Futfanatico is a blog for the people and by the people. Thus, once again, we surveyed some American soccer fans on what they thought about the recent US-Soccer game and international soccer friendlies in general. The responses are not surprising, but still are illuminating. Continue reading “Ask An American Soccer Fan: International Friendlies” »
We’ve all seen the EPL on NBC ads. The execution is amusing and I did chuckle a bit. However, the undertone is depressingly similar to the lamestream “soccer as other” take. The premise is that soccer is “foreign” and thus we should dislike it. This is very similar to the “soccer as feminine” line of thought. Both attempt to depict the United States as a proudly nativist, robust heterosexual male who dominates all worthy endeavors. Soccer is foreign and feminine, and thus will “never catch on.”
I don’t give two shits if soccer goes mainstream. I love the sport. But, with your indulgence, I’d like to write as an abrasive talk show radio host and take the opposite angle on soccer and the US.
Continue reading “Soccer has an “America” problem and it’s not what you think” »
Yes, I’m on a blogging break. However, I still get around. That is to say, I am ambulatory. My legs function. I walk. I stand. I move. My hands also enjoy a full range of movement, not limited to swiping on an iPad and typing on an ergonomic keyboard. Here are some cool spots where you can find my written word on soccer: Continue reading “Elliott Turner Continues to Get Around” »
It is easier to destroy than to create. Everybody is an expert at second-guessing everybody else, and the internet now allows millions of folks sitting at computers to hate on any person, team, and object under the sun. This is especially true of sports teams, and, more decidedly, the coaches of those teams. Recently, more US fans have started to follow soccer. Some have even drawn their beads on our current head coach, Jurgen Klinsmann. There’s just one problem: he’s led the US to four straight World Cup qualifying victories and a deep Gold Cup run.
Despite this recent run, though, no coach is bulletproof. Haters will hate. However, it’s not enough to just hate – you need some ammunition to be able to spread your hatorade. Just follow these ten tips and you will be able to criticize any national team coach at any time, including Jurgen Klinsmann, no matter how much they succeed. Continue reading “Soccer Coaches and the Dark Art of Surreptitious Ad Hominem” »
Bilingual fans of the USMNT often enjoy the dual delight of Spanish and English language TV broadcasts. We benefit from selection and competition. If an anglo announcer is disinterested or off his game, then we can switch to Univision a familiar cry of “Gooooolllllll!!!!” If the latinos are a bit over the top, then we can flip over to some dry humor and light commentary. As the USMNT has incorporated more chicano (American of Hispanic descent) players, though, an annoying trend has started: negative and sometimes offensive nicknames for chicano players.
At least in Spanish-language broadcasts. Continue reading “Just What Makes Edgar Castillo a “Homie”?” »
If you are here, it is because of a mis-indexed search engine keyword or you like reading about soccer. If you like reading about soccer, then you should subscribe to XI Quarterly, a fine North American publication. For under $50, you get four glorious issues in print and in digital format (via Zinio). I am a subscriber and the ‘zine jumps off my iPad’s screen. It is a pleasure to read and gorgeously designed.
The USMNT announced the home stadium locations for the remaining World Cup qualifiers. The selected locations are Seattle, Salt Lake, Kansas City, and Columbus. I’m not going to name names, but lots of folks were happy with the selection for a simple reason: these cities don’t have as sizable a Latino population as other places, and thus the US could “enjoy a true home field advantage.” The insinuation, based on past games, is that a game in Florida or California would sell out a larger venue, but attract first or second-generation Latinos with split loyalties who don’t support the Red, White, & Blue. I ask – is that true? And, even if so, is that a good idea in the big picture of things?
I’ve written before about Hispanic Identity and US Soccer. It’s getting better, but still complicated. I want to examine in depth some of the arguments and rationales, and invite you to comment. Here’s the question: is ths gamesmanship or something worse? Continue reading “The USMNT Home Field Advantage – Gamesmanship or White Flight?” »
In the book “Is There No Place on Earth For Me,” author Susan Sheehan narrates a year in the life of Sylvia Frumkin, a brilliant young woman diagnosed with schizophrenia. Frumkin’s intelligence butts heads both with her own limitations, but also society’s. No single mental institution can address all her symptoms at once, so she floats from place to place. Sheehan’s story underlies an important point: why does our society waste the life of a talented young woman like Frumkin? Why can’t we recast at least one corner of the Earth to fit her needs?
Despite the USMNT surviving a PR black eye, a blizzard, and Costa Rica, larger problems remain. Technical two-footed and ball-playing midfielders ask the same question of United States soccer as Frumkin of the world: is there no place for me?
As an American, I am proud of many aspects of my country. Freedom. Liberty. These are the overused and hollow terms used by others to explain why we swell with pride at the sound of the Star Spangled Banner. However, I have a much clearer view. I know exactly why I love my country. Unpaid labor. Inefficient management. Arcane rules.
Yes, I am proud of my country because of the NCAA. Nothing makes more sense than forcing talented 18 year old men and women to perform labor for free, as opposed to wages. The best part of this situation is that you then can selectively enforce the ban on under-the-table payments, and a bureaucracy is born!
And that’s why I am writing this letter – to praise the EPPP. I expect similar success. Continue reading “An Open Letter Praising the Premier League” »