Several members of the FC Dallas family are traveling to Brazil this summer to take in the 2014 FIFA World Cup and have agreed to share their experiences with FCDallas.com to give our readers a first-person perspective of the festivities. Today's entry comes from Mobile Sales Team Manager Ryan Hurtado from Rio de Janeiro.
I'll keep this one as succinct as possible.
The amount of US support in Rio was amazing!
Yesterday while wearing my away kit and and matching board shorts, I was ready to cheer my heart out for this US. We started with breakfast for the Portugal-Germany match at the "Gringo Cafe." A place where American food, drink and traditions are shared. From there, we took in Rio De Janeiro's FIFA Fan Fest on CopaCabana beach. As we walked the streets, constant chants of U-S-A were chanted aloud from English, Americans and Brazilians alike.
Upon arrival it was evident, Americans were ready to represent in Brazil. The music was all American from Guns and Roses to Springsteen and "Born in the USA." As the chants grew, the "I Believes" became stronger, kick was underway. I am not sure if my country pride has ever been stronger. Instantly with Dempsey's fantastic finish the crowd erupted! From tears, hugs and kisses from strangers, it felt like we were outside the White House cheering on our USMNT!
We know how the game panned out and my son will now be named John Anthony. As the whistle blew and the crowd exploded, the screams (I currently can't speak,) the chants and the music was all in accordance for a feeling that I can't only describe as a state of euphoria that was the most intense in my entire life! Seriously, the Fan Fest was the greatest thing I have ever been a part of! This reached it's pinnacle when the PA systems blasted "Smells Like Teen Spirit" by Nirvana and 20,000 plus screamed every lyric while in a joyous mosh pit. The actions we took for this day will be repeated for the following US matches out of superstition to ensure we get out of the group. (We are just trying to do our part).
I know my words will not truly embody what we experienced, but this is a story and feeling I want to share for the rest of my life!
With that day in my memory, I know that soccer is real now in America and if that support grows, the sky is the limit for the US!
I Believe, Ryan