Readers irate about difficulty of getting
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Readers still angry over difficulty seeing Confederations Cup.(Monday, August 9, 1999) -- The e-mail continues unabated with comments about the third-place finish of the United States and how hard it was for fans to watch it.
Lack of Confederations coverage shameful
I just wanted to drop you a quick note to tell you that I enjoyed reading Jerry Langdonís August 2 column FIFA displays little regard for athletes with Confederations sked).
Considering how well the Women's World Cup fared and that the U.S. team was part of it, it is scandalous that no U.S. network tried to get broadcasting rights for the Confederations Cup and that it was so hard to view the games.
I personally flew to Mexico to watch four games in the opening weekend but it was an exhausting trip and I don't think I will be doing anything like that anytime soon.
I also agree that FIFA and the organizing committee overdid it with the schedule. Group B had it easy to start but suffered in the end and Group A had it hard in the beginning (a game every other day). They could have done a much better job organizing this tournament and marketing it to ensure better coverage.
I was very proud of the U.S. team's play and only wish that more people in the States would have been able to watch them. Oh well . . . Thanks again and keep up the good work.
Pitiful TV effort
I pay extra money for FOX Sports World for soccer. Even they did not go through the trouble of putting the (Confederations Cup) games in their schedule. They televised three taped games later on but they never bothered to put those games in their programs.
It is very pity that US and the World did not find out how great our men's team played in Mexico.
Increase television coverage
I appreciated the short article "FIFA Displays Little Regard . . ." and especially the comments on television coverage. I had traveled from my home (San Diego) to Seattle last week and was unfortunate to miss the Brazil and Germany matches. I arrived back in S.D. on Sunday and not only was I greeted with the sea breeze, sun, and surf, but I was also back to the best soccer (futbol) coverage in the Americas.
God bless Mexican television and the antiquated antennae! I can consistently pick up any international match along with the Mexican Premier league, MLS, and Euro matches. U.S. - Mexico on Sunday, U.S. - Saudi Arabia last evening, Brazil - Mexico this evening. Good commentary, Spanish language practice, and two of the greatest "Gooool" calls from Jorge Ramos (Telemundo) and Andres Cantor (Univision). Pay per view? I paid $5 for some rabbit ears and I'm set.
I am directly concerned with TV coverage as I spend some of my occupational time courting sponsors for our A-League "Flash." As I have routinely seen, after some form of soccer is televised to a wide audience locally, we see our attendance numbers rise at the gate. So hear, hear for the push to increase television coverage. It is practically the only sport that I feel comfortable in letting my two young sons watch! And keep up the good work and wise commentaries.
If ESPN can invent the X-Games . . .
Yes, a performance to be savored. Too bad most of us never got a chance to savor it. Too bad those that can make a difference in the USSF and MLS did not seize this golden, GOLDEN opportunity to promote MLS and Soccer in general in this country. With the Women's World Cup still fresh in our minds, the audience would have been there. Arena's team had shown that it was a force to be reckoned with prior to the Confederations Cup, so its performance wasn't exactly a surprise.
What is wrong with these people? What difference can an excellent third place finish make, if no one sees it, no one is talking about it outside the die-hard soccer community? This is the real story of the Confederations Cup. The story of how long suffering soccer fans in this country are robbed again and again and again by short-sighted people who themselves apparently do not believe in their own product. It's not soccer the sport that's the problem. It's not the low scoring nature of soccer, or the "foreign" aspects of it that torpedo it. After all, this is the very same sport that Marla Messing, et. al., so successfully promoted, the same sport that produced the "riveting" (as described by the mainstream press) 0-0 final in the Womenís World Cup.
Heck, if ESPN can invent and market the 'X-Games', surely . . . well, enough said.
Ramon E. Creager
Cup lack of rest nothing compared to youth tourneys
I often read Jerry Langdonís columnís via the Internet. I enjoy his writings and appreciate his insights. I copy most of your items his items my 15-year-old-son who pays at the state ODP level.
This message concerns your article on FIFA's lack of concern for the athletes who participated in the Confederations Cup. I agreed with your opening comments, "FIFA has shown no concern about athletes in the Confederations Cup" with absurd scheduling that will result in four matches for the United States in seven days." However, your actual concern became unclear with your closing line, ". . . fans were cheated out of a top-quality match."
Was your actual concern for the players health or for the fans rights to a good match?
I mainly sent this message to you because of my concern, along with an ever increasing number of soccer parents, about the travel time and the number of games per tournament weekend that is now being expected from our youth. This also needs some controls put on it by FIFA and United States Youth Soccer Association.
While the U.S. team may have been required to play four matches in seven days, kids 14-20 all over the U.S. are expected to travel three to 10 hours and then play up to five full length games in two days. They then have to return home and go to school the next day. No one would even consider asking a college or high school football or basketball team to play five games in two days. Why do the national and state soccer organizations feel that they should sanction such events? Is this really just about money, making as much money as possible in the shortest amount of time? If it is, then the lawyers will win again and soccer and our youth will lose again when a kid dies on the field after four-and-a-half games in 95 degree temperatures and the law suit is filed.
As I said, I agree with the concern over the Confederations Cup being so short. But, why hasn't there been some kind of outcry over what we are doing to the mental and physical health of our soccer youth?
Jeril Scott Fancher
Respect is earned in World Cup
I agree with your statement that not everything has to be predicated on the World Cup, but the U.S. will never receive real respect from the rest of the world unless it wins at the highest level. That is the World Cup.
Give Mexico itís due
It is interesting that you say the U.S. was not at full strength, but Mexico was. Any true avid soccer fan knows that Mexico's top player Luis Hernandez was absent from the Confederations Cup. While you seemingly downplay Mexicoís effort, I noticed that you were quick to praise the U.S. effort against Brazil. That in itself is ridiculous, because of the fact that Brazil was minus at least four of its top players like Ronaldo, Rivaldo, R. Carlos, and Amorosa.
Mexico had closer games with Brazil at full strength in the Copa America losing 2-1 and 2-0, then the U.S. will have in the next 10 years. Quit bashing Mexico. What is it that you guys have against Mexico anyway? You also complain about the U.S. schedule, but Mexico had less than two weeks to rest its team after coming off the Copa America and basically had a similar schedule to that of the U.S. in the Confed Cup. Brazil chose to rest its top players, which is a luxury they have because of the talent pool.
It makes me laugh that You can give such praise to the U.S. team, but still enjoy making excuses for them.
U.S. day will come
I was wondering what your thoughts are about the recent Confederations Cup results. While Mexico did show admirably against Brazil and the U.S. do you feel that they were truly the number one team in the tournament? Or even the two team.
It has been well publicized that Brazil left its true team at home, and probably would have won the tournament otherwise. However, The U.S. was without some of its better players as well. Reyna, Pope, and Armas for example. While I do not know how the U.S.-Mexico game went (not televised) I am sure these players could have made a difference. While Mexico might not be ready to hand over the CONCACAF torch just yet surely it will happen in the next few years.