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Webster's World Cup Adventure

Discussion in 'Anything goes' started by Webster, Jun 20, 2006.

  1. Webster

    Webster Well-Known Member

    Got back after 7 days in Germany.  A group of 8 of us caught the two US matches, traveled around Germany (six cities) drinking beer, watching footy and getting shut out for tickets to other matches.  Some random thoughts:

    All of the baggage claims at the airport had a replica of the World Cup trophy on the carousel.  Got you pumped up right away.

    Every host city had a huge "fan fest" with massive TVs, booths for food and drink and other sources of entertainment.  The coolest one was in Berlin, which was right next to the Brandenberg Gate.

    I can't describe how many people were there.  Everyplace that you went, you would run into a group of fans from a different country.  For the most part, people were in good spirits.

    German beer is very good, but it wasn't a life changing experience.  The white wines were pretty decent though (although I'm not going to get all Dr. Z on you).

    Iran and Mexico both brought a ton of fans.  Portugal and Spain had the most attractive female fans.

    England fans are uniformally obnoxious.

    They haven't mastered the art of air conditioning in Germany.  Everything also smells like cigarettes.

    Other than on the two game days, no one paid any attention to our group wearing US gear, with the exception of Mexican fans.

    There is something scary about German fans chanting "Deustchland" in a crowded square. 

    Gelsenkirchen, where the US played their first game, was a dump.  The stadium was a good 40 minute walk from the town and there was nothing to do by the stadium.  We actually tailgated at a Wal-Mart which was a few minutes from the stadium.

    The US fans were insane for both matches, especially the Italy match. 

    I'm trying to black out the match against the Czechs.  The early goal couldn't have been more demoralizing to the fans.  Only Keller

    Up close, you can really see who works hard.  DMB was awful -- the fans were really on him during both matches.  Gooch and Reyna were great.

    We really need a leader.  Donovan isn't that guy.  He is so skilled, but he hesitates before getting his hands dirty.

    The smaller cities really went all out for the matches.  Leipzig did a great job being as accommodation as possible to everyone.

    Dusseldorf is a dump.

    Lot of talk about South Africa not being ready for 2010. There is a real chance that the USA may host the Cup

    The atmosphere in Kaiserslauten for the US game was just crazy.  We were probably 1/4 of the stadium, but we made way more noise than the Italians.

    We need some good chants.

    My group was all over TV because the guys brought red, white and blue letters which said USA.  Never has five dollars worth of construction papers yielded so much screen time.

    Drew Carey was on the field as a photographer.  He game over and chatted with us before the Italy game.  He then took a bunch of bills out of his wallet and told one of the guys to buy beer for the US fans.

    I don't think that I could have been more nervous before the Italy match.

    Kasey Keller is awesome.  Don't know if this was discussed, but he was really pissed about all of the diving by the Italy players and was encouraging us the yell "bullshit" at some call.  In the second half, he actually booted a goal kick at one on the guys laying on the ground, moving him up to number 1 on my list as the coolest athlete ever.

    Dempsey was great for the first 30 minutes, but was totally gassed after we scored the goal.  DMB was awful and the other US players were getting really pissed at him.

    At one point, Boca was bent over with his hands on his knees and Keller ran over to him to give him words of encouragement.

    McHead was great, but I still would have brough in some fresh legs.  Even bringing JOB in and moving DMB up front as a solo striker would have been worth a shot.

    After the second bad decision on a corner kick, the USA fans began throwing beer and cups on the field.

    Everyone (players, coaches and fans) understood how great of a performance we had against Italy.

    At the end of the game, Keller ran over to the US section to cheer the fans.  So did The Bruce and Reyna.

    At 36, I'm too old for a week long male bonding trip (especially one which involved no sleep on two straight Saturday nights).  It was great to come home, take a real shower, turn on the AC, kiss my wife and celebrate my first Father's Day with my daughter.
  2. FuerteJ

    FuerteJ Active Member

    Awesome, Webster. Simply awesome. I would love to have beenin Germany for a week during the cup. Would have been great. Thanks for the recap.
  3. Pastor

    Pastor Active Member

    Webster, I'm very jealous.

    Were you around the NJB at all? They are still there.
  4. Webster

    Webster Well-Known Member

    Hung out with them during both game days. Good people.
  5. spup1122

    spup1122 Guest

    My sister is studying in Germany for the semester and going to a game in Cologne on Thursday. She is very excited about going to a World Cup game.

    She travels around Germany (and Europe) a lot and says the same thing as you Webster. Only a few of her trips have come back as "life-changing" trips.
  6. poindexter

    poindexter Well-Known Member

    Mexico brought a ton of fans here for Mundial '94.

    They never left.
  7. The Big Ragu

    The Big Ragu Moderator Staff Member

    Great account Webster. I don't particularly like soccer, but I have been watching a ton of World Cup on TV. I also love big sporting events and the World Cup is one of the few I have never been to. Can't imagine how cool it is to be in a place filled with fans from around the world who each feel they have a personal stake in the competition. It must have been a ton of fun. It's something I need to do at some point in my lifetime. I am really jealous of you.
  8. Football_Bat

    Football_Bat Well-Known Member

    Well done, Webster.

    Do you know if the club Flash is still open in K-Town?

    And I still can't get used to the idea of Wal-Mart in Germany.
  9. Inky_Wretch

    Inky_Wretch Well-Known Member

    Tailgating at a Wal-Mart!?! Geez, the World Cup is just like SEC football or NASCAR. ;D
  10. Webster

    Webster Well-Known Member

    I said that, even if the U.S. lost, we won. There was literally no place else to go that was close. We went to two other places which were packed. The Wal-Mart had decent food and beer.
  11. kingcreole

    kingcreole Active Member

    Didn't see that, but you're right. Kasey Keller is my "You Rule!" list.
  12. Webster

    Webster Well-Known Member

    I did not see it, although the place was so packed that I wouldn't have noticed. The whole town was out of control and really did the event justice. It took us 90 minutes to walk back into town from the stadium and we hung out until about 3 a.m., at which point our garage closed so we drove to the Frankfurt airport.

    In addition to Wal-Mart, I can't believe how many Starbucks there were. The first business that you see after the Brandenberg Gate is a big Starbucks.
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