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Brews and Views Series: “Why American Soccer?”

We continue our new series on the Free Beer Movement. It's called “Brews and Views” and we pose a question or topic to various prominent soccer persons and, well, they give us their view on it.

We've got loads of get people that have already responded to our call for essay submissions and each week we'll feature a unique perspective on the current topic/question at hand. Kicking it off (pun intended) we're asking our respondents the question, “Why American soccer?”.

As inhabitants of the U.S. of A we've got loads of soccer viewing options and limited amount of time. We want our panel of essayists to make their case as to why the American version of the world's game is the one we should all invest in.

Regularly readers know where we stand on this issue. Buy American. It's ours. Build and shape it so it ranks as one of the premier leagues in the world.

The series will include such diverse voices as former U.S. Men's National Team player Alexi Lalas, The Shin Guardian, MatchFit USA's Jason Davis, Church of Soccer, Nutmeg Radio, FutFanatico, MLS Insider, and many, many more.

Interested in submitting your own answer to the question, “Why American soccer?”, then send us an email with your response. Please keep your submission to under 1000 words (that's like 2.5 pages typed!) and include a picture that you feel goes well with your response. Send it to freebeermovement(at)gmail(dot)com.

Today's contribution comes from Eric Beard. Mr. Beard is the founder and the head writer of “A Football Report”, a brilliant site that covers the global game.

A game of moments.

For a moment, forget about Landon Donovan’s goal against Algeria. Forget where you were, whom you were with, and how great the rest of your day was. Forget knocking Mexico out of the World Cup in 2002. Forget Clint Dempsey’s chip against Juventus. Forget Benny Feilhaber’s golazo that silenced 50,000 Mexicans.  Even forget the pain of losing to Ghana in 2010… and in 2006. Poof! Gone! It never happened. Now, how empty does that feel?

The beautiful game, it’s about moments. And in this sport, moments are universal.

If you forced me to watch a game of cricket, I would struggle profusely trying to pinpoint amazing. The average Englishman or South American would struggle in the same way with baseball. Nothing captures the imagination of the human spirit like soccer. The Bergkamp skill, the Abby Wambach header, the 70-yard bomb from Beckham, these aspects, by nature, are inspired by raw passion, perseverance, and pure skill. Though an educated fan will certainly appreciate all the nuances surrounding the game, the simplicity of soccer has lent itself to an ability to connect with almost anyone, anywhere.
But just because you can hop on the Internet doesn’t mean you should forget about where you are, how you were raised, and the heritage that surrounds you. In this modern America we live in, you can find the rest of the world within these borders. The melting pot of culture, the force that is globalization, has trickled down to help American soccer prosper.
No matter the stigmas you encounter, whether it be language barriers or ‘eurosnobs’, this game isn’t exclusive. Spanish fútbol lives and breathes in communities throughout the U.S., as does English football, Italian calico, Brazilian futebol, African, Asian, and any other brand of the game that exists.
You can love watching FC Barcelona, Arsenal, Bayern Munich, that’s perfectly fine. There’s no reason to deny any love for this game. Support whoever you want to support. Watch the leagues that appeal to you. But give American soccer, the game’s final frontier, a chance. The community grows by the day and supporting American soccer is the best way to connect with the people that share your passion.
You want to watch Fulham – Manchester United on a Sunday at 2 pm? Well, thousands of Americans want to do the same. But after that English Premier League match there’s a Seattle Sounders – Sporting KC game on. And more fans, of the Sounders and American soccer, are in attendance than the loyal ticket holders at Craven Cottage. The game is here and it’s not going away. The signs of progress are undeniable.

Why American soccer? You know why. Next question. 

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