The English Premier League Starts Today Heres One Reason To Watch

Beautiful, ain’t it? Americans’ interest in soccer is about three times higher during the World Cup than it usually is, judging by how often they search for the sport on Google. But that isn’t true for other countries. In England, where the English Premier League will kick off its season on Saturday, club play is followed almost as enthusiastically as international competition. The same is true in Spain, Italy, Brazil and Mexico.What accounts for the international appeal of soccer? One factor may be the comparative simplicity of its rulebook. Product designers have long appreciated the value of simplicity, which offers a gentler learning curve and fewer opportunities for mistranslation.I downloaded the FIFA Laws of the Game along with the rulebooks for the NFL, NBA, NHL and Major League Baseball. Then I counted the number of words in each one, excluding indices. This is a simple proxy for the complexity of each sport.Soccer is doing more with less; FIFA’s rulebook has just over 20,000 words. By contrast, the NBA’s has 30,000, MLB’s is close to 50,000, the NHL’s is nearly 60,000 and the NFL’s is 70,000.The correlation between the simplicity of a sport’s rulebook and its global popularity is almost one to one. Soccer, with its simple rulebook, is followed in almost every country. Basketball increasingly is, too. The more complex sports have less global appeal. Baseball is popular in the Americas and Japan but not yet elsewhere. Hockey fans are almost exclusively concentrated in the U.S., Canada, Northern Europe and Russia. American football has few fans outside America itself.Philosophers have also long recognized a connection between simplicity and beauty (indeed, long before soccer came to be known as “The Beautiful Game,” it was known as “The Simplest Game” instead). This June, when I attended a couple of World Cup matches at the Maracanã, in Rio de Janeiro, I was struck by how rich the experience was with so few frills. There was no 60-yard-long Jumbotron — there were hardly any scoreboards. There weren’t many words spoken, on or off the pitch.Soccer can get away with this minimalist presentation because of the simplicity of its rulebook; you don’t need Ed Hochuli to come out and explain the difference between offsides and encroachment and a neutral zone infraction.Instead, when Chile scored against Spain in their Group B match, it sounded something like this (sorry about my shaky camera work): read more

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Ceferin is not in favor of crossconfederation bids

first_imgThe UEFA president criticized the notion that the Spain-Portugal-Morocco bid will not be supported by the federationSpain, Portugal, and Morocco are studying the idea of bidding for the 2030 FIFA World Cup.This would be the first Europe/Africa tournament, as the old Mediterranean Games.But for UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin, this is not a good idea.gareth southgate, englandEngland and Bulgaria on a collision course over racism George Patchias – September 13, 2019 England’s concerns over racism in Bulgaria has sparked a furious row.Recently England manager Gareth Southgate expressed his concern over racist abuse being aimed at…“I’m not in favor of cross-confederation bids, to be honest,” he told The Balls.“Someone should say to the politicians it’s not up to them to speak about who will be hosts for sports events or not.”“I’ve seen many politicians saying that they will be candidates for this or that but they need to speak to their member associations. Some of them don’t even know about the public statements of the politicians,” he added.Ceferin promised to “do whatever I can to have one European bid because that raises the chances of Europe hosting the World Cup extremely.”last_img read more

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