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El Rincon hosts fans of FIFA World Cup

Customers enjoy viewing the World Cup at El Rincon. CW | Justin Barnett

Matt Moore

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Thersea and Jesus Avianeda have achieved several accomplishments throughout the past nine World ?Cups, going back 32 years. The couple moved to the United States from Buena Vista, Mexico, in 1991 and opened the El Rincon Latino Bar and Grill on the ?Strip in 2004.

“We opened the restaurant because we wanted to share our culture,” ?Thersea said.

After moving to America, Jesus worked as a grill cook in a Mexican restaurant while Thersea stayed home ?and raised a family. During his career ?as a grill cook, Jesus learned how to craft the mexican staples he and his wife serve, including fajitas, enchiladas ?and margaritas.

According to Brian Steinberg, senior television editor for Variety, more ?than seven million Americans tuned in to ESPN and Univision during the first few days of the World Cup, only slightly less than the typical audience of a new Modern Family episode.

In addition to television sets, soccer has permeated college culture, and Theresa said business at the ?restaurant has increased slightly during the World Cup. At El Rincon, ?several groups of UA students gathered to ?watch the United States take on ?Portugal on Sunday night.

“We don’t watch much Major League Soccer, but we have been watching ?the World Cup,” Cade Ingram, a junior majoring in marketing, said.

Ingram said he has followed the ?World Cup through social media, the ?use of which could be a reason for soccer’s increasing fandom in the America.

While an expanding Latino population, heightened social media presence and recent U.S. success in soccer ?have all propelled the sport’s popularity in recent years, the appeal remains ?simpler for others.

“There’s been a sense of patriotism,” said Laken Sisk, a sophomore majoring in business administration. “I saw a truck yesterday with a giant American flag, ?and I was like, ‘Yeah! Go America!’”

While the World Cup doesn’t enjoy ?the same level of fervor that other ?sports have in America, the sport is growing. The United States tied Portugal on Sunday and faces Germany ?this Thursday.

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Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894
El Rincon hosts fans of FIFA World Cup