Team USA Putting Best Foot Forward At World Cup 2010
It’s almost laughable to watch USA Soccer try to talk people in to caring
about the World Cup in South Africa. Spain (+400) and Brazil (+450) lead the charge in World Cup futures, while England and Argentina are outside shots with +650 and +600 odds to win the FIFA World Cup in 2010. Hell, even Serbia is getting better odds than Team USA’s +7000 odds.
Let’s face facts. Americans only cheer or care for things that they’re good at. The country as a whole prides itself on being the best in the world, and if they’re not great at something then they tend to turn a blind eye. Soccer is that bastard child in the states that the masses haven’t jumped all over because Team USA hasn’t ever advanced past the quarterfinals at the World Cup.
Instead of pumping some much needed money and vigor in to their soccer program, the USA has been too busy building their own sports. Rugby gave birth to American football. Cricket’s the long forgotten great grandfather of America’s favorite past time. Basketball was invented by a Canadian. The USA loves to make things their own, just so they can brag about being the best.
First World Cup Matchup – England vs. USA
Saturday, June 12th — 2:30pm EST
World Cup Betting Lines:
O 2.5 +105
U 2.5 -125
Unfortunately, you can’t reinvent the most popular game in the world. America’s athletes by and large invest themselves in hoops and baseball, leaving soccer to the pansies and nerds. Team USA will boast the best American soccer players on the planet, but that doesn’t mean that we’re showcasing the best American athletes there are.
Rarely does a team for the states endear itself to the fans unless they have marquee guys on the roster. Soccer nuts are very familiar with the thrilling footwork of Jozy Altirodore. The media will probably harp on the relationship of father/coach Bob Bradley and his son/player Michael Bradley.
Still, Landon Donavan has been the face of American soccer for as long as I can remember. Actually, I can’t even remember who Landon’ took the mantle from. He’s a superb athlete and a dynamo on the field, and as a soccer fan I certainly appreciates what he can do. Every casual sports fan has heard of Landon Donovan, and Team USA continues to build their image around his All-American good looks.
No matter how good Team USA is on paper, it’s going to take some massive upsets for this soccer team to get noticed by the mainstream. The chance will be there when the U.S. meets England in their first test in South Africa, and if they pass that gauntlet with any grade higher than an “F-minus” then that will be a win. Just don’t expect the country to be excited about it.
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