Host nation Qatar vs. Ecuador kicked off the 29-day tournament.
"We’re really excited for this World Cup; we’ve been watching World Cup since childhood," Austin resident and soccer player Sujan Pokhrel said.
From young to old, Austin residents gathered to watch the first game to cheer their teams to victory.
"Soccer is gaining more popularity and that’s what I love about it," Pokhrel said.
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"It’s good to see that this sport is growing here, it’s getting more recognition," Austin resident Eduardo Campuzano said.
Some reminisced on their childhood. "It does mean everything. Growing up it was the sport that I would play every day with my friends and family. It’s a big part of our culture," Campuzano said.
Others looked forward to the future.
FOX 7 Austin asked four-year-old Evelyn Tovar if she wanted to play soccer in the future and she replied, "Yes."
The first Team USA match is Monday against Wales.
- Mon, Nov. 21: United States vs. Wales: 1 p.m. CST, FOX 7
- Fri, Nov. 25: England vs. United States: 1 p.m. CST, FOX 7
- Tue, Nov. 29: Iran vs. United States: 1 p.m. CST, FOX 7
Should the U.S. advance, those games will be on FOX as well.