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So what does this mean for soccer in the US?

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So what does this mean for soccer in the US?

Unread postby Spin » Thu Jun 24, 2010 10:52 am

So what does all this mean for soccer in the US?

Is this the big attention getter the sport has been looking for?

IMO, it will be a sport that the country gets behind every two years, during the olympics and during the next World Cup.

The sport gets more fans, not a big number. But popularity rises some.

But when the World Cup is over and the hangovers go away, it'll be NBA free agent bonanza, something will happen in the NFL and MLB, and soccer will be back in the background for most people.

Which is fine by me. It's hard enough getting tickets as it is. ;-) ;) :wink:
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Re: So what does this mean for soccer in the US?

Unread postby peeker643 » Thu Jun 24, 2010 11:13 am

Agreed. I liken it to the Olympics. No one watches the Alpine Ski Championships each year or follows it each weekend. Not in the US and not anyone other than hardcore fans. But when the Olympics are on and there is national pride on the line under the biggest lights people tune in and get caught up.

Me? I love watching the national team. Watched a few of the friendlies and watching the World Cup but I'm not going to be watching English League or MLS games. At east not with a plan and intent to watch them.

I'll say this though: I know that for me specifically and for a lot of people my age with kids that this World Cup can't do anything but help soccer in the states. And you need the generational interest for the sport to develop past what it is. Watching these games with my kids and seeing how they get into it, well, it's no different than watching games and events with my old man.
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Re: So what does this mean for soccer in the US?

Unread postby Cease » Thu Jun 24, 2010 11:47 am

It's a pretty big deal for those who already follow. Those with established "favorite sports" will raise an eyebrow (ala following Olympics), but not change loyalties or spending habits (there is only so much time/$$ ppl have to invest in sports, and ppl are generally resistant to change).

The impact will most likely occur in MLS cities and with youths(speaking to peek's generational point) who are establishing sports affiliation and loyalty. IMO, this is the best growth- growth at the base, where a generation's generic view of the sport is more positive than the last generation's.
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Re: So what does this mean for soccer in the US?

Unread postby peeker643 » Thu Jun 24, 2010 11:56 am

Cease wrote:It's a pretty big deal for those who already follow. Those with established "favorite sports" will raise an eyebrow (ala following Olympics), but not change loyalties or spending habits (there is only so much time/$$ ppl have to invest in sports, and ppl are generally resistant to change).

The impact will most likely occur in MLS cities and with youths(speaking to peek's generational point) who are establishing sports affiliation and loyalty. IMO, this is the best growth- growth at the base, where a generation's generic view of the sport is more positive than the last generation's.


I agree its the best possible growth for the sport.

Again, as someone who hated it, never grew up with it, never followed and never played it, I think parents watching it with their kids, for whatever reason and whether or not they are casual fans or hardcore followers, gives the game roots and a platform for growth.

I know there are a lot of people who still don't care, don't like it and don't have any interest in watching it, but I can't tell you how many people in the neighborhood and just around the area were talking about it yesterday. And they've followed all of these games throughought the event.

Not sure to what extent the game grows. But there will be some. If not a great deal now, then down the road when the kids who watched the game yesterday grow up.
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Re: So what does this mean for soccer in the US?

Unread postby RickNashEquilibrium » Fri Jun 25, 2010 1:59 pm

peeker643 wrote:
Cease wrote:It's a pretty big deal for those who already follow. Those with established "favorite sports" will raise an eyebrow (ala following Olympics), but not change loyalties or spending habits (there is only so much time/$$ ppl have to invest in sports, and ppl are generally resistant to change).

The impact will most likely occur in MLS cities and with youths(speaking to peek's generational point) who are establishing sports affiliation and loyalty. IMO, this is the best growth- growth at the base, where a generation's generic view of the sport is more positive than the last generation's.


I agree its the best possible growth for the sport.

Again, as someone who hated it, never grew up with it, never followed and never played it, I think parents watching it with their kids, for whatever reason and whether or not they are casual fans or hardcore followers, gives the game roots and a platform for growth.

I know there are a lot of people who still don't care, don't like it and don't have any interest in watching it, but I can't tell you how many people in the neighborhood and just around the area were talking about it yesterday. And they've followed all of these games throughought the event.

