Diary of a misEducated Black Man

The Problem with American FUTbol is American FOOTball
July 17, 2010, 5:29 pm
Filed under: Lifestyle, Politics, Race, Sports | Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Guest post by the one and only Football connoisseur himself, Mr. Avon Jackson.  Enjoy.

With the 2010 FIFA World Cup over, the soccer fan in me could not pass up this opportunity to speak my piece on American Futbol (ie. American Soccer).  I would like to preface this article by congratulating our US Soccer Team on a tournament well played.  The Yanks managed to win our group for the first time in 80 years, which is a monumental achievement, especially in a group with England, and when they had two controversial goals called back on separate occasions.  Add to the mix their tendency to allow points in the first 15minutes of the match (3 out of 4) and winning the group becomes an amazing feat!!! My hat is off to you gentleman.  Continuing to the purpose of this blog….

I was watching Roberto Martinez break down the US vs Ghana post game the other day and I had an epiphany; US Soccer’s main enemy is American Football.  Fewer children play soccer in this country because they play football, a sport non-existent in other nations.  Martinez cited an inadequacy in US International soccer as a lack of early recruitment in the lower-class, a level of society know to produce athletes.

Martinez believes in America soccer is a sport reserved for the middle and upperclass children and therefore they can’t be as devoted to bettering their game.  I agree to a certain extent but add that more lower class American children would be interested in soccer, if they were not force-fed football.  It makes sense children who enjoy one might enjoy the other because both games foundations are similar (running, cutting & tackling on a field).

It’s a fact that in this country football is the promoted outdoor sport of the lower class.  If you dont agree with me ride through any American ghetto and see how many pop warner signs you see vs youth soccer ads.  This limits the pool of soccer athletes without ever giving children a chance to choose, possibly eliminating all chances of a US born Lionel Messi.

Can we imagine for a second a Brazil with the NFL and a US without?  Kaka and Ronaldinho could possibly be All-Pro at quarterback and receiver respectively, while Michael Vick and Chris Johnson would be quite appealing forwards.  While this would unquestionably improve our National Soccer team, both of these players were born in the “god watches football – South” and while I could be wrong, I’m pretty sure they didn’t get a fair shot at trying both sports.  Had they been given this opportunity however we might have witnessed a shift of power in International soccer worthy of 9.0 on the richter scale.
Now I’m not condemning American Football by any means, I played in college and I’m a diehard Redskins fan. What I am condemning is the American mindset that soccer is not an acceptable sport for the children of all social classes and all nations. Playing soccer is just as respectable and in many markets more profitable than American football.  Not to mention that like basketball, it has a much longer field life expectancy for it’s professional and casual athletes, giving us American born “brilliance on the pitch” for years to come.