June 18th, 2010
Friday Four Cents: Soccerphobe
This is a new column we’re going to debut where we try to tackle the relevant (and not so relevant) issues of the day. Ranting and raving is a special talent of mine, similar to how others can yodel or flare their nostrils. Sometimes it just irritates the hell out of people. Sometimes I gain a few supporters for my cause. And sometimes it’s like a tree falling in the forest with no one around to hear it. Each week in the Friday Four Cents we’ll take two topics and give our two cents on them. This week, Marc’s a soccer futbol hater.
When is Futbol not Football?
So I’ve been home most of this week and have been watching the world cup. I know that soccer is the world’s sport and everything, but I just don’t get it. Yes, I know that it’s beautiful when it works, but having to slog through 90 minutes of the game in order to see one or two goals, it just isn’t worth it for me. After watching a wide selection of first round games during the first week, Brazil and Germany were the only teams that made the game interesting. Even the US game, in which I had a rooting interest, got boring. Especially when we drew on a ridiculous easy goal. Who paid off the English Goal Keeper?
There are a few things that have given me problems while watching and because of these issues, I don’t think the game will ever gain the popularity of the other sports in the US. For me, as much of a team sport as it is, it’s a game of individuals. I’ve only seen a few teams who pass the ball unselfishly and with skill. So many teams employ defensive minded game plans to keep the other side from scoring. This just makes the games incredibly tedious. Unlike Hockey, they don’t fight, so the only thing worth watching for is the shots on goal. If you only get 3 shots on goal, why are we watching the game.
There’s nothing more frustrating than watching a play where someone takes a dive without even being touched. That’s what makes the real football so interesting. You don’t see players take a dive ten yards from the endzone and hope for a call from the refs, they fight through. Even watching hockey, the players fight through anything to get close to the net. Soccer is the only sport where players take a dive rather than try and score.
Finally, the crowds at the matches scare me. I don’t care about the vuvuzelas, or whatever the hell that buzzing is, but these are grown men and women dressing up and painting their faces like it’s Friday night Football game. Look, I know we have some wackos in the states… ever been to a raider game? Yeah, me neither. I value my life. These futbol fans take this seriously. I can’t believe world wars haven’t started at soccer matches. And the singing. Where the hell do these songs come from and why does everyone know them? Do they print hymnals and pass them out before the game like your were going to church?
Look, I’ll keep watching the world cup as long as the US is involved, but I don’t promise that I’ll like it.