Isn't that the conspicuous cliche that we are supposed to say now when we are referencing our U.S. National team in any public forum? That is what sets us apart from the rest (according to Soccer Goddess Nike). As I tried to decode what these few letters on our alternate jersey were, I thought to myself, "What should our team slogan be?" The Comeback Kids, David vs. Goliath, Butler Basketball—the list went on and on.
Not once did the slogan Nike stuffed in our mouths, "Indivisible," come to mind.
And why should it have? As a soccer nation, we might be the country furthest from the definition of "indivisible." In fact, if binary fission was a phrase in the sports world, we would be a biological powerhouse. Soccer is just one of the many sports we offer here in the US of A and it is not even close to the most popular. With the fan base being split up by so many different sports, I can't think of a word that would be worse to describe American soccer.
As for the team itself, "indivisible" is not exactly a word I would use to describe the squad's recent struggles. Defenders have been exchanged, flip-flopped and swapped so often that I can't even remember the last time we had a solid back four. Against Spain in the International Friendly, did we ever even show a glimpse of playing like one complete cell, incapable of being separated, fazed, or undetermined? Even against Guadeloupe, I felt as though I was watching 11 good players on the pitch—not one great team. Indivisible? Please.
Finally, the most important part of any soccer nation in the world is the support, and I am sorry to announce that currently, we are not indivisible. The primary point of any fan base is to positively support a team through every possible outcome. The fan base is directly connected to the the team and these two sides must be mutually indivisible, supporting each other through thick and thin.
The reason we watch is so they can produce results. The reason they produce results is because we watch. It is a simple concept to understand: We are indivisible. Yet something about this 2011 Gold Cup has me worried that we are not as linked of a unit as I once thought.
As I watched the USA painfully pull out a win against Guadeloupe, I simultaneously followed the disturbing USMNT tweets in my news feed. Negative Tweets I never thought I'd see were somehow becoming a phenomenon, causing me to think that a few of us have lost the cause.
Whether you are an American Outlaw or a casual lover of the U.S., you should never blatantly insult the team (publicly or privately) and forget that the role of fans is to support. Being a fan of the recent struggles is the catch-22 of supporting a developing soccer nation. For every Algeria jubilation, there will be Panama despair.
So what do we do now? The possible options include: jumping on the Spain bandwagon (from the Friendly's attendance I notice many of you already have), writing an anonymous complaint to Nike for creating such an absurd slogan, or accept the challenge and truly become indivisible.
It's your choice America, and I suggest you make it before Sunday afternoon.
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