Not sure to what extent the game grows. But there will be some. If not a great deal now, then down the road when the kids who watched the game yesterday grow up.


These points are absolutely spot on. The interesting, and also somewhat sad fact, is that soccer has been the fastest growing sport for youths over the past couple of years. The downside is that the big 3 of football, baseball, and basketball poach the best soccer players at a relatively young age. While the MLS will always be a stepping stone to the EPL, the sport's popularity has so much potential and your point about the kids watching THIS cup is so true.

What the US needs is a huge showing on the biggest stage (as well a face to associate that glory IE Landon Donavon) to convert people, or at the very least, spark younger folks interest in the sport long term. Like you Peek, I didn't grow up around the sport or play it, but gained an appreciation and ultimately, became a bonafide fan after a friend sat me down to watch a Liverpool game during college back in 2004. I digress. To the point about youths (especially the best players) staying in soccer, the sport is going to BLOW UP the day the US homegrows a superstar on the international level whether by the US winning or placing in the World Cup or someone becoming a mainstay favorite on a top-tier EPL team. Fans in this country are frontrunners by nature. An outright victory would do wonders for stateside popularity not only for the MLS, but grassroots fandom of young people who want to stick with it and actually aspire to be a GREAT United States soccer player, not a good soccer player who just happens to be from the United States.
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Re: So what does this mean for soccer in the US?

Unread postby Spin » Fri Jun 25, 2010 3:10 pm

IMO the future would look better if we had a team. It's too bad the USL ruined the franchise we had. We need a 2nd division (in whatever league survives) or 3rd division team in 2011. I think Bert Wolstein may have taken any chance of us getting in the MLS to the grave with him. In a few weeks the colleges will be back in action. But with no marketing programs, only a few people know.

This area needs something to sustain all this interest. It could be a soccer hotbed again with the right situation.
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Re: So what does this mean for soccer in the US?

Unread postby Love child of shawn kemp » Fri Jun 25, 2010 3:36 pm

The World Cup will do nothing for soccer's popularity. It never has and never will. The women's team won the world cup a few years back and I don't recall a big jump in interest in women's soccer. I think Lacrosse is the fastest growing sport right now and will ultimately surpass soccer. It actually does already in my city for middle school boys.
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Re: So what does this mean for soccer in the US?

Unread postby waborat » Sat Jun 26, 2010 11:36 am

Over the rest of the summer:

Wii will sell many more FIFA games and they'll end up on Ebay for $2 by XMas...

Single women will talk to every European man they meet in the bars...

You'll see more backyard bbq's with Sangria, Heineken & Tusker...

Wagering on the games in Vegas will rise...

Youth trophy sales will skyrocket
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Re: So what does this mean for soccer in the US?

Unread postby Spin » Sat Jun 26, 2010 7:53 pm

I'm so tired of hearing about how boring 1-0 games are. I don't buy it.

That would make a 100-84 NBA game the most exciting, right? Sorry, when it takes a half hour to play the last 2 minutes, I'm not impressed. Constant scoring doesn't do "it" for me.

But the WC is almost over, and all the stick-and-ball hacks can stop talking about soccer. And talk about more exciting things.

Like Tiger Woods.
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Re: So what does this mean for soccer in the US?

Unread postby waborat » Sat Jun 26, 2010 8:11 pm

Spin wrote:I'm so tired of hearing about how boring 1-0 games are. I don't buy it.



1-0 games are exciting, but ya need ta win em.

Personally, I believe in ties.

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Re: So what does this mean for soccer in the US?

Unread postby peeker643 » Sat Jun 26, 2010 9:12 pm

Spin wrote:I'm so tired of hearing about how boring 1-0 games are. I don't buy it.

That would make a 100-84 NBA game the most exciting, right? Sorry, when it takes a half hour to play the last 2 minutes, I'm not impressed. Constant scoring doesn't do "it" for me.

But the WC is almost over, and all the stick-and-ball hacks can stop talking about soccer. And talk about more exciting things.

Like Tiger Woods.


I don't find 1-0 soccer games boring. No more so than 1-0 baseball games. Every single pitch or play in a 1-0 baseball game can be critical. Same deal in soccer. Any giveaway, any lazy pass, any shot, any corner, etc can mean the difference in winning or going home.

