Dark times Ahead for US Soccer
By Paul Anthony
Let me start by saying I am a sports fan, I always have been and always will but the one sport I struggle to watch or even root for is Soccer, I don’t know if it’s because Pittsburgh doesn’t have a team just yet in the MLS but overall soccer which ranks as the number one sport in the world but here in north America it struggles to remain number 5 or 6 depending on NASCAR, but we want the league to grow and we hope it continue to grow. Usually viewership gets higher when the US National team does well in the World Cup or in the Olympics but this past Tuesday USA soccer took a step back and failed to qualify for next year world cup for the first time since 1986 and gets worse, much worse.
First let’s start with saying all they had to do was tie and they would be in but they couldn’t even do that and the worst part is they lost to the 99th ranked team in the competition. That’s right the US team lost 2-1 to Trinidad and Tobago which is one team by the way. This truly had to be a dark day for soccer now the team must wait until the next World Cup in Qatar in 2022. Even the MLS issued a statement saying this truly was a major setback for Soccer in the US.
No doubt this truly a dark time but for how long will it remain this way? Well let’s look a head the next Match the Us National team will play will be in 2019 in the CONCACAF Gold Cup then the following year will be the Olympics, so will two years be enough to reverse this trend? Because let’s be honest, this is a trend they were on for years. They peaked in 2002 but since that they failed to make 2012 and 2016 Olympics and now this.
Is talent really on the way? We like to think so we currently have a 19-year-old star in Christian Pulisic and there are others 19-year-old that are on the rise who should be tested and ready to go by 2022 but will this be enough?
I sure hope so because in the end I would see Soccer succeed but I doubt it will if the national team doesn’t step it up I believe ratings and viewership will fall and damn near kill the sport.