One of the benefits of growing up in Vancouver is that our winters are far more temperate than the rest of the country and unlike the rest of my Canadian brethren, hockey was a choice and not a necessity. That’s right – as a kid I had options.
It always seems to surprise people when I tell them I played soccer during the winter. Whether it was their belief that I was running around on the tundra kicking a frozen rock or dodging snowballs tossed from the sidelines, it seemed unfathomable that there was any green grass to be seen come winter.
But no – soccer was my choice of sport and my favourite one to play.
I grew up idolizing the Lenarduzzi brothers, drinking Super Socco, and one day playing for Canada in the FIFA World Cup. Boy were the eighties a wonderful decade!
I discovered as I got older that dreaming of playing nationally for the Canadian side was easier than actually committing to do so and soon decided I would instead become an ardent supporter. And having seen the squad qualify for the 1986 FIFA World Cup, this made so much sense.
Obviously the future was bright for soccer in Canada!
Well here we are approaching kickoff for the FIFA 2014 World Cup and there is no Canada to cheer on (in fact, we actually haven’t seen the mens side qualify since their appearance in 1986)!
And while I still bleed maple syrup, use the word “eh” with reckless abandon, and wear the maple leaf proud, I’m a fan without a side to support.
So who do I cheer for?
If I wanted to remain loyal to CONCACAF I can choose from Honduras, Mexico, Costa Rica or the United States. Friends have told me to go to my roots which provides either the English, German, Russian squads as choices. My cousin down under tells me I should support Australia. And if I just wanted to support the underdog, Cameroon seems like a solid choice.
So… who do I cheer for?
This is where you come in. I’m curious who you’re cheering for and why? Or if you’re not, why not? Is soccer (or football) not your sport? That’s cool too! Regardless, I’ll go with the popular choice from comments, Twitter and Facebook before kickoff on June 12!
It feels better this way. In fact, you could say it’s “All In One Rhythym!”
Update: #GoSocceroos! My cousin wins this one.