Additions to the Archive: A Look at the Soccer Web for December 2017

 In Additions to the Archive

Hello and Happy New Year! Hope 2018 is treating you and yours well so far. Here’s a quick review of some of what I’ve been reading on the soccer webs this past December.

The Soccer Reading List

Washington Post soccer writer Steven Goff compiled a list of his favorite soccer books with Christmas shopping in mind. If you have ever attempted an Amazon search for “soccer books” or simply wandered into the sports section of a used bookstore, it can be easy to get a little overwhelmed by the sheer volume of books written on the game we all love. Goff’s list is a nice concise reading list for those looking to find some of the best texts. I love lists like these for two reasons, first most of my favorites didn’t make the list; that just speaks to the number of quality books written on soccer. Second, I now have a few more books to add to my bookshelves in the near future. In particular, I’m really interested in picking up Simon Critchley’s What We Think About When We Think About Soccer and I was reminded of a book I’ve long been wanting to read Johan Cruyff’s My Turn. Thank you to Steven Goff for this great list of books that celebrate and contemplate the beautiful game.

Speaking of Books

Soccer historian Patrick Salkeld reviewed a new work by Tamir Bar-On, Beyond Soccer: International Relations and Politics as Seen Through the Beautiful Game over at the Sport in American History Blog. Salkeld gives a thorough account of a book that sounds fascinating.

As someone who teaches a Modern World Civilizations class from time to time this book hold particular interest. I aspired to teach soccer as part of my larger discussions of globalization and international politics this past semester. Seems like this book was written with that goal in mind, and I might just have to assign it next time I teach that class.

Best of

While we are discussing Salkeld and his work for the Sport in American History Blog, his article on the importance of lower league soccer in the United States was one of the top ten most read articles this year. Well worth a read if you’ve not seen this one yet.

Women’s Soccer Year in Review

I promise I haven’t been given a bribe to hype the Sports in American History blog, but honestly they do a very good job over there, so I’m happy to highlight them. I couldn’t leave out this comprehensive review of women’s soccer in 2017 by Colleen English.

Still Confused by Everything USSF?

Yeah, me too. A blog I was just introduced to, “Ranting Soccer Dad” took the time to read through transcripts of the United States Soccer Federation minutes (so you don’t have to). Part One, running from 1998 to 2009 posted on the December 31st. The USSF runs pretty much everything in American soccer from youth soccer to which leagues are sanctioned at what level, and of course they also control the purse strings of how the game is developed. If you want to know more about the internal politics, have a read over at the Ranting Soccer Dad. I’ll be looking forward to the next part.

Two More FIFA Convictions

I’ve been diving deep into FIFA corruption lately, so reading about the conviction of the former head of Brazil’s Football Confederation and the former head of the Paraguayan Football Association is just another scene in a much larger narrative. Each of them will face at least ten years in prison in the United States. Good.

With the multiple layers of FIFA corruption coming undone, here’s a tifo to remind us whose game this is.

RIP New York Cosmos Stan Terlecki

The Cosmos organization said a sad goodbye to former forward Stanislaw Terlecki who played with the club from 1983 until the end of the 1984 season. He played one indoor season for the Cosmos and one outdoor, but made a memorable impression on fans and teammates in New York. The Polish striker was also outspoken on political issues, especially pertaining to the communist regime in his homeland. Terlecki also made ends meet as a teacher while working towards a Master’s in History. There he was involved in student resistance to communism. My condolences to the Terlecki family and thank you for sharing such an amazing man with the world.

Well that is the first, prototype if you will, of “Additions to the Archive.” My goal is to make this best-of links from the soccer web a monthly feature for the blog. Plenty of sites provide great collections of links on a daily basis, but I think a monthly recap of the soccer web with a focus on the social and historical could be interesting. See anything you think I should read? Drop it in the comments section or find me on Twitter @ThSoccerScholar. Have a great January!

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