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thejuice
06-04-2010, 09:09 PM
Am I the only one that believes in an upset of the England team? There are a couple of Londoners at my job that think I'm nuts.

nfor304
06-04-2010, 09:33 PM
Thats about as likely as Australia beating England at the world cup

West Coast Ace
06-04-2010, 09:39 PM
nil - nil tie, of course.

jman
06-04-2010, 09:45 PM
I think your nuts. Australia is actually building up a reputation in football, so I wouldn't count them out.


Brasil FTW!!

Feña14
06-04-2010, 09:47 PM
It's possible, but I don't see much point in predictions like that.

England have countless Champions League winners, FA Cup winners, Premier League champions etc..

Steven Gerrard for instance single handedly won a Champions League on his own, Lampard has scored 30 goals this year on his own, he's scored an FA Cup winner late in the game from 25 yards with his left foot, he single handedly dragged his team back into a Champions League final they were being dominated in etc.. Rooney is arguably the best player around. These are world class players who have shown their class at the highest level...

Could there be an upset? Of course, but there is no real reason to point to that happening. It's like predicting "Youzhny will beat Federer at Wimbledon in a few weeks", anything can happen on the day but predicting something WILL happen with little evidence or reasoning behind it is to be taken with a pinch of salt.

I hope America do well and have a good tournament, though.

Dedans Penthouse
06-04-2010, 09:56 PM
Am I the only one that believes in an upset of the England team? There are a couple of Londoners at my job that think I'm nuts.
Dear (OP) "the juice"

For starters, I'd think the Brits would at the very least wanna adopt you as one of 'their own' given your "the juice" TW user name (wink).

That said, as I am no "soccer" know-it-all (am a college/NFL football devotee), but given the U.S.'s injuries let alone the fact that England is ranked 3rd in the world, I'm thinking that you (and me) have to hope for this "best case" scenario:

By its very nature, "soccer" is not a high-scoring game and by dint of that fact any "lesser" team (in this case, the United States) if they have any 'skills' can "hang" within a goal or two--admittedly a daunting, callanging disadvante.

Having said that, being that the underdog may be playing within a goal (and with 30+ minutes at hand), there's always the slight chance (again, albeit slight) that the U.S. may somehow end up "tied" 0-0 or 1-1 at halftime.....and from there, somewhere, somehow in the midst of the 2nd half, the 'Yanks' may try to survive by pulling all their defenders (and many forwards) "back" and try and keep Rooney & Co. out of the box and try to somehow squeeze out a (however dominated) draw....notwithstanding the pressure they'll be facing (from not only Great Britan but the rest of Europe who'll be "curiously" watching this one) that they Brits will have to contend with---after all, they're more than expected to win this one....and much as the U.S. is the underdog, they've improved what with many of their players (e.g. Landon Donovan) acquitted themselves favorably (favourably?) in Premiere League play this past season.

Think 1980 Olympic hockey: US during their "Miracle-on-Ice" run started off their run with a "survived" 2-2 draw against Sweden which allowed them to "survive" in order to fight another day against the lesser teams in that grouping.

IMHO, the same applies here. England's the clear class of this group. Can the U.S. somehow survive and move to the next round ..... off of an opening "0-0/1-1" type of draw (in the face of an overwhelming shots-on-goal disadvantage? Who knows?

It sometime happens: a goalie stands on his head....a shot riccochets off the crossbar/post... what should otherwise have ended up a 3-1 win turning into a 1-1 draw for the "live to fight another day" chumps.....

Btw, the U.S (not having GB's talent--and more importantly--DEPTH) to begin with have some injury issues at present at hand, no?

I don't even know how the "4-team" grouping end up advancing. Can the "2nd-place" team move on? That's the only way I see the Yanks moving on....

