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Maybe Americans shouldn't be watching soccer.

 
 
Reply Tue 1 Jul, 2014 06:57 pm
Today, since the US was playing in the round of 16, a group of friends and I decided to watch the match in a local bar.

As anyone who understands soccer knows, the US was clearly outplayed for almost all of the game. Tim Howard, the besieged US goalie was peppered by shot after shot with US chances few and far between.

The raucous crowd seemed to be oblivious to this. Every time a US player touched the ball there was applause. When Belgium ran down the side of the field, executed a nice cross that was awkwardly bounced off a a flailing US defender there were loud cheers... I wanted to turn and say "You don't realize that what just happened was bad, do you.", but then they started chanting "Olé, Olé USA USA"and I didn't have the heart.

I was hoping that with the World Cup this year, soccer would catch on more in the US, but now I am not so sure.

Is the world's game too nuanced for the average American sport's fan?
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Type: Question • Score: 15 • Views: 5,087 • Replies: 68

 
View best answer, chosen by maxdancona
glitterbag
 
  4  
Reply Tue 1 Jul, 2014 07:10 pm
@maxdancona,
I don't know, I'm not able to retain the nuances of any sport, but I like to watch because you never know what's going to happen. I loved watching hockey, but it scares the hell out of me when the puck flys off the ice. I recognize poor sportsmanship, who didn't know biting an opponent was not a valid move. Some of the teams playing were fierce. I really have enjoyed watching these matches, I'll watch till the end. I'll probably never become an expert, but who cares?
0 Replies
 
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Tue 1 Jul, 2014 07:40 pm
@maxdancona,
America: The land where fantasy trumps reality most every time.
0 Replies
 
roger
 
  1  
Reply Tue 1 Jul, 2014 07:59 pm
@maxdancona,
I will take your advice.
maxdancona
 
  1  
Reply Tue 1 Jul, 2014 09:37 pm
@roger,
Fine Roger,

Just to be clear... what bothered me was that these people didn't even try to understand the game. To them it was just an opportunity for a loud, garish display of nationalism. I would feel just as bothered if people claiming to be home team fans cheered wildly when their quarterback is sacked because he gets up with the ball.

It ruined the game for me.
Lordyaswas
 
  2  
Reply Wed 2 Jul, 2014 12:09 am
@maxdancona,
England fans have had many years of getting to know when their team is playing badly.
One thing that tends to evolve is the chanting. We have long had (to the tune of the Plastic Ono band's Give Peace a Chance)...."all we are say-ing, is give us a goal".

Next, it will be something like "Eng-er-land, Eng-er-land, we are not as **** as you think we are".

At the moment, USA fans in bars probably do not know the rules of football, let alone the nuances, so the only "connection" they feel is the patriotic bit.
Give it five, six or seven years and there will be many young adults around who actually played and enjoyed football throughout their school days, and will be more able to interpret what is going on in the match.

My prediction is that the USA will be one of the top five footballing nations within the next ten years. Money, can-do attitude, population, ambition... it will all click into gear sooner, rather than later.

Finally, the USA are actually playing the rest of the world at something, and not far away from winning.
0 Replies
 
hawkeye10
 
  2  
Reply Wed 2 Jul, 2014 01:14 am
@maxdancona,
Quote:
Just to be clear... what bothered me was that these people didn't even try to understand the game


and why would they do that? The whole point was to use world cup to have FUN! FUN! FUN!, understanding soccer is not required for that.
Lordyaswas
 
  1  
Reply Wed 2 Jul, 2014 02:01 am
@hawkeye10,
But it definitely adds to the experience somewhat, imo.
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Wed 2 Jul, 2014 02:07 am
@Lordyaswas,
Lordyaswas wrote:

But it definitely adds to the experience somewhat, imo.

After enough drinks have been consumed. Still, it is not I think possible to experience such idiocy with out being convinced that civilization is failing.
Lordyaswas
 
  1  
Reply Wed 2 Jul, 2014 03:48 am
@hawkeye10,
No alcohol involved, just a basic understanding of the game.

I found sex exciting once, but when I got to know what I was doing it was a lot more enjoyable.

