BOSTON (CBS) — The entire country is getting swept up in the excitement of the World Cup, and with the fourth-highest TV ratings in the U.S., Boston is among the most soccer-crazed cities this year.

To help capitalize on that excitement, Boston mayor Marty Walsh and the New England Revolution will be hosting a viewing party at City Hall Plaza for Thursday’s 12 p.m. game against Germany.

The game begins at noon, but based on the enthusiasm that’s evident on sports pages and on sports radio, the crowd is sure to be a big one.

The Revolution street team, known as the Battalion, will be on hand for giveaways and activities, while team mascot Slyde and the Rev Girls will be in the crowd as well.

City Hall Plaza didn’t host many large gatherings following the Patriots’ first Super Bowl parade in February 2002, but that’s changed in recent years as the Boston Calling music festival has grown into a very popular event at the location.

If the U.S. wins or draws against Germany, they will advance past the group stage and into the knockout round. A U.S. loss would not end their 2014 World Cup run, though they would need help from the Ghana-Portugal game in order to advance.

The United States nearly defeated Portgual on Sunday before giving up a goal in the final minute of stoppage time. The game ended in a draw, but it was the most-watched soccer game in American history. Watch parties around the country, including particularly large ones in Kansas City and New York City, were shown on the broadcast.



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