West Coast Ace
06-04-2010, 10:02 PM
I don't even know how the "4-team" grouping end up advancing. Can the "2nd-place" team move on? That's the only way I see the Yanks moving on....Yes. The top two from each move on, to make a 16 team 'knockout' stage. And that's why I think the US will play for the tie. One point from this game and wins in the other two should get them to the next round...

Feña14
06-04-2010, 10:05 PM
Dear (OP) "the juice"

For starters, I'd think the Brits would at the very least wanna adopt you as one of 'their own' given your "the juice" TW user name (wink).

That said, as I am no "soccer" know-it-all (am a college/NFL football devotee), but given the U.S.'s injuries let alone the fact that England is ranked 3rd in the world, I'm thinking that you (and me) have to hope for this "best case" scenario:

By its very nature, "soccer" is not a high-scoring game and by dint of that fact any "lesser" team (in this case, the United States) if they have any 'skills' can "hang" within a goal or two--admittedly a daunting, callanging disadvante.

Having said that, being that the underdog may be playing within a goal (and with 30+ minutes at hand), there's always the slight chance (again, albeit slight) that the U.S. may somehow end up "tied" 0-0 or 1-1 at halftime.....and from there, somewhere, somehow in the midst of the 2nd half, the 'Yanks' may try to survive by pulling all their defenders (and many forwards) "back" and try and keep Rooney & Co. out of the box and try to somehow squeeze out a (however dominated) draw....notwithstanding the pressure they'll be facing (from not only Great Britan but the rest of Europe who'll be "curiously" watching this one) that they Brits will have to contend with---after all, they're more than expected to win this one....and much as the U.S. is the underdog, they've improved what with many of their players (e.g. Landon Donovan) acquitted themselves favorably (favourably?) in Premiere League play this past season.

Think 1980 Olympic hockey: US during their "Miracle-on-Ice" run started off their run with a "survived" 2-2 draw against Sweden which allowed them to "survive" in order to fight another day against the lesser teams in that grouping.

IMHO, the same applies here. England's the clear class of this group. Can the U.S. somehow survive and move to the next round ..... off of an opening "0-0/1-1" type of draw (in the face of an overwhelming shots-on-goal disadvantage? Who knows?

It sometime happens: a goalie stands on his head....a shot riccochets off the crossbar/post... what should otherwise have ended up a 3-1 win turning into a 1-1 draw for the "live to fight another day" chumps.....

Btw, the U.S (not having GB's talent--and more importantly--DEPTH) to begin with have some injury issues at present at hand, no?

I don't even know how the "4-team" grouping end up advancing. Can the "2nd-place" team move on? That's the only way I see the Yanks moving on....

All very true! After your prediction about the Flyers coming back, i'm expecting you to be pretty spot on with this one too ;)

Davis937
06-05-2010, 01:20 AM
Am I the only one that believes in an upset of the England team? There are a couple of Londoners at my job that think I'm nuts.

Yeah, you are nuts ... that upset is about as likely as those pesky colonists winning their independence from their home country ... hmmm ... the name of which escapes me at the moment!

westside
06-05-2010, 01:25 AM
Thats about as likely as Australia beating England at the world cup

What's so far fetched about that mate? ;)

CAHILL!!!!!!

bezs
06-05-2010, 01:39 AM
Wouldn't be surprised if it happened, stranger things have happened.

malakas
06-05-2010, 01:58 AM
it's football everything is possible but I wouldn't bet on it.
I'll be cheering for you though!:)

Dream_On
06-05-2010, 02:03 AM
I think it may well happen, Englands team is full of individuals and egos and will rely only on rooney who is the only great player on the team. Now ferdinand is out as well, the US have a great chance of winning

nfor304
06-05-2010, 02:05 AM
What's so far fetched about that mate? ;)

CAHILL!!!!!!

Haha its not that far fetched.... but its pretty unlikely. Just like the USA beating England.

Its like Melzer playing Nadal at RG.


