Barca Stuffed: Mes Que Un Petty Troll

I’ve written extensively here about the online soccersphere. Sometimes, I take potshots at sleazy mods and catty subreddits. Other times, I focus on copyright law and how trolls try to twist the arms of upstart sites who arguably follow the spirit and letter of the DMCA law. For example, I wrote about the US legal saga of the Spanish website RojaDirecta. Roja survived bogus DMCA complaints and even an illegal seizure by the US federal government.

However, this past December, many Barcelona fans noticed something strange: their beloved BarcaStuff disappeared. Here’s why. Continue reading “Barca Stuffed: Mes Que Un Petty Troll” »

Find my writing at these great sites……

In case you hadn’t noticed, I’ve been pretty busy. I have a wife and two kids. I have a full time job. Thus, due to time constraints, Futfanatico is now officially a once-a-week blog. I say this because I hate it when a blog or site just disappears with no explanation. I also refuse to alter the long-ish style and oddness of my posts here – I could try and write two-paragraph, snappy, sarcastic responses to the daily news, but that’s what Dirty Tackle is for.  Another pet peeve for me is when a crazy good site just turns into a link mini-post mill. Thus, for the record, I will be writing here once a week original posts not found elsewhere.

However, the biggest factor in my drop in time is that I have been writing elsewhere. Therefore, about once a month, I will post links to that writing. If you want to know about my writing elsewhere a bit quicker, follow me on twitter. Continue reading “Find my writing at these great sites……” »

Barack Obama Destroys Hope of US Soccer World Cup Win (Singlehandedly)

I am such a bleeding heart liberal that I need regular blood transfusions to prevent cardiac arrest. I will defend LBJ’s “Model Cities” initiative to the end, and not so secretly took some delight upon hearing of the passing of Ronald Reagan. During the two terms of George W. Bush, I lived in Spain, Portugal, Argentina, the Dominican Republic, and Nicaragua. If I spoke a third language other than Spanish and English, I probably would have moved to an even farther away country. Sadly, though, my Arabic and Mandarin Chinese are not so polished.

Thus, of course, I voted for Barack Obama and waited for him and government to immediately solve all of my life’s problems. And then he stabbed me in the back. Continue reading “Barack Obama Destroys Hope of US Soccer World Cup Win (Singlehandedly)” »

Top Secret Meeting of the Liverpool FC Transfer Committee

In the darkest of places, in an abandoned mine well below the depths of Moria, in a hole so deep you can hear the echoes from past Chinese New Year celebrations, lurks the cave…and the “committee.” Kinda. In truth, the cave is not a cave, but rather a series of caves, a maze of blackness so black it sucks in light, chews it up, and doesn’t bother to spit it out. If you’ve ever been lost in an IKEA around closing time, you know the full scale of absolute terror felt in a seemingly never ending labyrinth. You could fit at least two and a half IKEAs in this cave complex, if not 3.

And In this vast expanse of cold air, stalagmites, stalactites, mineral water and leather chairs, a table sits. And at this table sits the committee. Continue reading “Top Secret Meeting of the Liverpool FC Transfer Committee” »

A Premature Happy Holidays & Blogger Break Warning….

Don’t you hate it when your favorite bloggers stop blogging but in the blog don’t explain why they are not blogging or when they will resume regular blogging? Luckily, Futfanaatico is totally pro. I am traveling for Thanksgiving, hosting family for Christmas, and things will be spare around these particular parts. You may catch me on Twitter, you may not. Expect this Death Star to be rebuilt and fully operational by mid-January with some erratic planetary death rays here and there.

Luckily, though, I’ve been kicking it for Soccer Gods and Paste Soccer. You have plenty to read. Continue reading “A Premature Happy Holidays & Blogger Break Warning….” »

Affable Alexi Lalas Refuses to Badmouth US Soccer Group Whose Aim is His Imminent Destruction

Alexi Lalas has long been the “big tent” pundit of soccer in the United States. Whether it’s getting in a twitter spat with a US national team player or defending a less-than-popular idealist reformer, Alexi has taken the ACLU First Amendment position that “all speech is good speech.” At least if that speech is about soccer. For Alexi, the tent of US soccer is big enough for different opinions and stronger for encouraging robust debate and dissent.

