Actually, it’s about ACC Men’s Soccer, but…

…but, they had the ACC Men’s Championship game on Fox Sports Net (local cable channel 50 in Apex) which was also being held at the SAS Soccer Park in Cary so you know I had to watch it.

While I never played any organized team sports growing up as a kid, not with the crippling rheumatoid arthritis I was born with, I did play some sandlot soccer as a kid in the 60’s when Pele’ was king and have been more than a casual fan of “real football” ever since.

The championship game today was between Duke and Carolina and when it’s the two of them, they could be playing tiddleywinks for all they care and there still would be blood on the floor afterwards.

I don’t know what it was today, but both teams seemed to languish on the field, to only half-jog instead of use their young-leg team speed to run around like the field like madman as they (and most college-level teams) are want to do, like they both had ankled weights around their collective leggings that never came off, so of course at the end of regulation it was a Zero-Zero tie and after two overtime periods also produced nada, it came down to that invention of modern attention span requirements, “the shootout”.

I’m of mixed feeling regarding the shootout, where each team takes five turns in turn shooting the ball one-on-one, five different players taking a shot each against their opposing team’s goalie and whoever leads at the end of five frames wins the shootout and therefor the game, but of course since it was Duke and Carolina playing it was 4-4 at the end of the regulation shootout and went into true sudden death at that point, Duke ultimately winning.

For purists of which I consider myself a half of one, soccer purist that is, the shootout is abombination of the true spirit of soccer, which is the greater wave of combined team effort over a longggggg game time should win and usually does.

However, all but purists love the shootout, since it takes the usual number of realistic scoring chances, say, uuyyhhhh, five per game during the course of sixty or ninety or however many minutes depending, and compresses those scoring chances into a head-on mano-el’-mano contest, okay, manio-el’-mano (pardon if my Espanol is rusty) for-all-the-marbles contest that takes less than 5 minutes as opposed to more or less two hours to complete. 99% of the fans love it, the TV production people love it, it is exciting to watch even if you are a purist, and for someone who’s never seen soccer in their life watching an exciting shootout for a championship just might spark the interest in watching the sport the rest of the world loves best, which is a good thing, never a ban thing.

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