Lisowski: It’s not called soccer


Fauzan Saari - Unsplash

The FIFA World Cup is a tournament that is held every four years.

Maximillian Lisowski, Opinion Editor

The FIFA World Cup is here, and fans across the globe tune in each day to watch this spectacle. What’s even more exciting is the fact that the U.S. actually qualified. 

In 2018, they failed to reach the world stage after suffering losses from teams in the Confederation of North, Central American and Caribbean Association Football leagues. Losing to Trinidad and Tobago did not set the U.S. team up for success, while Honduras and Panama beat Mexico and Costa Rica, respectively. 

This succession of wins and losses by these teams set the U.S. at fifth place in their bracket — ruining all chances of making it to the World Cup. 

This was a massive surprise to fans of the U.S. Men’s National Team (USMNT), mainly because Panama qualified for the first time ever. Now, the team is back and has made it to the Round of 16. What’s disappointing is how our nation is treating our success. 

Social media within the U.S. has disrespected the sport, and it has been embarrassing, as an American, to see.  

The FIFA World Cup is great because it draws in more viewership from people living in the U.S., but it’s terrible because when we scrape by with a win or draw to another team, the world should call it soccer. 

After our 0-0 draw to England Friday, social media accounts were riddled with posts that read, “It’s called soccer now,” simply because we were able to compete. Since when did the majority of the U.S. actually care about football? And when was it a good thing to just scrape by in the group stage? 

Our nation is acting as if winning by one goal over Iran is the equivalent of winning the Super Bowl — and that’s embarrassing. Maybe we should be proud of the wins we get and become more dominant on the field. Maybe we should stop rubbing our “great wins” into the faces of other countries. 

I congratulate the USMNT for making it to the Round of 16, but I would not be surprised if we fail to make it further and come up with an excuse as to why we lost. Perhaps it’s the lack of support for the sport from people within our country who show up every time we qualify for the cup as “soccer fans” but go on to watch grown men give each other concussions once we’re eliminated.    

It’s called football, and it’s the most popular sport in the world. We can do well in tournaments like the World Cup, but maybe we shouldn’t make America look even more arrogant than the world already does.