Alex Morgan, in her Twitter bio, calls herself a footballer. The American women’s soccer star, with her over 4 million followers, doesn’t say soccer player. Understandably, since only in the United States is it called soccer. And Morgan is an international football / soccer star, so makes sense she would use the language the majority of the world uses for the sport.
I don’t know, should we Americans change it to football? Yeah, we call it soccer but everywhere else in the world it’s called football. Just make the NFL change football or American football to something else. That should be easy. That won’t stir up any controversy.
Even in English speaking England the greatest sport in the world is called football, you know. In Spanish speaking countries it’s called futbol. There are footballers and futbalistas. Are you a football player or soccer player? You can’t say soccerer or soccerista. I guess you could but it doesn’t sound right.
Remember the old days when soccer in the United States was dismissed and made fun of, for those weaker kids who didn’t want to play American football? Football players of the American kind, with helmets and shoulder pads, were tough, soccer players were weak and dismissed. It was a sissy sport.
Sometimes it was even deemed Communist. Other. Not part of American culture or identity. It was for foreigners. In reality, that’s what makes soccer or football or futbol or whatever you want to call it so special and unique: everyone knows who to play the game or knows the language of the game. You don’t have to be Romelu Lukaku to play the game with someone from another country.
You just start playing the ball back and forth, that’s the language of the game. That’s what I love about the game too, that people of all backgrounds and colors of skin know the language of the sport. Everyone is welcome into the pickup game because everyone grows up kicking the ball and watching the greats like Messi and Ronaldo make the sport an art.
Soccer or football or whatever you call it is in fact the sport that requires more endurance and energy and more time crafted skill. There’s no skipping the part where you have to master the soccer I mean football. You have to put in those 10,000 hours. You have to put in those hours with the ball to become Messi like. And you often have to put in those hours in with the ball on your own, which you do because you love it and are addicted to improving. There’s no real short cut to becoming great. In American football if you’re an exceptional athlete there’s more of a short cut to playing the game at a high level.
It’s funny to see foreign coaches come to the United States and have to say soccer. Some don’t make the change and still call it football. It doesn’t sound right when David Beckham calls it soccer.
I’ve seen some American based soccer websites call soccer, ‘world football’. Which seems like a pretty good compromise.
Really though it doesn’t matter. It’s the beautiful game. It’s football. It’s soccer. Either one works. And I don’t want to have to find a new domain name for Football Training Info.