USA and Aus are playing a friendly against each other soon. Cant wait

statto
06-05-2010, 02:06 AM
Yes. The top two from each move on, to make a 16 team 'knockout' stage. And that's why I think the US will play for the tie. One point from this game and wins in the other two should get them to the next round...

That would definitely get them to the next round.

A loss against England and two wins would probably get them to the next round.

A couple of draws and a win would probably get them to the next round.

A loss, a draw, and a win would possibly get them to the next round.

Even with two losses and a win there would be an outside chance of them making the next round.

All of which goes to prove that the big matches for the US are their last two, where they'll be favourites. If they can perform well against the two minnows in the group then they should be fine.

westside
06-05-2010, 02:29 AM
Haha its not that far fetched.... but its pretty unlikely. Just like the USA beating England.

Its like Melzer playing Nadal at RG.


USA and Aus are playing a friendly against each other soon. Cant wait


Haha, nah i agree with you.

I'm also excited for the friendly tonight. Unfortunately i'll be tuning into it during the change of ends for the women's final

Peters
06-05-2010, 02:54 AM
I'm English myself and I'm predicting a 1-1 draw. England are superior to USA in every department but are notorious for not playing to their full potential in major competitions.

If the US play well as a team they're more than capable of scoring against us, so it won't be an easy match for England.

jaggy
06-05-2010, 05:18 AM
I dont see the US getting a single point in this one.

NickC
06-05-2010, 08:13 AM
England will loose, they don't play well as a unit and rarely do they get a player who actually takes pride in playing for his country. The USA, on the other hand, aren't as skilled or talented, but each one of those guys out there give every drop of blood in their bodies for the Flag and for the pride that comes in representing the USA.

And oh yeah, we've never lost to them in FIFA-sanctioned official matches.

1777. 1950. 2010. NOT YOUR COLONY ANYMORE!

baseline_monster
06-05-2010, 08:16 AM
The USA are fast becoming a decent football team, as there showing in Copa America last year shows. I think they need a few more years though. Fact is in europe, defo England its our number one sport, in America it comes after mlb, nfl, nba, nhl and probably lacrosse. I've allways been a believer that if the USA put there efforts in, they could win a world cup in the next 20 years

NickC
06-05-2010, 08:21 AM
Dear (OP) "the juice"

For starters, I'd think the Brits would at the very least wanna adopt you as one of 'their own' given your "the juice" TW user name (wink).

That said, as I am no "soccer" know-it-all (am a college/NFL football devotee), but given the U.S.'s injuries let alone the fact that England is ranked 3rd in the world, I'm thinking that you (and me) have to hope for this "best case" scenario:

By its very nature, "soccer" is not a high-scoring game and by dint of that fact any "lesser" team (in this case, the United States) if they have any 'skills' can "hang" within a goal or two--admittedly a daunting, callanging disadvante.

Having said that, being that the underdog may be playing within a goal (and with 30+ minutes at hand), there's always the slight chance (again, albeit slight) that the U.S. may somehow end up "tied" 0-0 or 1-1 at halftime.....and from there, somewhere, somehow in the midst of the 2nd half, the 'Yanks' may try to survive by pulling all their defenders (and many forwards) "back" and try and keep Rooney & Co. out of the box and try to somehow squeeze out a (however dominated) draw....notwithstanding the pressure they'll be facing (from not only Great Britan but the rest of Europe who'll be "curiously" watching this one) that they Brits will have to contend with---after all, they're more than expected to win this one....and much as the U.S. is the underdog, they've improved what with many of their players (e.g. Landon Donovan) acquitted themselves favorably (favourably?) in Premiere League play this past season.

Think 1980 Olympic hockey: US during their "Miracle-on-Ice" run started off their run with a "survived" 2-2 draw against Sweden which allowed them to "survive" in order to fight another day against the lesser teams in that grouping.

IMHO, the same applies here. England's the clear class of this group. Can the U.S. somehow survive and move to the next round ..... off of an opening "0-0/1-1" type of draw (in the face of an overwhelming shots-on-goal disadvantage? Who knows?

