|Zusi #19 scores a goal against Jamaica. Players celebrate accordingly. Image from wsj.com.|
But let's not beat around the bush here. The underlying truth is this: Soccer players are Fucking Hot. Capital F. Capital H.
Millions of fangirl pixels have been dedicated to international superstars like Iker Casillas, Gerard Pique (Shakira's baby daddy), and Cristiano Ronaldo, among dozens of others. And make no mistake, these guys are Fucking Hot. However, in this case, I would be remiss in my patriotic duty if I didn't profile the Fucking Hot players who will be representing my own country this year in Brazil.
I can't help it. This level of hotness makes me...jingoistic. Springsteen, Elvis, James Brown, Ford, rock n' roll, bubble wrap, bubble gum, neuticles--these things make me proud to be an American, as do the following players on USA's World Cup 2014 team.
It should be noted that not all of these players were born in the U.S.A. or even have close ties to America. But we are enlisting their feet for the scoring of American goals, and that's what counts.
For reference, here is the entire droolworthy roster so far.
|Image from ussoccer.com.|
Now, in no particular order, I offer up five players for blatant objectification.
1. Kyle Beckerman
This midfielder is 32 years old and team captain for Real Salt Lake. 2014 is his first World Cup appearance. The dreads are a signature. If they turn you off, look a little closer. Beckerman is a lantern-jawed cutie. He's also a newlywed who has big enough cojones to take Pinterest-style engagement photos with his lady, Kate Pappas.
|Kyle Beckerman. Image from onthefiredotcom.|
|Kyle Beckerman's tats. Image from mlssoccer.com.|
|Kyle Beckerman. Image from globalfootballtoday.com.|
|Kyle Beckerman and Kate Pappas. Aw. Image from saltlakebrideandgroom.com.|
2. John Brooks
This defender is 21 years old and plays for Hetha Berlin. Raised in Berlin, Brooks is the son of an American serviceman and holds dual citizenship for both the U.S. and Germany. He's also 6-foot-4 inches of pure, strapping rawr.
|John Brooks. Image from rapgenius.com.|
|Map tattoos showing where Brooks' father's family is from (Chicago) and where he grew up (Berlin). Image from meninblazers.com.|
|John Brooks in action. Image from ussoccer.com.|
Midfielder Mikkel "Mix" Morgenstar Pålssønn Diskerud (whew) is 23 years old and plays for Rosenborg BK, a Norwegian team. Born in Oslo, Mix's mother is from Arizona, so Mix holds dual citizenship for both the U.S. and Norway. I think he looks like Prince Charming.
|Mix Diskerud. Image from azkicksit.com.|
|Oh, my God. He's beautiful. Mix Diskerud. Image from espnfc.com.|
|In action. Mix Diskerud. Image from www.sbnation.com.|
This 23-year-old striker plays for Alkmaar in the Netherlands. He was born in Mobile, Alabama, to Icelandic parents, who moved back to Iceland when he was three. His resemblance to a young Kevin Bacon is celebrated in this fan video, where you can watch him warming up to "Footloose." What a charmer.
|Aron Johannsson. Image from www.mlssoccer.com.|
|Aron Johannsson totally looks like a young Kevin Bacon. Image from newsoficeland.com.|
|Aron Johannsson, right, and Charlie Mulgrew of Scotland, left. Image from cdn.spundge.com.|
5. Graham Zusi
Midfielder Zusi is my favorite on the team not for any substantive reason, but because he's cute and has nice hair. Born in Florida, 27-year-old Zusi plays for Sporting Kansas City. Last year he scored a goal against Panama that meant Mexico would advance to the next round. Fans across Mexico dubbed him San Zusi, or Saint Zusi.
|Graham Zusi. Image from www.mlssoccer.com.|
|Graham Zusi after a 2-0 against South Korea. Image from www.empireofsoccer.com.|
|Graham Zusi. You know he's got the goods under that jersey. Image from www.sportingkc.com.|
|Graham Zusi. Blarglarghghgh. Image from worldsoccertalk.com.|
So there you have it. Five hotties from Team USA. I encourage you to explore the lineup on your own and when World Cup kicks off in about a week and a half, you'll know who to keep an eye on.
P.S. One more for posterity. Carlos Bocanegra is not on this year's national team. But two years ago he posed for the ESPN Body Issue, a choice for which I will never, ever forgive him. Ever.