World Cup Fever is Global in the U.S.

If you’ve seen a few more flags or heard cheers in your neighborhood for other countries around the world participating in World Cup 2014, don’t be surprised. With 13 percent of the U.S. population born in another country, it’s easy to find excited fans cheering on almost every team participating in this global competition that happens only once every four years. We created a map that connects each of the 31 non-U.S. countries participating in World Cup 2014 with a U.S. city where you’re likely to find residents who were born in that country. For example, there are a number of people who were born in Belgium but currently live in Santa Barbara, so it’s likely there will be some lively banter going on there during today’s match between the U.S. and Belgium. On the map, we’ve grayed out countries that are no longer participating as of June 30 and we’ll update through the end of the competition.


How did we do it?

We started with U.S. Census data for foreign-born residents across all metro areas in 2012, then narrowed it down to metro areas with at least 200,000 total residents and at least 100 residents born in the World Cup country. For this illustration, each city could only rank for one country. (Otherwise, we’d see clusters of countries in cities such as New York, D.C. and Miami, which have large populations of foreign-born citizens.) For example, once Miami ranked for Colombia, it was not able to rank for any other countries, even though the city also has a lot of residents who were born in Argentina and Uruguay.

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