Jurgen Klinsmann debuts tonight as the new coach of the U.S. men’s soccer team in an international friendly at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia against the 2011 CONCACAF Gold Cup champion Mexico.
Klinsmann has already pledged a more aggressive attacking style of play from his new U.S. squad, whom he expects to transform to the next level of worldwide competitiveness.
If that’s the case, why hasn’t the German signed Marta?
Yes, Marta. As in the brilliant Brazilian striker.
Like Klinsmann, Marta currently earns a living here in the U.S. playing for the Western New York Flash in the WPS. Marta also resides in New York. So why can’t she play for same the U.S. team Klinsmann coaches?
There’s one very simple reason. Actually, two.
First, Marta is a woman. Second, she already plays for the Brazilian women’s national team. Old Sepp’s blatter would burst if U.S. Soccer Federation president Sunil Gulati attempted to sign this scintillating star—among the greatest female soccer players ever.
Signing Marta—both a female and a foreigner—to the U.S. men's national soccer team screams of sacrilege in men’s soccer circles. It’ll never happen. Too bad. Marta personifies the top-flight talent and fearless finisher the Yanks' side needs, and desperately demands at this time.
Mentioning Marta as the new soccer standard Klinsmann covets is not as crazy as soccer insiders think. Americans can learn from this five-time FIFA Player of the Year:
- The U.S. needs a midfield visionary with the intensity of Tim Howard, but with Marta’s skill and uncanny soccer acumen.
- The Americans need Marta’s amazing ability to score because U.S World Cup strikers Clint Dempsey and Jozy Altidore, noticeably left off tonight’s roster against the Mexicans, have failed to put the ball in the back of the net on a consistent basis in international play.
- The U.S. needs Marta’s deft touch and poetic flick of the ball one seldom sees from Landon Donovan or Michael Bradley.
- Finally, the Americans need the same swagger and pissed-off pout that Marta carries on to the pitch that fans never see from U.S. defenders Carlos Bocanegra or Steve Cherundolo.
If they ever expect to compete with the Spaniards, Dutch, Brazilians, Italians and Germans—or even the Mexicans tonight—the Americans need much more than an aggressive attacking style.
Jurgen Klinsmann and his American side need Marta.
Too bad it’s not going to happen.
Straight talk. No static.
MIKE – thee ultimate talking head on sports!