Panama City Beach, FL---It was an exciting, if not a roller coast kind of day for local soccer fans who gathered to watch the U.S. World Cup match. Team USA falling to Belgium in a 2-1, extra time thriller, in which nobody scored through the first two halves.
Then in the first extra time period, Belgium scored twice. The U.S. responded with a goal from Tampa born Julian Green in the second extra time, but that proved too little, too late.
Local fans though loving it all, with the exception of the outcome.
Once again Fishale Taphouse and Grill in Panama City Beach serving as a gathering place to watch the match.
A group of local fans called the American Outlaws adopting this place has it's meeting place for U.S. matches.
Once again the group showing up in strong and vocal numbers. A series of chants a part of the festivities, as well as the color and the flags, beads, hats and so on.
No doubt about it, these folks believe there is something about getting together to root on the U.S. team, that's unlike most other sports.
"When you look at U.S. soccer" says local fan Michael Wynn "it truly is about the passion on one side, versus the passion on the other side. Just as much as it is about the 11 men on the field for each team. And that's what it's all about, just showing how much you love and care for the team that you're pulling for."
"You can sit by yourself and watch it with a couple of guys." local fan Steve Camp told us. "But when you hear all the war chants, as I like to call them, and all the excitement and momentum of this, it really makes the pride of the USA, it's untouchable."
I asked another local fan, Bruce Lacle, who's a part of the "American Outlaws' if win or lose Tuesday, what this World Cup experience, means to both fans locally, and throughout the United States?
"Well you can see throughout the United States what's going on." Lacle told me. "And locally it's a great group. We finally got a following here, especially for the national group. We've got a local team, the Panama City Beach Pirates, we're gonna give them support also. But nationally, it's just amazing."
Worst part of all this, we have to wait four years to do it all again. The 2018 World Cup set for Russia.