ESPN English Premier League article.
BEAVERTON, OR. —
In what people inside of Nike headquarters are hailing as one of the most bold fashion moves of all time, Nike design engineers revealed their newest jersey for the men’s and women’s national soccer teams.
During a recent, Nike-sponsored press conference held at Nike’s Beaverton compound, the haggard but triumphant design team responsible for coming up with the idea to put stripes on a jersey discussed the revamp with Nike’s in-house press corps.
“We spent months trying to capture the essence of the national teams, and then molding their essences–essensi? I’m never sure–into one comprehensively stunning kit,” said design director Thomas Walker.
In the early days of the project, Nike’s creative braintrust reached out to members of each of the national teams, asking them to free-associate words that describe their respective squads.
According to Walker, responses from the USWNT and USMNT varied from “assertive,” “respected,” and “good,” to “frustrated,” “under-appreciated,” and “trying hard.” (Responses were submitted anonymously, so there’s no way to tell which descriptors came from which team.)
“People said we couldn’t do it–said America wasn’t ready for stripes–but we went with our gut, and I couldn’t be prouder,” continued Walker.
“I’m gonna piggy-back onto what Thomas just said, and remind everyone gathered here that when we started this project, all we had was a blank canvas, and our imaginations. Now look at us!” Shouted Rory O’Reilly to a room full of his Dry-Fitted co-workers.
Other designers described the process as one that required much personal sacrifice.
“I didn’t see my kids for weeks. The youngest boy thinks I’m his uncle,” chimed in team member Scott Albright.
“My marriage fell apart; I was served with divorce papers during a three minute mandatory hydration break,” said team member Jeremy Trine. “But ask me if it was worth it. Seriously. Will someone please ask me? No? Okay. Well, the answer was going to be, ‘We fell out of love years ago. Right around the time of the equally groundbreaking Oregon Ducks redesign. After that project, I could basically write my own ticket.’ I’m sorry. What were we talking about?”
Nike representatives, eager to gauge the public’s response to the newly outfitted soccer stars, asked fans at a recent friendly at PPL Park between the US Women’s National Team and China what they thought.
“The stripes? Yeah, they’re okay, I guess,” answered father of four Don Albright (no relation to Scott). “Can I go back and watch the game with my kids now?”
Outside the stadium, though, Nike canvassers got more of the controversial blow-black all real artists look for.
“Americans don’t wear stripes! Stripes are flip-floppy. Solids show that we commit,” said one wild-eyed gentleman standing at a nearby bustop. “Just look at them running around,” he said, pointing to a program for that day’s game that had blown out onto the sidewalk. “They look like they’re about to take a leisurely ride down the Riviera.”
For more on people trying to come up with as many things as possible to say about stripes, please see this little video.
Archie Walkenshire writes for TITS’ segment: Across The Pond. Archie is a mutt of the UK consisting of English, Scottish and Welsh ancestry. After attending numerous prestigious boarding schools, Archie has traveled the world exploring sports in unfamiliar terrain; never forgetting his trade-mark charm.
Manchesta City finally gave a good glob trobblin to them cunts over at United. Chant united now you blook hordey fuckalls!!
Now that’s a tosty icicle if you eva shoved one down your yappers! City ain’t had the title since 1969: the year I was born. My first memory is me mum shoving her teet in my mouf as I watch Man City win the cup and the glory! My next memory did not come until 4 years later, but I forgot all them from binge drinking and concussions.
And now Chelsea CHELSEA! CHEL! SEA! wins the UEFA Cup in penalty kicks. ARE YOU WANKING SAUSAGE GRINDING ME!?!?!?! Penalty kicks is like aving no footy at all. “All right boys, line up, pull up yer skirts and kick one frew dem wickets ahead!”
DAT’S NOT FOOTY.
Footy’s about grace, determination and moltov cocktails hitting school children! It’s a game of constant running and survival. If any sport could be a fiery riot, it would be football. American Football would be a MASH unit.
I write this sitting in a pub writing on napkins wif a my quill pen in one hand and a bowie knife in the other! Once I finish this I’ma turn this city into 28 Days Later!
FUCK OFF YOU CUNTS!!
Let’s just dive right in, shall we?
- To the surprise of absolutely no one and the notice of a very few, alumnae of the University of Connecticut dominated the women’s basketball roster for this year’s Olympics (The Olympics are coming! The Olympics are coming!). The Geno Auriemma-coached squad reportedly declined to be fitted for official Team USA jerseys, opting instead to “just stick with the colors that got us here,” according to the unapologetically stately-haired Auriemma.
- Jersey abandoner, 6-pack aficionado and all-around gal’s gal Brandi Chastain traded in her shin guards for a sand wedge at this past weekend’s Michael Jordan Celebrity Invitational. She and partner John Smoltz (Ret. P-Atlanta Braves) defeated other notable weekend-golfers such as former NBA Inside Stuff Main Man Ahmad Rashad, “The Office” (US Version) cast member Brian Baumgartner, and hockey wife and mother of five, Janet Jones-Gretzky. “It’s not about beating Michael,” Chastain said. Poppycock. Of course it’s about beating Michael! This is the sort of stuff great obituaries are made of. You go, girl.
