The Weltmeisterschaft, or World Cup, is a bit of a big deal in Germany. Imagine all of the Football, Basketball, and Baseball fans in America united and formed one national sport. That’s how Fußball (soccer) is in Germany.
And today is a bit of an unusually big deal, as far as big deals go because it’s the World Cup finale. This year it’s between France and Croatia, which are the two teams that have made it far enough to not be eliminated so far.
The World Cup is but an insignificant blip on the radar for Americans. It’s actually been going on for the last few weeks, though I doubt anyone there talks much about it. The tournament is in Moscow this year, and although Moscow is very far away, I guarantee you most every European with a television has been tuned in since the beginning.
The World Cup is definitely more fun when your country is actually in it. The United States soccer team didn’t even make it to the World Cup this year. Naturally, I went with the next best choice of Germany with which to give my support. Germany has been the Weltmeister (world champion) for the last 4 years in a row; alas, this year they were eliminated fairly early. So most Germans watching the game tonight are doing so out of curiosity over who will win, mixed with love for the sport.
Things have been pretty wild here since the World Cup began. You can bet it would have been more like 10x so if Germany was still in the race and 100x more if they were in the finals. I can’t say that I ever cared much about soccer before I came here. It’s fun though when you have a sport everyone can watch and enjoy, as well as a national team to support and be proud of.
Usually for the games every weekend all of the neighbors will get together and bring food, drink beer, talk, laugh, and have a good time. That’s where you’ll find me right after this blog post. The game begins at 17:00, or 5:00 pm, so with the time change that means back home you’ll need to be ready about 10:00 am if you want to watch it. I low-key hope France takes home the cup, but Croatia is the underdog as they’ve never won a Weltmeisterschaft perhaps because they’re such a tiny country. And Americans generally love the underdogs, so to each their own, and in the end, may the best team win.