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A Primer to Soccer, Sort Of

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Soccer is the world’s most popular sport, as we are told every time some bored sportswriter dusts off their collegiate freshman globalization mantra handbook and pens yet another stirring op-ed decrying its status, or lack thereof, within our golden shores. You just don’t understand the beautiful game, comes the cry against those among us who 1) still watch sports of any kind period 2) would rather watch baseball or football or hockey or basketball or tiddlywinks, preferably not involving one spending a few decades altogether too close for comfort. (Side note: I actually like watching soccer, although given how my team is the San Jose Earthquakes said enjoyment has been quite subdued lately. But I digress.)

We at the Good Pirate Ship RedState have heard the cries of those devastatingly afflicted with soul-crushing grief over soccer’s relative lack of popularity in our great land — both of you — and are here to help. What, you think all we do all day is mercilessly jab at the follies and foibles of the woke agenda and its ruinous policies? Perish the thought! And so, without further ado, we present to you a handy guideline to soccer so the next time the subject is broached you can speak with authoritative authority. You’re welcome.

Soccer as a game has been around ever since … well, sometime in the nineteenth century as near as anyone can tell. At least officially, with rules and stuff. It started in England, and much like the British Empire at the time, rapidly encircled the globe as people discovered the joys of a participation sport requiring little equipment save a ball, a field to run up and down on, perhaps a couple of nets at either end so you wouldn’t have to retrieve the ball after a goal from the nearest swamp, and maybe some shoes just in case the field was a reclaimed cow pasture.

The objective of soccer is to score a goal, preferably by kicking the ball into the other team’s goal. If you kick the ball into your team’s goal it is scored as a

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