Wednesday, February 04, 2009

The Rivalry: A History

A week from tonight, the United States kicks off the final round of World Cup Qualifying against Mexico. While, in the end, the results of the two matches between us won't matter much in the qualification process, that doesn't mean the rivalry isn't as hot as ever.

If you're curious about the US/Mexico rivalry through the years, this piece over at ESPNsoccernet will get you up to speed. It was not always as contentious as it is now:

For nearly 57 years following the 1934 World Cup, soccer in the U.S. struggled, with players either changing sports or performing in obscurity. Nor would the U.S. achieve a significant result against Mexico. The U.S. did take a 2-1 decision over the Mexicans in a 1980 qualifier, but it had already been eliminated and only 2,126 spectators bothered to show up for the match in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
By contrast, a game these days - even a friendly - can draw 60,000+ fans. Unfortunately, most of them are still rooting for Mexico, but that's changing. Should be a very home friendly crowd in Columbus next week.


RedZeppelin said...

Do we know yet if it's going to be televised. If it is and it's in HD I'm going to have to commandeer the TV for the night, protests from the rest of the family aside.

JDB said...

7pm on epsn2, Red. In HD. :)

RedZeppelin said...

I. Am. THERE! Don't let me forget!