I’ll be answering questions in a Reddit AMA on Wednesday at 1pm ET. The AMA (“ask me anything”) is presented by r/NASL and will largely focus (I assume) on the current controversy over league sanctioning and club failures in the closed system of US Soccer. I’m fairly positive politics will play into the discussion though as it is difficult to separate the Clinton loss from goings on in the American soccer world. Both soccer fandom and officials in the United States tend to align with the Democratic Party (or in the case of many fans, the Sanders movement).
Many of the current machinations are related tangentially to the US’ potential bid to host the 2026 World Cup. The leadership of the US Soccer Federation (USSF) which tends to lean to left politically threw in with the Clinton candidacy publicly with a view toward this bid. This came in the midst of a DOJ investigation that some have alleged was politically motivated following the rejection of the US bid to host the 2022 World Cup.
President Clinton had led the US delegation to FIFA with a view of securing the rights to host the 2022 World Cup, but after the US was passed over in favor of Qatar, coincidently the Department of Justice in a Democratic administration began an investigation of FIFA, and largely focused on the behavior of foreign officials and sports marketing executives not associated with the USSF on American soil. This web engulfed the 2nd division North American Soccer League (NASL) in the US but interestingly (or perhaps strangely?) not the first division MLS or the US Soccer Federation itself.
Behind this backdrop we have the current controversy over league sanctioning where the NASL’s second division status is under review by the USSF. This is of course a USSF whose leading officials are still smarting from the Clinton defeat and are busy trying to fend off the controversy related to the federations unwillingness to pay women’s national team players the same as their male counterparts (despite superior results).