Writing About Soccer

Over the past few years, I've written about soccer, specifically Major League Soccer and my beloved FC Dallas.

I got into FC Dallas while living in Dallas just past the 2010 World Cup. I decided I was going to follow the LA Galaxy back then because they had Landon Donovan, American hero. And yet I stumbled across an FC Dallas game on some sub-station on the cable network. They intrigued me – young players, lots of energy, and promise.

Plus, I could go watch them live. And indeed, I did.

They became my first season ticket experience as a sports fan. I attended my first playoff game. Over time, my knowledge of the game as a whole improved – understanding terminology, tactics, talent levels, and more.

While I don't consider myself a sports journalist on par with many seasoned pros at ESPN and elsewhere, writing about soccer has challenged me. You need a story of substance. Sure, you can just be silly and make up stuff, which I have done from time to time, but listening for stories, conflicts, and challenges can mean the difference between something boring and something interesting.

Stories show up in unlikely places – in a player showing up for a fan's birthday party, in a formation change, in conflict behind the scenes, in the stats from work on the field, in a goal by a clever player.

Writing about soccer has challenged me to pay attention to things I might have missed. I am still learning. I have so much to learn. But it's been fun to write about things other than theology.

Sometimes, a bunch of guys kicking a ball around is theology – it is life.