The 2014 World Cup in Brazil is all wrapped up and zee Germans have been crowned king of the footballing world. Though the final whistle has been blown on the quad-annual competition, there is an undeniable buzz and energy about the status of football (soccer) in this country. We are now in the era of Timmy Howard. The 35 year old goalkeeper is coming off a record breaking, heart tearing, leave it all on the field performance that has left this country proud and out of breath. The USA Men’s National Soccer Team captured our hearts with their advancement from the “Group of Death,” and a hard fought battle against one the world’s most talented teams. A soccer fan can only hope that this buzz and interest with “the beautiful game” in our country will continue and grow domestically. For the newcomers to soccer, our top domestic league is Major League Soccer (MLS). The league currently boasts 19 teams, 2 to be added in 2015, and 3 more in the coming years. Fingers crossed for some MLS soccer in Austin. According to Forbes, the average MLS team is worth $103 million, which is up 175% from five years previous. That’s Warren Buffet numbers people! With this being a year for the world cup, I have a strong feeling that we will see live attendance and TV coverage to continue to surge for the MLS for the next couple of months, maybe even years. Watch out NHL and NBA, the MLS is coming for you. Picking Your Poison Let’s say you were a cynic, but now through this amazing post you have gone all in and are ready to dive head first into this amazing game and its cultures. You are probably asking yourself, who do I follow? Who’s the club that I am going to eat, breathe, and live? How do I know I picked the right one? Well, as long as you don’t join Emilio and pick Manchester United, you will probably be okay. Though the more important question is what club are you willing to suffer for? Today, I am going to help you run through some of the most popular teams in the world. The superpowers, as they say. Welcome to our express 101 course on European Super Football Clubs. Let us begin. Manchester United Arguably the most popular football club in the world, Manchester United plays in the English Premier League (EPL) and is owned by the American Glazer family. “Man U,” as they’re known, have more global appeal than any other club in the world. They are considered the Yankees of club football because of the aggressive spending allowance, and boy do they use it. They also boast the most league titles in England. They can be an easy team to jump on because of their rich history, stylish and solid play, and for the bandwagon-ers, because they win. Though for the same reasons, they can be just as easy to hate. Also their new Chevy-sponsored jerseys are hideous. Barcelona / Real Madrid If England is too bland and you are looking for some more spice, how about some spanish flair? The two most popular teams in La Liga (Spanish Top Division) are Barcelona and Real Madrid. These guys have two of the top players in the world playing for them, Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, respectively. They provide a lot of attention and a lot of $$$$. Here’s the deal though, you can’t like both. If you are going to choose between these two teams, you have to pick a side. The political and philosophical tension between Barcelona and Madrid goes back further than soccer itself, and just adds to the level of competition between these two super-teams. This is some Shakespearean Montague vs Capulet stuff… in Spanish. Chelsea Also known as “The Mercenaries,” and owned by a Russian Billionaire who is not afraid to take chances and spend money. You have to respect the shoot from the hip philosophythis club possesses. Lead by Jose Mourinho, the self proclaimed, “Special One,” Chelsea plays very tactical soccer with highly analytical game plans. A London club that mixes white collar high brow and blue collar fortitude, the Chelsea “Blues” are the team of choice for writer in residence here at FreightPros, Logan Theissen. This alone means they are not the team you should be rooting for. Paris St. Germain (PSG) There are two words why you should at least pay attention to this team: Zlatan Ibrahimovic. He is the Kanye West of world sports. He might be the most interesting athlete around, with undeniable talent on the pitch. He is a blaster and a top class finisher when it comes to scoring goals. Paris St. Germain is a French super power on its way to being one of the best teams in the world. They are the first major French squad to join the upper echelon of world soccer, and look to have a strong future ahead of them. Bayern Munich How can we leave out zee Germans? Bayern Munich is the top team in Germany, with more titles than anyone else. They are well-trained killers when it comes to their futbol. They play an efficient, low-mistake game that can sometimes be the most beautiful thing you see on the pitch. One third of the German national team played on Bayern Munich for the 2013-2014 season, so it just goes to show some of that success can be parlayed to a national level. With such a respected pedigree, it’s no stretch to say they’re one of the best teams on the planet. Well, there you have it. Your first lesson in European super powers was a quick, but important, one. You should be now equipped to know five teams that will be in this year’s European club championship, The Champions League. We have started you off on the right foot (pun intended), and are looking forward to spreading our knowledge and passion to you through future soccer posts here at FreightPros; the online freight broker that’s about more than just freight.
Ethan graduated from University of New Mexico in 2012 with a degree in Finance. In his free time, he likes to participate in hyper-competitive lawn dart matches, strip mining, and the elusive search for Austin’s best breakfast taco. One day, he will find it.
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