Today (Tuesday March 27th) Germany plays Brazil in an international friendly soccer match in preparation for this summer’s World Cup tournament. These are two of the most skilled international soccer teams in the world, and they are both favorites to win the golden trophy in July while competing in the most watched sporting event on the planet. Pubs all around Europe will be showing matches every day and night during the competition, and I can’t recommend it enough to join in on the fun.
Even if you don’t care about soccer at all, even if you’ve never heard of any of the players, the World Cup is a legitimate world event that captivates the vast majority of the planet, and you will be fortunate enough to be in countries that care deeply about its results while it’s happening! Soccer means so much to Europeans, more than any sport does to Americans, and having the opportunity to immerse yourself within their fan culture even for just a fleeting moment is a chance you can’t pass up. You picked the perfect summer to go abroad!
A ton of you have said that one of the reasons you wanted to study abroad in the first place was to “get a global perspective.” But what does that really mean? Is it eating unfamiliar food? Is it looking at foreign art and architecture? Is it meeting local people and struggling through language barriers? Of course it’s those things. But I think that having the chance to share in either the joy or the heartbreak of locals as they watch their national team play their national sport on the world’s biggest stage is a really unique part of it too. The US didn’t qualify for the tournament, so you might as well support the local teams right alongside the people you’ll meet in pubs along the way. The World Cup only comes once every 4 years, so get involved!
Because the more you know players and the overall breakdown of how the World Cup will be unfolding, the more you’ll enjoy the amazing buildup that will be palpable at The Friend at Hand in London, and in every pub and cafe we all meet from that city forward this summer! There’s literally nothing in the whole world like the emotion generated by groups watching these epic matches together. You’re going to want to feel it too this summer, so start now!