You'll no doubt discover that one day.
0 Replies
 
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Wed 2 Jul, 2014 03:51 am
@maxdancona,
American sports fans require constant input. We have fishing shows and they edit the interminable "Waiting for the fuckin fish to bite" stuff and only show the bites or landings.

I have to admit that "larnin' the nuances of the game" is not in my DNA.
I even watch consolidated 30 min versions of each days Phillies games cause I get bored at a full baseball game. We went to a Phillies game a few weeks ago and I was constantly on the weather channel and looking **** up on the phone.

0 Replies
 
engineer
 
  5  
Reply Wed 2 Jul, 2014 05:14 am
@maxdancona,
This sounds like a wine snob saying if I can't appreciate the fine aspects of wine drinking I should just stick to water. If people are having a good time why isn't that good? Just because they don't appreciate the warm, deep red flavors, quite a lot of fruit sweetness, smooth and rich but not cloying aspects of the game doesn't mean they can't appreciate those 16 saves or a good effort.
maxdancona
 
  1  
Reply Wed 2 Jul, 2014 07:03 am
@engineer,
Maybe engineer, but there is a difference. I might prefer a cheap Ernest and Gallo wine over a fine French wine that said wine snobs know is of much better quality.

But I am not going to jump on a table during a wine tasting and start screaming "USA! USA!" while I chug it.

tsarstepan
 
  1  
Reply Wed 2 Jul, 2014 07:07 am
@maxdancona,
maxdancona wrote:

Is the world's game too nuanced for the average American sport's fan?

http://i60.tinypic.com/s2qq0h.gif
0 Replies
 
tsarstepan
 
  2  
Reply Wed 2 Jul, 2014 07:15 am
@roger,
roger wrote:

I will take your advice.

I was apparently taking his advice before he thought about writing this thread. I haven't been watching any soccer let alone the World Bore Cup (nor do I plan on it even if the US advanced to the next level). Hopefully now that the US is out of it then maybe the soccer delusion-induced fever will clear up and go away for the next four years.
0 Replies
 
McGentrix
 
  4  
Reply Wed 2 Jul, 2014 07:17 am
@maxdancona,
maxdancona wrote:

Maybe engineer, but there is a difference. I might prefer a cheap Ernest and Gallo wine over a fine French wine that said wine snobs know is of much better quality.

But I am not going to jump on a table during a wine tasting and start screaming "USA! USA!" while I chug it.




Maybe you don't grasp the nuances of American culture?
0 Replies
 
tsarstepan
 
  2  
Reply Wed 2 Jul, 2014 07:19 am
@maxdancona,
maxdancona wrote:

To them it was just an opportunity for a loud, garish display of nationalism.

You're right. No one (in almost every other country involved) could possibly watching the World Cup because of nationalism. Jingoistic nationalism is an exclusive American thing, right? Rolling Eyes
lmur
 
  2  
Reply Wed 2 Jul, 2014 07:21 am
@engineer,
I'd agree with that. In any event, patriotic fervour amongst the football-illiterate is not uniquely American (Irish fans have a disturbing habit of singing Ole Ole Ole at the drop of a pint, er hat).
maxdancona
 
  1  
Reply Wed 2 Jul, 2014 07:25 am
@tsarstepan,
In almost every other country, watch the World Cup because they want to see the game being played. There is nationalism, but there is also a basic understanding of, and appreciation for how the game is played.

There is no other country where fans would cheer wildly after the defense broke down because the other team has been awarded a corner.
0 Replies
 
maxdancona
 
  1  
Reply Wed 2 Jul, 2014 07:31 am
@lmur,
Maybe you all don't know what I am talking about (unless you were in an American bar yesterday).

I have watched soccer games, even World Cup matches, in bars outside of the US (including a weird experience of being one of two Usians in a crowded bar in a small city in Guatamala as the US was knocking out their team during a qualifier. Although my team was winning, I kept pretty quiet.).

Being in a US bar is a unique experience for the level of loud and soccer illiterate.
 

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