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World Cup and #MiBAcrossAmerica Tour Diary - Men in Blazers

World Cup and #MiBAcrossAmerica Tour Diary

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July 15, 2018 - World Cup Final Instant Reaction Pod

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Rog and Davo recap the World Cup Final from a makeshift studio at the Budweiser Live Final Experience in NYC. Plus, England Belgium in THE BIG ONE. And a look back at the past 32 football-filled, glorious days that made up Rogue State 2018.

July 11, 2018 - Live in Boston

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Live from Boston. England lose. Rog weeps. Davo looks forward to the third place game (The Big One). Plus, New England Revs manager and U.S. footballing legend Brad Friedel guests.

July 9, 2018 - In NYC

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Rog and Davo celebrate England's 2 - 0 World Cup quarterfinal win over Sweden, relive Croatia's penalty shootout victory over Russia and look ahead to the semifinals.

July 6, 2018 - Live in Philadelphia

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Live from a sold out Theatre of the Living Arts in Philadelphia, Rog and Davo breakdown Belgium's win over Brazil and France's defeat of Uruguay. Plus, World Cup Champion Julie Ertz and soon-to-be USMNT General Manager Earnie Stewart guest.

July 5, 2018 - In NYC and The Hamptons

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Rog and Davo relive the end-of-days-holy-crap-England-won-a-penalty-shootout-in-our-lifetime-anything-is-possible Round of 16 victory over Colombia. Plus, a look ahead to the quarterfinals.

July 2, 2018 - Live in Brooklyn

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Live from the Music Hall of Williamsburg in Brooklyn, Rog and Davo break down a George R.R. Martin-esque Round of 16. Plus, special guests Nick Kroll and Bradley Wright-Philips.

June 29, 2018 - In Moscow and LA

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From the Bud Hotel in Moscow, and the quite nice part of West Hollywood, Rog and Davo break down the turd-fest that was England vs. Belgium, perform an autopsy on Germany, and discuss Lionel Messi and Argentina.

June 29, 2018 - In Moscow and LA

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From the Bud Hotel in Moscow and beautiful West Hollywood, respectively, Rog and Davo discuss what things are like on the ground in Russia. Plus, England's swashbuckling win over lowly Panama and Mexico's hot start to the World Cup.

June 22, 2018 - In NYC and LA 

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Rog and Davo break down Messi and his 10 friends from the Rosario YMCA falling to an imperious Croatia. Plus, Brazil see off Costa Rica with a pair of late goals and England's manager injures himself.

June 21, 2018 - In NYC and LA 

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ROG WRITES: I can't believe what we all just witnessed. Croatia 3 Argentina 0. I just got a text from our live producer, John Johnson, which simply said, "Wish we had a live show tonight to talk about this. So do I. That was a beatdown that in many ways was as comprehensive a tactical dismantling as Germany 7 - 1 Brazil in 2014. I will pod tomorrow morning early with Davo and I cannot wait...

What must've been going through Messi's brain at the final whistle. A distress. A crushing pressure. The sound of Ronaldo's laughter. A profound loneliness. The great Russian novelist Dostoevsky one wrote, "Pain and suffering are inevitable for persons of broad awareness and depth of heart. The truly great are, in my view, always bound to feel a great sense of sadness during their time upon earth."

That was what I thought of after watching him trudge off. His team having playing like one which featured LeBron James and 10 J.R. Smiths. Croatia though proved that a squad that is balanced and tactically in-tune will destroy a squad of super-stars with no real idea of how to play. France should take note quickly.In other news, today is the 20 year anniversary of another shocking win. Iran 2 USA 1 at the 1998 World Cup. The game is the centerpiece of my 10-episode podcast I made with WNYC Studios, American Fiasco. You can relive it HERE. I would urge you to do so, if only to make sure the mistakes of the past are not repeated in the present. In 20 years time, I hope I have the ability to make "Argentinian Fiasco" about the factors which led to today's remarkable spectacle.

We pod tomorrow!

June 20, 2018 - Back in NYC and LA

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Rog and Davo recap this morning's win for Ronaldo and Portugal, marvel at upset-laden Group H, and applaud (completely unprompted and without any fear) host Russia's performance.

