Some theories suggest that collective emotions, in particular emotional entrainment as the feeling of affective attunement with others during rituals, can increase the identification with a social group. Furthermore, emotional entrainment is supposed to emotionally ‘charge’ group symbols that are part of ritual practices and influence group-related attitudes and solidarity even beyond the ritual context. This article tests these assumptions in a naturalistic study around the 2010 Football World Cup, which reliably generates emotional entrainment in a ritualized, nation-focused context. Results indicate that emotional entrainment during the tournament is a predictor of changes in national identification and the perceived emotional significance of national symbols after the tournament. Moreover, emotional entrainment partially mediates the relationship between pre- and post-World Cup national identification and the perception of national symbols.