It sometime happens: a goalie stands on his head....a shot riccochets off the crossbar/post... what should otherwise have ended up a 3-1 win turning into a 1-1 draw for the "live to fight another day" chumps.....

Btw, the U.S (not having GB's talent--and more importantly--DEPTH) to begin with have some injury issues at present at hand, no?

I don't even know how the "4-team" grouping end up advancing. Can the "2nd-place" team move on? That's the only way I see the Yanks moving on....

Because you're not really into soccer, I don't expect you to know that the US has a deeper selection at GK than any other country on the planet. But don't say that we're not deeper than England at all, because that's simply not true.

Look at it this way, who would you rather have as your keeper group?

Tim Howard
Brad Guzan
Marcus Hanneman

or

Joe Hart
Paul "I scored against myself in Croatia" Robinson
David "Calamity" James

Speaks for itself really.

baseline_monster
06-05-2010, 08:36 AM
Because you're not really into soccer, I don't expect you to know that the US has a deeper selection at GK than any other country on the planet. But don't say that we're not deeper than England at all, because that's simply not true.

Look at it this way, who would you rather have as your keeper group?

Tim Howard
Brad Guzan
Marcus Hanneman

or

Joe Hart
Paul "I scored against myself in Croatia" Robinson
David "Calamity" James

Speaks for itself really.

Well you must not watch to much "soccer". Paul Robinson isnt going, instead Robert Green, a great shot stopper. As for the calamity you call David James, you must just watch the high lites of a season clips. He has be awesome this year, the guy was Liverpool number one and if you tally up mistakes made by any keeper over a career, he is not much over, he makes up for it with being a good goalie who controls a defence. Tim Howard is a great keeper, but has had his slips ups, esp when he was at man utd.
I know I would rather have Rooney and Crouch up front instead of Donavon and Altidore. In midfield and defense you are just inferior. Now please dont misquote me, it is very possible for the USA to beat us, there is not a single poor team at the world cup. On the same note, we are very much over rated and often considered for honors we have no real right for but player wise we have a team that can square up to to the likes of Brasil, Spain and Italy

cucio
06-05-2010, 08:57 AM
Because you're not really into soccer, I don't expect you to know that the US has a deeper selection at GK than any other country on the planet. But don't say that we're not deeper than England at all, because that's simply not true.

Look at it this way, who would you rather have as your keeper group?

Tim Howard
Brad Guzan
Marcus Hanneman


Casillas, Reina and Valdes. Who are those guys you mention?

baseline_monster
06-05-2010, 09:08 AM
England will loose, they don't play well as a unit and rarely do they get a player who actually takes pride in playing for his country. The USA, on the other hand, aren't as skilled or talented, but each one of those guys out there give every drop of blood in their bodies for the Flag and for the pride that comes in representing the USA.

And oh yeah, we've never lost to them in FIFA-sanctioned official matches.

1777. 1950. 2010. NOT YOUR COLONY ANYMORE!

Just read back. How can you comment on players pride from another country? We look in out history books and have the following

http://img13.imageshack.us/img13/8436/gazza17349t.jpg (http://img13.imageshack.us/i/gazza17349t.jpg/)
gazza after seeing he would miss the 90 final of we made it
Uploaded with ImageShack.us (http://imageshack.us)
peirce after scoring a pen in euro 96, thats passion
http://img32.imageshack.us/img32/8373/pearce.jpg (http://img32.imageshack.us/i/pearce.jpg/)

Uploaded with ImageShack.us (http://imageshack.us)
terry butcher giving everything
http://img188.imageshack.us/img188/8058/terrybutcher.jpg (http://img188.imageshack.us/i/terrybutcher.jpg/)

Uploaded with ImageShack.us (http://imageshack.us)
1966- proud does not describe it.
http://img39.imageshack.us/img39/8933/england66maxi.jpg (http://img39.imageshack.us/i/england66maxi.jpg/)

Uploaded with ImageShack.us (http://imageshack.us)
we have a history in football, we dont pretend to have a top NFL side or crap like that.