June 19, 2018 - Flying Back to NYC

ROG WRITES: We have just finished the first leg of the Men In Blazers Across America Tour. It was a rollicking, joyous, meaning-filled World Cup journey. In charging through St. Louis, Seattle, Portland and San Francisco (all Pods available below), we were able to experience up-close some of the remarkably passionate yet diverse footballing cultures that have grown deep roots in the United States. To touch thousands of fans who are head over heels in love with the game of soccer, raise a glass with them, and learn about their passion for the game. Here are 7 takeaways:

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1. American Football Fandom is both hyper-local and deeply connected to the global, with no contradiction between the two. In every city, we encountered a deep pride in the area’s local footballing traditions and history, youth development pipeline, and support for local football clubs coexisting seamlessly with an intensely felt connection to a Premier League or European team with no contradiction or friction between the two. And so we heard a lot of “I support the Seattle Sounders and Tottenham” or “St. Louis FC and Leeds United.” American football fandom is gloriously, giddily hyphenated.

2. The audience is so Young. A phenomenon that was especially startling when we played clubs that were not Over-21. The Premier League in particular has certainly caught the imagination of an under-30 audience, but some of the most passionate new fans were in their early teens - ages that make even Trent Alexander Arnold seem old. EA Sports FIFA Addictions are wonderfully common maladies.

3. The United States Men’s National Team’s failure to qualify for World Cup 2018 has created a deep psychic wound which will take a long, long time to heal. Connected to that, interest in youth development systems feels is at an all-time high.

4. It is hard to exaggerate the level of hope invested in the US Women’s Team ahead of the 2019 World Cup. They redeemed the Men’s 1998 failure with their 1999 World Cup campaign. The sheer volume of prayers being sent to the Soccer Gods that history can repeat itself next year are at epic levels.

5. The passion for the game brings unfathomable depths of joy to the fans who celebrate it. Especially for those new to soccer, many of whom cannot believe how fast, how hard they have fallen for the sport. For almost everyone we met, whether long time football fans, or recent, Premier League-inspired converts, being a “Football fan” has become a central part of their identity — and a deeply meaningful one to boot.

6. We are so grateful to be able to undertake this journey. Both to be able to take the stage every night, drink some Buds, and revel in the World Cup narrative, and to explore America. We never take it, or the love and support of our GFOPs for granted. We will be podding on a regular basis while we are off to Moscow next week, then the East Coast leg of the tour begins: Brooklyn! Boston! Philadelphia! Tickets available HERE. Atlanta you are next. We cannot wait to be in your cities. Please spread the word and come be with us.

7. It is quite emotionally exhausting going On Tour. The movie “Almost Famous did not quite mentally prepare us. Doing a World Cup Road Trip is like being in a band on the road. But instead of just playing the hits, we have to write a new album night after night. Thanks to Puppet Master Producers JWs and Tony Award winning-John Johnson for keeping things almost sane, and to Budweiser for giving us the support we needed to travel the country, meet America’s fast-growing, fervent footballing loving communities face-to-face, and give them a cuddle.

You can see highlights of the tour on HBO Real Sports TONIGHT

To more. Let’s keep making World Cup memories that will last a lifetime.

Courage, 

Rog 🇺🇲️ 🇺🇸🇺🇸

June 18, 2018 - MiB Live in San Francisco

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Rog and Davo recap an England win over Tunisia that may begin to rebuild what's left of the Empire. Plus, the inspiration for "Moneyball," Barnsley owner, Oakland A's exec, and the G'est of all the FOPs, Billy Beane.

June 17, 2018 - MiB Live in Portland

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Rog and Davo marvel at Mexico's 1 - 0 victory over Germany and recap Day Four of Rogue State 2018. Plus, special guests Timbers owner Merritt Paulson and Timber Joey.

June 16, 2018 - MiB Live in Seattle

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Rog and Davo recap Day Three of Rogue State 2018, Live from the Showbox SoDo in Seattle, including Mighty Iceland's 1 - 1 victory over Lionel Messi and Argentina. Plus, special guests, Sounders majority owner Adrian Hanauer and Seahawk Tyler Lockett.

June 15, 2018 - MiB Live at the Minneapolis Airport

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During a layover at Minneapolis Airport, Rog and Davo discuss Ronaldo's GOAT-like performance against Spain in a World Cup Instant Classic.

June 14, 2018 - MiB Live in St. Louis

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Live from Delmar Hall in St. Louis, Rog and Davo celebrate FIFA's decision to bring World Cup 2026 to North America, break down Russia 2018's opening ceremony, and this year's opening game. Plus, hometown boy/USMNT up-and-comer Josh Sargent and St. Louis FC manager Anthony Pulis guest.