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Why the U.S. calls the sport “soccer” [video]

As you’ve probably noticed, around these parts, we use the term “soccer”  because most of us live in the States, but when did this split occur and who’s to blame?

Turns out, it’s just another opportunity for Americans to give grief to the motherland, Britain, and dig up embarrassing moments from the past.

According to sports economist Stefan Szymanski of the University of Michigan:

“Soccer” was a recognized term in Britain in the first half of the twentieth century, but it wasn’t widely used until after World War II, when it was in vogue (and interchangeable with “football” and other phrases like “soccer football”) for a couple decades, perhaps because of the influence of American troops stationed in Britain during the war and the allure of American culture in its aftermath. In the 1980s, however, Brits began rejecting the term, as soccer became a more popular sport in the United States.

In recent decades, “The penetration of the game into American culture, measured by the use of the name ‘soccer,’ has led to backlash against the use of the word in Britain, where it was once considered an innocuous alternative to the word ‘football.'”

For the British audience out there, though, we’ll let you give vent to your frustrations, as well. Might as well make everyone mad while we’re at it.

Full story at the Atlantic.

Soccer or football?

Map credit: reddripper/reddit , Graphics credit: Canva

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