It took nine hours and 21 minutes, but the United States men’s national soccer team finally landed in Sao Paulo, Brazil, to prepare for its first 2014 FIFA World Cup game next week against Ghana.
The 4,080 mile journey from Miami wasn’t the difficult part for the Americans. It was the four-mile drive from the airport to their hotel that created the most problems. A subway strike in Sao Paulo created worse-than-normal traffic congestion, and it took the team 45 minutes to get to their destination.
It wasn’t all bad, though. With Sao Paulo just one hour ahead of Eastern daylight time, the Americans hope that the fact that they don’t have to deal with a huge time change will benefit them.
“The first couple days of preparation are always hard when you can’t sleep,” said goalkeeper Tim Howard, per the AP. “So the fact that we won’t have any problem tonight sleeping will be certainly beneficial.”
The team didn’t waste any time getting ready as they held their first workouts just seven hours after they landed without coach Jurgen Klinsmann, who stayed in the United States to see Ghana play an exhibition game.