The British are Coming! U.S. vs. England in the World Cup
There is no sporting event more revered worldwide than the World Cup, the once-every-four-years soccer championship. While ad revenue people love to brag over the Super Bowl's viewership (just less than 100 million last year) the widely quoted figure for the 2006 World Cup was 715 million. This is something the world cares about.
But in America, we've struggled with soccer. Despite hosting the tournament in 1994 and making the field every year since then, the best we've ever done is finish third ... in 1930. This was, of course, before a 40-year run of failing to qualify. USA!
None of that matters now, though, because we'll be in South Africa competing in the 2010 World Cup. Our team looks strong (not too strong—Vegas puts our odds of winning the Cup at 60:1). We have a devastatingly powerful opponent in the first match of the round robin pool play: England.
A little backstory: In 1950, when the United States was near the bottom of the world's totem pole of soccer rankings, our team somehow triumphed over the English, 1-0. Add to this how highly regarded England was at the time, our shared colonial past and that the two teams haven't met in a World Cup match since then. It's easy to see why this is one of the most anticipated games in the first round.
The World Cup begins tomorrow, and the England-USA match occurs on Saturday, June 12, at 12:30 p.m. local time. The World Cup lasts one month, and almost all of the matches will be broadcast on either ESPN or ABC. Join the rest of the world in watching some great soccer—715 million people can't be wrong.