US Women Destroy Germany’s World Cup Dreams

The USWNT Made Good Last Night

The USWNT Made Good Last Night

The headline in today’s Bild online says it all: US-Girls zerstören unseren WM-Traum. In a contest between the top two teams in the world last night, the United States came out on top 2-0 in a surprisingly dominant performance, outlasting a loaded German side in the most anticipated match of the tournament. Germany was heavily favored going into the game, despite a nailbiter against France last weekend. But the USWNT made good on the promise they brought into the tournament to peak at the right time and pulled off the win in front of the rabidly pro-USA crowd in Montreal.

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A Golden Cup

German flagTomorrow one of the most coveted trophies in sport will come to Berlin. Today Germany woke up collectively hungover but with a jubilant smile on its face. Yesterday, just before midnight, the nation erupted into euphoria when the German football team won the World Cup.

Around the world, online and print media is chock full with articles on that extraordinary night: why the Germans won, how they won, what the players’ wives and girlfriends wore, what Rihanna did to celebrate the goal, what type of beer Joachim Löw (the German coach) and Angela Merkel drank when they celebrated together in the hotel. Sitting here in Berlin there can be no other topic to write about today, but as neither football expert nor celebrity gossip connoisseur, I ask myself what relevant and original ideas can I add. The English expat’s view perhaps …

First this – how Germany became England’s favourite. For English fans, Germany would not be the obvious team to support once our own boys failed so miserably to progress beyond the group stages (yet again). Most Germans would not perceive a direct rivalry between the two teams, but most English do. Continue reading

Here Comes the World Cup

I am sure you already know this, but as of the time of my writing, the World Cup begins in 22 days. In just over 3 weeks, soccer fever will consume Germany and much of the rest of the world. Are you ready?

If you are new to Germany and have arrived from North America, you might not be. The World Cup is big. Bigger than the Superbowl. And longer, more exciting, and more fun. “How can that be?”, you may ask. “Nothing is bigger than the Superbowl!”, you may say. This is something you must experience to believe.

Beginning June 12th at 5pm Sao Paolo time (10pm German time), you can spend your waking (and sleeping) hours consumed with the game of soccer. Lest you fear you will have to sit at home in front of your TV all day, rest assured: many workplaces will broadcast it in-house. All pubs will show the matches. And there is “public viewing” – the German notion of gathering in public squares to watch matches on giant screens, together. With beer. This is more fun than it sounds! (“public viewing” for Germans involves watching sports together in public, and is an awkward example of Germans adopting English words and giving them new meanings). Continue reading

Soccer Fever!

Japan Wins the 2011 World Cup – photo picked up via Google from Thomas Lachetta’s Blog

Talk about a nail-biter! Did you see that game last night? It was amazing! The stadium was packed, the fans were at turns euphoric and devastated, and in the end, it all came down to a few penalty kicks. For the world championship of soccer. Women’s soccer. You missed it? I hardly believe it. I’m pretty sure that no female sport has ever had as much attention as that game did yesterday… or perhaps I’m just biased. It was, after all, a World Cup tournament in this soccer-crazed country and my team was in the final. I even knew people in the stands (who I looked for every time the camera panned the crowd).

It’s a shame that Germany didn’t progress to the final as they had planned, but it lessened their pain when the team who kicked them out ended up winning the tournament. Japan was certainly the underdog going into the game, and despite my nationality I was secretly pulling for them. Continue reading

Goodbye Deutschland

The title of this post is not meant to be in reference to Germany and its standing at the World Cup. Rather, it is in reference to the fact that this will be my last post on this blog while living in Germany. One prominent aspect of expatriate life is a higher probability of relocating. Although my husband is German, we have been anticipating an overseas move through his job over the last five years.

It’s been a long, drawn out process anticipating where and when we’ll move. There have been some false starts including absolute certainty that we were moving to Singapore some time soon after the birth of our second daughter. She’s now 20 months old. In fact, it seemed likely that we were moving to Asia, so it took some getting used to that we are in fact moving to San Diego, California, back in the U.S. of A.
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