After watching Euro2016 and Copa America games over the past two weeks, I feel compelled to post this 2 Cent Tuesday sports blog about the unique language and other oddities associated with the sport of soccer.
Known as football throughout the non-American sports universe, soccer boasts its own unique language, eccentric expressions and one-of-a-kind idiosyncrasies.
Soccer is the world’s most popular sport by a long shot, in spite of its ample peculiarities and confusing language.
For example, the sport soccer keeps time in the exact opposite direction of every other sport on the planet.
Soccer matches, not games, are played by men wearing boots rather than cleats atop a pitch instead of a field.
When overdone, soccer’s inexcusably melodramatic flopping may sully spectators’ enjoyment.
Soccer fans also get flummoxed by the inexplicable calculation of stoppage time and anti-climactic penalty kick shootouts that decide championship games.
However, in spite of all its quirkiness, this international sport has flourished for generations.
Incredible athletes, iconic coaches and passionate fans beckon both the wealthiest and poorest nations of the world to bask in the brilliance of the Beautiful Game.
No other sport flaunts its language with the poetic depictions and eccentric expressions quite like the game of soccer.
Whether it’s a bookable offense for wayward defending, bringing one’s side level in a match or dispossessing the ball from an unexpected midfielder, soccer’s colorful language truly entertains.
British Broadcaster Ian Darke
I love listening to the liquid gold voice of British broadcaster Ian Darke as he calls a soccer game, I mean, football match.
Darke masterfully and eloquently reports on brilliant services, wonderfully weighted passes, tidy challenges, gentle flicks of the ball, fantastic pace and rapier thrusts through the opposition’s defense.
Darke’s play-by-play announcing infuses greater life into the already frenetic action on the soccer pitch. He can chronicle a nil nil match which serves as another example of the sport’s unique language.
Instead of applauding the goalies for their shut out work in goal, announcers like Darke gush over the keepers’ clean sheets.
American football fans may need an interpreter to follow Darke. And, they may require a glossary of terms to understand his eccentric and, at times, confusing soccer vocabulary.
But, they’ll instinctively know that a goalie’s clean sheet is something to cheer about – as long as he’s defending their side’s goal.
Just remember these flowery phrases and confusing poetic expressions add another element to soccer – the world’s most popular sport.
And, referencing a goalie’s clean sheet, prominently featured in the comic above, is just one example of the unique language of soccer.
MIKE on sports!