No seriously – did you actually see the US national team game vs Costa Rica because I had an extremely tough time making it out on TV! Seriously, that was one of the CRAZIEST 90 minutes of soccer I have ever seen, simply because of the snow and the conditions. Somebody should have sent a weatherman out to the game.
In a game that the US won 1-0, there were many talking points and here are some from an SC101 perspective. If I missed anything, let me know in the comment section below!
Ball choice – The Color
All the talk on social media surrounded the ball color choice. Nike use a yellow hi-vis ball, yet it was pretty impossible to see on tv. A lot of folks pointed out that an orange ball like the Adidas Confusa hi-vis ball should have been used. Unfortunately, you can’t change ball brand during the game and we were left watching a game where the ball seemed to disappear at times. Here is the thing, although we were unable to see it on TV, the visibility of the ball on field was not an issue for players and the yellow color was easily seen. There were actually several sideline shots on screen that highlighted this point.
Bottom Line – Nike listen and will obviously take all criticism into account. If there next hi-vis ball is Orange, I will come back and highlight this post!
Boots and the Nike Spring 2013 Collection
Could there have been a worse game to debut your latest series of colorways in? I actually think not. There was no focus on the boots and I actually struggled to find a way to talk about what the players were wearing on social media. “Check out those Vapors Dempsey is sporting” I wrote. “We can’t see the ball let alone what boots he is wearing you clown” was the response. I took it all as positive criticism, my feelings weren’t hurt I swear. Check out the entire Nike 2013 Spring range at soccer.com.
Anyone see the Costa Rica players wearing the old-school yellow Nike CTR360 Maestri II? Considering the US players were wearing the newest of the new colorways in the Maestri III colorway, it shows there is a substantial gap in what players can choose to wear. As a sponsored player, you are pretty much required to wear the latest silo (except if your name is RVP). Michael Bradley chose to wore a prior colorway in the Maestri III range, but that was probably related to comfort and I imagine he felt like he needed more time before he wore his new pair.
Bottom Line – We are going to see plenty of these colorways, it is just a pity they were overshadowed during this game.
Ground Staff – Awesome Job
Are you kidding me with the fantastic job the ground staff did. We often mock and find humor in the work done by ground staff, but when you consider the fact that the game would have been called-off had it not been for their persistence in getting on the field when needed, clearing what they could as quick as they could. If you were part of the ground staff team, we applaud you!
Bottom Line – Ask the next ground staff member you see for their autograph, no matter what the game.
The Centennial Was Worn!
I was actually unsure about what kit the US would wear for tonights game. It seems like there might have been an agreement reached that allowed them and Costa Rica to wear different colors to their regular home/away jerseys. Either way, it was great to see them wearing the kit and I have to agree with Ryan Bailey that the crest is a real winner. But really…debuting a white jersey when the field was covered in snow? Obviously there was no way of knowing that there was going to be an epic snow storm, another unfortunate event for Nike.
Bottom Line: The team are unbeaten in a kit that represents and pays homage to US soccer history.
Weather reports say it will be 27 degrees to a projected 80 degrees come kick off at the Azteca on Tuesday. Talk about a surreal shock to the system! Tuesday’s game will kick off at 7.30pm, live on ESPN. Make sure to tune in as there is no doubt it will be another classic game.
Bottom Line – Someone get out the Under Armour Heatgear shirts!