You're not going going to change perception or bring soccer to a higher point in the collective conscience of american sports fans over a fortnight or a month though Spin.It's going to take a generation or two if it happens at all. But what went down over the past month or so is a really nice start. I went to Panini's today and sat on their deck with 50 other soccer fans to watch the game. I've never done that or seen it before. And it went on all across the country. Whether it lasts or not is another question. But it's a start.
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Re: So what does this mean for soccer in the US?

Unread postby swerb » Sat Jun 26, 2010 9:31 pm

Great post Peeker. My same take exactly.
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Re: So what does this mean for soccer in the US?

Unread postby waborat » Sun Jun 27, 2010 8:08 am

A 1-0 game is very exciting...

Whether it's in baseball, hockey or an even rarer 3-0 or 7-0 game in football, it's one mistake away from changing everything...

Though fortunately and unfortunately for a lot of people, it's the norm more than the exception in soccer...It shouldn't change the excitement level, but it does for many...

Which brings up the question of this thread...For soccer to make it in this country, then corporate America needs to find a way to make a lot of money from it...For recruitment of fans, that starts with exposure...For corporations to take a risk on it, that falls into advertising (and a lot of it)...Until someone can find a way to market these players, include numerous commercials & medicate American's ADD then you're going to keep getting what we have now...

I also wonder if a big reason why it's never taken off after the school-level is because it's just not an American game??? Same reason why the NHL is not on the same tier as football, baseball & hoops...The rest of the world hates our watered-down beer and we disregard their metric system and sports...Not saying it's right, but it is what it is

I think Peek said it earlier about the WC being like the Olympics? Cross-country skiing can be exciting and interesting on the big stage, but a shrug-of-the-shoulders most of the time to many people during the "off season"...Enjoy the sports you love and wear em on your sleeve if you want as it's what makes life fun and interesting...Don't worry if they become mainstream, because then you just might not like em so much
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Re: So what does this mean for soccer in the US?

Unread postby Squints » Sun Jun 27, 2010 10:56 am

I watch soccer on the international level, I'll follow the WC qualification, inter. friendlies and such. But I will not pretent that I am a hard-core fan like Cease and Spin. I will say that I am disappointed in this WC showing for the US.

The question was raised what will this do for soccer in the US- IMO soccer won't take off until the US makes the next step in the WC- At least the semi-finals with a breakout cross-over star. And then it may take time. I was exprecting the quarter finals- and in hindsight, it took three unusual (won't say miracle) circumstances to get out of the group stage. The US has been in every WC since '90, out in group stage or the 2nd round all but once. No longer is making the cup and advancing to the 2nd round going to cut it for most Americans. The build up of the England match, the Slovenia come-back and the Donovan goal had the nation as focused on soccer as I can remember. The soccer experts had stated that the draw was favorable for the US to advance to perhaps the semifinals. They were favored against Ghana, a good team but hardly a powerhouse or a recognizable name and lost the game and with it lost the opportunity to further seize the moment. But hey, they have people talking about it, people even saying they under-achieved. 20 years ago at the '90 Cup, no one said anything, so progress being made. How can the progress?
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Re: So what does this mean for soccer in the US?

Unread postby Squints » Sun Jun 27, 2010 11:12 am

Comptuer started acting up and had to submitt.

Just making the Cup has become standard for the US. Looking at their performance over the last 20 years, the sentiment may be= "Sure they made the cup, they make it every year, but that's it.

Unfortunately, I may contradict myself here- Our best players need to play the best competition. We know that is not the MLS- they need to ignore the pressure to stay at home and build the MLS and go play for the EPL, Serie A, etc..; However, how is soccer going grow if we can't see the US's best. Perhaps schedule more friendlies in the US? But will Brazil, England, Germany, etc.. agree and/or send their best to the US. I don't know.

This may help the competition because if CONCACAF is not the weakest qualifying region, it has to be among the worst. There is the US, Mexico and third world Central American and Carribbean countries. If we lose the the likes of Nicaraqua in anything other than cocaine smuggling and murders, than do we deserve the WC. Canadian soccer anyone?? Honduras had no shot at advancing and can't recall any other country other than those two advancing to the second round since '90. This is as long of a post that I have ever typed. I'll jump back and let the experts comment. Just posing questions or scenerios. Thanks.
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Re: So what does this mean for soccer in the US?

