That was me screaming in the bar on Wednesday as Messi scored the first goal in Argentina vs. Nigeria!
I must say that I am slightly embarrassed by my naïveté when it comes to soccer. Where I am from, the only football we acknowledge is [American] football.
Here is a little known fact about me: I played on a church soccer team for about 4 years when I was a kid. I’m not going to lie and say I was out there beasting like Briana Scurry or Sydney Leroux; however, I like to think I was pretty good on the field.
But those years and whatever knowledge I had of how to play seem to be so long forgotten in my memory that I had to do an intense refresher on the rules of the game shortly before the World Cup began. If you are in the same boat as me, here were some YouTube videos I watched to get caught up:
I am really excited to watch this year’s tournament unfold as I feel like I am just now being introduced to the world’s most popular sport - which probably makes it the most interesting and exciting by default, despite my personal preferences! And, from what I gather, this year is going to be very fun to follow because it has been the year of crazy soccer happenings: there are no African teams in the World Cup for the first time since 1982, this year is one of the few times a defending champion [Germany] has not made it to the Finals, and… erm Russia?! It is a little disappointing that there is no team USA to cheer for :-( But I am actually especially invested this year in spite of and, simultaneously, because of the absence of a USA Team in the tournament. (Side Note: Hope Solo’s hot take on why the USA has not established a world class soccer team is certainly interesting to ponder on.)
Before I reveal my bracket, heed an obligatory disclaimer: I know fairly little about soccer and this will be my first time participating in a bracket challenge for the World Cup. Don’t burn me on my picks and please, don’t laugh at them… at least to my face! I am making uninformed, uneducated guesses here. I will admit, I did seek out the assistance of Twitter, ESPN and CBS Sports Analysts, and my “bad hombre” of a date from earlier this week (this is why Mexico advances one more round in my bracket despite the fact that, from what I’ve read, they always choke).
Without further ado…
And some of my comments:
- I think this could be the year Mexico comes in and just fucks some shit up, like NCAA March Madness style. Is upsetting a big “thing” in World Cup Soccer? I hope so!
- I am #teamRonaldo!!! So I picked France to win over Argentina and Portugal to go to the Semifinals.
- I pushed Russia up further than I wanted because Putin’s got clout. But secretly, I don’t think they stand a chance against Spain.
- I miss my English client so much, but I read somewhere that it’s not wise to bet on England in the World Cup unless you hate money. LOL