NPR has five reasons why the world’s football (not the pigskin) has a sudden surge in popularity in the States. Will it last in a way opposite from the 70’s, when I played the sport and rooted for my hometown team against the international-laden heavyweights? Soccer disappeared with a whisper in the 80’s.
Luis Suarez is a gifted athlete. He does not appear to be gifted in self-control. Gifted competitors always attract attention, including unwanted attention. How a person reacts to pressure is what distinguishes a mere athlete from a champion. Given his good behavior this past season, Mr Suarez possibly had steady guidance from his mates on his professional team this past year, perhaps his well-regarded captain. Now the Uruguayan star is the object of near-worldwide mockery. His four-month ban seems harsh or lenient, depending on one’s view. Other players have done more damage to an opponent and been punished less. My sense is that FIFA invested something in Mr Suarez, and his crime is the harm done to the sport.
I see my favorite Premier League side is playing in a neighboring state next month. Hmm. I don’t have a white scarf to dig out. I don’t think I have a wedding to play that day. Hmmmmm. What are the chances I will ever travel to Wales to see them play? Hmm. Swans!
As I type, the Chileans are holding against Brazil.