How to prepare for the World Cup in Columbus
The men's World Cup is underway in Qatar, with the U.S. kicking off its first match this afternoon against Wales.
Why it matters: Columbus is the "spiritual home" of the U.S. Men's National Team. For the next month, we better act like it.
- You might find yourself at a watch party or viewing the action during a Thanksgiving visit, so here's a quick guide to faking your World Cup knowledge:
How it works: The soccer tournament, held every four years, begins with the group stage. The 32 countries that qualified for the tournament are split into eight groups of four.
- Each country plays the other teams in its group, earning points for victories and draws (ties).
- The top two countries in each group advance to a standard 16-team single-elimination bracket.
- America is grouped with Wales (today), England (Friday) and Iran (Nov. 29). All games start at 2pm locally.
State of play: The USMNT reached this year's World Cup following a lengthy qualifying schedule, including victories against El Salvador and Costa Rica at Lower.com Field.
- We're a young team. Only one player was on the USMNT roster when it last qualified for the tournament in 2014.
- Just one Crew player is playing in Qatar: defender Miloš Degenek, competing for Australia.
Where to watch: The Crew is hosting "Pride & Glory" parties at Lower.com Field for the match against England and the World Cup Final on Dec. 18.
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