Soccer and tennis are two sports I absolutely love watching and playing when I can. I was a little bummed when I found out there were no soccer teams for the Sleepy Eye schools. Soccer is one of those sports I wish was more popular because I love it so much.

Why do I love soccer? For one thing, it’s amazing to watch what the athletes can do. These players basically have to run around for two, 45 minute periods. Their ball handling, passing and teamwork skills are very impressive. Another main reason I enjoy it is because there are hardly any commercials if you watch it on TV. There are no timeouts, so the only commercials you see are during half-time. Yet another reason I enjoy soccer so much is the fans. Soccer fans get so much more into the game than any other sporting event. At any particular professional soccer match, you will always see fans dressed up in wacky outfits, hear various chants throughout the game, and of course, hear one or two vuvuzelas.

I could go on and on about why I love soccer so much, but I wanted to mention the FIFA World Cup. Right now, teams from all around the world are competing in World Cup qualifying matches to get a chance to become a competitor at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil. The U.S. Men’s Team has been doing very well and has a good chance of playing at the World Cup, which I plan on going to if I can. On March 26, they had a huge game versus Mexico in which they tied 0-0, which is a good thing believe it or not, because Mexico was the favor to win on their home field.

The U.S. isn’t especially known for our men’s soccer team, but now that they are actually doing quite well it’s pretty exciting. However, the U.S. is known for our women’s team, because they are one of the best women’s soccer teams in the world.

I’ve only been to one professional soccer match and it was a World Cup Qualifier last summer, and it was so much fun being there. Cheering for your country in a sport isn’t something you can do very often outside of the Olympics.

This brings me to my love for tennis. I played tennis for three out of four years at my Division 1 high school and I fell in love with playing and watching it since. It’s a great workout and you can play it your whole life. I try and watch the professional, major tournaments as much as possible and I try to find people to play with too.

Tennis is another sport the U.S. isn’t well known for. The best most recent men’s player we’ve had is probably Andy Roddick, but he recently retired which leaves us with nobody for now, which is too bad. But we do however still have Serena Williams and her dominant playing style in the womens. I grew up watching these players and it’s a blast to watch them now as veterans. Sometimes the final match of a big tournament such as the Australian Open is at three in the morning our time, so of course I have to stay up and watch the whole thing. We all know that watching a live event is way better than watching the replay the next day.

So, if there is anyone who wants to play tennis sometime, hit me up. And if you have never played, find a friend that has also never played and try it out. You might be surprised how fun it is and how well you can play after a while. Can you tell I’m excited for summer and summer sports? I think we all are at this point.