By Dan Loney on Jun 21, 2019 at 4:46 PM
  1. Dan Loney

    Dan Loney BigSoccer Supporter

    Mar 10, 2000
    Cincilluminati
    Club:
    Los Angeles Sol
    Nat'l Team:
    Philippines

    US Soccer Summer - Shut Up and Sing

    By Dan Loney on Jun 21, 2019 at 4:46 PM
    Ugh. Sorry, people, assuming I have any people left. I wish I had an interesting reason for taking an impromptu, but I don't, so please accept my apologies.

    So we're American soccer fans and it's 2019. How do we explain what that's like?

    Let's say we have two adult children we love very dearly. One son, one daughter. They're big now, but they'll always be our babies.

    Our daughter is a big success, but is always under pressure to do even better in her job. She's bright and talented and hugely popular, but she's also one hell of a perfectionist. And there are those who are jealous of her achievements, and wouldn't mind seeing her fail. She's got a big, big project this month, and there are huge, huge expectations on her.

    Meanwhile, our son went to prison for selling meth to schoolkids.

    Let's talk about the USWNT, shall we?

    It wasn't until I saw Stuart Holden and Maurice Edu on Fox Sports almost come to blows over the subject that I realized how deeply personal the whole celebration thing was for people. Holden and Edu are different people, obviously, but they are national team contemporaries whose playing careers are remarkably similar. And yet the two men strongly disagreed. That tells me there's not a code about this, written or unwritten. Usually a pro athlete is going to have a different and more detailed perspective about subjects in professional athletics – this time, everyone is just a fan. You don't care about my opinion, but you care about yours a lot. (And vice versa, to be fair, which is why I'm still writing this, even if you have stopped reading.)

    After a couple of days, I don't think people were upset about running up the score. There really wasn't a second team Jill Ellis could have put in. Goal differential is, conceivably, a factor (although one a team like the United States shouldn't have to concern themselves with). And it was sort of useful practice, if only for muscle memory. Ideally Jill would have taken a couple of players off and played 9 v 11 to make it more of a worthwhile scrimmage after the 60th minute, but that would have been much, much more disrespectful than the celebrations.

    Jill Ellis didn't mind the celebrations, she wants a mindset where scoring goals is good. I know, what a weirdo. I almost feel embarrassed at joining in the banshee chorus, but I just wanted to make two points.

    (1) Anyone saying this is a Trump thing or an Obama thing or an American exceptionalism thing is being silly. Silly as Milli Vanilli, Jennifer Tilly and Free Willy.

    (2) "We are so offended at your classless lack of class, United States! This will inspire us to play better than we would have otherwise! Even though this is the World Cup, and presumably we were already going to play with maximum effort! But you have given us more reasons to want to defeat you, which apparently we needed for some reason! You will regret giving us incentive to do what we already wanted to do more than anything else in the world!"

    (3) (I just remembered this one) Okay, so, "act like you've been there." I used to do this, as an extremely poor park player whenever I lucked into scoring. I would invariably job back to my position and wait for restart.

    Because I was living out a fantasy, just as much as anyone who did a slide into where they imagine the corner flag might be. I was pretending to be such an awesome player that goals were all in a day's work, ma'am, just doing my job. Of course I wanted to be Bud Grant when I grew up, who didn't?

    (4) (Okay, I lied about having only two things to add, I might as well admit it, mistakes were made, let's move on) What is it about the United States Women's National Team that we always want to make a damned morality play out of them?

    Yes, the 1990's team won all the time. The women's national team were underdogs just for existing. No one knew whether people would pay to watch women's team sports. FIFA was so hesitant about women's soccer they wouldn't even allow the 1991 tournament to be called a "World Cup," for fear of devaluing the men's brand. FIFA's support of women's soccer would be dignified by the term "grudging."

    And the turn of the millennium Wambach/Solo years were soapboxes all the way down. Hope Solo threw Briana Scurry under the bus as hard as she could, but male players do that to each other all the time. Solo probably wouldn't have been allowed to forget 2007 even if she had apologized. Abby herself remains a controversial figure – one of the topics I missed was her election to the Hall of Fame with 81% of the vote, a tally I find criminally pathetic.

    Now, we don't even bother to climb off their backs for a second. We've seamlessly transitioned from celebrating to singing the national anthem. And we're only now out of the group stage. Who knows what silliness they'll come up with if and when the US keeps progressing.

    I think this United States team is fun, likeable, and exciting. They're a great mix of veterans and newcomers. They are also one of the tournament's favorites, and if the tournament were almost anywhere else they might be prohibitive favorites. And their most famous players – Morgan, Rapinoe, Lloyd – seem to attract and enjoy controversy, if only as a means of motivation.