West Coast Ace
06-05-2010, 10:19 AM
The USA are fast becoming a decent football team, as there showing in Copa America last year shows. I think they need a few more years though. Fact is in europe, defo England its our number one sport, in America it comes after mlb, nfl, nba, nhl and probably lacrosse. I've allways been a believer that if the USA put there efforts in, they could win a world cup in the next 20 yearsBut we both know it won't happen. Our best athletes will always go into those other sports.

I think your nuts. Australia is actually building up a reputation in football, so I wouldn't count them out. Got a spanking today...

SuperFly
06-05-2010, 10:24 AM
I usually would be rooting for Poland but since the didn't qualify... USA USA USA USA

Breaker
06-05-2010, 12:15 PM
England 5-0.

Heskey to score just for laughs.

snoopy
06-05-2010, 02:58 PM
The old days when the US team was a total joke in international play have been gone for a while now. We are a "B" level team. We don't have any real stars with great talent except maybe in goal, but we have good speed and athleticism.

I wouldn't be surprised if we beat England. All the pressure is on them, not us.

On a side note, I hope soccer never becomes popular in the USA.

Legend of Borg
06-05-2010, 03:10 PM
England 5-0.

Heskey to score just for laughs.

I bet that was the mentality of the Spanish team at the 2009 Confederations Cup when they faced the States.

ninman
06-05-2010, 05:30 PM
Being Scottish I love watching England lose. The English media in Britain hypes up England to almost psychotic levels, and it drives everybody else in the UK crazy. They think they are much much better than they really are.

baseline_monster
06-05-2010, 05:31 PM
"soccer" will never become to big in the USA. Look at baseball, football, basketball, all games played over a lot longer and can be won in the last second.

atatu
06-05-2010, 10:03 PM
I'm English myself and I'm predicting a 1-1 draw. England are superior to USA in every department but are notorious for not playing to their full potential in major competitions.

If the US play well as a team they're more than capable of scoring against us, so it won't be an easy match for England.

The US has a better keeper, but otherwise you are right, England is better across the board.

Peters
06-06-2010, 02:51 AM
Being Scottish I love watching England lose. The English media in Britain hypes up England to almost psychotic levels, and it drives everybody else in the UK crazy. They think they are much much better than they really are.
:lol:

I love how the Scottish always moan constantly about English media hype about our football team. What do you expect? For the tabloids to downplay our involvement in the tournament and not give it any coverage? They're tabloids for goodness sake.

Talk about sour grapes. Getting in a strop about tabloid hype is like getting in a strop about the world being round. Absolutely pointless.

For what it's worth, myself - any many other regular English people - don't realistically see England getting past the QF. We simply don't play well enough as a team.

But please, carry on with the predictable anti-English sentiment. It's rather amusing, and I'd expect nothing less from a Scot.

baseline_monster
06-06-2010, 03:05 AM
:lol:

I love how the Scottish always moan constantly about English media hype about our football team. What do you expect? For the tabloids to downplay our involvement in the tournament and not give it any coverage? They're tabloids for goodness sake.

Talk about sour grapes. Getting in a strop about tabloid hype is like getting in a strop about the world being round. Absolutely pointless.

For what it's worth, myself - any many other regular English people - don't realistically see England getting past the QF. We simply don't play well enough as a team.

But please, carry on with the predictable anti-English sentiment. It's rather amusing, and I'd expect nothing less from a Scot.

Love it lol. Funny thing is if the scotts and the Irish are doing good we always back them but they hate us! Our only expectation is to go through the group phase, then its on us, we are the best equip t ever and have the best manager

Feña14
06-06-2010, 04:28 AM
Being Scottish I love watching England lose. The English media in Britain hypes up England to almost psychotic levels, and it drives everybody else in the UK crazy. They think they are much much better than they really are.

