Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Win Against Spain Means Nothing

What prisoners of the moment we are. Wednesday's big news was that the USA soccer team beat #1 Spain 2-0. It was the headline for the websites of ESPN, Sports Illustrated, FOX Sports and Yahoo Sports. Everyone was talking about it. My question is, um, why?

Last time I checked (and I check every so often), nobody in this country cares about soccer. We don't play it and we don't watch it. So why all the hoopla about beating Spain? I can understand if we just beat the Iranian team, or if it was 2002 and we beat the French. Do we really only pay attention when we do something well?

Yup. The reason we don't like soccer is because we're not any good at it. We are the Clippers of soccer. So we pass it off as a silly foreign game. It's boring, not really a sport, bad television, so on and so on.

Wait, we beat the #1 team? USA! USA! USA!

That's pretty much the common thinking here. It's embarrassing seeing everyone get so excited over this. Where were you when we were routinely getting our asses kicked? At least with the sports we like, we endure the rough times. Cleveland sports have had about as much glory as Team USA, but their fans still bleed with their teams and never waver.

And this is why soccer will never become popular in this country. Shortly after the match, ESPN put up a poll, "Was a 2-0 win against Spain a game-changing moment for the sport of soccer in the United States?" The results: 57% said yes. I guarantee you that this time next year, 90% of those people who answered yes won't give a damn about soccer.

That is, unless we become Spain. If Team USA goes on to dominate the sport or at least be in serious contention every year, then maybe we will all become fans. But what's the odds of that happening? Remember, a bigger upset happened in 1980 when Team USA beat Russia in hockey. And we all know how much Americans loooooove hockey...

Please stop acting like you care about this. The only time Americans pay attention to soccer is when one of the players rips her shirt off. Or David Beckham rips his shirt off. And I think that about says it all.


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