By Charles Boehm – WASHINGTON, DC (Nov 17, 2017) US Soccer Players - I’ve experienced a wide range of emotions during USMNT games over the past few years, both as a journalistic observer and from the perspective of a soccer-enamored American. Tuesday’s friendly draw with Portugal handed me a new one. A conflicted mix of intrigue, bewilderment, and uneasiness. On the field, the part that should . . .
By Charles Boehm – WASHINGTON, DC (Nov 10, 2017) US Soccer Players - Fifteen years and five months after the shock World Cup win over Portugal that launched the program into a bold new century, a dramatically revamped USMNT squad has gathered in Lisbon this week ahead of a rematch that marks both the beginning and end of an era. The 3-2 defeat of Luis Vigo and the heavily favored Portuguese side . . .
By Charles Boehm – WASHINGTON, DC (Nov 3, 2017) US Soccer Players - Anthony Precourt’s confounding machinations about the present and future location of the Columbus Crew. The NASL’s momentous antitrust suit against the US Soccer Federation. We find ourselves talking and thinking a lot about the business of the beautiful game this fall. “Soccer is a business,” state many of the mercantile-minded . . .
By Charles Boehm – WASHINGTON, DC (Oct 27, 2017) US Soccer Players - He’s a household name in Japan, and increasingly so across East Asia as he’s spread his particular gospel of youth development to China and points further afield. Yet in his native land, Tom Byer is the soccer equivalent of a rare import record, or perhaps a bootleg mixtape. He's recognized and revered by a relatively small . . .
By Charles Boehm – WASHINGTON, DC (Oct 20, 2017) US Soccer Players - Some readers will be familiar with my occasional tendency to sift through developments from seemingly disparate quarters of the American soccer scene in search of deeper meaning. So far October has brought us stunning World Cup qualification heartbreak, and a resulting tidal wave of anger, recrimination and soul-searching. Word . . .
By Charles Boehm – WASHINGTON, DC (Oct 13, 2017) US Soccer Players - American soccer suddenly finds itself talking about things that are tough to pin down. Systems, structures, and cultural nuances can be slippery and difficult. Still, there’s no time for it like the end of a three-decade run of consecutive World Cup qualifications. Naturally, focus will turn towards Major League Soccer. A . . .
By Charles Boehm – ORLANDO, FL (Oct 5, 2017) US Soccer Players - Even in a palpable stressful situation, with the World Cup dreams of millions riding on his team’s next 90 minutes of play, Bruce Arena found a way to summon his trademark droll sarcasm. “Good morning everyone,” he said to a jam-packed press conference room at Orlando City Stadium on Thursday, on the eve of the USMNT’s massive World . . .
By Charles Boehm – WASHINGTON DC (Sep 29, 2017) US Soccer Players - After their club matches this weekend, the USMNT will gather again, this time in Orlando, Florida, for one more pair of CONCACAF World Cup qualifiers. The 2018 Hexagonal concludes with games against Panama and Trinidad & Tobago. These are the final two opportunities for the US to overcome the many missteps and wobbles of this . . .
By Charles Boehm – WASHINGTON DC (Sep 22, 2017) US Soccer Players - It’s been an interesting week or so in Major League Soccer, both on the field and behind the scenes. Last Wednesday expansion club Atlanta United laid down a startling marker at their second match in their glittering new $1.5-billion home, Mercedes-Benz Stadium. The New England Revolution hit town as nominal rivals to ATL in the . . .
By Charles Boehm – WASHINGTON DC (Sep 14, 2017) US Soccer Players - It’s been a week since the USMNT wrapped up September’s World Cup qualifiers. The noise from media and fans has scarcely dropped a decibel. There's justification for some of the criticism. Some of it not so much. A few of the less articulate outbursts barely even deserve the term. One topic of discussion does merit a longer look. . . .