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American fans leave Terrace happy

Some fans came to the Memorial Union Thursday morning sporting the Stars and Stripes on their bandanas, scarves, shorts and socks. Others donned shirts emblazoned with the American flag and Declaration of Independence, or a bald eagle and bolts of lightning.

Another, smaller group was decked out in red, black and yellow: On leis, their cheeks and, for one girl, a pair of bunny ears.

They gathered under sunny skies on the Memorial Union Terrace and in the building’s Rathskeller the German style beer hall with steins and German murals along its walls to watch the American soccer team take on Germany in the World Cup.

And whatever colors they wore, both groups of fans left the Union happy after a 1 0 German victory that nevertheless punched the Americans’ ticket into the second round of the tournament.

It was a day for American fans to celebrate the big picture: Despite the loss, their team made it out of the “Group of Death,” having beaten Ghana,Cheap Jerseys china fallen to a dominant German squad and tied Portugal. surrendered a tying goal in the game’s final moments, after looking poised to claim an upset victory.

“I’m a lot happier with the loss today than I was with the tie on Sunday,” said Dan Pasquerelli, who dyed his hair red, white and blue before watching the game from the Terrace.

For the smaller German contingent it was a game to be proud of a win that sealed their victory in the group stage and sent them rolling into the second round.

“It’s just what I was hoping for,” German fan Timo Schopfer said, “none of us getting kicked out.”

A cluster of German fans sat near the back of the Rathskeller crowd during the game, where they chatted with their American counterparts and amicably disagreed on a few calls.

Among the German supporters was UW Madison professor Anja Wanner, who said of the rivalry, “It’s competitive but it’s friendly.”

Some fans kept one eye on their laptops, streaming video of the match between Portugal and Ghana. team lost, and if the Portugal Ghana game went just the wrong way, there was a chance the Americans could be eliminated from the World Cup.

The nervous energy in the Rathskeller rose, fans’ frustrations evident in groans every time the Germans took back the ball they had owned for much of the game. But then, in a moment American fan Alex Meier described as “pure relief,” Portugal scored to take a 2 1 lead on Ghana. If the scores held up, the Americans would move on.

The mood in Der Rathskeller lifted as fans cheered their way through the final minutes of a sweet defeat for American soccer.

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