Yes, I was extremely excited to watch The World Cup last summer and yes, I was equally as excited to watch the Women's World Cup this summer, but the short-lived fanaticism here in the US was disappointing both times. One would assume that with the football season and its contracts seeming more like a WWE script, that there would be at least a small shift toward sports like rugby and soccer in which the players realize that playing and entertaining are the important aspects of the career. But no. The majority of the German crowd was in the US' corner for their matches, but American attendance was paltry. I've blogged before about this nation's disconnect from the remainder of the world in terms of sports, but soccer is the biggest conundrum. Why do we push children to play soccer until age 13 and then drop it completely off the face of the planet?
There was a recent news article citing multiple school districts that were considering soccer to be the sport that could be eliminated from their budgets with the least amount of opposition. Why? Because few people see the importance in soccer when football is much "manlier" for boys to play. The greatest bane to their plan? Title 9, which asserts that there should be an equal number of sports for girls and boys...Bane? Obstacle? Seriously?
Though I suppose in a country in which more people watched the Super Bowl than the Presidential inauguration, the initial first 24 hour coverage of the Japanese tsunami, ANY space shuttle liftoff, or any other sporting event, etc. etc. etc. I shouldn't be surprised.
The US women put on a tremendous show, were inspirational and played excellent team soccer; though they made a few mistakes which ultimately cost them the game, namely the disorganization in front of the goal which led to Japan's easy tying goal, they made huge progress from the team that barely qualified.
Best part of watching this year, see below: