Top 5 Ways To Make Americans Care About Soccer
By Jason Iannone
The World Cup is upon us once again and Americans are looking forward to grabbing a couple beers and sitting down to watch something else. No matter how much the other 200-something countries insist the ‘Home of the Brave’ is missing out, the U.S. just does not give two rips about soccer. And no amount of David Beckham can, has or will change that.
Can anything make Americans care about soccer then? We offer a few possible solutions, all of which have been scrutinized and analyzed by the brightest minds Monopoly money can buy.
5. Each Goal is Worth a Random Amount of Points
Many Americans complain that soccer sucks because the scoring is practically nonexistent. A 2-1 game is considered a high-scoring affair in this sport, and when you pitch that to a country raised on Super Bowls that end with scores like 49-26, the poo-pooing should begin mighty fast.
Since soccer’s low scoring is due to the size of the field and the supreme difficulty in actually getting the ball into the goal, the only way to even begin to approach a high score is to make each goal worth many points. Exactly how many would be determined by a random drawing after each goal. Whatever number comes up determines the value of that goal. It could be anywhere from one point to 25.
Not only will this give the U.S. the high scores it craves, but the luck of the draw will also satisfy its intense love of gambling.
4. Brainwash Them Into Thinking They Invented It
There’s a legitimate theory out there that argues Americans hate soccer because they didn’t invent it. Baseball, basketball, and American football are U.S. creations. Hockey, being a Canadian creation, is “close enough.”
Soccer though? Although it’s been around since pretty much the dawn of civilization, America was incredibly late to the ball-kicking party. Thus, Americans thumb their nose and focus all of their attention on sports THEY had a hand in creating.
The first inventor to build one of those Men In Black memory eraser things should use it on the whole of America, convincing them that they invented soccer and should totally support it. The rest of the world should play along, since the most powerful nation in the world liking soccer means more exposure and money for all. Besides, it’s not like they’ll magically get less awful at it, so you’ll get their money AND beat the ever-loving snot out of them. Win win!
3. More Time Stoppages
The rest of the world loves soccer because it’s quick. A 45-minute half will end in, at most, 50 minutes. Unfortunately, for many an American, all that non-stop action leaves no time to go out for pizza, hit the head, flip to another game, or look at pictures of cars and girls online. Games where action is preceded by long periods of inactivity, on the other hand, allow for all these activities to happen. Sometimes at the same time.
A soccer game that stops every time there’s a possession change or an out-of-bounds call will allow more American viewers to do stuff in addition to watching the game, and if that happens, watch ratings and pizza sales skyrocket.
2. Actually Teach Kids How to Play It
Kids soccer might be the biggest joke of them all. Very rarely do kids actually learn anything in these pee-wee leagues. More often, it’s just “kick the ball, keep kicking, and see if you can’t score a goal or two.” They don’t learn technique, they don’t learn strategy, and they don’t learn how to enjoy themselves. To so many, youth soccer is simply an annoying, boring and frustrating rite of passage that their parents forced them into until they became old enough to join little league and finally start giving a crap about something.
Actually teaching children how to legitimately play soccer would go a long way toward making them like the sport. Because as it stands, too much of the country views each MLS and World Cup game as a PTSD event just waiting to happen.
1. Win the World Cup
Ha! Like that’ll ever happen…
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