World Cup Passion in New Orleans Stronger Than You Might Think

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Crowds of afternoon soccer-fans packed local bars Thursday to watch the opening game of World Cup 2014.

WGNO discovers that passion for the world’s most popular game is stronger here in New Orleans than most people think.

“I’ve been waiting for his all year,” says soccer fan Jon Felton at Tracy’s in the Irish Channel. “World Cup is the biggest sporting event of all. It’s the granddaddy.”

First game of World Cup and the host country is down early.

“This is Brazil and Croatia. Croatia is up 1-0 now,” says Felton.

“Let’s hope they turn this around, you know,” says another fan nearby.

Within minutes Felton watches as Brazil scores to tie the game at 1-1, “This is what I live for.”

True passion for this month-long global event can be found at Fin McCool’s Irish Pub in Mid-City.

“This game is a passion that I’ve had,” says owner Stephen Patterson. “And all of the people that come to the bar are from all over the world.”

The World Cup trophy is considered the most sought after prize in all of sport.

And for the next 4 weeks local fans from all walks of life will come together.

Football is the world’s sport, and it’s what unites us,” says Patterson.

The United States team is 14th in the world power rankings and plays their first game Monday verses Ghana.