Monday, June 20, 2011

Why Soccer Sucks

Despite all of my ranting and raving, the Sports Biotch is a lover of sports. Each sport, though, holds a unique place in the quadrant of my heart devoted to athletics (the other three quadrants go to pizza, ice cream, and cuddly puppies).

There are sports that I understand and love, such as football and water polo. There are those that I understand and enjoy sometimes, like basketball and baseball. There are some that I might like if I had any clue as to what might be happening, such as cricket…which I’m convinced is just a giant British joke meant to make the rest of us feel stupid.

Then there is soccer.

I have tried oh-so hard over the years to like soccer, I really really have. During the 2008 (correction: 2006...same difference) World Cup, I was traveling all over Europe and did my best to get into the spirit of the game. While I was very successful when it came to getting into the drinking part of soccer fandom, I just couldn’t stir up the passion for the games we were watching. Now, after some deep soul-searching, I have realized why.

Soccer sucks.

World, I know you think Americans are dumb for calling the wrong sport “football”, and I agree that it makes little to no sense. But at least our football is GOOD. How you people can watch this soccer crap day in and day out and pay money to wear those hideous scarves and jerseys is beyond me.

Watching the Panama vs. El Salvador game last night, I was literally on the verge of tears. This sport is actually so frustratingly stupid that it nearly made me cry, and I’ll tell you why. Without further ado, the top 5 reasons that soccer sucks.

5. Zero ball control. When is a sport not a good sport? When the table version with plastic men on metal sticks allows for better ball handling than the real thing. I mean, my unneutered puppy has better ball control.

Seriously, who thought this was a good idea? You have a field about a mile wide and turnovers happen every 3 seconds or so because accuracy is impossible. You’re better off watching a track meet – at least track doesn’t pretend to be something other than running.

4. BS point scoring. This is a direct result of number 5. Without being able to actually pass to teammates, you can’t have, you know, PLAYS like in normal people sports. Therefore, when those once-an-hour goals finally are scored, more often than not it’s on some ridiculous penalty kick or amid an awkward mess where the ball manages to roll into the goal. Not impressive. Not entertaining. Stupid.

3. Offsides is moronic. During last night’s game I had to have my boyfriend remind me about how this whole offsides business works. “You can’t be ahead of the last defender and get the ball passed to you,” he said.

I eloquently expressed to him that I thought this was retarded, because in any sport, getting ahead of the defender and getting the ball is exactly what you want to do. It’s called a good counter-attack/burning the mofo.

His argument? “But then they could just keep players back by the goal, ready to score.” Yes. That is exactly what they should do. Then maybe they would occasionally SCORE GOALS AND SOCCER MIGHT BE INTERESTING.

2. Excuse me, Mr. Ref, I believe your clock is broken. Let me tell you how a normal conversation about a game goes:
- Hey Bob, what’s the score of the ***** game?
- Oh hey Mary, it’s **** to ****. The **** are up.
- Cool! How much time is left?
- **** minutes to go in the **** period/quarter! Should be interesting!

But ooooh no, not soccer. If you care at all about how much time is left for the losing team to possibly catch up, and not about how long these dudes have been running sprints on a field, you’ll have to do some math. Really, though, don’t bother, because they’re not sure EXACTLY how long they want to play. The “end” of the game is really just a “few minute warning”. How many minutes? Well, we’ll just let that old guy in the short shorts on the sideline take a stab at it.

1. Flops. Honestly, this is worse than pro wrestling, because at least wrestling has more or less given up on pretending to be real. There is absolutely no reason that pro soccer players should be falling over more often than kids on 5 & under teams. And fans shouldn’t have to sit there and wait for the medical team to bring these pansies water, which will suddenly revive them once a yellow card has been doled out to the opposition. Give me a break. If I wanted to watch grown men be needlessly dramatic I’d turn on Ru Paul’s Drag Race. We have instant replay, man, and we know that he barely touched you. There is no need to roll around like you’re on fire and try to pick a body part to grab in agony. It’s not convincing, and you look like a little bitch. Really, soccer fans, are you not seeing this? Pathetic.

