I'm not going to lie, yesterday was a very difficult day to focus on soccer in the United States. Not only were there zero major matches to distract me, but there was a rather important presidential election keeping me occupied.
An election will do that to sports. It, understandably, supersedes anything else going on. Every time I tried to sit down and bang out an article about the MLS Expansion Draft or the upcoming USMNT matches against Mexico and Costa Rica, my mind kept wandering off into the grander world of politics. As someone who writes about sports because it helps me escape the often dreary world of politics, it was a rather difficult reality to come to.
In the end, it was impossible to stick to sports yesterday. I wrote a post on Facebook last night before I went to bed that got picked up by Sports and Politics, a sister site to the Last Word on Sports network that I write and podcast for. It was the first, and apparently not only, public statement I made about this election. It was about voting against the two party system and about how if this election wasn't the time, when was the time to protest Democrats and Republicans that have ruled our country for a long time?
As the shocking results trickled in throughout the course of the night, my mood couldn't work its way back towards soccer. It's a little after 2am as I write this Wake Up and the race isn't over, although Clinton's campaign manager more or less announced that nothing positive was coming for that campaign tonight.
My mind can't stop thinking about the change that is about to come in this country. This is serious stuff that raises far more questions than it answers. The populace has elected an outsider to the White House. With Trump's track record of lying and hateful speech, what, if anything, can he get done in office?
I think the one question it does answer is whether or not a ton of Americans are sick of politicians. Donald Trump is many things. He is a liar, a racist, a bigot. He's rich as hell, a very dominating personality, and more than capable to connecting with a lot of common folk. One thing that he is not is a politician. He's proven that time and time again over the last year or so. His election is a sign that a plurality of Americans are fed up with the perceived corruption of the average politician and they are willing to look past quite a few character flaws in order to try and root out those entrenched Washington lifers.
As someone who couldn't stand either candidate, there was no happy ending to a long, long election regardless of last night's result. I certainly think we got the more shocking ending, but no, it wasn't a happy one.
There was some soccer news to discuss yesterday, though. First of all, in the meaningless EFL Trophy competition, Chelsea's U-21 team took down Oxford United in an English record 17 round shootout. A total of 34 penalties were taken in the debacle, ending 13-12 after Oxford's Wes Thomas missed in the 17th and final round. The previous record was a 32 shot affair between Scunthorpe and Worcester in a 2014 EFL Cup match.
Injecting top level youth teams to the EFL Trophy isn't exactly doing it's intended job either. In a move that was supposed to inject interest into the event, crowds are showing up in record low numbers.
50,000 Words of Soccer Update
As mentioned above, this was the only addition to the 50,000 Words of Soccer catalogue. It brings the word count to 13,303.