Version en Español abajo!
Ok, so yesterday I wanted to talk about soccer, a sport I love. Ever since I moved to the US I became interested on American Football. At first I was very confused by it, to the point that it was almost painful to watch because there are a lot of rules and so many player positions. It was hard to keep up with who does what, let alone figure out who was who. Then there is the whole NFL vs. College ball difference, not to mention the complexity of who plays who when it comes to college. Then I started to become a Chicago Bears fan, and little by little I began to understand the game. I love the game now and think is excellent. This is a by no means a lets put down American Football, however in a worldwide point of view, soccer is king. Therefore I can call Soccer the real football.
American Football has a lot of depth both from the strategy side and the physical aspect. At times it can be a game that requires a lot more knowledge of the rules to truly enjoy it. It makes it seem almost too complicated to pick up in one afternoon like you can do with other sports. I think this really taints the American audience and at times turns the game from sport to spectacle with all the stop and go and little to no flow. Comparing Soccer to Football at times seems unfair. It is like matching a kitten against a lion, they both have claws, they are both felines, but only one of them can kill you. To compare to soccer to football in an sports realm seems to me like comparing Tennis to Ping Pong(or table Tennis). I am sure this will be controversial to some people but hear me out.
Starting from the athlete side of things, I don’t care who the strongest football player in the NFL is, who fastest player might be, or even who the most talented or gifted for the game is; because in the end you will not be talking about the same player. Soccer however is a lot more straightforward when having a number one player, a lot of times who the person wearing that number 10 shirt might be. You could argue that the quarterback is all of that, but I would disagree, while during the history of football we have had players like Pele and Maradona that were brilliant at scoring goals, you also have Valderrama that while not a striker was the best player to come out of Colombia during my generation. Football has its idols too, and almost every position has someone that you can remember if you have followed the game, but show me if you can come up with one name that everyone in the world would agree was the greatest player ever (except for Argentineans of course). Ask that question to a soccer fan, and he will tell you Pele was the best player that ever lived.
While there are stars in the game of football, and most of the time they are quarterbacks there is no overall best player that encompasses the whole range of what the game entails. There might be a player that can play both offense and defense, even special teams, but not consistently. A lot of the players are conditioned according to their position and team and for example a lineman and a receiver can have two totally different body types. Soccer players have for the most part the same constitution and athleticism. Soccer players all posses the same basic skills that are fundamental to the game. Football in the other hand is opposite, a lineman might not even be capable of throwing the ball ten yards, while every single player in a soccer team will be able to make a long pass.
One of my biggest complains about Football is how it consumes its players. Partly because of the ferocity of the game, some players are injured for life. I also blame the NFL for not taking better care of their players’ health, the weight that a player gains during its career to me is alarming. While soccer is also a very physical game, it is not the norm to check for an injured list after every game like it is costume if you follow football. I am sad to hear a lot of times that many of the players from the NFL die young and of problems directly related to their weight gain, not to mention forgotten. I feel that the NFL should be more responsible for keeping people healthy after they have given the best years of their lives to the sport. Conditioning your body for soccer will not be detrimental to your health so this is another point that I think soccer has over football.
I have a lot more to say about this subject. I really don’t want to elaborate on the obvious points beyond just mentioning that soccer is global. Also that anyone can play soccer, while playing football requires money. Sure you could say that you can pick up a football and just play with a group of friends outside, but in reality without the protective gear required if you play tackle football you will get hurt. I cannot wait to hear your ideas on why I am so wrong
Para la version en Spanish Read more Football vs Soccer