Dec 26, 2014, 10:11 AM EDT
As we prepare to turn the calendar to 2015, it is once again time to look back on another great year for Notre Dame and the Monogram Club. Over the next several days, we’ll continue to recap the significant Monogram initiatives, events and accomplishments from 2014. The summer marked a historic moment for Notre Dame men’s soccer…
To say it has been a big year for Matt Besler (‘09) might be an understatement.
Last December, the former Irish soccer standout helped lead Sporting Kansas City to the 2013 MLS Cup. A week later, he got married. This summer, Besler became the first Notre Dame soccer player to suit up for the United States men’s national team in the FIFA World Cup.
The former All-American and Academic All-American asserted himself as a key member of the USMNT, starting all four matches during the team’s run in Brazil.
Thanks to a 2-1 victory over Ghana and a 2-2 draw with Portugal, the U.S. emerged from the so-called “Group of Death” and advanced to the Round of 16. On July 1, the U.S. battled Belgium to a scoreless tie in regulation, before ultimately dropping a 2-1 decision in extra time.
It was an exciting few weeks for the United States, as fans rallied together for game watches in bars, stadiums and city streets around the country. It was especially enjoyable for Notre Dame and the Monogram Club to watch one of our own starring on his sport’s biggest stage.
Last month, Besler returned to campus for the first time in three years, where he was honored on the field during the football game versus Louisville, and had the opportunity to watch the Irish and his brother Nick (a senior midfielder) defeat Ohio State in an NCAA Second Round game.