The FIFA World Cup will kickoff on June 12th from the beautiful country of Brazil. The United States’ campaign will begin four days later with an opening match with Ghana in Natal. The USMNT has been drawn into arguably the most difficult group in the entire tournament being tasked with Germany, Portugal, and Ghana. The odds are long for the U.S. to even be lucky enough to advance out of the group stage into the knockout rounds, but crazier things have happened. But we wanted to take this just one step further and examine what would happen if the United States won the whole thing.
4. Parades, parades, and more parades
Cities across the country have a habit of hosting lavish parades when their home town team wins the championship. But this would be a little different, because the World Cup would be a win for every city. There would be a tour of ticker tape parades from coast to coast that would attract hundreds of thousands, if not more, in every single city. 315 million people would want to congratulate the 23 men who hoisted the World Cup, oh what a party it would be.
3. Landon Donovan becomes an afterthought
When Jürgen Klinsmann announced his final 23-man roster that he’s bringing to Brazil there was outrage over the exclusion of national team great Landon Donovan. Donovan has been the face of American soccer for more than a decade, but if the U.S. wins the World Cup, his name will almost be forgotten. His goal against Algeria that is widely considered the most influential goal in American soccer history would slip down to 4th or 5th on the list superseded by just about every goal from this World Cup winning run.
2. MLS sees an uptick in exposure
Many believe a World Cup would turn the MLS into a premier league in the United States. It wouldn’t. However, there certainly would be a lot more interest in the sport, and as the only legitimate professional domestic league it would certainly see a boost in popularity. The question remains however, how long will it last once everyone realizes most of the stars that brought the World Cup to the states play elsewhere.
1. Clint Dempsey, Michael Bradley, and Jozy Altidore are household names
Think about how quickly a player can go from no one to someone in the U.S. Whether it’s Michael Phelps and his eighteen gold medals or Richard Sherman and interviewing antics, or Yasiel Puig and his explosion into the Major Leagues, it doesn’t take much for this country to fall in love with players in a hurry. Soccer fans already know all three of these guys and understand their brilliance, but the rest of the country might not know them yet. In less than a month’s time, that would change dramatically. Plus, they’d never have to pay for a drink in a American sports bar ever again.