With the United States now out of the World Cup, Americans who do not have a built-in allegiance to any of the remaining teams might be looking for the right country to cheer.

Of the eight teams left, each won its group stage, which is the first time that has happened since the current format began in 1998. Here's a case for why each nation could be the one for you:

Which Nation Should American Fans Cheer Now That U.S. Is Out Of World Cup? Slideshow


Brazil, Group A

Brazil could be the first host nation to win the World Cup since France in 1998. Brazil has 18 players that go by a single name, making cheering for the team a much easier task than other nations.


Netherlands, Group B

The Flying Dutchmen opened the tournament by shellacking Spain 5-1 in a rematch of the 2010 World Cup Final and cruised into the knockout stage for the third time. The Dutch bring their bright orange jerseys, making them look more like the Flying Pumpkins. But either way, we all know that Orange Is The New Black.


Colombia, Group C

Colombia moved into the quarterfinals with performances that could double as a Dancing With The Stars audition. If you like to shake it and move it, Colombia is your team. Another reason? Since Andres Escobar was killed after perpetrating an own goal in Colombia's loss to the U.S. in 1994, this is just the second time Colombia has qualified for the World Cup.


Costa Rica, Group D

If you want an underdog story, look no further. Costa Rica is the smallest nation left in the tournament with a population of 4.64 million. Costa Rica was a 40-to-1 longshot, but it has already defeated Uruguay and Italy in group play. It beat Greece in the round of 16 in a penalty shootout after going down to 10 men in the 66th minute. It is the last CONCACAF team after the U.S. and Mexico lost in the round of 16. Next up is the Netherlands.


France, Group E

This is the most interesting case in the whole tournament. France has made 13 appearances in the World Cup, winning in 1998 on home soil. France did not qualify in 1990 or 1994 before its title in 1998. From 2002-2010, France finished 28th, second and 29th, respectively. In 2010, French players threatened to walk out due to differences with the coaching staff. But France can make some history if it wins as its coach, Didier Deschamps, was captain of the 1998 World Cup championship team.


Argentina, Group F

Argentina has reached the quarterfinals largely because of superstar Lionel Messi. Argentina has not won the World Cup since 1986 when it was led by another superstar, Diego Maradona, and it needed help from God's other hand. That might be the case again, but let's not overlook the possibility. Argentina easily won its group, but struggled before winning in extra time against a Swiss team the does not have the strongest attack. Argentina can knock out Belgium in the next round, which should be pretty good reason for American fans to back it.


Germany, Group G

The German team has been referred to as a "well-oiled machine" more than the collection of spectacular human talent. Thomas Muller has nine World Cup goals and he is only 24. No European team has ever won a World Cup in the Western Hemisphere. Germany, France and Netherlands all look to end that trend. If you need another reason to cheer for Germany, it was in the same group as the United States.


Belgium, Group H

It is hard to imagine that any American would cheer for the team that knocked the United States out of the tournament, unless they subscribe to the "well, at least we got beat by the champs" school of thought. Here are some other reasons. If you don’t like Lionel Messi, cheer for Belgium. If you love a country with beautiful architecture and scenic countryside, and enjoy fluffy golden waffles, then by all means cheer for Belgium. And if you enjoy watching soccer while drinking a nice cold beer, remember that Budweiser is now owned by a Belgium corporation.

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