The world is currently being gripped by World Cup fever as the tournament rolls on in Russia, and it isn't just humans who are celebrating.
The World Cup is well underway in Russia. This is a soccer tournament that is staged every four years and is one of the biggest sporting events on the planet, aside from maybe the Olympic Games, but it's a close call. While the big guns are yet to really make a mark on the tournament, the likes of Mexico and Iceland have already gone about proving that they haven't made the trip just to make up the numbers.
Just because there are only 32 countries competing in the tournament doesn't mean the rest of the world can't enjoy the fun along with them. The United States failed to qualify for the World Cup for the first time since 1986, so interest in soccer there is likely at an all-time low. China didn't qualify either though, and the States could probably take a leaf from their book when it comes to enjoying the tournament nonetheless.
Some baby giant pandas at the Shenshuping Panda Base in Sichuan province, China have been celebrating the World Cup, and they don't seem to care that China isn't part of the official festivities. ABC News posted some photos of the bears and as you can see, they are downright adorable. Some of them are having fun with the soccer balls while others seem more content to play with the various national flags adorning their enclosure.
The World Cup does only come along once every four years, so if your country doesn't qualify then you can either embrace and enjoy it without the added pressure of hoping your nation doesn't lose or bury your head in the sand for another four years. China's people (and their pandas) are very much on the "enjoy and embrace" side of the argument as has been made abundantly clear by the bears.
It isn't just the pandas either. According to Russian state news agency, Tass, 100,000 Chinese fans have made the trip to Russia in order to be part of the tournament. The World Cup truly is a global event, and clearly, you don't need to be from the 32 qualified nations to be part of what is one of the biggest events on the globe today, sport related or otherwise.