The World Cup media blitz continues, with another round of fawning profiles of the U.S. team and five-minute graphical guides to Everything You Need To Know About The World Cup (’cause, ya know, Americans aren’t so into footy). I’m actually getting a bit bored of it at this point, if only because a lot of these articles were (a) written two months ago and (b) contain about 7 percent original content. Of course, this doesn’t mean I’ll stop reading them.
Two gems in particular from this weekend. First was a long piece in the Times’ new sports magazine (huh? wha? why?) about the U.S. team, with a focus on Il Bruce. It’s written by the guy who wrote one of the Eagles books a year ago (If Football’s A Religion, Why Don’t We Have a Prayer), and it does a nice job of convincing me that our national team and its coach are actually kind of humble (“I don’t think there are too many coaches in Europe who are looking at me and are very impressed, believe me”). The second is the obligatory fawning SI piece, which actually doesn’t contain many insights (or very much original content), but does contain a reference to my all-time favorite sports cliche, in re: Gooch:
Now the agile 6’4″, 210-pound central defender is poised to become the U.S.’s breakout star of the Cup, which could lead to a lucrative transfer from his Belgian team, Standard de LiÃ©ge, to one of Europe’s big clubs. “Gooch has fantastic physical dimensions for a center back at the international level,” says Arena.
In other words, you just can’t teach size like that.