Erm, no. 99% of people are saying we won't win it. The consensus is that if England get to the semi finals then they will of had a very solid tournament. Everyone knows Brazil and Spain are by the far the best teams, a loss in the semi's in nothing to be ashamed of.

It's funny, the two people i've heard backing England to win this week have been Luca Toni from Italy and Messi talked up England's chances also.

:lol:

I love how the Scottish always moan constantly about English media hype about our football team. What do you expect? For the tabloids to downplay our involvement in the tournament and not give it any coverage? They're tabloids for goodness sake.

Talk about sour grapes. Getting in a strop about tabloid hype is like getting in a strop about the world being round. Absolutely pointless.

For what it's worth, myself - any many other regular English people - don't realistically see England getting past the QF. We simply don't play well enough as a team.

But please, carry on with the predictable anti-English sentiment. It's rather amusing, and I'd expect nothing less from a Scot.

It is pretty funny, isn't it? :)

ninman
06-06-2010, 05:07 AM
:lol:

I love how the Scottish always moan constantly about English media hype about our football team. What do you expect? For the tabloids to downplay our involvement in the tournament and not give it any coverage? They're tabloids for goodness sake.

Talk about sour grapes. Getting in a strop about tabloid hype is like getting in a strop about the world being round. Absolutely pointless.

For what it's worth, myself - any many other regular English people - don't realistically see England getting past the QF. We simply don't play well enough as a team.

But please, carry on with the predictable anti-English sentiment. It's rather amusing, and I'd expect nothing less from a Scot.

Who said anything about being anti-English? I just want to England to lose so that the media will finally shut up, but no that would be too much to ask wouldn't it? I'll tell you why because when England lose we're going to start hearing for days about "who is to blame?", like if someone misses a penalty, he's going to be lynched in the street mob style.

I feel sorry for the team to be honest. Much like I feel sorry for Henman and Murray playing at Wimbledon. They are also hyped up to psychotic levels, you almost feel like there's going to be mass suicides when they lose.

ninman
06-06-2010, 05:09 AM
Love it lol. Funny thing is if the scotts and the Irish are doing good we always back them but they hate us! Our only expectation is to go through the group phase, then its on us, we are the best equip t ever and have the best manager

Yeah well it's easy enough to be gracious when your team qualifies, and receives all the attention. I think what angers most of us in Scotland, Wales and Ireland is that England gets a vastly disproportionate amount of attention when all 4 teams qualify. Nobody in the English media would ever hype any of the other 3 teams to level that they hype England.

SempreSami
06-06-2010, 08:04 AM
Yeah well it's easy enough to be gracious when your team qualifies, and receives all the attention. I think what angers most of us in Scotland, Wales and Ireland is that England gets a vastly disproportionate amount of attention when all 4 teams qualify. Nobody in the English media would ever hype any of the other 3 teams to level that they hype England.

That made me lol.

baseline_monster
06-06-2010, 08:28 AM
Yeah well it's easy enough to be gracious when your team qualifies, and receives all the attention. I think what angers most of us in Scotland, Wales and Ireland is that England gets a vastly disproportionate amount of attention when all 4 teams qualify. Nobody in the English media would ever hype any of the other 3 teams to level that they hype England.

Thats because the English media cater for the English people...
There was enough attention on the Ireland hand ball thing. I mean they were asking for a rematch, stupid

West Coast Ace
06-06-2010, 09:36 AM
I feel sorry for the team to be honest. Much like I feel sorry for Henman and Murray playing at Wimbledon. They are also hyped up to psychotic levels, you almost feel like there's going to be mass suicides when they lose.I agree with this. The English don't seem to have the right mentality toward sports. The peaks and valleys are ridiculous. And ironic considering Kipling's famous quote hangs just inside the door at Wimby.

mr_eko
06-06-2010, 11:20 AM
I got a feeling this will be a 0-0 match.

