America Makes The Beautiful Game Look Like The Ugly Game

Don AbrahamContributor IApril 25, 2009

CARSON, CA - APRIL 18:  Goalkeeper Zach Thornton #22 of Chivas USA and Freddie Ljungberg #10 of Seattle Sounders FC shake hands after the MLS match at The Home Depot Center on April 18, 2009 in Carson, California. Chivas USA defeated Sounders FC 2-0.  (Photo by Victor Decolongon/Getty Images)

European football AKA, soccer is not sitting well with the American public. Pele introduce America to soccer back in 1975, while playing for the New York Cosmos. Mainly immigrant communities and upscale suburban communities have taken an interest in soccer.

Unfortunately, the heartland of America, and urban America, never paid attention. Why is soccer an international sport of great value, and the Americans do not care to even pay attention to the sports?

MLS soccer is not interesting, to be truthful, the MLS has thrown so much money at developing the league, but it just don't work. The departure of David Beckham is an interesting situation.

Beckham was expected to be the saviour of soccer in America, now he wants nothing to do with it. Maybe he found it odd, that a league where they can afford to pay a player $50 million per season, was getting their butts kicked by teams that can afford to barely pay their players $40,000 per season.

The USL is far more exciting, aggressive, and skillful than the MLS. The New England Revolution cannot even beat Joe Public, a team based in Trinidad and Tobago. The Houston Dynamo cannot even beat the Puerto Rico Islanders. Why are USL teams advancing in the Concacaf champions league and MLS teams not.

The MLS format is utterly ridiculous, the idea that the MLS thinks they can develop into a league and cannot outperform teams that play in front of audiences of 2,000, is illusional. Flat out the USL is just a better league. I don't know why, but maybe some one can tell me.

The MLS has become a breeding ground for young American players before they depart to Europe. Players like Clint Dempsey, Jozy Altidore, Maurice Edu, Michael Bradley, Brad Guzan, and Fredie Adu, have practically used the MLS as a stepping stone before going to play in Europe.

Its totally unacceptable, that an American sports league is a breeding ground. In America we are suppose to be the best of the best, the cream of the crop, when it comes to soccer we are a total whack job. 

With all due respect the fact that Landon Donovan is touted as the all-time goal scorer in the history of US National soccer is ashamed. I love Dovonvan he grew up where I grew in the Inland Empire, of Southern California, but hes an average soccer player who struggled to crack the lineup while on loan at Bayern Munich.

US soccer needs to develop players at a younger age, and make an effort to introduce kids from all backgrounds to the sport. Players like Maurice Edu, who is a friend of my family and also comes from the Inland Empire of Southern California, comes from an immigrant family, just as Freddy Adu, and Jozy Altidore. 

There accomplishments are not applaudable for US soccer, I come from an immigrant family also, and was born it soccer. Soccer was the first sport I played and the only sport my parents ever took interest in me playing. However the environment to develop into a player was no where to be found.

It is mind boggling how the MLS continues to expand, and invest money into the league, when the future looks grim. The fans here at MLS games in Los Angeles at the Home Depot Center  are wannabes. I go to the games and the fans are not passionate in the stands, they only appear to be passionate in order to imitate the European Football fans they see on Fox Soccer Channel, and Gol TV.

The main problem with US soccer and the MLS is that their is no fundamental ingredients as to how to develop players between the ages 6-13. Soccer is unlike any other sport.

You cant start getting serious about soccer when your in high school, like baseball, basketball, and football. Most elite soccer players are signing their first professional contract in high school.

Shame on the MLS for investing in a league, without implementing youth academy's. The MLS only have 3 teams that have a youth academy, Chicago Fire, D.C United, and New York Red Bulls. The MLS is completely clueless to the fact that the league needs more youth academy's. Every team in the MLS should be mandated to have a youth academy.

In Los Angeles, where I live there is a huge surplus of talented kids. The Home Depot Center is a state of the art soccer facility, but yet no youth academy. The youth system is the only way to build great players and leagues.

The concentration on youth soccer are one of the reasons the English Premiere league  is so dominate. Anyone who has been to the UK knows that youth soccer is very huge, and every kid in the UK participates, therefore no potential talent goes unnoticed.

As a father of 2 boys one 18 months the other 3 months, I day dream about my kids playing professional soccer, but not here. I look at potential youth academies and leagues but there are very few, which offer a competitive nature.

Hopefully when they get older, but as for now I'm stuck with crafting my own strategy to develop my children in to elite football players. I hope its works!