In a couple weeks when the 2010 FIFA World Cup kicks off in South Africa it will bring with it a new level of attention and popularity for the game of soccer. The majority of the world is accustomed to the popularity of the sport since soccer is widely considered the "globe's game." However, in the United States, soccer isn't considered as interesting in comparison to the other four major sports the country has to offer. However, this couldn't be further from the truth. Soccer doesn't get the respect it rightfully deserves in the States, but when it comes down to Team USA versus the world and bringing a cultural event to the country, no matter how Americans feel about the game, they pay very close attention.
The 1994 World Cup (the last time the games were held in the United States) was attended by a total of 3.6 million people, which is still a record even though the games have expanded. From a United States perspective, it was the highest attended single sporting event in U.S. history. The United States Bid Committee, which is in charge of bringing the games back, understands the significance of hosting such an event and has pulled out all the stops to bring the games to America over other locations like England, Australia, and Japan.
The U.S. Committee's board of directors is made up of important figures like U.S. Soccer President Sunil Gulati, Mayor of New York Michael Bloomberg, Governor of California Arnold Schwarzenegger, and Counselor to former President Clinton, Doug Band. The addition of Doug Band to the U.S. Committee is a smart move on behalf of the committee because Band, an avid fan of the game, is co-creator of the Clinton Global Initiative, and has worked tirelessly to help millions across the globe, adding an internationally recognized face on America’s bid. Band's commitment and global understanding is exactly what the Committee needs to make the games and culture of the 2018/2022 World Cup an American reality.
With the world watching, the 2010 World Cup will be on the forefront of sports viewing technology with some of the games even being broadcasted in 3-D for the first time ever. Team USA drew a favorable bracket and will open the games against England which has many in the country ready to rename this soccer battle the Revolutionary War Part II. Team USA is posed to begin their quest for their first ever World Cup, and America is ready to root them on showing that 2018/2022 is the time to bring the cultural relevance of the world's most popular sport back to America.
The United States wants to bring the world’s attention to America by hosting the World Cup and demonstrating their embrace for the international game of soccer. Billions of people come together under the banner of soccer and root for their country's team in hopes of holding the cup. Winning the World Cup bid will hopefully bring the games to our shores but will also convey the message that America welcomes diversity and respects worldwide culture.
Guest Post By: Marc Parker