Friday, June 13, 2014

From One Mom to Another: How to Sound Like a Soccer Fan

With the World Cup upon us I thought I may step outside of my normal area of writing and take up the sports desk - for just one post.  There are a few things that separate the real fans from the others.  Since I am new to the sport and have found myself embarrassed this year more than once (like when I yelled at the "goalie" for not using his hands when he was out of the box - oops), I thought I would share what little I have picked up.

1 - The goalkeeper is not called a goalie - he is called a keeper.

2 - The field is often called a pitch - sometimes a field, but if you call it a pitch you will sound legit.

3 - It is called a soccer game (USA) or a football match (UK).

4 - The keeper can only use his hands when he is in the box or penalty area - the 18 yards around the goal.

5 - The keeper cannot use his hands if his own player passes it back to him.

6 - The offsides rules are confusing.  If you are new, don't question offsides.  Just go with it.

7 - Sometimes players will not pass to open guys, because those open players are actually offsides.   Yelling at the screen for them to pass to their open teammate, when that team mate is offsides, will show your ignorance.

8 - There are only 4 positions in soccer (Goalkeeper, Defender, Midfielders, Forwards), and you have 11 players for each team on the field at one time.

9 - Games run 90 minutes plus 'overage'.  Except at half time, the clock doesn't stop during play.  If the game stops for some reason (injury etc), then they make up that time at the end of the game.  Therefore the game isn't actually over at 90 minutes, there is usually another few minutes of overage to play.

10 - Players often play for teams in other countries, but they return to their home country to play in the World Cup.  For instance, David Luiz and Oscar both play for Brazil, but also play together for Chelsea FC in the UK during the regular season.

11 - FIFA is not just a video game company. It is the international organization that oversees the World Cup.

12- Brazilians love soccer, but are not happy about hosting the World Cup because they stand to loose billions of dollars.  In 2010, South Africa hosted and only recapped 11% of the money they spent getting ready for the games.  If Brazil goes the same way, after spending 11 billion on infrastructure, they stand to loose a lot of money (IMB Times, June 13).  

Enjoy your soccer viewing and thanks for stopping by!

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