While the likelihood of soccer’s impending popularity surge in the U.S. remains debatable, the real reason to watch the World Cup this month is pretty straightforward: Soccer players are sexy. The quadrennial extravaganza kicks off this Thursday, meaning we’re about to embark on a monthlong excuse to ogle 32 teams' worth of the world’s most sprightly, nimble, toned, and tanned men.
Soccer games also mark the only occasion that a grown man can wear a headband and, by some bizarre feat of rationality, not look any less hot. While longstanding headband-icon David Beckham seems to have forsaken the look along with his career, plenty of players are still using the handy elastics to keep their sweaty bangs out of their eyes. Click through the slideshow for a look at 20 hot men in headbands to keep an eye out for on the field.BEGIN SLIDESHOW