Three Norwegian born players will be making their World Cup debuts with other national teams.
With the commencement of the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, residents of Scandinavian nations face the rare specter of no representative team(s) for which to root.
According to the 2009 book Soccernomics (a text that uses statistics, economics, and psychology to make calculations and predictions about the world of soccer), Norwegians represent the most dedicated soccer fans in the world.
Norwegian team failed
This calculation was derived by evaluating enthusiasm for playing soccer, live spectating, and TV viewing (a category dominated by Norwegian viewers).
Yet in spite of this national dedication to the sport, the Norwegian men’s team has failed to qualify for a world cup since 1998.
Sweden qualified for both the 2002 and 2006 World Cups while Denmark participated in the 2010 tournament in South Africa, giving fans the ability to at least cheer on a Scandinavian-based team. The 2014 World Cup is, thus, a rarity for Norwegian fans as there is not a clear team with which to support.
Russia, or three other options
For those living in the High North, Russia may be the closest team geographically, but for Norwegians seeking to support their countrymen there are, perhaps, three more viable options.
Three Norwegian born players will be making their World Cup debuts with other national teams.:
The United States features substitute midfielder Mikkel “Mix” Diskerud, a Norwegian born 23-year old and current Rosenborg club member. The Cote D’Ivoire team boasts a speedy midfielder in Norwegian-born Mathis Bolly.
Finally, the Ghana national team features substitute goalkeeper, and current player for Stromsgodset IF, Adam Kwarasey.
While all three have a fighting chance, Cote d’Ivoire seems most likely to advance out of their group (according to the Soccer Power Index) but all three teams provide Norwegians with plenty of options to view, and cheer on, players of Norwegian descent while establishing bonds with fans from around the world.
For more information about selecting a team (other than Norway) to cheer on, check out:
General information about the World Cup can be found at: