It’s that time again: World Cup 2018, when the great teams of soccer clash for month-long play in 11 cities in Russia. This year, stunningly, there is no Netherlands, no Italy, no Chile, no United States, and no Canada. I’m sure there are other powerhouses who won’t be there, so forgive me if I’ve not mentioned a team of note.

This year’s 32 contenders are shown in this graphic:

Group2

Our family likes to choose teams to cheer to the end, with each of us choosing one team. This year, Aubrey and Scott’s partners are joining in the fun. How not, with a $100 prize for the winner? Our choices are:

Aubrey: Argentinamascot
Dave: Peru
Scott: Belgium
Indy: Spain
Tom: Spain
Ann: Brazil

The games begin June 14 and run through July 15.

Here’s to the hope for great matches, laudable refereeing, and good sportsmanship on all sides. (I can live and hope, right?)