OT: Why does soccer appeal

HuskyHawk

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For @Kitaman who wants to understand the game, and why he should become a fan, as suggested by @Waquoit . I was never a serious player, but my HS team played in the state championship game every year I was there, then soccer was huge at UConn and we went to most games as part of the North Goal Gang. I had friends who were HS players, and I joined intramural teams. I'm too slow to be good. Years later started watching on TV due to the National Team World Cup efforts.

Positives about the sport: Very few stoppages in play. No commercials. Very limited substitutions. That means that overall fitness is critical, and pacing is critical. There is impressive athleticism, but not usually the size/strength focus we see in US football and basketball. Speed and skill, ball placement. The biggest thing I noticed from UConn level soccer to MLA to Europe to World Cup is accuracy of ball placement on passes. The football analogy would be throwing a deep pass that the receiver catches in stride perfectly vs a pass that he has to come back for and make contested. Strategy takes longer to pick up, and I am no expert. There are some clear differences in teams that focus on possession and controlled short passing to move up field. Others may have a strong defense and counter-attack game (like a steal and fastbreak in basketball). Others may rely on deep balls to speedy wing players.

Maybe somebody who is a less of a casual than me can help him understand the game. Offsides was counter-intuitive to me when I was introduced to the game. For hockey fans, it works like the blue line, except it isn't fixed, it moves with the last non goalie defender for the other team.
 

SubbaBub

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As it's been said, matches last 2 hrs and most always end on time.

Unlike most other ball sports there is no running out the clock or parades to the foul line.

Most matches the outcome, win, loss or draw is not known until very late if not the final whistle.

There is almost always something to play for multiple trophies, champions league, relegation, derbies.

Matches are not won because one team has the best player, though one player can be decisive. Tactics vary by club, match, and situation and are meant to win over the long haul of what remains on the clock. There is not a uniform way to play even at the top levels and these variances keep the game fresh and entertaining if you know what to look at.

Son and Kane play very differently than Mane and Salah or Varde at Leicester City.
 

SubbaBub

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Offsides is easy if you think of it this way. Once the ball is struck by an attacking player by way of foot, head, etc., any other attacking player who is closer to the opposing goal than every defender save the keeper is ineligible to touch the ball or otherwise influence play until the ball is touched by another player when he is no longer past the last defender.

Offsides is determined when the ball is struck. If there is a defender closer to the end line than you at that moment, you are onside and free to engage in the play.
 

HuskyHawk

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Offsides is easy if you think of it this way. Once the ball is struck by an attacking player by way of foot, head, etc., any other attacking player who is closer to the opposing goal than every defender save the keeper is ineligible to touch the ball or otherwise influence play until the ball is touched by another player when he is no longer past the last defender.

Offsides is determined when the ball is struck. If there is a defender closer to the end line than you at that moment, you are onside and free to engage in the play.

Yeah, I learned it, but for kids growing up on American football, where you throws bombs to guys who try to get behind the defense (same for basketball), it seems weird.
 
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I think that once you understand the offsides rule completely, I mean in the sense that one naturally knows it when they see it real time, one's appreciation of the game will really flourish. Without offsides, the game is just brute force, like basketball or football. Or indoor soccer. With the offsides rule comes the creativity and skill that makes the game so much fun.
 
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Yeah, I learned it, but for kids growing up on American football, where you throws bombs to guys who try to get behind the defense (same for basketball), it seems weird.
They still try to get behind and go for bombs in soccer. Offsides only comes into play in the attacking half of the pitch. But the game definitely has a non-American sensibility which I don't think is a bad thing.
 
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The drama, the sacking if coaches, club history, rivalries, the dives on fouls, the skill of world class payers, etc are all reasons for me. I played in HS, college intramurals, adult leagues, and FIFA. It is a reason to rally with your friends, talk smack, get up for game days, and is a reason to drink a tasty beverage. All great stuff if you ask me. Tune into EPL on NBCSN 1:00 today City plays, I will. Watch some games and listen in and also tune into our national teams. It is a global sport and more people will spark up a convo about soccer then you think. Cheers and C'Mon City!!
 
