Students are captivated by the World Cup


Ellie Levine, LT

Junior Dalia Greenblum watches a world cup game before her math class.

Ellie Levine, Reporter

Three weeks ago, the 22nd World Cup opened in Qatar. Since its start date on Nov 21st, the competition has found its place in CESJDS, with students glued to their screens between passing periods, hoping to catch even a moment of a game. 

32 teams competed in what is called the group stage, which determines what teams make it into the final sixteen, also called the knockout stage. In these games, teams are eliminated if they lose. The knockout stage began on Saturday, with the US falling to the Netherlands by a score of 3-1. 

“I was rooting for the US to win and was really sad to see them lose,” sophomore Tali Brenner said. 

The JDS community has picked up this major event with passion and a sense of community, as many students can be seen discussing or watching the games together throughout the day. However, the fact that the games are in Qatar has made it difficult for students to watch entire games due to the eight-hour time difference and the fact that most of the games occur during school hours.

“It’s really difficult that the teachers won’t let us watch something that happens once every four years and is really important to me,” junior Sela Wertlieb said 

Last week, for the US vs. Iran game in which the US needed to win to move on to the knockout stage, a large portion of the senior class left school to go to a bar to watch the game. Senior and boys varsity soccer player, Ben Bass, was a part of that group and described the initial atmosphere as tense, but once the US scored the “vibe loosened up a bit.”

“Watching a game like USA vs. Iran with like 200 people was a super cool experience,” Bass said. 

Bass has been watching soccer his entire life and is especially excited to follow the Brazil team this year. 

“I’ve never seen Brazil win a World Cup so I watch every game to see who their potential opponents are,” Bass said. 

Wertlieb has also been following every game closely and finds that watching the World Cup has inspired her in her own soccer journey. 

“I can look up to these players and learn from them even by just watching them through a screen,” Wertlieb said.

It is not only soccer fans who have gotten into the spirit of the World Cup, many students who paid no attention to soccer before this week have embraced the sport, including junior Evan Pearlman.

“It was especially fun to watch my team, USA, in the World Cup for the first time in eight years,” Pearlman said.

The excitement of the World Cup is only beginning as the group stage came to an end on Dec 2nd, and the tournament stage began on Dec 3rd. As the tournament is in progress and final competitions approach, students are looking forward to the end game.