However, one new US soccer group just may have tested his resolve. Continue reading “Affable Alexi Lalas Refuses to Badmouth US Soccer Group Whose Aim is His Imminent Destruction” »

The Klinsmann and MLS Row: Draining a Fountain of Youth?

Jeff Carlisle at ESPNFC got some juicy nuggets from MLS executives: apparently, many are pretty angry that Jurgen Klinsmann and his staff have nudged MLS academy players to sign for European Clubs instead of MLS teams. At issue is pride, but also money: many MLS academies waive fees for players, and thus cost around $600,000 a year to maintain. When you factor in that MLS is a closed system where players rarely transfer within MLS for transfer fees (sometimes allocation money, admittedly), you can understand the MLS owners’ gripes. They invest heavily to groom a garden of players, many of whom won’t reach the highest level, and some bird swoops down when they turn 18 and takes away the ripest fruit.

However, Christian Hambleton and Michael Wheeler at the Vanderbilt “JetLaw” site point out that MLS owners may be themselves to blame: they are leaving money on the table. Continue reading “The Klinsmann and MLS Row: Draining a Fountain of Youth?” »

The Dirty Tackle Blog is No More….

Free Darko. The Run of Play. The list of blogs worth reading shrinks every year. For six glorious years, Brooks Peck wrote irreverent and clever posts for the “Dirty Tackle” blog at Yahoo. In fact, I can recall the time before it was a Yahoo sports blog. I was very jealous of Brook’s neat WordPress theme and ability to digest and publish obscure soccer news before anybody else.

I was honored to write for Dirty Tackle about the bleak, last year of Raul Gonzalez’s career while in Germany at Schalke. As per DT style, the narrative form was a satirical diary, an exaggerated take on the possible inner person and workings of a player who we will never personally know, but upon whom we project certain characteristics and traits based on brief moments in time. Continue reading “The Dirty Tackle Blog is No More….” »

The Unpublishable Files: Top 10 Ways to Use the World Cup to Get Close with your Token Latino Friend/Coworker!

Now that I’ve entered this odd nether region between a blogger and free-lancer, you’ve seen my writing pop up at several sites around the webs. As you may have suspected, unlike at Futfanatico, those posts get edited by a person and I get paid. That’s created a dynamic where I pitch ideas to editors, some of which they like, some they don’t. Then I submit a piece of writing that is edited.

This current post was submitted to a few outlets during the past World Cup and one accepted the idea, but turned it into a really nice and positive part of a broader piece. I kinda like the claws, though. Deep down, I just may never stop being a snarky blogger. I couldn’t publish it during the World Cup because of a family situation, but I always felt this baby had to see the light of day. Will this be the start of a series of Unpublishables? Who knows. In a sense, this entire blog has been “Unpublishables” for about six years, so why change anything?

Without further delay, enjoy:

Continue reading “The Unpublishable Files: Top 10 Ways to Use the World Cup to Get Close with your Token Latino Friend/Coworker!” »

Struggles of EPL teams in Europe are wholly unprecedented and lead to thoughtful root-and-branch analyses

Oh, hello there. Dearest reader, I am going to write this post in first to second person. Why? Intimacy. Or at least the feeling of intimacy. You see, sometimes this cold, cold world of soccer journalism can feel foreign, icy, chilly, remote. Writers sometimes without a name or credit pen words where subjects precede verbs that are then followed by objects, with an adverb or adjective here or there. They talk about clubs and you ask yourself whether plural groups should be represented by singular or plural conjugations of verbs but it just gets a little stale. A bit old. A little not spicy. A bit trite.

But not today, Dearest reader (may I call you “Dearie”?). Today, just you and me, share a secret. Continue reading “Struggles of EPL teams in Europe are wholly unprecedented and lead to thoughtful root-and-branch analyses” »