Since I'm fair and balanced, I'll wrap this up by saying just one good thing about soccer: they allow celebrations, which is sweet. It's not that soccer players are particularly good at them, mind you, because I think football players could do better if given the chance to perform organized team celebrations. But I do give props to the rich white guys who run soccer for being way more fun than the rich white guys running football. Respect.


Anonymous said...

Your article makes some good points, but there was no world cup in 2008

Diana said...

Oh, POOP. I guess that was 2006. Man, I'm getting old. Thanks for the compliment and for pointing out my stupidity.

El Matarife said...

Here, let me sum up for you why this post is stupid:

5. What? Zero ball control? Do you know how hard it is to control a ball with your foot? Just because it looks like they have zero ball control to YOU doesn't mean they can't control a ball. Why aren't you bitching about puck control in hockey?

4. Just wrong. Look up some statistics instead of spewing drivel.

3. Offside is not moronic just because you don't understand it. Is offside moronic in football? is the blue line moronic in hockey?

2. hahahahhaahahahaha are you kidding? 10 minutes left on the clock in soccer means the game will be done in 10-15 minutes. 10 minutes left in hockey, basketball, or football can often mean quadruple or quintuple the amount of time showing on the clock. And hey, don't even mention baseball, a sport with no clock whatsoever.

1. You don't like the NBA or NHL either? Guys flop in that all the time. If your complaint is about the 15 minutes of rolling around on the ground then yeah, I agree.

Diana said...


Thanks for the comment. Allow me to retort:

5. Never said it was easy, in fact it's too difficult, which is why I don't have the patience to watch it. Don't like hockey all that much, either, for the same reason. But at least they're men - they actually hit each other and only roll on the ground if they're injured.

4. Not sure if you noticed, but my blog is called Sports Biotch...I'm clearly not here for heavy statistical analysis. Sure, I've seen some great intentional shots scored, but based on personal experience I feel there are too many points scored off of PKs or after pure chaos happening in front of the goal.

3.Offside in football is entirely different. Offside in soccer = a receiver in front of a DB in football catching the ball. Can you imagine if that wasn't allowed? Moronic.

2. Um, maybe YOU care about how much actual time is left before the game ends because your mom gets mad when you come home late. But I care about how much game time is left. I want to know EXACTLY how much PLAY time they have, because that gives you an idea of what the odds are for the final outcome. And yes, baseball drags on and it's obnoxious. I'm not big on baseball for that and many other resasons.

1. Woooo! I got you to agree!! Weeeee! I hate when anyone flops. I don't need stats on this one, though - soccer is by far has the most and wastes a ton of time on it. The leagues/officials/whoever not doing anything about it is just a big f-you to the fans, IMO.

Anonymous said...

Sports Bitch, the only honest name on the internet.

Diana said...

Thanks...I think?

Anonymous said...

You need to add "dumb" to the middle of your blog name. Panama/El Salvadore as a representative case is pitiful, try watching a premiere league game. Fast paced, physical and with very little "flopping". That was like comparing Arena Football to the NFL. Your argument about offsides is particularly stupid after mentioning that you sometimes enjoy hockey and I saw more flopping in the NBA finals over the last few weeks by "Mr. I'm Taking My Talents To Southbeach" and "D-Whaaa" then I have in an Italian League game. Stop being a hater.

Diana said...

Oh dear realize that a) calling a stranger dumb because they don't like something that you do is dumb and b) calling someone a hater is, well, also dumb? Yes, I pretty much hate soccer, and I have my reasons. Last time I checked, hating something due to personal preference wasn't wrong or dumb. What IS dumb is adding an "e" to the end of El Salvador and not knowing the difference between then and than. Anyway, I digress. On to your actual points.

