Soccer is amazing. I have always been one of the typical American nay-sayers, but no longer my friends. I am hoooooked. Can’t get me enough futbol. Did you guys catch that World Cup? Oh my. That soccer is one mesmerizing, inspiring, absurd little sport.

Let’s start with the game itself. Couldn’t be more perfect. For ninety grueling minutes, players sprint non-stop around a gigantic field, rarely if ever scoring a goal. If that doesn’t settle the match, well it’s a half hour more of the same shit. That’s right, two full hours of exhaustion. For those first two hours soccer is the most physically demanding activity in sports. Then the whistle blows and the game goes to penalty kicks, which is when the sport turns into the easiest, most elementary child’s game ever seen. You can watch seven soccer matches and never see a goal. If the last one goes to penalty kicks you will most likely see nine goals in four minutes. But soccer is so arrogant, they don’t even count the goals as goals scored in the game. They just use them to decide who wins.

“We just won the championship. We are the best team in the world.” “What was the score?” “We won 0-0.” Hilarious.

And the way those guys celebrate goals? We have clowns like Randy Moss fake moon a crowd when he scores. Classless. I saw some guy from Italy score a goal and what did he do? He played an imaginary violin. Classy. Then there’s that guy a few World Cups ago who celebrated a goal by pretending to snort the chalk out-of-bounds line. Daryl Strawberry would be my favorite player ever if, to celebrate a homer, he snorted the foul line. It simply doesn’t get better than a coke gag in front of 80,000 men, women and children. Can’t be topped.

Now let us talk about the greatest of these athletes. Zinedine Zidane. Zidane has for years been the top player on France, one of the top soccer players in the world who in ‘98 led France to a World Cup Championship win. Before this years tournament, he announced his retirement from the game he loves effective immediately after the Cup. France was good but weren’t expected to make a run for the title. But Zindane played like a beast, scoring game altering goals against Portugal and Spain, as well as the go ahead goal against pre-tourney favorite Brazil. He even scored the first and only goal against Italy in the final that put France up 1-0. It was looking like he was going to end his career in the most spectacular fashion one could imagine. If things kept continuing the way they had, there’s little doubt Zidane would have kicked the game winning PK in his last World Cup match to bring the title back to France once more. But that’s the stuff of American fairy tale bullshit. This was a man. A true athlete. Kicking the winning goal? No thanks. Smashing an opposing player in the heart with my skull and getting thrown out of the match with ten minutes left? Sounds great.

And that’s what separates the men from the boys. We as Americans talk down on soccer as an inferior sport, and view the athletes as little sissy-boys who skip around kicking a ball until they flop on the turf hoping for a foul call. But we have nothing to say anymore. We were just schooled in the way a true legend exits his sport. And that is in complete disgrace.

In America, everything has to end with a happy ending. That’s so pretentious. Look at Michael Jordan. In Jordan’s last meaningful game in the NBA Finals, the game was tied with under a minute left. So does Jordan throw a haymaker at opposing guard Byron Russell and get booted from the game? Or I bet he flipped the scorers’ table and spit in the announcers face like any true superstar icon would go out, right? Oh that’s right. He hit the game winner with mere seconds remaining in the game to secure his legacy. That is sooooo cliché