I suspect that the World Cup in North America is one of the most popular sports which is not talked about very much, if that makes sense. Here at my work I know many people who got up at the crack of dawn on Friday last week to catch the first match. None of us had spoken about 'soccer' previously.
Each year I get excited at World Cup time because when I go to a local sports bar for lunch and a dark creamy tapped beverage there is actually something to watch other than the Bahama workout.
As I noted to somebody else, it has the distinct benefit of providing something to watch in the middle of the night (between counter-strike matches) that is actually _Interesting_.