Portland vs Seattle, NY Red Bulls vs New York City FC, LAFC vs Galaxy, please … those aren’t rivalries, those are scrimmages, those are friendly play dates among buddies who are all on the same boat rowing in the same direction.
Mexico vs the United States?
That’s a fucking rivalry.
And that’s what we get this Sunday for the Gold Cup Final.
That said, the following is a discussion on the last time the US played Mexico on June 06, 2021, in the Nations League Final.
A quick sidenote:
That means more than just watching games, but trying to learn what’s happening on multiple layers – on and off the field.
So when we have episodes such as this one, that zooms in on the US mens national team, it is just as important as if we had an episode interviewing some youth coach, a European academy director, or anything else.
You may not give a crap about John Brooks and Diego Lainez or Gregg Berhalter and Tata Martino, but you should absolutely care about the underlying principles and the machinations in play – on and off the field.
It’s about continually improving our capacity to properly interpret and contextualize. Which in turn, enables us to better apply lessons to our circumstances.
In any case, this is a timely episode in that the US will face Mexico tomorrow in the Gold cup final.
Yes, the context is different in that these are different rosters.
Yes, if the US loses, there’s a built-in excuse that this isn’t the so-called “A-team”, since it’s just MLS players and not our Europeans.
Yes, there are counterarguments that MLS players are in mid-season form and playing at home, while Mexican players have just come out of summer vacation to play in this Gold Cup.
But the value in this episode isn’t about silly things like that which anyone and everyone can bring up.
This is about starting to provide an alternative perspective to the banal, monolithic, non-practitioner, consensus-based, mainstream stuff you’ll get out there by simply being part of the soccer community.