through the eyes of sports, as opposed to through the negative eyes of war!
Glenford Robinson, Clinical Laboratory Scientist, writes for MSTARDOM, INC., a writing company providing news articles, press releases, web content copies, and many other writing services to businesses worldwide.