If you have gotten the gist of some of my past blog posts, know that I am a huge sports fan. Having grown up a soccer fan, this week marks the beginning of the world’s largest sporting spectacle, the World Cup. Countries from all over the world compete for one of the most prestigious prizes in all of sports. These countries have spent two and half years preparing for and qualifying for this global tournament, and it is fun watch professional athletes compete for their countries instead of being paid to compete for club sports teams.
1. The tradition
Soccer is the most popular sport in the world, played and enjoyed by over 70 percent of the planet’s population. Even in the United States, where baseball and football are more the national past times, most children start soccer as their first sport. It is an easy game to play, with minimal equipment and an easy to follow strategy system. With such global popularity and interest, it is an event not unlike the Olympics in stature.
2. New potential
Every 4 years, a new team strikes fear into the hearts of the traditional powerhouse teams, which include Argentina, Brazil, Italy, and Germany (which have combined for 85% of all World Cup winners). Whether it is some new country from Africa or Asia changing the way the game is played, or the traditional strong teams fielding new up and coming stars, the games are so different year after year.
3. Pick a favorite
So many people root for their home country, but when you have a tournament like this, it is fun to pick a new favorite team and watch how good they do. Between fun colors on their uniforms and great names for players from other countries (Brazilians are particularly famous for using nicknames instead of their real names), there are so many reasons to find a “horse” and back it, even if the United States winds up winning the Cup!
Have fun watching the tournament and tune in with your little ones. The chances that they’ll enjoy it are pretty high!