The Philly Soccer Page is calling out SportsWeek on their claim of being the “bible of Philadelphia sports” as it doesn’t include coverage of the Philadelphia Union.
“SportsWeek will be the bible of Philadelphia sports, and it will be as passionate and eloquent as you, the fan. It will also be a work in progress, so let me know what you want in your weekly sports holy book: firstname.lastname@example.org” – Larry Platt
Please allow me to start by saying that I love Philly. I love the city. I love the steaks. I love the history. I love the people. I love the LOVE, the Brotherly Love. It is the single greatest city on this massive, round ball we all live on. It is the father city of this great, and free nation, the United States of America. Benjamin Franklin, practically an American deity and arguably the greatest American mind of all time, called this city home. Philadelphia was the second largest city in the British Empire, second only to London. Now, I do not mean to insult your intelligence. Sir, I am sure that you are well aware of how amazing the City of Brotherly Love is, and I am certain that you most likely know more about it’s past than I do. I was simply hoping to convey just how passionate I am about the city.
The passion that I posses for the city floods into many aspects of my life, but none more so than sports. As I have portrayed multiple times already, I love the city of Philadelphia, but I am absolutely, positively, literally and genuinely crazy for Philly sports. Just ask my wife, she despises my obsession with competition. Who knows exactly where the passion to compete comes from? I would say that a good majority comes from me just being a man. Competition is more a part of everyday, human life than most people care to notice. Men start their lives competing just to live before they even have chance to become an embryo in their mother’s womb. We must out do each other. It’s just the ways of nature. Rams butt horns, lions beat the living hell out of each other, and men attempt to out drink each other, breed, arm wrestle and play sports. I don’t need a pride. Give me a living room full of grown, hairy men, their ties half off, shirts dripping in a hysterical sweat, weeping in the corners as I rise to the top of my coffee table with my winnings in my lower hand and the March Madness bracket that got me there in my other, presenting it to the heavens. And as the proverbial, holy light would shine down on me, and the lesser males advert their eyes, I would release a bellowing growl of, “YEAH BABY!!!” That is the modern male’s plateau in the circle of life that is Middle Class America.
My passion to win, coupled with my adoring love of Philadelphia makes for a die hardest, true, amorous Philly fan. If Philadelphia had a competitive Candy Land team, I would watch it and scream bloody murder at my flat screen the minute our team got to Gloppy the Molasses Monster, and pulled the card that sent us back to Lord Licorice. Of all the sports that I watch, and I watch a very large amount, I am most passionate for soccer. It is an amazing game full of tactical moves, strategic calculations, physical battles and hard fought victories. I am sure I do not need to explain my love for the Union. I wake up every morning, brush my teeth and take my morning “DOOP”. I am a Son of Ben (official Philly Union Supporters Club) and I am proud to dawn my scarf every time the Union suit up to face an opponent. I do the same for every Phillies game, every Eagles game, every Flyers game and yes, even every Sixers game. I love watching the pre-game, the game and the post game. I love to wake up in the morning and read all of the analyzing of how well, or how poor my team played the night before. I would love to have one location to travel to and find all of this, for all of my Philly teams. If I had a “Sports Holy Book” (to quote your Bible comparison), I would expect it to live up to it’s title.
I understand that this nation likes to focus on THEIR four professional sports, but the fact of the matter is there are countless professional sports, soccer being the single largest sport in the world, that in this nation tends to be ignored by most sports shows and papers. In no way am I implying that SportsWeek has ignored the Union totally, there have been a few decent articles that I have read (besides the misspelling of Goal Keeper, Zac MacMath’s name, no “h”), but all in all the Union tends to get put on the back burner to an analysis of a botched Eagles game. I understand that soccer is considered a “new” sport to Americans, but we need to realize that our forefathers who landed in this “new world” were playing soccer before football, basketball, and hockey were ever officially played in the States. The modern people of Philadelphia have also spoken and they obviously love this game, a game that I, and most refer to as “The Beautiful Game”. We show up to every home game at PPL Park in sell out numbers, and flood away stadiums as far as California in Union blue and Gold. Die hard Flyer’s fans have even embraced our goal scoring chant, “DOOP”! I understand that our Phightin’ Phils are on par for an amazing, and God willing World Series Championship, but did you realize that the Union are a mere four games away from their first ever appearance in the MLS playoffs? This is just our second year in league, and although we may only be in second place, we held the Eastern Conference first place spot for a good majority of the season, and we did it without any multi-million dollar contracts unlike other teams in the league. Tonight we threaten to take that number one spot back, but all SportsWeek has to say about it is this, “Union at Chivas. Carson, Calif. TCN, 8 p.m.” There is no mention of playoff hopes, no game analysis, no stat battles, no predictions, no banter in the least. If we win this game we will grasp sole possession of first place in the East, and with only three games left to play out the regular season it is very, very possible that we will make our playoff debut in just our sophomore season in the MLS.
This should be just as exciting to a true Philly sports fan as the Phillies NL East clinch this past regular season, yet SportsWeek has fallen short on any discussion, or coverage of a game of such caliber. I believe I speak not only for the Sons of Ben, but for all Philly Union fans, and all soccer fans when I say, please pay attention to this sport. It is an amazing game, filled with blood, sweat, tears, the underdog victory and the table turning defeats, everything Americans love about sports. I do hope that none of this is taken in the wrong light, I am merely trying to open your eyes to a great game that many people are missing out on. A game that SportsWeekly can help shine some light on. I leave you with this quote from Arsene Wenger, manager of English Premier League team, Arsenal (considered one of the most prestigious teams in soccer):
“Football (soccer) is very much a global game, something that can unite us all across the world. This weekend’s North London Derby (the equivalent to Eagles vs. Giants) illustrates the passion involved both on, and off the pitch, and we’re excited that all of our supporters in the U.S. will be able to join and support us thanks to FOX. We hope to give them a great game.”