Even though the US lost to Belgium 2-1, there was arguably one US player who came out of the match a winner: goalie Tim Howard.
Howard’s impressive play against 27 shots on goal – the most faced by a goalie in the World Cup in nearly 50 years – earned him fans both in the US and abroad. And it earned him a World Cup meme of his very own: #ThingsTimHowardCouldSave.
Naturally, Howard was inserted into other World Cup scenes (and inspirations for memes):
Could Tim Howard have stopped Suarez’s bite?
Perhaps he could have stopped the Netherlands’ Arjen Robben from taking a dive.
Or Maradona’s famous “Hand of God” goal.
Howard makes appearances in other sports, too:
But he’s not only limited to athletics – Howard is seen making historical saves:
Howard saves the Titanic.
Keeping the Leaning Tower of Pisa from falling.
If only Tim Howard was around during prehistoric times.
And pop culture saves – think of the movies that would’ve been changed if Tim Howard was in them:
He could’ve saved Private Ryan.
Bambi would’ve been a very different movie if Tim Howard was there.
Star Wars too.
With Tim Howard around, it’s safe to go into the water again.
But perhaps the best thing to come out of this meme for Howard? If he ever decides to retire, he’ll have other career options:
Of the countless number of World Cup souvenirs in Brazil, the most sought-after may be one you can’t buy.
Selfies – taking a picture of yourself with a smartphone – have become immensely popular worldwide. So it’s no surprise that fans are coming to Brazil with cell phones in hand, hoping to get a selfie with their favorite player. And a lucky few have been able to do just that, and walk away with what may be the ultimate World Cup memento.
Brazilian President Dilma Roussef kicked off the trend with World Cup stadium construction workers:
Since then, fans have been seeking selfies with some of their favorite players – Javier Hernandez of Mexico:
Ecuador’s Jorge Guagua:
Italy’s Mario Balotelli:
Italy’s Gianluigi Buffon and Daniele De Rossi:
But it’s not just the players that are getting attention from fans – coaches, like Netherlands’ Louis Van Gaal, are too:
And even the players can get starstruck, resulting in a memorable photo. Take Germany’s Lukas Podolski, who was able to snag a selfie with German Chancellor Angela Merkel after Germany’s 4-0 rout of Portugal:
But the prize for best football selfie has to go to Team Mexico. Not only did they get a selfie with Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto…
…they were able to fit the entire team into the photo!
Robin van Persie, the Flying Dutchman. (AP | Christophe Ena)
Robin van Persie was just trying to help the Netherlands defeat Spain in their opening Group B match on June 13 – he surely wasn’t looking to become an Internet sensation.
But van Persie managed to do both: his spectacular header didn’t just contribute to the Netherlands’ 5-1 rout of Spain, but inspired thousands of internet memes and earned him the nickname “The Flying Dutchman.”
In the days following his impressive performance, fans around the world have Photoshopped van Persie’s famous shot into various positions and locations…
…from World Cup-related shots…
…to pop culture references…
…to locations around the world…
…it’s even inspired a flipbook…
…and a hashtag – #Persieing!