When U.S. soccer returned to eras past by going Back to the Future with Bruce Arena, our minds and hearts were transported to more formative days. An epoch during which the Meolas, Hejduks, Popes and Balboas, charged out to play the game with Mullets wafting and a furious wonder. A time in which everything felt naively possible.
In an effort to bottle this feeling, and map out football in America's family tree, we are undertaking a special/bonkers project.
The idea for said project came about when JW bought to the Panic Room a poster that once hung over his childhood bed. It's an Alexi Lalas Adidas promotional advertisement featuring a younger of age, longer of hair Lalas in his footballing prime. JW's aunt procured it at a Lalas autograph signing in New Brunswick, New Jersey. Alexi thoughtfully personalized it with the wisdom, "KICK HARD."
We hung the poster in our office and marveled at it on a daily basis. For us, it begs two obvious questions:
Why isn’t this hanging in its rightful place in the Smithsonian?
What other ephemera from the pioneering days of American Soccer - the posters, T-shirts, pennants, glassware, promotional Crap - is out there, lurking in people’s attics and unfinished basements. And what would it look like if we bought it all together in one place? A national exhibit showcasing each “Soccer, Sport of the Future” pennant, each 1990 USA World Cup Poster, and each Pele Soccer Atari game as what they truly are, breadcrumbs that allow us to retrace America’s National Soccer Journey. The story of who we are and how we got here.
Our goal is to challenge you, Dear GFOPs. If you have such artifacts, whether they be NASL, Major Indoor Soccer League, MLS, World Cup 1994, or Michelle Akers-themed, send them to us. We will make them part of our People's History of American Soccer Hall of Fame, a museum of sorts to be curated in the Crap Part of SoHo. Please also include a letter describing your piece of treasure and how you came across it. We will send you back a patch in return.
Care of Men in Blazers Seventh Floor
325 Hudson Street
NY, NY 10013
We know this is bonkers. Yet there is little in the world which feels more important to us right now. See some of the gold you've already provided below. Courage.