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Article:SSR Interviews: The Beautiful Game

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This is a new series I'm starting over at my blog interviewing other bloggers throughout the week (because everyone else is doing it). This one starts with Joshua Mayers, writer of The Beautiful Game. Oh yeah, I'm a homer because he's a local boy from U-Dub.


The UEFA Champions League is Josh's favorite league to cover.

1. When did you decide it was time to join the blogging world?

How crazy does one have to be to start a soccer blog in the U.S.? It’d probably garner as much interest as a VCR/Discman repairman these days.


It must have been early in 2007, I got a random Facebook message from a former high-school teammate. He saw that I’d gotten into the sportswriting field and casually said “Hey, you should start a soccer blog!”

It made perfect sense.

I’ve always loved the sport, it’s the only one that I’ve played competitively and it could be a great way to keep informed and keep my writing fresh.

It’s been fun.

2. Do you have a strong soccer background in your family?

Not really. My dad played casually and loved watching games when I was young. That exposure really got me interested in the international stars like Ronaldo, Dennis Bergkamp, Zidane.

My little brother, like myself, played through high school. But not much else.

3. What is your favorite league to cover?

<epic anthem style>The Champions!</epic>

I love the Champions League, which isn’t a domestic league, but it’s awesome, so there. Otherwise I spend most of my attention to the Premiership, which has all the money, the stars and, oh yeah, three of the four semifinalists in the UCL. (And I can read England’s newspapers)

I’m trying to get more into the MLS, especially with Seattle getting a team, but it’s a work in progress.

4. What can Bob Bradley do to improve the US Men’s National Team?


The USMNT would be unstoppable if all the guys were on the juice. It’s the great equalizer. Other countries have loaded talent pools and passion for the sport, we need some help.

5. Have you bought into “Beckhammania” at all (like most people)?

As a soccer fan in this country, I’m thrilled that Beckham is here.

He’s set a precedent for European stars to come over in the future. (you reading this Thierry? Zinedine?) He’s gotten all the ESPN heads and media folk talking about the game. And he’s still a phenomenal player, with service second to none.

Some soccer purists think he’s a sideshow, but I think American soccer is a better and more entertaining product with him here.

6. Who wins the title? Manchester United or Chelsea?

Man. U.

Despite a dip in form of late, I still think the Red Devils will get the two wins. They got the tiebreaker (goal differential) locked up, obviously that’s work.

Oh yeah, Cristiano’s on the juice. That’ll help.

7. What are some soccer blogs that you recommend?

I love the soccer beat-writers’ blogs: The Soccer Insider, Soccer by Ives and Sideline Views.

101 Great Goals always has the highlights and awesome videos for me.

Some other favorites: Center Holds It, Goal! NY Times, Kickette, MLS Rumors, The Offside, The Offside Rules, The Spoiler and Who Ate All the Pies?

8. Do you think Seattle Sounders FC will threaten to move (like the Sonics and Mariners) if not granted a new stadium?

I can’t see that happening.

The Pacific Northwest is one of the best markets in the country, and people love soccer up here.

I appreciate what the league is doing, stressing the importance of soccer specific stadiums, but in Seattle I think it’s win-win with or without one.

Plus, I’ve been to many games at Qwest. In my opinion it’s a great soccer venue.

9. Finally, if you had one ticket to go to any international match in the world, where would it be and why?

It’s not very creative or original, but being the stands for a World Cup final would be out of this world.

It’s a soccer players dream, so it’s got to be a soccer lover’s dream too, right? 100,000 fans going nuts for 90 minutes. The pinnacle of the beautiful game puts the world on pause.

Where legends are made. I’d love to be there live blogging.

Thanks to Josh for the interview and you can check out his website at this address.

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