    I suppose this is the consequence of years and years of role model marketing. Fans of the US men loved either Clint Dempsey or Landon Donovan – almost never both, for some reason – but neither of those players were held up as heroes of American youth. There's a commercial out with Alex Morgan where the tag line is literally that when you cheer for her, you're also cheering for a battalion of adorable little children. This is a woman who was thrown out of Disney World.

    The down side of this sort of marketing is the idiotic decorum scrutiny that we've seen. I have every confidence there will be others popping up, and that's if the US ends up winning. God have mercy on them if they lose, because we mortals won't.

    But, for the time being we're a little more enthusiastic about our daughter than our son.

    I have no problem using the Gold Cup as a benchmark for progress, especially after the last couple of games allegedly designed to prepare for the Gold Cup.

    I do have a problem, and maybe I'm alone in this, with wanting to bring up the U-20 team practically wholesale. We don't have to go back fifteen years to Folie Adu to see the risks in rushing players. Sure, the U-20s looked good. Against other teenagers.

    Fundamentally, the place for young players to develop is with their club, not their country. This was a big problem in ye olden tymes, back before American players had access to teams that could pay them a living salary. These days are not those. U-20 players should establish themselves as starters on clubs before being called to the full national team. Is there a sliding scale depending on the size of the team? Well, sure. I don't recommend dropping Pulisic if for some reason he doesn't get playing time at Chelsea.

    But no matter how big the club, if the player is on the youth team, then that player is still a youth. If they're not playing against adults, or even training against adults, asking them to represent their country against adults seems to me a quick way to disaster.

    You may well ask, "What's worse than what we have now?" Having what we have now for decades, because we blew out this generation and the next generation trying to make up for the failures of the previous generation. That would be worse.

    All I want out of the US men's national team at this point is what we had back before the Klinsmann regime – a team that made up in heart what it lacked in talent. I don't need us to beat Mexico, mainly because I think it's going to be a hot minute before we beat them again. But I do want us to play well against them.

    There is precedent for Gold Cup failure costing the coach his job. Losing the Gold Cup final gave Sunil Gulati – excuse me, that's Soccer Hall of Fame inductee Sunil Gulati – the justification he needed to replace Bob Bradley. Since then Bradley's replacement crashed out of the Gold Cup in the semifinals, and stayed at his post.

    So this should be the benchmark, especially for the current state of the squad. Semifinals or hot seat. And if we lose to Jamaica for a third time at home – well, I don't know how many coaches the USSF can afford to pay at one time, but they'll have to make room in the budget, that's all I can say.
     
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?

Speaking of news I missed: You can only win one. Country or continent?

  1. I'd rather have Manchester City's season

    7 vote(s)
    19.4%
  2. I'd rather have Liverpool's season

    29 vote(s)
    80.6%

Comments

Discussion in 'Articles' started by Dan Loney, Jun 21, 2019.

    1. Beau Dure

      Beau Dure Member+

      May 31, 2000
      Vienna, VA

      US Soccer Summer - Shut Up and Sing

      By Dan Loney on Jun 21, 2019 at 4:46 PM
      Welcome back.

      You want to know one reason the celebration argument dragged on so long, as do so many other WNT controversies? Because it brings forth from the woodwork all these people who know nothing about women's soccer and even less about men's sports, all complaining about a "double standard."

      I had a Twitter conversation in which someone said no one complains when this happens on the men's side. I asked for a recent example of a 13-0 game in the men's World Cup. Funny, never got a response.

      And let's be perfectly honest here. How many of the same people who think these nice suburban-looking women are criticized unfairly will turn around and say the same thing when a less-suburban baseball player is raked over the coals for flipping his bat after a home run?

      (Please don't tell anyone on Twitter I said that.)
       
    2. Justin O

      Justin O Member+

      Nov 30, 1998
      Seattle
      Club:
      Seattle

      US Soccer Summer - Shut Up and Sing

      By Dan Loney on Jun 21, 2019 at 4:46 PM
      Having a team that "made up in heart what it lacked in talent" would certainly be an improvement now. As much as people like to blame this on people in US soccer, I think it reflects the fact that we are transitioning from players whose playing lives and dreams revolved predominantly around playing for the US team, to players who look at soccer careers as much more than that. Perhaps even playing for the US team has become secondary to a successful club career. Whereas before their clubs were more a means to an end, with that end being playing and succeeding with the US national team, now it can even be the reverse. The problem for the moment is the talent is not sufficient to make up for the loss in heart.
       
