As every soccer fan knows, tomorrow begins the greatest sporting event on the planet: The 2014 FIFA World Cup. Thirty-two teams representing thirty-two nations all vying for the Jules Rimet Trophy.
Will the Jurgen Klinnsman-led U.S. team make it out of the Group of Death? How will Lionel Messi perform with Argentina? What kind of factor will home field play into for host Brazil? These and many more questions will be answered over the next six weeks.
We want you to get involved. MLSsoccer.com is hosting a special Brazil Bracket Challenge where you can pick your teams and predict how far they'll go all the way up to the final. It's free to play and you can join other Timbers fans in the official Portland Timbers Supporters group.
But that's not all, we've asked Timbers players to give us their predictions so you can see how your selections stack up against them (and/or crib notes to help fill your own bracket out):
Not surprisingly, Diego Valeri picks his native Argentina to win it all:
Need more help on your picks? The FiveThirtyEight stats gurus created this beautiful statistical probability chart of who they think will make it out of the group stage forward through the knockouts. Also, MLSsoccer.com is providing wall-to-wall coverage of the World Cup. Some more:
And of course, you can always turn to Twitter for ideas. They'll be in the thick of the #WorldCup discussion:
But you'd better hurry.
Brackets lock tomorrow at 11am PT. EXTENDED TO 12:30PM PT TODAY!
It's going to be a busy month of soccer!