John Riggins: Not a soccer fan
I mostly tune out the complains about soccer diving and soccer players' general wussiness, because they're all the same, like complaints about high taxes or traffic or Albert Haynesworth.
But when John Riggins is doing the complaining, I'll grant him a listen. Here's what he just wrote on his blog, after watching all of USA-Ghana, his first career 90-minute soccer experience:
The aspect of the game that I could not brook was the disingenuous nature of the players in regard to their injuries and perceived trespasses by their opponents. Crybabies, they are the scourge of sport, and my sport certainly had their share, but in soccer it almost seems as though it's a prerequisite....
Our football and hockey players are like dumb animals when they are injured; they are matter of fact with little or no fanfare (although from what I recall, Big Al is an exception to that statement).....I know soccer has its share of legitimate injuries; I'm just having trouble with buying into all the ambulance chasers down on the pitch. What would those guys do if you told them to lay out for a ball over the middle. I guess I hunted armed men long enough and liked it!
No Americans particularly like diving; many of us just put up with its occasional unsightly appearances in the pursuit of the thrilling parts, just like we put up with football's endless whistles, basketball's unlimited timeouts and Bud Selig. But if you wanted to put soccer on blast for wussiness, calling crybabies "the scourge of sport" is a pretty good start.
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