Friends who like soccer have brought up this Panama/El Salvador thing, too. Mind you, I said this game IN PARTICULAR was so bad I wanted to cry. I've watched plenty of games in the past (including Premier League) and have been annoyed by all of the same things, just maybe not to the same extent as Sunday night. Besides that, though, don't you think maybe there's something wrong with a sport if the best players from two countries where the sport is extremely popular are still pretty awful? On top of that, there were plenty of people still watching and cheering and getting into that game...what I'm saying is I don't understand how they could've possibly enjoyed it.

And bringing up hockey to argue with me is no longer allowed. I like when they beat each other up and go really really fast - for me, that's usually enough to outweigh the lack of puck control and the offsides BS. As for basketball, it's the same thing. The flops there are stupid, but the rest of the game doesn't suck like soccer.

Thanks for your comment!!!

Anonymous said...

Salvadore/salvador..... Then/than..... "2006 same difference". We aren't writing literary masterpieces here are we?

Diana said...

Of course not - you're totally right! I'm well aware of the fact that I often make mistakes, too. There's a difference, though, between a wrong date or a typo and not knowing basic grammar or how to spell. If someone calls me dumb and falls into the latter category, well, I'm going to point that out.

El Matarife said...

Here we go!

5. This literally makes zero sense. You like watching people do easy things easily? Why are you watching sports to begin with? Go watch someone walk a dog in a park or tie their shoes. Now THERE'S riveting viewing.

4. I guess basketball gets a pass for points scored of rebounds or loose balls and football for fumbles/ints/broken plays? And, let's be honest here, isn't every single play in football "pure chaos"?

3. If there was no offside in soccer your forwards could stand in front of the goal the entire game, causing someone on the other team to have to mark him. Imagine a wide receiver standing on the 1 yard line without having to reset, forcing a DB to stand there with him while the offense gets to run the ball against one less defender. Now send 5 guys deep. You've now made the line of scrimmage 6 on 6. If you're going to make an analogy at least follow it all the way to it's conclusion.

2. Let me break it down for you: A soccer game is 90 minutes long. Right around the 89th minute they tell you how much time will be added. Take 90, add that number, and you know when the game will end.

And give me a break with your "odds for the final outcome". You just said not 2 bullet points earlier that you don't care about statistical analysis.

1. I got nothing!

Ed Radakovitz said...

Thank You, Thank You, Thank You ! I have been trying to tell my friends this for years. One of my points I like to make: The dimensions of a soccer goal are 24x8 ft. That's 192 Sq/ft to shoot at and the "best" players in the world can barely score 1 goal per game with all that space to shoot at? The phrase "He couldn't hit the side of a barn" literally applies to soccer players!!

Diana said...

Woooo! Somebody agrees with me! Thanks for the comment, Ed. Really appreciate it. You are totally right...damn near the size of barn.

Matt said...

I totally agree, soccer is a terrible spectator sport. Just a track meet on grass. In response to the soccer hooligan backlash:

5. Just because it's hard doesn't make it fun to watch. I don't want baseball to switch to golf balls and broomsticks because it would make it more difficult.

4. It seems like there are infinitely more videos of own goals and fluke shots than there are of intentional, impressive ones. Especially considering the number of shots on goal per match.

3. Even though they go by the same name sometimes, I don't see much of a parallel between soccer and American football, especially because of the way possession changes work. I think with regard to the offside issue, it compares better to basketball. If someone wants to stand under the basket, let them. It affects their team on defense, or might force the other team to send a defender down leaving a 4-on-4. Whatever it does, it adds a little (more?)strategy to the game. At the end of the day each team has the same number of players so let them use them in the way they each think is best. Also, I'm not a big hockey guy, but the blue line seems to be the balance for a power play more than anything else.

2. Agreed, the extra time thing is ridiculous. As far as baseball, they do have innings and a predetermined number of outs. They don't get to the eighth then decide to add an extra one.

1. I don't think anyone disagrees that they flop WAY too much. Unless you get kicked in the face or the family jewels, get up and keep running.

sportsb*tch said...

Matt! Thanks for having my back. You're now my new best friend. Be excited.