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Will Ferrell, Teddy Goalsevelt Pump Up U.S. Fans

"I'm not going to lie to you — I'm not in the best shape," Will Ferrell told American soccer fans in Brazil last night, after being announced as a mock World Cup replacement by U.S. Soccer.

The comedian paid a surprise visit to a rally for fans on the eve of the U.S. soccer team's showdown with Germany, sending the crowd into a frenzy after being unveiled as its "secret weapon."

"I'm so honored to be playing tomorrow," Ferrell said. He later added, "I'm not in soccer shape right now, but I'm going to try my best to live up to the spirit of this American team."

The rally was held in Recife, where today's game is slated to begin at noon, ET. We'll be live-blogging the event here at The Two-Way.

Last night, Ferrell unveiled a special plan to be enacted if the score gets close.

"I will bite the opponent," he said, in a reference to the controversy surrounding Uruguay's Luis Suarez. "I will bite every German player, if I have to."

And then, inexplicably and yet understandably, Ferrell pointed out a fan who was wearing a Miami Heat jersey. He led a howling chorus of boos.

"That's going to be a great memory for you one day," said Ferrell, a noted fan of the L.A. Lakers.

The unwelcome jersey also garnered a shake of the head from Mike D'Amico, the recently anointed U.S. superfan whose habit of dressing as Theodore Roosevelt made him a Twitter star after TV broadcasts showed him cheering the Americans in Sunday's game against Portugal.

Thursday's game against Germany could be played under heavy rains; portions of Recife were reportedly flooding Thursday.

Who better to guide a U.S. Soccer vehicle through floodwaters, then, than the man dressed as the president who built the Panama Canal? That's the scene U.S. Soccer shared this morning, via Twitter.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Bill Chappell is a writer and editor on the News Desk in the heart of NPR's newsroom in Washington, D.C.
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