Should U.S. Men's Soccer fire everyone?
via AP

Should U.S. Men's Soccer fire everyone?

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The 2018 World Cup draw was announced today, and guess who was left out with no one to blame but themselves—U.S. Soccer. The U.S. Men’s National Team (USMNT) now faces a situation where the sport could fall back into obscurity, and many pundits believe the team needs to start from scratch. However, wholesale changes may not be necessary when the program was relatively successful before. What do you think? 🇺🇸 ⚽

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Watching the USMNT flounder during World Cup qualifying was infuriating for fans. The team skated along believing it would qualify for the World Cup, thinking they could turn on the intensity whenever they chose. That hubris finally caught up to them against Trinidad and Tobago, keeping them out of the world tournament for the first time in 32 years.

That cocky attitude comes from a toxic culture in the program that needs to change. USMNT should clean house, and start all over from the top down. Here's an excerpt from ESPN analyst Taylor Twellman's epic rant:

The gloves should have been off years ago. We should have been having real criticism. And the discussion after Brazil, Max, was, ‘Can we beat the Colombias and the Belgiums and the Argentinas of the world?’ You kidding me? We can’t beat Trinidad on a field that’s too wet and too heavy? What are we doing? What are we doing?

The United States deserves to have a soccer team that can compete at the highest level, but it won’t get there if leadership can't get the team into the World Cup. Here's an excerpt from Four Four Two's Paul Tenorio:

This shouldn’t even be considered a controversial statement. If this was Argentina or England, Germany or France, the resignation letter would come in the hours after the result. The U.S. is not yet a footballing nation. Tuesday night proved that. But if it wants to move the sport forward, it needs to start holding leadership accountable as though it is.

People want to believe that the United States has been in the bottom 100 in the world in soccer. Truth is, the program has been progressing just fine without making dramatic changes.

According to Oregon Live, the men's national team saw a burst of growth in popularity under the current regime and has been successful in the region. One down cycle shouldn't change everything. Little tweaks can get this program back on the right track.

There is no doubt the USMNT had a poor qualifying run this year. They are going to watch the World Cup from home for a reason, but to blow up the entire organization would be a shortsighted mistake. The team was already building something and they just need more time. Here is US Soccer Federation president Sunil Gulati:

You don't make wholesale changes based on the ball being 2 inches wide or 2 inches in. So we will look at everything, obviously, all of our programs, both the national team and all the development stuff. But we've got some pieces in place that we think are very good and are coming along.
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