      Burr and barroldinho repped this.
    3. American Brummie

      Jun 19, 2009
      There Be Dragons Here
      Club:
      Birmingham City FC
      Nat'l Team:
      United States

      US Soccer Summer - Shut Up and Sing

      By Dan Loney on Jun 21, 2019 at 4:46 PM
      0/7 analogy. The adult son was arrested for trying, and failing, to sell meth to schoolkids.
       
      el Rafaa, UxSxAxfooty, CBusAlex and 4 others repped this.
    4. Lloyd Heilbrunn

      Lloyd Heilbrunn Member+

      Feb 11, 2002
      Jupiter, Fl.
      Nat'l Team:
      United States

      US Soccer Summer - Shut Up and Sing

      By Dan Loney on Jun 21, 2019 at 4:46 PM
      Jennifer Tilly was hot...
       
      lynesjc repped this.
    5. jack sticker

      jack sticker Red Card

      Rangers
      United States
      Jun 5, 2018

      US Soccer Summer - Shut Up and Sing

      By Dan Loney on Jun 21, 2019 at 4:46 PM
      I think I throw up in my mouth when ever I see Megan Rapione

       
    6. Dan Loney

      Dan Loney BigSoccer Supporter

      Mar 10, 2000
      Cincilluminati
      Club:
      Los Angeles Sol
      Nat'l Team:
      Philippines

      US Soccer Summer - Shut Up and Sing

      By Dan Loney on Jun 21, 2019 at 4:46 PM
      She's always spoken highly of you.
       
      bungadiri, Ismitje, AlbertCamus and 6 others repped this.
    7. Honore de Ballsac

      Oct 28, 2005
      France.

      US Soccer Summer - Shut Up and Sing

      By Dan Loney on Jun 21, 2019 at 4:46 PM
      Love my kids but if one of them's acting like a ********ing asshole I call them on it. (Maybe not in those words.)
       
      Baka_Shinpan repped this.
    8. RalleeMonkey

      RalleeMonkey Member+

      Aug 30, 2004
      here

      US Soccer Summer - Shut Up and Sing

      By Dan Loney on Jun 21, 2019 at 4:46 PM
      and, it's not like the U-20's did that great - same as the previous 2 or 3 u-20 WC's, right. The bottom line for the men is that there are vastly more young players coming up getting vastly better coaching than there were a generation ago. I'm not talking about the number of players in ayso. I'm talking about the number of players in club environments and the quality of coaching they are receiving.

      If the next generation of the MNT isn't vastly improved, it will show how incredibly wildly the 2002, 2010, and 2014 teams over achieved.
       
    9. Honore de Ballsac

      Oct 28, 2005
      France.

      US Soccer Summer - Shut Up and Sing

      By Dan Loney on Jun 21, 2019 at 4:46 PM
      What is it about the United States Women's National Team that they always want to make a damned morality play out of themselves?

      Oh right. Fame and fortune. Financial security. Which is fine.
       
      Kejsare, Baka_Shinpan and jack sticker repped this.
    10. gunnerfan7

      gunnerfan7 Member+

      SJ Earthquakes/Arsenal
      United States
      Jul 22, 2012
      Pleasanton, California
      Club:
      Arsenal FC
      Nat'l Team:
      United States

      US Soccer Summer - Shut Up and Sing

      By Dan Loney on Jun 21, 2019 at 4:46 PM
      It's really fairly simple. When one sports team is extremely dominant, celebrations are expected to be toned down. For example, the USA basketball team wasn't taunting the Nigerian players when they put up 156 points. You could throw up your hands and jump around for the first three-pointer. Not the 30th when you're up by 60.
       
      Deep Wilcox and Baka_Shinpan repped this.
    11. LevskiSofia

      LevskiSofia Member

      Nov 19, 2008

      US Soccer Summer - Shut Up and Sing

      By Dan Loney on Jun 21, 2019 at 4:46 PM
      Actually the US Team were extremely lucky in this game. Every 3-pointer was going in. I've never seen such high percentage from 3 in my life. I doubt that this record will be beaten unless they play really horrible team and do not put their feet of the gas.

      Otherwise USWNT soccer are not even close as dominant as US men/women basketball teams. I expect them to be eliminated today by France.
       
    12. Dan Loney

      Dan Loney BigSoccer Supporter

      Mar 10, 2000
      Cincilluminati
      Club:
      Los Angeles Sol
      Nat'l Team:
      Philippines

      US Soccer Summer - Shut Up and Sing

      By Dan Loney on Jun 21, 2019 at 4:46 PM
      Well, since we're calling shots...if this weren't in France, the US would be a solid favorite. I'm going to be a fanboy and predict the US wins effectively.
       
      EvanJ repped this.
    13. deejay

      deejay Member+

      Feb 14, 2000
      Tarpon Springs, FL
      Club:
      Jorge Wilstermann
      Nat'l Team:
      Bolivia

      US Soccer Summer - Shut Up and Sing

      By Dan Loney on Jun 21, 2019 at 4:46 PM
      My sister-in-law was visiting last week from Bolivia. I can verify that she was very upset with the US after the third goal against Guyana. "Poor Guyana! The US shouldn't score so many goals!" So, I think it's normal for some people to feel bad for the underdog.

