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West Palm World Cup Fans Show South American Solidarity During Uruguay Match

On a Friday morning in West Palm Beach, World Cup fans clad in sky blue took over the Argentine restaurant Al Pan Pan. South Floridians representing a host of different Latin American countries collectively cheered for their neighbor Uruguay in its match against France. 

Members of the crowd screamed, cried, and bit their nails during the quick 95-minute game.

Among the folds of Uruguayan flags stood patron Juan Iglesias, who is Cuban.

"Whoever's in that is a Latin country, you know I root for that," Iglesias said.

Fernando Cortez, who owns Al Pan Pan, is from Colombia. He said people naturally take sides as the World Cup progresses. 

"It's a rival now against Europe teams and South Americans," he said. "So, you know, we're cheering for South American teams. It's in everyone's heart to bring the cup to South America."

But the room's hopefulness deflated as France scored a first and then a second goal against Uruguay. The Europeans beat the South Americans in this round.

In the afternoon match, Brazil was eliminated by Belgium. No other team from the Americas remains in the World Cup. 

Credit Claire Thornton / WLRN News
Fans praying in the final minutes of the match, with Uruguay down 2-0.

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