10 ways that the US Men’s National Team is eerily similar to England

4. Domestication of top players

In the 2010 World Cup, England was one of three nations to have its entire roster playing in its domestic leagues. Soon the U.S. could join those ranks, as its top stars flee Europe and Mexico for less competition, a higher paycheck, and the comfort of the U.S. The names have been discussed to death, but no longer do U.S. players need to play overseas to prove themselves as world class or even worthy of being considered world class.

In 2014, England had one player on the roster that played abroad (a back-up keeper) but the other two entirely domestic squads from 2010 (Germany and Italy) had diversified their rosters. Soon, maybe only England and the U.S. will be growing their own international teams domestically.

5. Inability to see the growth of the game around the world

When the U.S. lost to Jamaica in the Gold Cup, the near unanimous reaction was that the U.S. has choked, not that Jamaica had caught up to a stagnate U.S. system. England, as “inventors” of the game, have long had the issue of seeing other names play their game better than they do (Hungary 1956 e.g.). At least England invented the game; the U.S., as relative latecomers, should have more of a desire to remain ahead of.

6. Coaches are gods, until they disrespect the domestic league

It took years for Sunil Gulati to woo Jurgen Klinsmann to the U.S. National Team, but despite the up-and-down results his comments on his players returning to MLS is what has rankled most fans and turned the media against him. Just as in England is the domestic league sacred, a national team coach slighting the league is a mortal sin that only winning the World Cup can absolve.

7. Inability to win on penalties

England fans could relate to the U.S. loss in penalties to Panama. After all, the history of the England national time is mired with disheartening losses due to penalties missed both during a match and in sudden death. Now it seems that the U.S. is falling into the same trap.

8. The odd desire for a domestic coach

When things are going poorly for the national team, the fall back for both England and the U.S. is that a domestic coach is needed to lead the team. U.S. fans yearn for the days of Bruce Arena or wonder what Jason Kreis can do on the international stage, and England fans got their wish with Roy Hodgson being hired for the last World Cup cycle.

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  1. Rick August 1, 2015
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