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  1. AFC merges with OFC and CAF, CONCACAF merges with CONMEBOL, UEFA stays the same 10 teams from 3 confederations hosts plus previous World Cup winner -host and prev WC champ get bye into second round: -10 groups of 3, group winners advance -2nd round: 12 teams in 4 groups
  2. Why does Turkey have, by far, so many World Cup representatives from their domestic league, but are no-names internationally? Same goes for China and Ukraine, but to much lesser extents... 300 domestic league teams are represented in the World Cup (32 23-man rosters). English soccer (not counting Wales' 2 teams representatives) has 28 teams represented, the most of any nation. 19% of World Cup players who play club soccer abroad play in England. 247 of 736 World Cup players play club soccer in the same country they will represent in the World Cup. All 23 Russian players play in Russian leagues, the only WC team with a full roster of national league representatives. All WC teams have at least one player on the roster who plays in the domestic league. 52 countries' club soccer teams are represented in the World Cup. 11 teams in the World Cup have no foreign World Cup players playing in their national leagues. Can you name the 11 countries? Hint: Iran is one.
  3. You ever seen Midnight Express? It's best to watch it late at night so the sun comes up right as the movie ends. Jail.
  4. Dubai Davis and Yaro Ykesandrian at the Cheesecake Factory in 09.
  5. "Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol" is set partly in Dubai, at the Burj Hotel. How about Dubai Goatses?
  6. Chris Constantinople, Devils 99-01 James Davidson, Oilers, 88-89 Mike Chesters, 76ers, 94-95 Von Rivera, Astros, 86-88 Dan Wilhemson, Iowa football, 90-93 Philo Delphoa, Phillililies, 92-95
  7. Maybe really only Columbus exists because largesse, big government excess largesse, like big excess? Columbus? exists because really only Maybe.
  8. Probably the only English/European club name theme to go completely unused by American soccer teams is the stand-alone nickname without the city name (i.e. Rangers, Celtic, Hearts, Tourbillon FC (Chadian soccer), Arsenal FC, etc.). Why couldn't Louisville City just be called Fleur-de-lis FC, Renaissance FC, Stables FC (yuck), KFC FC (ooh, or "Kentuckiana Football Club"), Country FC, or simply "River'Breds," "Colonels," or "Bats?" Why not call the team "Cold Beer on a Friday Night Pair of Jeans that Fit Just Right T-Turn the Radio Uuuu-u-up Football Club?" MetroStars might have been the only attempt in MLS.
  9. I thought the Bucs were extremely unlucky all season. It started in pre-season with the Josh Freeman thing and then a terribly unlucky streak at the beginning of the season with no success in close games. The worst part about the whole year was the complete pessimism. Nobody outside of Bucs fans were rooting for them to succeed and it probably hurt their play to feel this way and to see their record reflect such lack of luck. They were major underachievers last year. I am expecting them to be good this year, but I think they made a mistake in not keeping Freeman around. Painful is the perfect description. Releasing Freeman stayed with them all year. Mixed with unlucky game results, they dug their own hole.
  10. The fleur-de-lis means "lily flower," so there is your new imagery for Louisville City's logo. The problem is not that the fleur-de-lis is overused in professional sports, but that the fleur-de-lis is overused in THIS logo. It is a big hunk of gold meant to symbolize "internationality" and "high esteem" surrounded by negative space overlaid on a big, fat, purple bourbon barrel full of booze...Kentucky. The team is named "Louisville City" (kinda redundant if you ask me..."ville" = "city" in French) because the MLS affiliate will be Orlando City. Unless Louisville City had no choice but to name their team "Louisville City," there is an unfortunate coincidence in the naming of the team by English soccer standards (Manchester City, Stoke City, Leicester City, etc.) and the obvious French symbolism. Why did the French buy the land bought in the Louisiana Purchase in the first place? Hint: to mess with the English. The fleur-de-lis is definitely relevant because of the number of sports teams that have started to use it. It is merely another clip-art icon that unimaginative sports owners can use in their logos. 4/120 = 1 team per league uses the fleur-de-lis. Too many IMO. 2 would be too many, otherwise the symbol comes to symbolize more than 1 team. The teams which use it lose their identity...I thought this was a common complaint among us...why don't the New Orleans Saints have an intellectual property claim against Louisville City? Why doesn't the French government have a claim against the New Orleans Saints? Just riffin. Uncreative font too.
  11. *whichever side you take, you must hold that opinion until after Russia 2018, Qatar 2022, etc.
  12. The Fleur-de-lis is overused and there are better "international symbols" than a Beauty-and-the-Beast-looking fleur-de-lis. Also, any the symbols traditionally associated with any of the French Revolutions are better than any symbol of French aristocracy simply for the call-to-arms nature of their meanings. I am saying that symbols of "resistance" are better than symbols of Versailles because Louisville City is a sports team that will enjoy bloodying their English counterparts (oh, wait...Louisville City? Like "Manchester City?") "Louisville City" is certainly missing the "nipple" theme that they need to conjoin the symbolism of the local alcohol/hooch industry and 18th century France. Just drop "Lady Liberty" into a bathtub and call them the Louisville River'Breds or the Kentucky Colonels for America's sake.
  13. My initial thought that USMNT could tie Bayern Munich was based on the idea that 15 star players (Bayern has 18 players who made 30-man World Cup rosters) were equal to 30 average players (USMNT roster, "average" = 16th-best World Cup team), but... If Bayern has 15 star players, how would they play against 30 average USMNT players? If there can only be 11 players on the field, it doesn't matter how good the players who can't play are, so maybe Bayern would trash USMNT. So, how many World Cup players from a domestic team are necessary to beat the USMNT? 14? In that case, Barcelona would "tie" USMNT. Why do you think Bayern Munich would "thrash" USMNT? You probably know more players on USMNT than Bayern Munich, right? You don't think there's a logical argument for DeAndre Yedlin being a better player than Zlatan? How do you prove that Zlatan is a better player than yourself? Why would Bayern Munich thrash the US Men's Team? They only have 18 World Cup players on their team. The entire USMNT roster are World Cup-caliber players. Who do you have in "FC Barcelona vs. Spain?" Going to go get some coffee.
  14. The last table I posted is probably the best indicator to determine the best domestic team in the world ("Which foreign imports made their national team rosters?"), because It eliminates the bias of selecting players from the domestic league. Here it is: t1. Bayern Munich, 11 (11 players not playing on German national team, but on another WC team) t1. SSC Napoli, 11 (Italy) t3. Manchester United, 10 (England) t3. Manchester City, 10 (England) t3. Inter Milan, 10 (Italy) t6. Real Madrid, 9 (Spain) t6. Chelsea FC, 9 (England) t8. Atletico Madrid, 8 (Spain) t8. Paris Saint-Germain, 8 (France) t8. Arsenal FC, 8 (England) t8. FC Porto, 8 (Portugal) t12. FC Barcelona, 7 (Spain) t12. Juventus FC, 7 (Italy) t12. VfL Wolfsburg, 7 (Germany) t15. Liverpool FC, SS Lazio, AS Monaco, FSV Mainz 05, Newcastle United, Tottenham Hotspur FC, 6 Honestly, the top 20 club teams in the "number of foreign imports to make their national teams" ranking are probably the 20 best club teams in the world right now IMO. Bayern Munich could probably beat the United States. They are probably pretty evenly-matched (but who really knows). 16th~17th best national team = world's best domestic team? *You know what, the rankings might be biased because foreign players might rather play in Naples or Monaco than Wolfsburg or Liverpool. See a map of the locations for the 20 teams listed above on geomidpoint.com