Soccer Made Interesting (Really!)

We were sitting in a hotel room in Transylvania watching soccer highlights on BBC World News. What can I say? We were still in a haze over the seven hour time difference. Anyway, they came to one game and the presenter said, “Nothing significant happened in the second half.”

Whoa, wait a second? You couldn’t find one play in forty-five minutes of competition that was worth looking at? That’s soccer for you.

Anyway, this commercial from Nike is a triumph because it manages to make football soccer look exciting, even to Americans.

16 thoughts on “Soccer Made Interesting (Really!)

  1. Next time, change the channel. That will make soccer,
    oh..pardon me football, even more interesting.

  2. EVERYTHING is more exciting when it’s got Jan Akkerman’s killer riff and Thijs Van Leer’s yodeling on “Hocus Pocus” by Focus in the middle of it!!

    (0:45 to 2:35, for those who don’t know the song . . . . )

  3. That video is insane.

    Flute, yodeling, whistling… Van Leer is an inspiration to those who feel their musical specialty is too peculiar for a rock band.

  4. Yeah, I just cross-posted to my blog. After your brother ran away with my $10 in 1975 and made funny smells while listening to WLIR, I had to filch a copy of Focus’ “Live at the Rainbow” from the Nassau Community College media center, because it was SO GOOD and SO IMPORTANT that I have it. Never mind that nobody else ever got to have it after that . . . .

  5. Probably not the place to make a plug for my favorite local youth soccer club, and high school and college soccer teams?

  6. JES: Do you still have that?

    BL: Please do, by all means, plug away.

    I may be representative of many Americans in that we love soccer when our kids are playing but completely lose interest when they move from the game. I’d say that goes for a lot of the kids, too. I even coached youth soccer for many seasons — but now I couldn’t care less.

    Maybe a little experiment is in order: perhaps I should start closely following the team I arbitrarily decided would be my club, Arsenal, or maybe pick an American team. A rooting interest may make it more important to me.

  7. HA! Trust me, come fall I’ll make you sick(er) of me. Shameless touting will be ever present. For the spring though, I’ll plug the old town youth club where we coached or parented or (one of us) mocked their martial logo.

  8. It is not that easy to just pick up a team in your adult life and become a passionate fan. Critical thought enters the equation which keeps you from becoming an irrational crazy. You just can’t become the ‘Fireman Ed’ of Arsenal in your fourties. But if you want to choose a team just for pure beauty of the game, Arsenal is a good choice, as is Barcelona. Better yet, the US Mens National Team bandwagon is now accepting jumpers-on between now and June 12th.

  9. re JES: Do you still have that?

    I sold most of my old vinyl for $250 to a collector a couple of years ago, and I’m not sure if “Live at the Rainbow” was in the pile of things he rejected or not . . . it was pretty battered, so I suspect it’s still in a crate in the basement, slowly moldering away . . .

    I gave up on professional soccer when the Washington Diplomats folded in 1980. World Cup still gets my attention though, as do the qualifying rounds . . .

  10. Pick up a copy of the book ‘Fever Pitch'(yes, that horrible Jimmy Fallon movie is based on it) by Nick Hornsby and his ‘addiction’ with Arsenal and its relationship with his life.

  11. JRW: Thanks for the suggestion. I think I’ve read everything else Hornby’s written. He’s been pretty lucky with film adaptations; High Fidelity was great, and About a Boy wasn’t bad, either.

    That they took Fever Pitch and made it about baseball is nuts, especially considering the title. Stupid Hollywood…

  12. There was actually a Brit version of Fever Pitch first, with Colin Firth as the Arsenal-loving protagonist. Not bad, and completely understandable adaptation.

    Channel 13 used to show FA soccer way back in the early 70s. The game was a very hip and private vice to be into back then.

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