- According to her Twitter feed, Venus Williams had to write a paper. And it was hard. And apparently about math.
- And as if winning fancy golf tournaments and writing on a deadline wasn’t enough for them, it appears that females are ruining sports, in general.(Though you probably already knew that.) Thanks to the allegedly questionable fashion choices on the part of some lady journos, Major League Baseball announced at the end of last year that they will be instigating and enforcing a new dress code policy for media members, presumably set to kick in with the start of the 2012-2013 season. The new guidelines are the result of a pow-wow held by MLB officials in response to a September 2010 incident regarding a) The New York Jets and 2) a Mexican TV reporter. According to one, good-for-nothing girl writer, things have gotten “a little too casual” out at the ol’ ball game. So if any of you were hoping to spy an errant bra-strap or a little extra leg during post-game interviews, well you can just forget it. Better luck watching NFL or NBA coverage, because, let’s face it: anything goes in those two dens of vipers.
So now you know what the ladies have been up to. Check back next week for some more pillow talk and your weekly dose of sports as social commentary (hint: it will probably have something to do with some old broad whose color palette may or may not include “Masters Green”).
Following closely on the heels of a newly passed Scottish law outlawing “offensive behavior” at soccer matches, the government of the United Kingdom today officially approved legislation making it illegal for fans of the sport (known in the U.K. as “football”) to think bad thoughts about opposing teams or fans.
“We are all concerned about individual privacy rights,” said U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron, “but football-related violence is one of our country’s greatest shames, and violent actions spring from violent thoughts. Therefore, we must combat this issue at its source: Our traitorous, disloyal minds.”
The new law, dubbed the Mental Boorishness Prevention Act, shall be enforced by a new department, the Ministry of Civility, with the use of a sophisticated device known as a cerebrometer. Cerebrometers, which scan brain waves in order to detect sectarianism, hostility or “general aggro-ness,” are to be placed prominently in soccer stadiums, pubs and the homes of particularly troublesome individuals. Any fan whose disposition is determined to be insufficiently positive will be subject to re-education or, in extreme cases, a mysterious rehabilitative procedure known as the Ludovico Technique.
Reactions to the legislation were mixed. When asked their opinion on the subject, spectators at the Old Trafford stadium, home of the famed Manchester United club, would only smile nervously and voice their support for their own team, then hurriedly emphasize that that support in no way implied any antipathy towards opposing teams, then run away.
On the other hand, This Is the Sports contributor and U.K. native Archie Walkenshire was strongly critical, saying, “Are you taking the piss out of me? The bloody Lords must be barmy! ‘Tisn’t real football if I can’t fink the other team’s a pile of bloomin’ prats! And tell ’em so to their grotty faces, for ‘at matter, and leave ’em wiv a Chelsea Smile for their trouble! Blimey, somefing must be done!” Walkenshire then donned a Guy Fawkes mask and disappeared in a puff of smoke.
However, the new law does seem to have had a pacifying effect on Manchester fans. After the start of today’s match, the crowd would often break into repetitive chants of “LET’S JUST ALL HAVE FUN,” and by the game’s conclusion, a record low of only seven knife fights had broken out in the stands.
MLS star Landon Donovan’s mother, Donna, has again been named team mom of the LA Galaxy. Donna, known throughout the league for her warmth and respectful distance, seen more as a big sister by some, has diligently performed her duties in seasons past such as delivering oranges at half time, driving players to and from practice and post game celebrations of ice cream.
The champion Galaxy are preparing to defend their title this season and do not want to mess with the tried and true formula. Goalie Nick Noble’s mother was slated to perform mom duties this season, but the team traded her to DC United in a salary saving maneuver.
Hours after arriving in Vancouver for the CONCACAF tournament, where the U.S. women’s soccer team hopes to qualify for this year’s London Games, a lone Canadian gunman entered the players’ hotel and opened fire in the adjoining bar.
None of the players were hurt, though the incident kept star goalie/dancer Hope Solo from making a post-practice caffeine run. “Was about to walk to starbucks [sic] when all hell broke loose in the lobby of our hotel! Life is precious…” Tweeted the Nike spokeswoman and Golden Glove Winner.
“Well, here we go again. First it was their heroics last year in Germany, and now the mainstream media feels compelled to mention that they were almost victims of a senseless tragedy,” lamented male soccer star Landon Donovan, on his way inside a Los Angeles area Pinkberry.
“I have it on good authority that ESPN ran the story somewhere on its futball homepage. To say nothing of all the press This is the Sports–where sports goes to get their sports–has been giving the team. I mean, when was the last time anyone gave a fig about the men’s national team? If we had been shot at, would anyone have cared?”
Sometime soon after making this remark, a tree in a distant forest allegedly fell down.