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US Norwich City fan Charlie Hatch says the World Cup is catching on in the States

PUBLISHED: 07:06 28 June 2014

Charlie Hatch, right, with his Dad

Charlie Hatch, right, with his Dad

Archant

Norwich City fan Charlie Hatch is in Brazil following the USA side. The 19-year-old, from Cincinatti, says the US has caught World Cup fever after they qualified for the knockout stages.

Growing up, my dad would always put on “Death or Glory” by The Clash before anything important to our family. The title was self-explanatory, yet it carried so much weight. It described competition in its simplest sense: win or lose.

Thursday afternoon in Recife was another opportunity to play the tune as the US faced Germany.

The Germans entered as a World Cup favourite, ready to prove how dominant the nation can be on the biggest stage. The US is still trying to make itself relevant in footballing terms, but the tournament is catching on back home.

My dad’s company, which is notoriously stingy about employees missing work, allowed its workers to wear red, white and blue and watch from the conference room.

My hometown, Cincinnati, has organized a massive screening of the match. For once, the U.S. is wrapped up in World Cup Fever.

Seeing a World Cup match is both special and surreal. For Americans, we finally get to see all the players we wake up to early on Saturdays and Sundays to see, only this time it’s in person.

Over the last two World Cups, I’ve attended a dozen matches and I’ve seen some of the greatest players in the game. But none of that compares to watching my country in person.

Last week, I went to U.S. vs. Ghana as an optimistic, but realistic fan. I’d lie if I said my eyes didn’t tear up when I sang “The Star-Spangled Banner,” our national anthem, full throat for all the Brazilians to stare and laugh. There’s no other place I’d rather do it.

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