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Too those who have not played the game, soccer seems to be all process and little production....a bunch of folks passing the ball back and forth in a game of keep away...

But once you start noticing the wall passes, triangles, crossing passes, etc...you start to appreciate the finesse of the beautiful game. The great pass threading the needle or the well timed break for a through pass is something that can be learned to appeciate.
 

ClifSpliffy

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riveting:
HELLTOWN BEER: US Cable Soccer Viewership, Dec 22-28
how many decades now where soccer will be 'the next big thing on tv?'
still no.
i totally get anyone being a fan of, well, any sport. the part that is ridiculous is when aficionados yell 'u have to pay closer attention to the nuance!'
no, we don't. still mindnumbingly boring for the rest of us 329,500,000 not watching it on tv.
ergo, it's viewing 'appeal' to us is factually untrue, and remains such.
on the udder hand, this is what exploding tv viewership looks like:
'In 2020, The Cowboy Channel, RFD-TV, The The PRCA on Cowboy Channel+ App and Rural Radio doubled last year's ratings. It was the most watched NFR of all time.'
Wrangler NFR Viewership Doubles in First Year on The Cowboy Chan - The Cowboy Channel

NFR at dallas cowgirl stadium, in march, will be yuger. folks like watching stuff happen. get ur tix!
and, the Cowboy Channel is now on Connecticut cable, so if u can't make it down, u can still watch it live. noice.
 
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For @Kitaman who wants to understand the game, and why he should become a fan,

come have a few pints with AO Hartford while we cheer on the national teams - obv once covid has passed - and you will feel the passion and energy the beautiful game offers
 
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Like I said, if someone doesn't like soccer; it's their loss not mine.
 
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come have a few pints with AO Hartford while we cheer on the national teams - obv once covid has passed - and you will feel the passion and energy the beautiful game offers
Still boycotting Athletic? I'm curious.
 
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Still boycotting Athletic? I'm curious.
I never boycotted Athletic - wish them the very best and success - I've been to a few games at Dillon and love that we have this here. I am not an active "supporter", mostly to stay neutral since our chapter is split between HA and HCFC.
 
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Thanks for the reply. I still don't get the need for "neutrality" though. It's still seems a People's Front of Judea/Judean Peoples Front situation to me.
 

Fairfield_1st

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riveting:
HELLTOWN BEER: US Cable Soccer Viewership, Dec 22-28
how many decades now where soccer will be 'the next big thing on tv?'
still no.
i totally get anyone being a fan of, well, any sport. the part that is ridiculous is when aficionados yell 'u have to pay closer attention to the nuance!'
no, we don't. still mindnumbingly boring for the rest of us 329,500,000 not watching it on tv.
ergo, it's viewing 'appeal' to us is factually untrue, and remains such.
on the udder hand, this is what exploding tv viewership looks like:
'In 2020, The Cowboy Channel, RFD-TV, The The PRCA on Cowboy Channel+ App and Rural Radio doubled last year's ratings. It was the most watched NFR of all time.'
Wrangler NFR Viewership Doubles in First Year on The Cowboy Chan - The Cowboy Channel

NFR at dallas cowgirl stadium, in march, will be yuger. folks like watching stuff happen. get ur tix!
and, the Cowboy Channel is now on Connecticut cable, so if u can't make it down, u can still watch it live. noice.
First, since you don't appear to care about it on TV, why did you bother opening, reading, and commenting on this topic? I didn't see you tagged anywhere. I root for the US and Liverpool, played myself, understand the game, and find it a joy to watch.

Second, for someone that wants to understand and appreciate the game, you do need to pay attention to the nuances, kind of like the NBA used to be. Movement, cuts and proper delivery of the ball. The NBA is now a wretched thing to watch, regardless of how many people do. Throw up as many 3's as possible, great fun. I know you didn't mention the NBA, I'm just using it as a point of comparison.
 
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Thanks for the reply. I still don't get the need for "neutrality" though. It's still seems a People's Front of Judea/Judean Peoples Front situation to me.
Well, from my position, I felt that both sides were pulling me to dedicate my fandom to their club. and with me, AO Hartford. Chapter leadership talked about this a great deal and we decided it was better for the organization to stay neutral and focus on supporting the US. Which is what I did as well. I look forward to attending games of both clubs in the future and will support the local games as much as I can.

hope this helps - cheers!
 

