First Take

Yuma Sun - - NEWS - By Grady Gar­rett, sports editor

We — United States sports fans like my­self — have al­most made it.

The worst part of the United States Men’s Na­tional Team miss­ing the 2018 World Cup was that it — the de­ci­sive loss to Trinidad and Tobago on Oct. 10 — hap­pened more than seven months be­fore the World Cup.

For seven months, we’d have to lis­ten to all the buildup while know­ing the United States wasn’t go­ing to be a part of it.

With the World Cup start­ing this week, that buildup has reached its peak. Read­ing through team-by-team pre­views, it’s painful not see­ing the United States in there.

While I’ll en­joy the World Cup nonethe­less, it’ll be some­what of a re­lief when it’s over — or at least half-over.

Three weeks from now, the loss to Trinidad and Tobago will no longer mat­ter, be­cause even if the U.S. had made it, our at­ten­tion would be turned to 2022 at that point any­way.

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