By Julianna Miller
The world of soccer blogs, is a daunting one. There are funny blogs, serious blogs, tactical blogs, team-based blogs, national blogs, international blogs, and so many more. The variability and enormity of the soccer blog world is astonishing; yet this vastness is comforting because soccer fanatics of all types can confidently believe that they will be able to find a blog to perfectly match their interests and desires. Here I will generate a “guide” to one of the countless soccer blogs that exists today.
The blog, Pitch Invasion, is a North American-based blog founded in 2007 that focuses on soccer culture and history around the globe. The blog’s editor, Tom Dunmore, is an English-born writer, based in Chicago. The blog not only has an innumerable amount of a wide variety of blog posts, but it also includes a link to its podcast, its tumblr, and amazon page,where you can purchase the book,The Very Best of Pitch Invasion, which is compilation of numerous essays from the site. The variety of ways in which followers can connect with the site adds a uniqueness and accessibility for people to stay connected in an assortment of ways. The podcast is recorded monthly and features the founder, Tom Dunmore, former Chicago Fire president, Peter Wilt, and several guests, like MLS general managers. The tumblr page is a collection of soccer pictures that give the site’s visitors a visual approach to the blog as well.
Blog topics range from soccer history, culture, books, business, economics, racial issues, music, sports psychology, religion, and popularity. The blog posts are intriguing and captivating. They draw attention to topics not generally discussed in the soccer world, unveiling interesting and unique viewpoints and arguments. This blog is not as much of a soccer news-reporting blog, but more of a blog including written work regarding soccer. There are essentially no recaps of games or statistical analyses of teams or matches, but rather, there are interesting analyses of various different aspects involving the sport, both directly and indirectly. There are posts about stadiums, songs, and books, for example. One blog post I found particularly interesting was the post regarding the Italian football songs. The author takes a look at the influential force that song plays in a football game. Posts, like this one, are well written and extensively researched, thus encompassing a harmonious marriage of facts and analyses of the particular topic. In addition to looking at social aspects of the game, like the songs and chants for example, this blog also takes an interesting perspective of the sport by making psychological/mental analyses, publishing book reviews, and delving into the fiery politics off the pitch.
There are various articles written about the mental aspect behind the game, which adds a refreshing perspective to the “bigger picture” of sports in general. A common writer on the blog, Andrew Guest, is a teacher of Intro to Psychology and has written various works focusing on sports psychology, enhances the readers’ understanding of soccer (and sports, in general) with his vast psychological knowledge. It is interesting to hear and learn more about a part of the sport that is less commonly spoken about.
In addition, there are numerous articles surveying the popularity and culture of American soccer, as well, which adds an interesting perspective to the global game. There are articles explaining the intimate relationship soccer has embedded itself in American family and generational cultures, which is a common tradition for many Americans to relate to. There are also articles about the often discussed topic pertaining to the inexplicable absence of soccer popularity in America. In addition to focusing on American soccer, the blog delves into topics from around the world. From history, to politics, to psychology, to religion, to gender and racial issues, Pitch Invasion covers a wide, eclectic range of topics targeted for an audience who genuinely has a passion and interest for the sport and all of its implications on our society today.
The blog, like many other blogs these days, also has a corresponding twitter and Facebook account, which provides more of the “soccer news” aspect, in comparison to the blog. The twitter and facebook accounts can be accessed with just one simple click on the blogs homepage. The twitter account strategically uses that form of social media to draw attention to games and statistics around the globe, as well as links to interesting articles, pictures, and quotes from various sources. The twitter account has over 8,000 followers and the facebook page has over 1000 followers, giving it a solid fan base. Similar to the twitter, the blog’s facebook account posts statuses and pictures that follow the themes of the blog and twitter. Both of these forms of social media extend the blog’s fan base to greater limits by making it so easy and accessible to connect to.
All in all, this blog provides an invigorating educational experience for a soccer fanatic, providing a wide variety of topics that broaden the typical horizons of soccer blogs.