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Soccer Culture

07 August 12:56 pm

Cette semaine, une nouvelle émission spéciale de Coup Franc : « La MLS vue de l’autre côté de l’Atlantique » - à écouter ici. L’équipe reçoit Thierry Marchand de France Football et Loïc Moreau, basé en Angleterre, du site mls-news pour en parler. Parmi les thèmes abordés :

- Quel regard portent les médias et les supporters européens sur la MLS ?
- Les particularités « exotiques » de la MLS ont-elles un côté attirant ou rebutant pour eux ?
- Sont-ils davantage attirés par les clubs des grandes villes, par ceux qui ont les meilleurs résultats ou par les vedettes ?
- Les préjugés, avérés ou non, qui y circulent.
- Les joueurs de renom : bons pour l’image de la MLS, mais ce serait mieux s’ils étaient plus jeunes…
- Le rôle des joueurs français et de l’Impact de Montréal sur l’intérêt croissant en France.
- L’intérêt porté par les clubs européens aux joueurs de MLS.

Nos autres sujets de discussion :
- Les équipes qui étaient en tête au début de l’été n’avancent presque plus : que se passe-t-il ?
- On parle aussi du calendrier de la MLS : équilibré ou non ? Été, hiver ou les deux ?
- Lisez ici le texte sur les périodes de méforme de Wondolowski
- Quelles conséquences pour le coup de tête de Nelson Rivas ?

L'émission Coup Franc est aussi disponible sur iTunes. Vous pouvez nous joindre par courriel (coup.franc@MLSsoccer.com) ou sur Twitter (@CoupFrancMLS).

31 July 2:25 pm

Ever wonder what the days are like in the life of MLSers leading up to matches?

Well, now you can find out. Major League Soccer and NBC have announced a new, day-in-the-life series, MLS 36. The program – which follows in the footsteps of fellow NBC Sports Network series Fight Night 36, IndyCar 36 and NHL 36 – takes viewers behind the scenes for a player's 36 hours prior to kickoff.

San Jose Earthquakes star and golden-boot leading Chris Wondolowski wil be the first league player highlighted, when his preparation for the 2012 MLS All-Star Game will air on Sunday, August 5 at 9:30 pm ET on the NBC Sports Network. The second installment is set to air the following Friday, August 10 when Seattle's Fredy Montero's preparations are recorded ahead of the Sounders' World Football Challenge match vs. Chelsea on July 18.

Additional episodes and players of MLS 36 will be announced at a later date. Which player to the right would you want to see featured? Or, let us know who else you would want in the comments below.

19 July 3:47 pm

Wednesday's matchup between Vancouver and LA witnessed David Beckham’s sixth goal of the season, a personal MLS best for the Galaxy superstar.

Back with Manchester United in the 2001–2002 season the Englishman scored 11 goals in 28 games, his personal best. With 13 games remaining for the Galaxy, he’s on pace to pass his career single-season scoring record.  For his career, Beckham scores an average of every 440 minutes, or every 5 games. This season he has scored an average of every 234 minutes, or every 3 games.  He has a very real chance of surpassing his career mark. 

Rank your top Beckham goals here.

19 July 1:49 pm

Una de las cosas que definitivamente tenía que ver en Seattle era la ya muy reconocida Marcha al Estadio o “March to the Match”, donde – con una banda de guerra al frente – los aficionados de Seattle Sounders hacen una ruidosa llegada al CenturyLink Field.

Para el partido ante Chelsea FC la fiesta no fue diferente. Los dejó con este video que es una pequeñísima prueba de la rumba que se arma antes del inicio de los partidos.

Un agradecimiento especial a la Barra Fuerza Verde por guiar a este extranjero de sus tradiciones y un detalle a resaltar: noten la seriedad de los hombres del Chelsea al segundo 11 de este video… no sé a ustedes, pero a mí se me hace que no esperaban que todo ese revuelo no fuera para ellos sino para los locales. Me gusta.

18 July 4:39 am

Es el jugador más representativo de Seattle Sounders en el medio del campo, y muchos dicen que incluso es el mejor jugador actualmente en la MLS.

Ese es Osvaldo Alonso.

Claro está que no lo es en todas las posiciones de la cancha, tal y como muestra este video, donde el estelar cubano es vencido en la portería por una pequeña jugadora de fútbol.

Zapatero a sus zapatos.

12 July 1:14 pm


Courtesy of NBA.com

Steve Nash has all the skills needed to succeed at the professional level of his sport: vision, agility, an incredible feel for the game.

And oh yeah, he's pretty good at basketball, too.

In an interview with Lakers.com's Mike Trudell, the recetly-acquired point guard was quick to admit that the Beautiful Game has been vital to his basketball career.

"I didn't play basketball until I was 13," Nash said. "I wouldn't have been an NBA player if I didn't play soccer."