      What really seemed to give this topic fuel was the Canadian reaction. They were just over the top about it. They seemed to really feel kinship to a team that never had a chance against the mighty USA. :ROFLMAO:
       
    14. EvanJ

      EvanJ Member+

      Manchester United
      United States
      Mar 30, 2004
      Nassau County, NY
      Club:
      Manchester United FC
      Nat'l Team:
      United States
      #15 EvanJ, Jun 29, 2019
      Last edited: Jun 29, 2019

      US Soccer Summer - Shut Up and Sing

      By Dan Loney on Jun 21, 2019 at 4:46 PM
      Even if they're not as dominant as in basketball for both genders, the USWNT are Number 1 in the FIFA Rankings and the defending WWC champion. They didn't win the 2016 Olympics, but of the 2015 WWC, 2016 Olympics, and FIFA Rankings, they're the defending champion or Number 1 in two out of three. You don't need to criticize them by comparing them to the best tea in other sports. In addition, comparing blowout scores in different sports is apples and oranges. Scoring five times the average goals per team per game is easier than the best basketball team scoring double the average points per team per game. I mean double the average, not doubling their opponent in one game. If the average score is 70, winning 120-50 isn't doubling the average.

      I hope your sister-in-law never watches games like Germany vs. San Marino.
       
    15. Beau Dure

      Beau Dure Member+

      May 31, 2000
      Vienna, VA

      US Soccer Summer - Shut Up and Sing

      By Dan Loney on Jun 21, 2019 at 4:46 PM
      Especially when they were robbed of their best chance to beat the USA.
       
    16. TimB4Last

      TimB4Last Member+

      May 5, 2006
      Dystopia

      US Soccer Summer - Shut Up and Sing

      By Dan Loney on Jun 21, 2019 at 4:46 PM
      [​IMG]
       
    17. Roger Allaway

      Roger Allaway Member+

      Apr 22, 2009
      Warminster, Pa.
      Club:
      Philadelphia Union
      Nat'l Team:
      United States

      US Soccer Summer - Shut Up and Sing

      By Dan Loney on Jun 21, 2019 at 4:46 PM
      I know that soccer is a low-scoring game, but I didn't realize that three goals constitutes running up the score.
       
      Dan Loney and Beau Dure repped this.
    18. Lloyd Heilbrunn

      Lloyd Heilbrunn Member+

      Feb 11, 2002
      Jupiter, Fl.
      Nat'l Team:
      United States

      US Soccer Summer - Shut Up and Sing

      By Dan Loney on Jun 21, 2019 at 4:46 PM
      Well, it's a whole bunch for Bolivia...
       
      Roger Allaway repped this.
    19. SantaCruzRed

      SantaCruzRed New Member

      Feb 13, 2009
      Club:
      San Jose Earthquakes

      US Soccer Summer - Shut Up and Sing

      By Dan Loney on Jun 21, 2019 at 4:46 PM
      No, for a lot of reasons we shouldn't bring up the U20's en mass to the MNT. What we should do is make them our de facto Olympic team for next year, and open negotiations with European Clubs to allow Pulisic, McKinney and all the other under 23's playing overseas to play on the Olympic team. That's where the 2022 MNT can be tested under fire, and if we could get all of the eligibles into the Olympic squad, we might not look so pathetic. They don't have to play in qualifying, that's asking too much of some of their clubs, and if the biggest country in Concacaf can't get in without them, well ... But they should be allowed to play in the Olympics. Cummon USsoccer. Flex your muscle. Beg. Crawl. Do whatever it takes. Offer em money if that's what they want. Don't let Chelsea do summer tours in the US if they don't agree.
       
    20. Soaker888

      Soaker888 Member+

      Feb 21, 2012
      Denver
      Club:
      Colorado Rapids

      US Soccer Summer - Shut Up and Sing

      By Dan Loney on Jun 21, 2019 at 4:46 PM
      About the only apt criticism I've heard about the excessive celebrations went something like this: Were the goal scoring celebrations over the top and in poor taste? Yes. Should people call it out? Sure, why not. Should the conversation about this issue last more than about 48 hours? Hell no. If you're still talking about this with some damn form of conviction, one way or the other... you're the problem.
       
    21. TimB4Last

      TimB4Last Member+

      May 5, 2006
      Dystopia

      US Soccer Summer - Shut Up and Sing

      By Dan Loney on Jun 21, 2019 at 4:46 PM
      Wait, is the above post - almost six weeks after the Thailand match - an admission that you are the problem?
       
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    22. Justin O

      Justin O Member+

      Nov 30, 1998
      Seattle
      Club:
      Seattle

      US Soccer Summer - Shut Up and Sing

      By Dan Loney on Jun 21, 2019 at 4:46 PM
      Well I for one like the US' chances. And watch out for the Netherlands. I think they may surprise some people.
       
      Beau Dure and autogolazzo repped this.

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