Top 10 reasons to start watching soccer


Adam Reckamp

1. Perfect time to start

There is no better time to start watching soccer than now. The World Cup, the most viewed sporting event in the world, is starting on June 12. In the World Cup, the best players from in the world come together to compete in the best tournament in sports. The World Cup is soccer’s Super Bowl, and a perfect time to get into the sport. Watching the World Cup will not be challenging as hundreds of matches will be played in a months span, giving sports fans ample amount of time to check out a match or two.

2. Easier than ever to watch

Last year NBC bought the rights to broadcast the English Premier League, arguably the best league in professional soccer, on American television. NBC now televises every game in EPL, making it easier than ever to watch. Soccer games will not interfere with any other sport American’s watch either, as games last 2 hours at most and play on weekend mornings, ending before football or any other sport starts. If fans don’t want to get up early to watch the matches, they can record them with little chance of running into spoilers on American television.

3. It is continuous

The ratio of inaction to action in any given football game is 10 to 1, with instant replays making up 56% of the broadcast. Soccer is a game that never stops. Soccer has no pesky timeouts, commercial breaks, or stops in play. The game is always going on, making every second matter, and not wasting viewers time. Soccer only has one break, a short 20 minute halftime giving fans time to go to the restroom or attend to other business.

4. A year-round season

Professional soccer seasons start in August and run until May, lasting 10 months of the year. Soccer provides constant entertainment. Not only do teams compete in their league seasons, they play in many tournaments throughout the year to keep everything interesting. The longer seasons lead to more entertainment and more interesting narratives throughout the year.

5. The Transfer Window

Unlike many American sports, the offseason is almost as exciting as the regular season. In pro soccer there are two transfer windows where teams can buy and sell players. A short window in January and a long window over the summer. The transfer window is basically free agency on steroids as players are being bought and sold every day, as teams try to fill all their needs in the little time they have. Hundreds of clubs from around the world participate in these negotiations leading to constant rumors and surprises.

6. The Champions League

While the World Cup is the best international tournament in sports, the Champions League is the best club tournament in sports. The Champions League is a tournament running from September until May comprised of the best 32 teams in the world. These teams compete in the group stage during the winter with the top 2 teams from each of the 8 groups advancing to the knockout stage in the spring. These teams then play a single elimination tournament to crown the best soccer team in the world. These matches are some of the best matches in soccer as the best teams in different leagues that would normally never play match up in a high stakes game.

7. It’s the world’s game

Soccer is the most popular sport in the world by far. Soccer connects the world and soccer clubs have fans in countries all around the globe. Being a soccer fan connects you with sports fans around the globe and makes you a more global person.

8. Soccer fans

Soccer fans are the greatest fans in sports. Soccer is not just a sport for many fans; it’s a lifestyle. At many sports games in America, fans are told when to cheer and how to cheer by the PA system. In soccer fans cheer by themselves. Each team’s fans have their own original chants that echo around the stadium during the entire game. Soccer fans live and die by their teams because for many, soccer is the only sport that matters.

9. Goals

Soccer goals are some of the most exciting moments in professional sports. Soccer games are relatively low scoring so every goal matters so much. Goals are beautiful to watch, from bicycle kicks to long range curling strikes. Unlike football, which frowns upon celebrations, in soccer they are encouraged. Soccer is the only sport that allows players to do backflips after goals, while football players are not even allowed to dunk over a goalpost.

10. Season structure

In soccer there are no playoffs, a blasphemous concept to American sports fans. The lack of a playoff system makes every game matter, unlike a sport like baseball with 162 regular season games where losing a game means almost nothing. In soccer even if a team is having a bad season there is still something to play for. The bottom three teams at the end of a season are sent to the minor leagues and the top three teams from the minor leagues are promoted, making every match important for every team.