As many U.S. soccer enthusiasts, I was able watch the 1994 World Cup. I was able to see the quarterfinal match between Brazil and the Netherlands at the Cotton Bowl Stadium, Dallas, Texas. This was my first time seeing the Brazilian soccer fan in person. I am proud to say that they are the greatest soccer fans anywhere.
I was enrolled at the University of Colorado in Boulder, Colorado, in 1994. My soccer coach asked me to take my coach, a live score player in the team, to Texas for the quarterfinal match. We purchased two cheap tickets to Houston from Denver. My friend was feeling ill so she stayed at the hotel while I explored the NASA Johnson Space Center. We rented a car the next day and drove four hours to Dallas. This was my first encounter with Brazilian soccer fans. All of them were dressed in yellow and green. They marched in a joyful mood, screaming and banging their drums. The Cotton Bowl was full to capacity, and there was an orange contingent of Netherlands soccer fans.
The most thrilling quarterfinal match was between Brazil and Netherlands on July 9, 1994 in Dallas. Brazil was victorious in their group B, beating Russia and Cameroon and tied Sweden. The Netherlands won Group F after beating Saudi Arabia and losing to Belgium. Morocco then beat the Netherlands. The Netherlands defeated Ireland 2-0, while Brazil beat the U.S. 1-1 in the round 16. The actual quarterfinal match (capacity of 64,500 at Cotton Bowl) was scoreless in the first half. Romario, Brazil scored the first goal in 53 minutes and Bebeto scored in the 63rd. The Netherlands’ Dennis Bergkamp scored in the 64th minutes, while Winter of the Netherlands scored the equalizer goal at the 76th. Brasilian fans were riveted until Branco’s goal in the 81st minutes. Brazil defeated the Netherlands 3-2 in an exciting quarterfinal match. The Brazilian fans exhaled and celebrated in the streets. Brazil defeated Sweden 1-0 in semi-finals, and Italy beat Brazil 3-2 in the final on penalty kicks to become first team to win four consecutive World Cups. I was astonished to see the Brazilian fans cheering on their team in the 1994 quarterfinals match.