ClifSpliffy

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First, since you don't appear to care about it on TV, why did you bother opening, reading, and commenting on this topic? I didn't see you tagged anywhere. I root for the US and Liverpool, played myself, understand the game, and find it a joy to watch.

Second, for someone that wants to understand and appreciate the game, you do need to pay attention to the nuances, kind of like the NBA used to be. Movement, cuts and proper delivery of the ball. The NBA is now a wretched thing to watch, regardless of how many people do. Throw up as many 3's as possible, great fun. I know you didn't mention the NBA, I'm just using it as a point of comparison.
i totally agree with you on the nba thing. the only periodic attraction for me is to sometimes watch a special player, or at least to see for myself if in fact the 'hype of the month player' is really special, or not.
 
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When I started playing soccer on a competitive adult travel team, few Americans played...My team was called sarcastically, the Green Cards. Guys from England, NIgeria, Tanzania, Argentina, France were my team mates. Soccer is not a great spectator sport for most Americans.... I played, coached, and officiated...and I rarely watch a match. My son played and coached and he will not watch MLS...he will watch Arsenal, Tottenham and the like.
 
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As an aside..if you didn't grow up with soccer, you don't develop a left foot for shooting...50 years ago, Americans got no respect when moving across the goal in the direction where your left would be the kicking foot...they marked us for going right footed.
 

HuskyHawk

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come have a few pints with AO Hartford while we cheer on the national teams - obv once covid has passed - and you will feel the passion and energy the beautiful game offers

Well I already watch the national team games. It's @Kitaman who needs convincing. But your post reminded me of Sunday mornings at Irish pubs in Boston. Breakfast, Guinness and soccer.

I'm a casual Revolution fan and live about 20 minutes from the stadium. Expecting them to solid this year. As much as I disliked Arena coaching the MNT, he's terrific in MLS. I'm trying to revive my casual Manchester United fan status too.
 
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I remember when they said that soccer was going to be the sport of the 70s.
 
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Well, from my position, I felt that both sides were pulling me to dedicate my fandom to their club. and with me, AO Hartford. Chapter leadership talked about this a great deal and we decided it was better for the organization to stay neutral and focus on supporting the US. Which is what I did as well. I look forward to attending games of both clubs in the future and will support the local games as much as I can.

hope this helps - cheers!
Thanks. It's just amazing to me that so many local soccer supporters won't support a local soccer team out of spite. Especially one that has delivered the goods. Two years in and they've put together a great product, as good as the league has to offer. A club Providence is aspiring to have, in fact.
 
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At the urging of my nephew (a Liverpool fan) I started following a few years back and decided to support Wolverhampton when I found out they were Led Zep's Robert Plant's hometown side. Wolves had just been promoted to the Premier League by winning the Championship division below it.

As you can see by my Avatar, I've become quite a fan and now watch quite a bit of non-PL soccer.

What I like:
  • 2 hour games, with very limited interruption (injuries, video review).
  • The fitness and athleticism of the players over the 2 hours is incredible.
  • As was mentioned above, I also find the passing accuracy is freaking ridiculous and beautiful to watch.
  • Without a doubt, the most incredible thing about any soccer game is the PASSION OF THE FANS.
Whether it's a league game or an international friendly, the fans are amazing. The chants, the garb, the fan pages, etc. I'll put the fans of a 6th tier England side up against the Bills Mafia any day. It's truly amazing. I watched England play Croatia in the 2018 World Cup while on vacation in the Cayman Islands with 100 ex-pats. It was absolutely insane! The USMNT vs/ Peru back in '18 was similarly insane. Fans are everything which is why these games during COVID, are so much different.
 

Fairfield_1st

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I'd rather watch rugby.
I enjoy watching rugby, but have absolutely 0 understanding of the game. I only understand scoring and that's it. It's similar to watching UConn women's field hockey on the rare times it's on TV. I understand scoring a goal and not another thing.
 
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