Fifa World Cup makes its way to the CHS screens

Andrew Seckular and Luke Bigley

As the World Cup captivated fans across the globe, the unexpected upsets, anxiety-inducing games and world-class players have found a
new place in the halls of CHS. Whenever a game was being played, it was typical to find at least one screen in the school streaming it, whether
that be a student tucked in the corner of their class or projected onto the whiteboard in the fitness center.

“Since the World Cup is only once every 4 years, I think it’s really fun when it comes around to keep up with it and watch as many games as possible,” junior Lilly Fischer of Rumson said. “It’s cool to see all these countries come together, especially with the upsets we’ve had this year. Whenever I can, I try to watch at any time.”

Quietly streaming during math class is not the only way CHS students have been viewing the games. Fitness teacher Jennifer Baldaccini has worked the global tournament into her class activities.

“In some of the classes, we did World Cup Kahoots where they are learning about the countries and capitals, even about teams participating in the World Cup,” Baldaccini said. “Clev and I have also done World Cup-themed activities, where we name the teams after countries that are in the World Cup and do tournament- style play.”

Baldaccini also notes the newfound interest she has seen in many students due to this. One student that has been following the games since the beginning is junior Ariana Ortiz of Long Branch.

Unlike many other students, Ortiz is not supporting the United States, but rather the Ecuadorian team.

“The entire side of my mom’s family is Ecuadorian, and they are all heavily into soccer, which has made us all patriotic about wanting to support our country,” Ortiz explained. “I stick with my blood.”

Team U.S.A. came into the tournament with a squad of 26 players and the heart of America on their badges. And although the U.S. team was knocked out after its initial advancement into round 16, they captivated America’s fans.

U.S. Men’s National Team head coach Gregg Berhalter said his goal going into the World Cup was to, “change the way the world views U.S. soccer.” Berhalter worked his way toward achieving this goal, and although this U.S. team only made it past the group stage, they showed more talent and promise for the future than any cohort before them.

With an average age of 25 years- old, the U.S. team was the second youngest team in the tournament. The U.S.’s young talent is paramount compared to the years before, with the likes of Weston McKennie, Timothy Weah, Christian Pulisic, who has been nicknamed “Captain America” by fans of the U.S. team, and 19-year-old Giovvani Reyna, who is the son of U.S. soccer legend Claudio Reyna. This US team seems to be a serious contender, especially when they take home turf in the 2026 pan-American tournament.

The games have been more exciting than ever, with the ability to hold the attention of large crowds, both inside and outside CHS. These incredibly exhilarating games have become the perfect way to introduce groups around the world to the amazing sport of soccer.