JustBob
06-08-2010, 12:08 AM
Thank god there's only one. :)


Nation's Lone Soccer Fan Becoming Insufferable

10.27.05 WILMINGTON, DE—As the 2010 World Cup approaches, friends, family, and coworkers of 32-year-old Brad Janovich are growing less tolerant of the exuberant behavior of the United States' lone soccer fan.

"Who's got World Cup fever?" Janovich asked his officemates at Credit Solutions Friday, failing to notice their silent stares as he reported for work clad in the sole Team USA jersey sold this year. "I do! I've got World Cup fever!"

"Check out this World Cup wall chart I just bought," added Janovich, who is the only American citizen currently aware that the World Cup begins June 11.

According to sources only peripherally aware of the World Cup, Janovich's infuriating behavior first became apparent during a Super Bowl viewing party last February when he repeatedly used the phrase "American football" to describe the action on the field. In recent weeks, Janovich has also begun referring to the supposed suspense involved in choosing the players for the U.S. "side," and has struck up several extended but one-sided conversations concerning figures such as "Kaka" and "Ronaldinho," generally mystifying and alienating everyone he has come into contact with.

Yesterday Janovich sent an office-wide e-mail about the controversy surrounding the new World Cup ball, and the message was instantly deleted by all of his coworkers.

"Decorating his cubicle with World Cup stuff is fine, I guess," said coworker Greg Lafferty, who endured several elevator rides in which he politely listened to the lone American soccer fan evaluate international matchups before realizing that Janovich was discussing the outcomes of soccer games and not impending wars. "I myself have a Yankees pennant at my desk. But Brad has all these scarves draped all over everything. They hang into other people's areas, and when they ask him to move them, he responds by explaining what the scarf means. It's driving us nuts."

"Last week he was talking about how 'footy' was really heating up and asked me to come over for the 'friendly' against Turkey," said Janovich's friend Beth Gleason, who has known the only projected U.S. viewer of this year's World Cup broadcast since college. "I love Brad, I really do, but when he talks like that I want to punch him in the goddamn face. Especially because, when I asked him what he was talking about, he just said the same thing again, only slower. I was like, 'Brad, don't talk like that. People don't talk like that.'"

With only a week to go, Janovich's singular, almost unconscionable degree of soccer fanhood has only intensified. Credit Solutions employees reported that a crude "World Cup countdown calendar" appeared on the break room wall Friday, the same day that everyone in Janovich's division arrived to find him wearing Umbro soccer shorts and placing a World Cup bracket on every desk.

In addition, coworkers reported that it is not uncommon for Janovich to spontaneously start humming or singing repeated snatches of songs evidently composed exclusively of the sound "olé" while seated at his desk.

"I had absolutely no idea what 'FIFA South Africa 2010' meant," said Lafferty, who made the mistake of asking Janovich to explain. "When he told me that's where the soccer games were and that the time difference meant he'd be getting up early to watch them, all I could think was that maybe he'd be too tired to talk about them afterward."

Janovich has also extended invitations to everyone he knows to accompany him to the Newgate, a pub in downtown Wilmington that will be showing the World Cup live and is favored by British expatriates.

"It'll be nice to finally be among other fans," Janovich said. "And speaking as a fan, it's really great to see Hotspur and Arsenal and Aston Villa supporters all come together for the Three Lions, though I'm hoping the Yanks can channel the spirit of the 1950 shock horror. But that's not as important as uniting in our love of the Beautiful Game, as any football [sic] fan will tell you."

Newgate regulars agreed that Janovich's enthusiasm was unique.

"That American fan? He's harmless, I guess," bartender and lifelong Tottenham supporter Martin West said. "Though he gets pretty tiresome with all his footy rubbish, and he can really get annoying when we're all just trying to watch in peace. Thank Christ he's the only one."