World Cup Fans: How Are You Feeling?

100609) -- BEIJING, June 9, 2010 (Xinhua) -- Graphics shows basic facts of South Africa, host country of the FIFA 2010 World Cup. (Xinhua/Zheng Yue.

In reference to the World Cup, a friend of mine sent me a note on Facebook this morning saying that she felt like a kid who is too anxious to find out if Santa will bring her what she wants for Christmas. It certainly feels that way with one big exception. This celebration will last longer than one morning.

The anticipation that has been building inside me for the World Cup is greater than any other tournament I’ve experienced. There’s more of a feeling that there a lot more people are aware of the tournament this time. And there’s been so much more buzz than usual.

The feelings that are going inside me are ones of tension and anxiety coupled with giddy excitement. I have a strong feeling that I’ll feel so much better when the tournament kicks off on Friday. And so too will soccer fans around the globe as they all let out a heavy sigh and the weight of the World Cup anxiety and nervousness about the country’s performance is lifted off their shoulders all at once.

But what about you? What are the feelings and thoughts that are running through your mind and body about this World Cup? How are they different than previous tournaments? And how anxious are you for this tournament to kick off as soon as possible? Please share your insights in the comments section below.

Two additional points I want to make are as follows. One, as we get closer and closer to Saturday’s USA versus England match, the level of hostility in the comments sections on my site and others seems to increase. As soon as the game is over, expect an avalanche of debate and comments from soccer fans on both sides of the Atlantic. And two, I have a big concern that soccer fans will get burned out faster than ever before this tournament. There’s not just the six hours of games each day. But there’s more TV coverage than ever before. And there’s the Twitter and Facebook effect. This is the first World Cup that is truly 24/7. So be sure to take a break now and again, pace yourselves and don’t overdo it. After all, it’s only another four years before the next time it comes around.

7 thoughts on “World Cup Fans: How Are You Feeling?”

  1. Hi, I’m Siim from Estonia. Just found this great blog and from now on I’ll try to follow it as much as I can, it’s one of a kind, really.

    For me there are two major points or questions about the tournament this year. First is the climate. It’s not summer down there in South-Africa as we are used to watch World Cup football played in. The temperatures for the earliest kick-off of the day could be about 20°C but the night’s game may only have about 5°C and since it’s rainy season then even rain shouldn’t be taken out of the equation. Don’t be surprised to see people on the stands or substitutes on the bench wearing warm clothing.

    The second question is, as definitely on lot of other people’s minds, whether South-Africa will put on a great show or will there be problems. FIFA seems to have confidence in host nation’s efforts but there could be some unexpected problems. I hope it’s going to be fine and we can all just enjoy football.

    And I very much agree that this is going to be the first truly 24/7 tournament and lot of information coming from hundreds of sources on the Internet, newspapers, TV. Really going to be exciting.

  2. This is just my third year of following the EPL and the European competitions that go with it. That means it’s my first WC where I actually have knowledge of many players outside of the U.S. squad. I am going to enjoy this WC a whole lot more.

    I am going to be much more interested in non-U.S. matches because I will recognize many of those international players and pull for some of their teams. So, I will be watching and enjoying a lot more of the WC, even after the U.S. gets knocked out (just being realistic).

    Gaffer….glad to see you’ve at least got your goosebumps under control.

    @ Siim from Estonia….Welcome to the show.

  3. I am beyond excited for the World Cup. I have rented a 50 inch tv for the whole month, and have made a pledge to watch every game in its entirety, even if I have to tape some and watch them later due to work. I can relate to the idea of Christmas coming. I have been a USMNT fan since I was 11 in 1994. That is when they really came into the national consciousness for the first time. I have become an absolute die hard, and consider them the most important sports squad I support, since they represent both my favorite sport and my country. Nothing thrills me more than seeing them succeed. I can easily say that going up 2-0 on Brazil was the sports highlight of my life, and this is coming from a lifetime Boston Red Sox fan. That’s right, it was more exciting to me than winning the World Series in 2004. I just view football as being so much more important than any other sport. The whole world plays it, and I have developed friendships with people from other nations that had the starting point of a shared interest in the game. I will obviously be rooting for our Yanks to do well, but I am also looking forward to a great overall competition and am very excited that I will be able to watch every match in HD. I did not even have an HDTV during the last World Cup…so this is going to be thrilling. Can you tell I am excited? haha.

  4. I am beyond excited about this tournament starting up. However, like Gaffer said, hopefully burnout doesn’t play apart as it nearly did for me. I was watching or reading so many previews, that I needed to take the last 4-5 days off. But now, I am refreshed and ready to go. I think one thing about this tournament that is making things so exciting is trying to do the picks for the group phase. Group winners are fairly straight-forward (on paper anyway) but trying to decide on 2nd and 3rd on many of these groups has me pulling my hair out from so many variable factors. Will goal diff. come into it? I am really interested to see what happens on day 1 with France v Uruaguay, since the French aren’t always the strongest starters. You are correct Gaffer, this is so much better than Christmas morning. Just one sidenote. How ironic is it that now that ESPN actually have quality announcers, they are going to be drowned out by vuvuzelas! Let the games begin.

  5. I am very excited, but it’s the second most important event of the week. My wife and I are in the delivery room right now (free wifi) waiting for the birth of our first child. I have noticed a much higher level of visibility for the World Cup. More bars and restaurants are advertising that they will show matches. The more the merrier. I am very excited about the tournament, but I have something more important to do before then.

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