“The 2010 Fifa World Cup is more than just a game: it symbolises the power of football to bring people together from all over the world, regardless of language, the colour of one’s skin, political or religious persuasion.”
I have been counting down the days to the World Cup for the last four years and the opening day has reminded me why I love the tournament so much.
This week I have been visiting friends in Vancouver and due to the time difference the first game was at seven this morning.
I am well-known for not being a morning person but I found myself waking up early on vacation to watch the match and am really glad I did. South Africa scored a spectacular goal in a dream start to the first African tournament. The dream was almost realised as South Africa came close to winning in the 89th minute but even though that didn’t happen it was still great to watch the enthusiasm of the fans.
One of my favourite things about the World Cup is finding yourself cheering for (some) other teams when your own isn’t involved and I found myself shouting for South Africa – luckily my friends were out of the house taking their kids to school so I didn’t embarrass myself too much.
However this won’t be the case tomorrow when England play their first game as I will either go crazy when we win or cry if we lose. To get in the mood for the match this is my favourite England World Cup song – World in Motion by New Order from back in 1990:
And a few other World Cup links:
– although I prefer the Star Wars inspired ad from Adidas;
– New Yorker piece on Everton and US goalie Tim Howard and how he believes having Tourette’s Syndrome has helped his game;
– National Geographic’s fab article, Mandela’s Children, highlighting the importance of the tournament to South Africa;
– a reminder of the last time England played the US in the World Cup (I am keeping my fingers crossed that history doesn’t repeat itself).