If you are fairly new to MLS, this is a must read This should be acclaimed as the Bible for MLS first 20 years This book is geared toward soccer die hards who relish in game recaps and minutia of which I do not But I enjoyed learning about the history of each MLS team and team name The author also explores the importance of supporter clubs and having a proper stadium It s a quick read. In , FIFA Decreed That The World Cup Would Be Played In The United States With The Condition That The US Would Start A New Professional League The North American Soccer League Had Failed Just Four Years Prior, And The Prospects Of Launching A New League For Americans, Who Didn T Share The Rest Of The World S Love For Soccer, Were Both Exciting And DauntingThe United States Of Soccer Is The Engaging History Of MLS S Bootstrap Origins Prior To Its Launch, Its Near Demise In The Early S, Its Surprising Resilience And Growth In The Following Years, And Its Continued Rise In Respectability And Recognition From Soccer Fans Around The WorldThe Book Also Explores The Origin Of A Number Of MLS S Best Known Supporters Groups The Superfans Responsible For Setting The Tone Within MLS Stadiums And Defining What It Is To Be A North American Soccer Fan The Book Looks At How MLS Helped Develop The Massive American Audiences For The Most Recent Men S And Women S World Cups Peaking At Million For The Women S World Cup Finals Even As It Looks To Expand Its Number Of Franchises And Grow Its Audience In A Sports Saturated WorldPhil West Chronicles Those Fans Voices Intermingled With League Officials, Former Players And Coaches, Journalists, And Newspaper Accounts To Detail MLS S Remarkable Journey For Those New To The US S Top Tier League, As Well As Those Who Think They Know The Full MLS Story Before 2016, my only real exposure to the game of soccer was a single season playing with a pack of other first graders on the fields near my childhood home I lasted just one season because 1 I couldn t keep track of which goal I was supposed to be shooting at 2 I didn t like people kicking at me and 3 wet grass clippings stuck to my shoes and my legs and that was the grossest thing ever Flash forward to the present While I still don t like being kicked or wet grass clippings, I now have a good friend who is both a recreational soccer player and a longtime fan of the game, making it an opportune moment to learn about the sport that was once the bane of my Saturdays The United States of Soccer is not an explanation of the sport or a history of Major League Soccer its original genesis was sportswriter Phil West s desire to visit every MLS stadium Many interviews later, it seems to have become part history, part ethnography, part football culture primer, and part fannish glee.While he clearly wishes he had the space to give kick by kick descriptions, West keeps his game and season summaries relatively succinct, focusing on the personalities that shaped the league from the 1990s on Owners, players, and fans all get their moment in the spotlight as West explores how love of the game brought them together and kept them mostly together, despite economic downturns, unsuitable facilities, local politics, and even the threat of international terrorism.As someone with essentially a bored first grader s understanding of the game, I found The United States of Soccer generally accessible and informative, although the true intended reader is likely someone with experience in the sport Funny and decently written, the real draw of The United States of Soccer is the passion West and his subjects feel for the game. This is a fantastic book for anyone who wants to learn about Major League Soccer and how it became the league we know today. Chronologically arranged chapters highlight the history of MLS with a special focus on on field drama and the impact of supporters groups. A history of the league, especially from the front office perspective, but not terribly in depth. A must for any American soccer fan. I notice a number of people complain about the book I would speak in its defence For anyone not quite familiar with the MLS and its roots this work is quite unparalleled I learn a lot, it explained much and nowhere was it dry It has a rather good mix of boardroom and terraces perspectives The only thing I dodn t like but it s my problem only were descriptions of key matches and play off series I was looking into overall view of development, and generally skipped in game drama Then again feedback from state and nationwide media, fans and owners to the results is provided, and that s exactly the part of the League s inner workings I was looking into Overall, a very solid and quality introduction. If you ve been a hardcore MLS fan since the league s inception in 1996, then Phil West s book may be redundant Most anyone else will learn something about the league on or off the field, or how soccer culture has evolved in recent years Notable for its breadth, the book provides a good overview of the major elements of the sport s growth in the U.S over the last two decades West frequently quotes relevant articles to capture the mood at the time, and he leaves the reader with a solid understanding of how American soccer got to where it is today.
Is a well-known author, some of his books are a fascination for readers like in the The United States of Soccer book, this is one of the most wanted Phil West author readers around the world.
- 272 pages
- The United States of Soccer
- Phil West
- 15 July 2017 Phil West