Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Soccer is the American Game

Seeing that I have a BA in History, my New Year's Resolution is to try to do several blogs about the History of Soccer/Football in America during 2008.

Back in 1620 when those fun lovin Puritans - The Pilgrims - landed at Plymouth Rock in what is now Massachusetts, they observed the local natives playing a game very similar to what is now soccer - it was called Pasuckquakkohwog, which means "they gather to play football."


Let's all keep in mind that what we know call football/soccer, has been played in varying forms for thousands of years - a form of the game existed in China, possibly as early as 1 a.d., and a form of the game existed in Italy before the folks in Genoa saw the Brits playing the modern style.

What is to come . . . America is a country built on the backs of immigrants, many from Europe who brought their love of soccer with them, and I will do my best to chronicle this over the next twelve months and make the case that soccer is not a foriegn sport, it is the birthright of all Americans, whether you're a EuroTrash Mutt like myself or not.

In the early years of American soccer, the teams were supported by factories and ethnic clubs, many of which were part of the American Soccer League. And it was a blood sport, the plastic cleats did not exist, but nails did. Weekends were a time for immigrants to take out frustrations on each other, especially in the northeast, like New Jersey. Can you san Bethleham Steel F.C., Newark Stitch, New York United, Philadelphia Ukrainians, Kearny Scots, or Kearny Irish???? One of the greatest American players, Billy Gonsalves - the Babe Ruth of American Soccer, spent his last days tending bar in Kearny.


Long Live Soccer, the American Game . . .

Please check out World Soccer Wrap (c) - the latest podcast is now available at iTunes and at:


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