The sixth annual Modern Foreign Languages and Literaturs soccer tournament kicked off at the Regal Soccer Stadium Wednesday. The Italian club created the event, and a total of nine language programs (French, Italian, Arabic, Portuguese, Chinese, Japanese, Spanish, German and Russian) participated. Each game lasted 20 minutes with five minutes of halftime break.
“It’s much better this year,” Savannah Householder, who represented the Chinese team, said. “There are more people who came to support. The jerseys are much nicer and everyone is more excited.”
The first round featured matchups between the Japanese and the Russians, Spanish and Arabic, German and Portuguese and the reigning French champions and Italian team.
Italian supporters came out in full force; the Italian team had never won the tournament.
After the first round of tournament, the Japanese dance team performed during halftime.
Students organize teams and practice leading up to the tournament. The language programs provide the jerseys.
Students like Jacob Isber enjoy the opportunity to play against other language students.
“It’s bringing a bunch of people together,” Isber, who represented the Arabic team, said. “It’s my first time. We love it. We are having a great time, because it’s like a mini-world cup. It’s pretty sweet.”
However, not everyone remained happy during the tournament. The Chinese versus Spanish matchup included a goal controversy that heated arguments between coaches and referees.
The Spanish fouled a Chinese player four seconds before the end of game, and the Chinese earned a free kick. With an automatic clock, the time never stopped, and the game ended.
The referee kept his own time accounting for extra time, however. The Spanish team became agitated because time expired. The team thought the judge awarded an unfair penalty kick. As no Spanish goalkeeper showed up, the Chinese kicked the ball into the open net and won by 3-2.
The Italian team ultimately swept the tournament, marking its first win.
Featured Images: Jeff Park
Edited by Lexie Little