With the 2014 World Cup in Brazil less than a year away, the United States men’s soccer team secured its spot for the seventh consecutive time. BYU-Hawaii students weigh in on who will be the team’s biggest challenge.
Following a 2-0 win over rival Mexico in Columbus, Ohio on Sept. 10, the U.S. men’s soccer team is headed to Brazil. Eddie Johnson and Landon Donavon each scored in the second half to lead the national team to victory. In a post-game interview,
Head Coach Jurgen Klinsmann, said, "Obviously this is a huge, huge evening for all of us… It's a huge milestone whenever you make it to a World Cup."
The team went on winning and stunned Panama on Oct. 15 with seconds left in the game. “Graham Zusi and Aron Johannsson scored in second-half stoppage time, giving United States a 3-2 win … that left Mexico's hopes alive and knocked out the Panamanians,” says an article on the Huffington Post online.
"It shows you how brutal football can be. For one side that's almost there, and then the other side is back in," Klinsmann said. "Now obviously you feel for the people. You feel for an entire country."
Every four years the FIFA World Cup features 32 teams from around the globe competing for the coveted trophy. This year the tournament will be held in Brazil where soccer is a part of everyday life.
“Soccer is everywhere,” said Andre Obata, a senior in ICS communications. Obata is from Rio de Janeiro, the center stage for next year’s cup. “No matter where you go you see people playing soccer at the park, on the beach, and on the street.”
When tickets went on sale, according to FIFA’s website, 2.3 million people requested tickets within the first 24 hours.
Plenty of BYUH students are passionate about soccer and are anxious for next summer. “I think Brazil will win because they live for soccer. They will be playing at home and they have the best players in the world,” said Claudio Gonzalez a senior in business finance from Chile.
Logan Anderson, a junior in business from Utah, loves USA soccer but is not sure how well they will fare. “I don’t think the U.S. will win because there are too many powerhouse teams like Brazil, Germany, and defending champions Spain,” said Anderson.