Pretend To Care About Soccer – 5 Easy Tips

The Coach

Spring is in the air, birds are singing, and somewhere on the planet two teams are kicking the skull of a referee through a parking lot in celebration of all the wonder that is soccer, or as everyone outside of the United States stubbornly continues to call it, ‘football.’

That massive cultural chasm aside, how can you pretend to care about soccer around the water cooler so that your more ‘international’ colleagues don’t detect your latent disinterest in the world’s most popular sport, or indeed in finding out anything about their lives other than the bare minimum required to make it through 30-second snippets of conversation?

Here’s 5 easy tips to help you pretend to care about soccer.

1. Make a Pele reference

There was a soccer player called Pele, once, right? Maybe he should be your favorite soccer player. He was born in Brazil, he’s still alive, and he scored over 500 goals in his career, which is impressive for a sport that frequently ends in a zero-zero tie. Maybe don’t mention that his son went to jail after laundering money for the cartels. Oh, and he retired in 1977.

2. Talk About The World Cup

The World Cup is a never-ending, 365-day football (soccer) tournament that involves every country in the world, even the United States. It also happens to be the single most unifying force for magnifying long-dormant national hatreds on the planet, which means you should take it way too seriously and paint your face for every USA soccer game, and probably call each player at home and deliver a supportive message and maybe murder someone from Nigeria or Scotland as a way of thinning out the ranks of the competition.

3. Buy A Jersey. Wear It. Never Take It Off

What shows more dedication to a sport than flying its colors around the clock? Come to work in some kind of soccer jersey. Pick any team, it doesn’t fucking matter: Real Madrid, Arsenal, Steel Fist, Goatse. Make sure it has a ton of advertisements pasted on it, and never take it off, even at the pool, or when showering, or during major surgery. Eventually, people will stop talking to you altogether. Mission: accomplished.

4. Make A ‘Football’ Joke

No one’s ever heard that one before, so it should go over well at the quarterly meeting. Bonus points for working ‘Monday Night Soccer’ into the conversation.

5. Join A Soccer League

Find an after-hours soccer league and play a couple nights a week. Work on your fundamentals, your leg strength, and your positioning. But don’t go overboard – remember, the nine year-olds on the field with you don’t have the situational awareness of a full-grown adult. But green-stick fractures heal easily, so it’s really a mixed bag.

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