Spirit, Reign play a legitimately entertaining soccer game

Things didn’t bode well Saturday. Traffic heading up the Beltway to Maryland was worse than usual. The SoccerPlex didn’t have its usual Ben & Jerry’s cart — Yom Kippur apparently kept the proprietor away. And Seattle’s Jess Fishlock, simultaneously one of the most inspirational and infuriating players in women’s soccer, started the game by clatteringContinue reading “Spirit, Reign play a legitimately entertaining soccer game”

To kneel or not to kneel (revised)

When Colin Kaepernick started kneeling for the national anthem last year and Megan Rapinoe followed suit, I was skeptical. In the circles in which I run, skepticism is a bad idea. Outside the women’s soccer community, of course, opinion was more polarized. I was stunned to see people I’ve considered sympathetic to the Kaepernick/Rapinoe causeContinue reading “To kneel or not to kneel (revised)”

No one injured in Spirit-Breakers game

Neither the Washington Spirit nor the Boston Breakers tanked Saturday night’s game to get the No. 1 draft pick. For once, my prediction was right. But it wasn’t pretty. I didn’t notice any Spirit Academy kids in the crowd, and that’s probably for the best. You don’t want them to learn anything from this. TwoContinue reading “No one injured in Spirit-Breakers game”

Attendance check: Club over country?

Attendance at last five Atlanta United home games: July 4: 44,974 July 29: 45,006 Sept. 10: 45,314 (first game in new stadium) Sept. 13: 42,511 Sept. 16: 70,425 Attendance at last five Seattle Sounders home games: July 23: 43,528 Aug. 12: 43,350 Aug. 20: 40,312 Aug. 27: 51,796 Sept. 10: 44,697 Attendance at last fiveContinue reading “Attendance check: Club over country?”

Podcast, Ep. 9 — Girls’ Development Academy with Travis Clark, plus a soccerpolitical rant

The podcast starts this week with a bit of a political rant. The news on DACA is hard to ignore, and we’ve had some ongoing overheated arguments in the soccer community. The Travis Clark interview on the Development Academy starts around the 9:25 mark. A few landmarks: Will the NWSL affiliates dominate? (19:45) DA vs.Continue reading “Podcast, Ep. 9 — Girls’ Development Academy with Travis Clark, plus a soccerpolitical rant”

Podcast, Ep. 8 — Youth development and women’s soccer with Kris Ward

Kris Ward has done a bit of everything in coaching at a relatively young age — high school, Development Academy, ODP, college, traditional clubs and NWSL. We talk about rec soccer, how the U.S. academy approach compares with other countries and what a curriculum really means. Around the 40:30 mark, get ready for a detailed breakdown ofContinue reading “Podcast, Ep. 8 — Youth development and women’s soccer with Kris Ward”

Spirit-Red Stars: A mad night at the SoccerPlex

There’s just a lot of anger in the world right now. Our president took a break from Twitter ranting to issue the most controversial presidential pardon since Gerald Ford fell on his sword for Richard Nixon, paving the way for a peanut farmer from Georgia to become president and then a truly outstanding ex-president. NorthContinue reading “Spirit-Red Stars: A mad night at the SoccerPlex”

State of the Spirit, Mewis trade edition

You can’t fault the Washington Spirit for trading Kristie Mewis. She’s a strong attacking player who hasn’t been a full-time starter in recent weeks as the Spirit fully embrace their non-contender status and continue to develop a gaggle of young attackers who have been better than expected. She has trade value, and yet it’s reasonableContinue reading “State of the Spirit, Mewis trade edition”

Spirit-Breakers, before the deluge

Concentrating on soccer was rather difficult this afternoon. When we weren’t checking updates on Charlottesville, we were checking the weather. A couple of minutes after the final whistle, the SoccerPlex lightning-detection system kicked into gear, and we all had a wet drive home. But the game deserves some mention, even if it was basically aContinue reading “Spirit-Breakers, before the deluge”

Are refs calling NWSL and MLS games differently?

A few of us have gotten the impression that referees in NWSL games are awarding tons of penalty kicks but not many yellow cards. Are we right? Sort of … So the PKs, aside from games involving Sky Blue, aren’t that far off. But yellow cards? A rare sight in an NWSL game. If you’dContinue reading “Are refs calling NWSL and MLS games differently?”