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June 11, 2010   View Discussion

Mexico Takes on South Africa in World Cup Opener; Colbert Debates the Merits of the Sport

Yesterday, I gave readers some advice about how to get excited about the 2010 FIFA World Cup, which began this morning with a match between Mexico and South Africa.

This morning’s game started at 10:30am EST and it’s currently halftime, with the far-too-typical soccer score of 0-0. I’m sure there’s been some great jogging, though (Scroll down for Colbert’s take on the World Cup).

Also, if you weren’t aware, Mexico’s national soccer team is one of the most successful sports brands in the U.S. The Orange County Register reports:

The Mexican national team has not only exceeded Beckham as the top sales force in soccer in the United States but arrives at the 2010 World Cup in South Africa a sports brand on par with some of the biggest names in American sports. The team is a marketing colossus whose ticket sales, sponsorship and television numbers north of the border, to say nothing of a fan base with an unmatched passion, would be the envy of most NFL franchises. A team known to its faithful as “El Tri” for three-colored Mexican flag will make $20-million in the U.S. this year from corporate sponsorship alone, insiders estimate.

“I’ve always looked at the Mexico national team as being one of the biggest sports brands in America,” said Michael Hitchcock, a managing partner for Playbook Management International, a Texas-based sports and entertainment company, and the former general manager of MLS’ FC Dallas. “People like to talk about the (Dallas) Cowboys or (Los Angeles) Lakers but as far as the number of fans, the appeal of the team in all parts of the U.S., the corporate sponsorship, the TV ratings, Mexico has got to be one of the top sports brands in the U.S.”

Also, to complete the morning World Cup information grab-bag, take a moment to watch Colbert explain why you shouldn’t like a sport just because it’s popular:

The Colbert ReportMon - Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
Sport Report - Soccer Debate - Marc Fisher & Mark Starr
www.colbertnation.com
Colbert Report Full EpisodesPolitical HumorFox News
 

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