Decatur, Georgia | “We only travel to come back home,” writes Ludwig Harig, the German master of the football sonnet. These words have never seemed more true following an aborted trip to Deutschland, a trip that ended in tears on Jun 27 on a sweltering curbside outside the Delta Air Lines terminal at John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York. Obviously the disappointment is acute, all the more so as one of the missions of the Global Game since 2003 has been to connect to the wider world.
Saratoga, California | In a drama played out daily at planning and zoning hearings throughout the United States, parents’ desires for soccer space in this bedroom community of redwood trees and sycamores have created tension with other residents’ wishes for peace and quiet. The San Jose Mercury News reports on the dispute over the future of [...]
Kuala Lumpur | The fantasy of discovering previously unknown talent—the fuel behind American Idol and a host of schlocky televised talent shows worldwide—has been adapted in Malaysia to football. Producers of MyTeam (short for Malay Team), a planned 12-part production on TV3 Malaysia, believe that their idea of fielding a side of amateur footballers drawn from Malaysia’s 13 states will help reinvigorate a moribund domestic game. They hope that the ragtag outfit, following a seven-week training camp, will show well and perhaps defeat the national team on 28 May.
Freetown, Sierra Leone | The physical prowess of amputee footballers shows clearly in the pictures and text supplied by Robyn Dixon in last Friday’s Los Angeles Times. The victims of atrocities or other injuries incurred during a 10-year civil war, members of the Single Leg Amputee Sports Club must shed prostheses before taking the field and confront the handicap as well as the prejudices of the able-bodied.
Melilla, Spain | For a taste of the familiar after months-long journeys by land and sea, football has much to offer hundreds of displaced Africans. Recently the CETI Club de FÃºtbol started to compete in a 10-team city league in this Spanish enclave on the coast of northern Morocco.
Nairobi | Photographer John Barrett Reed traveled in 2005 to the Mathare Valley slums on the eastern edge of Kenya’s capital, hoping to provide new images of Africa for Western audiences who may have become desensitized. He concentrates his lens and writing on a slice of Mathare, home to 600,000 squatters, and uncovers the organic quality of football as [...]
Ashbourne, England | Brendan Harwood, born south of the River Henmore in this Derbyshire town, goaled a ceremonial, cork-filled ball for the Down’ards at 2130 GMT today to complete a Shrovetide Tuesday football match that some believe has been contested annually for more than 1,000 years. A second match with the Up’ards takes place tomorrow, Ash [...]
Miami | Eyes turn toward Brazil when considering links between football and the pre-Lenten season. Rio and São Paulo clubs exist symbiotically with samba schools that parade to the sambadrome during the Rio Carnaval. Yet a recent article in the South Florida Sun-Sentinel makes even clearer, from talking with expatriate Brazilians in Miami, the strong [...]
Decatur, Georgia | In the first in a series of Thanksgiving-timed editorials on immigrant leaders in the Atlanta area—titled “New American Heroes”—the Atlanta Journal-Constitution profiles Jordanian Luma Mufleh (see 6 April). Through soccer and the creation of a refugee-staffed cleaning service, Mufleh, 30, has helped give new arrivals to Atlanta a sense of belonging as well as [...]
Scarsdale, New York | A Westchester County supplement of the New York Times reports on a growing reality as playing space for soccer becomes scarce: communities having to police their fields to restrict access to “outsiders.” The case discussed by Marek Fuchs in his column (“ ’Go Out and Play’ Has Gotten Complicated,” Nov 20) involves the [...]
New York | Acting on intrigue developed from watching brothers, fathers and husbands play football to their exclusion, women from Honduras and Mexico have overcome initial resistance and formed a local Latina league that now includes more than 200 players with roots from across Latin America, reports Elena Cabral for National Public Radio. The suggestion is [...]
Washington | D.C. Council member and former mayor Marion Barry has reversed position on a proposed new stadium for D.C. United to be located in Poplar Point, in the district Barry represents in Anacostia. Realizing that the stadium could represent a $1 billion investment windfall for the primarily low-income area and provide much-needed low-wage housing, Barry [...]
Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic | WBUR of Boston’s Only a Game lingers with Grassroot Soccer as it employs sport to educate children on sugar-cane plantations in the country’s southwest about HIV/AIDS. Although baseball dominates the domestic sporting scene, reporter Michael Cavanaugh points out that more than 1 million Haitians live in the country and predominate in the [...]