With the World Cup looming fans in the Central Valley are feverishly preparing for a month of ‘futbol’ or soccer.
The majority of local soccer fans are expecting some stellar performances from host country Brazil, as well as Argentina .
“To be honest I don’t need favorites because I truly believe that Brazil is going to win it,” said soccer fan Brett Taylor. “I mean it’s in their house and with a national team that didn’t win last time, they have the weight of the country on their backs and if they don’t win, then that country is going to go in an uproar.”
“I think Brazil is going to take it because they have an overall better defense. It’s going to come down to Brazil and Germany but Portugal will be a surprise in their group,” Miguel Gualdamez said.
Argentina looks to be a heavy favorite behind Brazil for many reasons, but the proximity of home seems to play a big factor in the decision to pick the South American squad that has arguably the best player in the world in Lionel Messi.
“Argentina is going to win because Brazil doesn’t have the team to win it and Argentina does, plus they’re also very close to home. I think Brazil loses in the next round out against either the Dutch or Spain,” local fan Javier Aquino said.
“I want Spain to win, but obviously they are not going to win again. I think either Argentina will win it because Argentina has the best forward lineup,” said David Amaya.
From Thursday to June 26, at least one game will be broadcasted daily leading up to the round of 16 on June 28. The tournament, which occurs every four years, will run through July 13.
Those in the area looking for a local spot to catch a game can see them at Jura’s, Shooters and Staley’s.
Brazil and Croatia will take the pitch at 1 p.m. Thursday on ESPN. ABC will show 10 games, including the final, while ESPN has the majority with 43 and the remaining 11 will be on ESPN2.