With the FIFA World Cup 2014 going on, looks like the whole world seems to be soccer crazy. Three astronauts, two from United States, Reid Wiseman and Steve Swanson, and one from Germany, Alexander Gerst, played soccer in space.
In space, thorugh the space station's Internet connection, they've been watching bits and pieces of the World Cup games as and when they have the time in their hands. Looks like the World Cup has so much power that even when you're in orbit, you don't want to miss it.
A match, so-called "Group of Death, between the United States and Germany, being played on 26 June, will determine who qualifies from Group G. This has struck a chord with the astronauts from the countries, United States and Germany. The astronauts seem to have their personal stakes in this match.
NASA has released a video, to celebrate the upcoming match between the two teams, of the astronauts playing soccer and showing off their skills in space. The video, captured from the station's robot astronaut, Robonaut 2, has displays of upside down kicks, a header and sideline cheering action as well.
Alexander Gerst, the astronaut from Germany said, "If the U.S. wins, these guys are going to draw a little U.S. flag on my head, but I think if Germany wins these guys should have to shave their heads. Either way I'm looking forward to the game. It's going to be fun."
NASA has made full use of the opportunity to display to the world what programs are currently going on and what's happening with it. International Space Station is a collaboration involving five different space agencies and 15 countries. Started in 1998, the construction on the immense structure has been continuously occupied by rotating crews since November 2000.
In a video released a day before FIFA started, on June 12, the first video of them playing soccer in space was released and in that video, Gerst said, "We want to wish all the teams and fans on the ground and in Brazil a great World Cup. Have fun and have peaceful games. May the best win."