Wednesday, June 20, 2012

5 Reasons Why You Should NOT Be Hype for Euro 2012 (An American Perspective)

By Guest Contributor Trevor Ammons 

Kenny Powers thinks soccer is un-American. 

Disclaimer: I am a fan of soccer/football.  My dreams are filled with a United States soccer league that rivals those in Europe.  Yet after reading Blessing’s post about “5 Reasons Why We Should Be Hype About Euro 2012,”
I started watching the Euro 2012 tournament and thought to myself, what isn’t there to love about this?  What would a “normal” American see that would prevent them from the hype, love or appreciation for a sport someone like myself finds in such an event?
Well, here are five reasons that first came to mind…

5) Ties.  This one is obvious.  You disagree?  Oh really? Did you see the faces of the fans who attended the Italy v. Spain match-up on Sunday?  Those, my friends, were the faces of the supporters, after an exciting duel between two of the best teams in the world, ending in a draw.  In French, a “tie” translates to nul and in French the saying, “T’es nul,” loosely translates to, “You are a loser.”  Give one to the French for this beautiful summary of what a “tie” really is; instead a team being the loser in the end, the fan or viewer becomes the nul or loser.  People around the world could agree that they would rather see their rival team/country lose a game than tie.

4) Hair bands.  Not headbands.  Hair bands.  Americans have all summer long to watch the WNBA.

3) Not knowing when the game is over.  Honestly, would it not add to the overall ambiance or suspense of the game to be able to actually SEE the end of the competition nearing?  Americans do not like the unknown.  After 90 minutes of regular play, am I supposed to calculate the time spent on injuries? Why can’t there be a clock to let me know when the game is over? We are taught that everything happens for a reason, and when a game is called to end for no reason, we do not like that. 

2) Acting and Protective Gear.  The United States is known for Hollywood.  I just watched an awesome Hollywood film not two days before the European Cup and let me tell you, these Europeans sure do a good job.  Americans do not need to tune in to see some prima donna (Ronaldo and Torres are the first who come to mind) flail about when another player grabs their shoulder or kicks their “boot.”  I played soccer and I know how much getting kicked or someone stepping on your “boot” can hurt but remember, we are Americans.  Americans watch and play (well, at least used to play) real American “football.”  In “football,” we do not accept actors, magic spray or flailing about.  Wait, we accept flailing but only if you are having a seizure because a 250lb linebacker, who can run a 4.5 second 40 yard dash, just smashed your skull in.  

My proposal to solve this problem: Make a rule that states all players must wear a shin guard that actually covers the ENTIRE shin.  We love pads in America.  Pad up those European players and voila; you have a nation of annoying-yet-supportive fans across the pond forever trying to bridge the gap between football and soccer.

1) The Euro 2012 logo.  I have yet to determine why exactly the Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) decided to go with a flowery-soccerball-with-yellow-flowers-blooming-out-of-the ball logo but I hope it has something to do with Poland or Ukraine (the two hosting countries) because this logo is about as un-American as it gets.  Any American who sees that logo (that is all-too-often seen, flashed after every replay, sewn on the sleeve of every player’s jersey, etc.) or that purple paisley border UEFA decided to have flashing around the perimeter of the field…I mean pitch…is going to be completely turned off.  I have never seen a less-American, less-manly logo in my entire life.  That logo even makes me want to turn away while watching these matches just because I feel like I turn a little more European and a lose a little of my American soul each time I see it…and I see it A LOT.

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