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Scots wha hae! Thoughts on the sad and ominous decline of Scottish soccer

I note, with considerable exasperation tempered by sadness, that Scottish soccer is experimenting with a marvelous new scheme for eliminating diving from their game.
» 4 Comments

Celebrity coaches -- who needs them?

I am still finding it difficult to come to terms with the extraordinary way in which coaches have come to dominate our game. Have hijacked it, in fact.
» 15 Comments

Wenger must stay -- even the stats agree

Arsene Wenger should stay. That's what I think. And I think that way because I respect his unflinching devotion to skillful and entertaining soccer.
» 21 Comments

Violent Goalkeeping (Part 2): FIFA must radically rethink the goalkeeper's role

Last time, I asked: "What action has soccer taken to at least reduce the incidence of head injuries in the sport?" Well, FIFA -- which should be the body making the moves -- has done nothing. Incredibly, nothing.
» 17 Comments

Violent Goalkeeping (Part 1): Players at risk as soccer ignores its own rules

Goalkeepers, we are told, need protection. No doubt we all agree. Up to a point.
» 25 Comments

The triumphant return of Bruce Arena

Well, take that Jurgen Klinsmann. Never at any time during his five years in charge of the USA did any of Klinsmann's teams put on a show like the 6-0 destruction of Honduras that marked the return of Bruce Arena.
» 54 Comments

MLS games compare well with EPL but referees in both leagues reluctant to call PKs

During this past weekend, I watched -- on television, of course -- 15 games. Well, not really. I watched parts of 15 games. That's television for you, a magic carpet that started in Middlesbrough, England at 8 a.m. on Saturday and ended around 9 p.m. on Sunday in Seattle.
» 10 Comments

Of tattoos and voodoo and science ... and soccer

My calendar says March 1. But, quite possibly, global warming has advanced things. The weather is spring-like and there is a hint of April 1 in the air. Or so it seems to me.
» 60 Comments

Suddenly, the sport itself rebels against low-scoring Scrooge soccer

We haven't seen anything like this for quite a while. In fact it was beginning to look as though soccer had lost its identity, had shrunk from being the world's most exciting sport, and withered away to tedious 90-minute installments of scoreless running around
» 19 Comments

Pep snubs Kun -- modern soccer at its worst

Back in 2005 the word from Argentina was that maybe -- of course maybe -- a new Maradona was appearing. Independiente had a precocious 16-year-old already playing for their first team, already scoring goals.
» 7 Comments

Where soccer fails, the NFL gets it right

An impertinent book, this. The title and subtitle tell you succinctly what you are getting: "The Ugly Game -- How football lost its magic and what it could learn from the NFL."
» 19 Comments

More urgent than Van Basten's rule changes: soccer needs a total reversal of referees' negative mindset

The problem is this. To praise Marco van Basten for speaking out on a topic that the soccer biggies never deign to address. Or to heap ridicule on him for making such a hash of his welcome declaration.
» 19 Comments

Clearance: an ugly play, a useless stat

For some time now I have been wondering about the soccer term "clearance." A term, admittedly, that I have been hearing, and using for decades without giving it much thought.
» 17 Comments

Roberto Cabanas & the Beautiful Game

From the happiest of thoughts and memories about Roberto Cabanas to total bewilderment and sadness ... all it took was a few days.
» 5 Comments

Soccer & Concussion (Part 2): What needs to be done -- before the lawyers move in

The suspect nature of the enforcement of protocols is by no means the only barrier to any campaign that aims to reduce concussion injuries.
» 12 Comments




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