Unread postby aoxo1 » Sun Jun 27, 2010 11:22 am

How many years would it take for Roger Goodell or David Stern to implement a rule limiting the # of players that can be on the defensive side of the field in order to bring those scores up?
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Re: So what does this mean for soccer in the US?

Unread postby Spin » Sun Jun 27, 2010 12:34 pm

aoxo1 wrote:How many years would it take for Roger Goodell or David Stern to implement a rule limiting the # of players that can be on the defensive side of the field in order to bring those scores up?


Ed Tepper tried that...

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Re: So what does this mean for soccer in the US?

Unread postby Spin » Thu Jul 01, 2010 9:44 am

There's no pro soccer in Cleveland this season, but this fall in Cleveland's back yard the NCAA Division I runners-up make another run for the national title.

As soon as I have a solid broadcast schedule I'll post it here. The Cincinnati game 9/19 will be televised nationally. Ohio State, Penn State, Michigan, and/or Michigan State should be on the Big Ten Network. Most definitely perennial Top 10 tOSU.

Of course it's a short trip to UA's brand new soccer stadium. Just get your tickets a week ahead of time for the more popular opponents...

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Re: So what does this mean for soccer in the US?

Unread postby leadpipe » Tue Jul 06, 2010 8:50 am

waborat wrote:A 1-0 game is very exciting...

Whether it's in baseball, hockey or an even rarer 3-0 or 7-0 game in football, it's one mistake away from changing everything...

Though fortunately and unfortunately for a lot of people, it's the norm more than the exception in soccer...It shouldn't change the excitement level, but it does for many...

Which brings up the question of this thread...For soccer to make it in this country, then corporate America needs to find a way to make a lot of money from it...For recruitment of fans, that starts with exposure...For corporations to take a risk on it, that falls into advertising (and a lot of it)...Until someone can find a way to market these players, include numerous commercials & medicate American's ADD then you're going to keep getting what we have now...

I also wonder if a big reason why it's never taken off after the school-level is because it's just not an American game??? Same reason why the NHL is not on the same tier as football, baseball & hoops...The rest of the world hates our watered-down beer and we disregard their metric system and sports...Not saying it's right, but it is what it is

I think Peek said it earlier about the WC being like the Olympics? Cross-country skiing can be exciting and interesting on the big stage, but a shrug-of-the-shoulders most of the time to many people during the "off season"...Enjoy the sports you love and wear em on your sleeve if you want as it's what makes life fun and interesting...Don't worry if they become mainstream, because then you just might not like em so much


This is spot on....what's going to aid soccer the most is...money.

And a huge problem in this regard is the best players in the world are not here. In any sport deemed "major," well, this is the country the best players play.

And, this is also the reason it fizzles out after youth level, because many who might become excellent soccer players choose other sports when it's time to fish or cut bait.

Cheerleading handjobs for the quarterback over the mid-fielder at this point.

Wabo brings up another great point. If ya like soccer, maybe it's best it stays right at the level it's at here. Every other GD sport has been tainted by the chase for the dollar, if it ever gets to that point soccer will be no different.
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Re: So what does this mean for soccer in the US?

Unread postby Cease » Tue Jul 06, 2010 11:18 am

Right now, MLS is set to capitalize on the "victory lap" being performed by Donovan and other USMNT memebers. Donovan and Buddle are already back on the field for LA Galaxy- which they need to be. I'm looking at these attendence stats seeing a 9% rise year over year '09 to '10. MLS can make hay this summer.

Seattle is performing very well as a market, as expected. NBA's loss is MLS's gain. Drawing 36k per game through 8 games.

http://www.mls-daily.com/2010/03/2010-mls-attendance.html

Expansion plans (tentative) include Vancouver, backed by Steve Nash, Portland Timbers, and Montreal.

Vancouver and Montreal have a "hole" to fill left by a recent "major sport" exodus- so it's a matter of bringing these markets a more affordable/culturally relevant product. Portland Timbers draw 10k as a minor league soccer team. I've been there for a game, MLS will work in Portland, IMO.
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