Book Review: Soccer Star Cristiano Ronaldo by John Albert Torres


Author:  John Albert Torres Title:  Soccer Star Cristiano Ronaldo Publication Info:  Berkeley Heights, NJ : Speeding Star, an imprint of Enslow Publishers, Inc., [2014] Summary/Review: I read this children’s biography of the Real Madrid and Portugal football star aloud to my son.  Ronaldo is not someone I’ve particularly been impressed by as a person, although his…

Book Review: Eight World Cups by George Vecsey


Author: George Vecsey Title: Eight World Cups Publication Info: Times Books (May 13, 2014) ISBN: 9780805098488 Summary/Review: Vecsey, a sportswriter for The New York Times, writes a series of essays and memories of international soccer dating back to the 1982 World Cup in Spain, tying it in with his own love of the game back to his childhood….

Movie Review: 30 for 30: Soccer Stories


Title: 30 for 30: Soccer Stories Production Co:ESPN Films Country: United States Language: English (and other languages in interviews and archival footage) Genre: Documentary | Sports | History In preparation for this year’s World Cup tournament, I watched this series of ESPN films about football/futbol/soccer on Netflix. They all touch upon themes beyond sports and…

World Cup Round of 16 Rooting Interests and Predictions


After an exciting round of group play, the knock-out rounds for the 2014 World Cup begin today.  Below I’ve listed the teams I’m rooting for and the teams I expect to win (not always the same) for each game. 28 June 2014 Brazil vs. Chile This is a tough call.  I have a soft spot…

Book Review: Distant Corners by David Wangerin


Author: David Wangerin Title:  Distant Corners: American Soccer’s History of Missed Opportunities and Lost Causes Publication Info:  Temple University Press (2011) ISBN:  1439906300 Summary/Review: A sequel of sorts to Soccer in a Football World, Wangerin’s history of soccer in the United States, this book is a series of essays focusing on particular places and times…

Photopost: Boston Breakers versus Portland Thorns FC


On Sunday, our family went to see the Boston Breakers play a soccer match against the Portland Thorns FC.  My toddler daughter Kay didn’t last long and after about 20 minutes or so my wife had to take her to a playground.  But my son Peter and I stayed to watch the entire game even…

Open Streets on the Avenue of the Arts: Circle the City


Bostonians enjoyed easy access for walking, biking, skating, playing and more on the outbound lanes of Huntington Avenue on Sunday, July 14th thanks to the Circle the City Open Streets program.  Thanks to Walk Boston, I was able to participate in the event reviving my Boston By Foot Avenue of the Arts walking tour.  A small…

US Open Cup Soccer Comes to Boston


On Wednesday June 12th, the local soccer club the New England Revolution played a game on Boston soil for (I believe) the first time. The match saw the Revs face the New York Red Bulls in the Fourth Round of the US Open Cup.  If you’re not familiar with the US Open Cup, it is…

World Cup Qualifying – A World-Wide Approach?


The past week featured another round of qualifying games for the upcoming FIFA World Cup 2014 to be held in Brazil.  Under the current rules, the six association football confederations (loosely representing the 6 continents inhabited by humans) each conduct a qualifying tournament to determine which teams will represent their confederation.  The number of places…

Photopost: Mass United FC


Yesterday, my son Peter and I attended a Mass United FC soccer game for the first time.  Mass United is plays in the National Premier Soccer League, which is the fourth level on the United States soccer pyramid (which I guess would be equivalent to A-league in baseball terms).  The game was sparsely attended but…

Soccer Spectating Report 7-26 June: Gold Cup Edition


The CONCACAF Gold Cup came and went with the US Men’s National Team’s uninspiring loss. The Boston Breakers are treading water and the New England Revolution are abysmal so things are pretty miserable in my soccer world. Luckily the Women’s World Cup is starting and hopefully that will lift my spirits. Canada 0:2 United States…

Book Review: Once in a lifetime by Gavin Newsham


Author: Gavin Newsham Title: Once in a lifetime : the incredible story of the New York Cosmos Publication Info: New York : [Berkeley] : Grove Press ; Distributed by Publishers Group West, c2006. ISBN: 9780802142887 Summary/Review: Having watched the documentary film Once in a Lifetime and read Soccer in a Football World, I continue to…

Book Review: Inverting the Pyramid by Jonathan Wilson


Author: Jonathan Wilson Title: Inverting the Pyramid: The History of Football Tactics Publication Info: Orion (2008) ISBN:  0752889958 Summary/Review: This book traces this history of tactics, formations and styles over 100 years of soccer.  The title refers to the general trend toward defensive play moving players from the top of the formation to the bottom…

Book Review:Soccer in a Football World by David Wangerin


Author: David Wangerin Title: Soccer in a Football World Publication Info: Philadelphia : Temple University Press, 2008. ISBN: Summary/Review: Following up on Beastly Fury, the story of the origin of the game of football in Britain, I wanted to know the history of soccer in my own country.  Foreigners and Americans alike will claim that…

Soccer Spectating Report 16 May-6 June


With the Champions League final, the European season comes to the end. I watched a lot of teams and lot of games and determined that the clubs I like best are Everton of the English Premier League and Ajax of the Dutch Eredivisie. Next year I’m thinking I’ll try to watch as many games featuring…

Soccer Spectating Report 19 April-9 May


The European season is coming to an exciting conclusion while the MLS gets into full swing. Here’s three weeks of soccer highlights. New England Revolution 3:2 Sporting Kansas City (23 April) This game was the culmination of an exciting week – striker Rajko Levic’s first home game, the debut of midfielder Benny Feilhaber and the…

Soccer Spectating Report: Boston Breakers Home Opener


I only managed to watch one soccer game in the past week but I watched it live and in person at Harvard Stadium in Allston, MA. Boston Breakers 1:2 Western New York Flash (17 April) Western New York are a WPS expansion team but they have several good players (including some from defunct WPS champions…

Soccer Spectating Report 5-10 April


Barcelona 5:1 Shakhtar Donetsk (6 April) Barça made quick work of their Ukrainian opponents with half the starting squad scoring goals in this laugher at Camp Nou.  [Note:  I didn’t watch the second leg, but Barcelona won it as well 0-1 for a 6-1 aggregate victory and a secure spot in the Champions League semifinals)….

Soccer Spectating Report 31 March-4 April


England 1:2 United States (2 April) Bad news:  The US women’s team is clearly outplayed and loses to a much lower ranked England side.  Good news: It was just a friendly and the World Cup is still months away.  Bad news:  The US team lost to Mexico in the World Cup qualifying and should be…