American in Spain

Why I love the World Cup

June 24, 2010

World Cup 2010 South AfricaI enjoy watching soccer. Aside from the occasional beautifully executed maneuver, however, soccer, like all sports, is boring as hell if you don't care who wins. My biggest problem with soccer is mustering enough energy to care who wins. I did a better job this past year following the Spanish Liga, choosing allegiance with the local team, Racing Santander, even reading the sports newspaper, Marca, in a bar at least once a week. But the effort required to keep up with player trades, injuries, and rumors is more than a little exhausting...all in an attempt to generate some emotional attachment to teams or players. When it comes to the World Cup, however, it's not football clubs, it's entire countries competing! Having been an expatriate for a decade now, I have plenty of emotions about countries. I've met someone from most of the counties competing in the World Cup, and some of them are still friends I'm in contact with. That emotional connection makes the World Cup matches much more important to me than the average Liga game.

As I write this, all four countries I've called home, USA, Denmark, England, and Spain are still in it. Hand me my vuvuzela and let's watch some soccer!!