Nash joins an already soccer-crazed Laker squad that includes perennial All-Star and proud Barcelona fan Kobe Bryant, and actual Barcelona Basquet product Pau Gasol, who was in attendance to watch Spain win the Euros in Kiev on July 1.

Playing alongside offensive threats Bryant and Gasol, the NBA's fifth all-time assist leader will be poised to add to that total significantly. It's no coincidence that Nash is one of the best passers to ever play the game, and he credits his vision in large part to his soccer background.

"The ideas, the ability to see and anticipate, all of that is a part of my basketball game," Nash added. "It really was developed in soccer. It's been good to me in many ways."

10 July 5:15 pm

Remember that age-old mantra reminding you to be comfortable in your own skin? Well, a couple of US national teamers went a step further.

Men's captain Carlos Bocanegra and women's superstar Abby Wambach were not camera-shy when ESPN The Magazine's Body Issue came calling. Both Bocanegra and Wambach shed some skin – and some visual insight – into what the soccer bodies look like from two of America's best.

The body of a soccer player, like any athlete, is defined as much by its impressive and imposing physicality as it is its ability to withstand the daily beating it takes.

"When you play soccer, you are going to get cut, you are going to get bruised," explains Wambach. "If sitiches have to happen, if staples have to come, that's just part of the game – just take it."

Also included in the fourth annual publication are the NFL's Rob Gronkowski, the WNBA's Candace Parker and the NBA's Tyson Chandler, among others.

 

09 July 11:27 am

Pavel Pardo, la leyenda mexicana y actual mediocampista del Chicago Fire, cambió la cancha de fútbol por la de beisbol  este fin de semana para para hacer un lanzamiento de conmemoración en el U.S. Cellular Field de Chicago en celebración de los White Sox y el “Orgullo Sox”.

Además del lanzamiento de la estrella azteca, un excelente grupo mariachi le dio un sabor mexicano al himno de los Estados Unidos cuando entonaron una versión especial del Star Spangled Banner.

Juzguen ustedes mismos.

05 July 6:23 pm

EA SPORTS is running the Imagine Yourself Here sweepstakes on MLSsoccer.com that could win some lucky fan two seats in the Sideline FIFA Soccer Lounge at the 2012 AT&T MLS All-Star Game, taking place July 25 at PPL Park.

Sounds pretty cool. And it got us thinking about what the sensual experience of sitting sideline might actually be like.

So we asked New York Red Bulls midfielder Dax McCarty

If someone has a sideline seat, what can he or she expect you hear?

McCarty: Honestly, it’s a mix of Al Pacino in Scarface and Tupac. It can get a little intense with the heat of the competition. Things get said that you wouldn’t say to your Mom. But there’s also lots of communication. It’s like you have 11 guys all playing quarterback, barking out instructions, encouraging other guys.

What will they see?

McCarty: The subtle connections players have, like the movement of, say, the right back and right midfielder. You’ll see the playmaker’s subtle movements and the runs off the ball. For example, if the center back has the ball, you’ll notice a guy like Thierry Henry breaking off to run onto a long ball. You see the play before it happens.

What will they smell?

McCarty: Ha! Dirty laundry. Or a locker room. Definitely odors you don’t experience in the second deck with the hot dogs and nachos. It’s musky. You also can sometimes smell freshly cut grass. And dirt when the turf comes up on a slide tackle near the sidelines. But the muskiness outweighs the grass.

What will they taste?

McCarty: The moisture and the sweat of 22 guys running around. But it’s also metaphorical. You can taste the effort.

What will they feel?

McCarty: You might feel the grass under your feet. You feel how hard the field is or how soft it is. But mostly, you feel the emotion. You feel how much everyone wants to win. 

30 June 6:20 pm

Dave Wangerin, author of Soccer in a Football World and Distant Corners: American Soccer’s History of Missed Opportunities and Lost Causes, died on Friday, June 29, 2012.


I never knew David Wangerin, but I feel like I did.

His life story is eerily familiar: born in the Midwest, in love with writing, fascinated by soccer’s rich and woefully overlooked history in America.

His articles for When Saturday Comes and his 2006 book, Soccer in a Football World were — and remain — required reading for anyone in the US soccer scene. His regular appearances on various podcasts were always enjoyable.

Wangerin chronicled soccer here from its immigrant beginnings through the 1970s disco heyday of the NASL to the launch and slow rise of MLS. It was all part of his story.

Sadly, we will only be able to imagine the stories he might have told about the future of the game he loved. 

What some of my colleagues have said:

RIP David Wangerin, US soccer history expert, who wrote the excellent book "Soccer In A Football World"

— Grant Wahl (@GrantWahl) June 30, 2012

Enormously sad to hear about the passing of David Wangerin, author of the wonderful "Soccer In A Football World". Far, far too soon.

— Tom Dunmore (@pitchinvasion) June 30, 2012