Allstate Sueño Alianza National Showcase 2019

From Sept. 26th – Sept. 30th, 50 players out of a pool of 5,000 players took the opportunity to show their skills for a chance to sign a professional football contract. The Allstate Sueño Alianza National Showcase brought these young players to SilverLakes Sports Complex in Norco, CA where more than 30 scouts from Liga MX, Major League Soccer, United Soccer League, and La Liga surveyed and assessed their skills and talents.

Of these 50 players, separated by age groups in U-14, U-17, and U-20 squads, 18 will be selected by La Liga scouts to travel to Spain and compete against academy teams from Spanish clubs.

David Zavala of Grand Rapids, MI broke a record at Alianza De Futbol when he received 21 invitations from scouts at Liga MX, MLS and USL teams as well as both the Mexican and U.S. national teams.

More information can be found at Alianza De Futbol’s webpage: https://alianzadefutbol.com/en/home/

Below are a few photos from the final match of the final day of competitions. Here is the link to the full album: https://www.flickr.com/photos/afroxander/albums/72157711196212448

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Interview with Jonathan Gonzalez

I made another guest appearance on Resortera Wave founded & hosted by my friend Nayib Moran. We spoke about my interview with Monterrey FC & Mexico national team player Jonathan Gonzalez.

Listen in at https://delejitos.substack.com/p/resortera-wave-the-career-of-jonathan

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Why Did Soccer Fail In The U.S. When Other Sports Thrived?

Below is a link to a research paper I wrote last year that I’ve uploaded to my Academia page. It concerns research into the growth of gridiron football (NFL-style), baseball, and basketball in the US and why association football (a.k.a. soccer) failed to grasp the country’s imagination as the other three.

https://www.academia.edu/40016593/Why_Did_Soccer_Fail_In_The_U.S._When_Other_Sports_Thrived

An excerpt:

Most importantly, “the game in America badly lacked willful leadership…Plenty of athletic departments and administrators may have thought soccer was vaguely a good thing, yet none seemed to possess the eagerness and ambition to lift it to greater prominence” (Wangerin “Distant” 32).

The main issue facing the leagues across the nation was the lack of a governmental body to enforce a set of rules agreed upon by all. Leagues played according to their own sets of rules, which put them at odds with each other and the fanbases they catered to. A league in St. Louis, for example, “played halves of 30 minutes instead of 45” (Wangerin, “Soccer” 29).

The AFA, founded, ironically enough, by a group of British expatriates made the first to attempt to unify the country’s leagues in the late 19th century. Unfortunately, any and all attempts at unification became power struggles between British and American leaders of the sport who “engaged in petty rivalries and internecine organizational struggles that only helped to preserve their narrow fiefdoms and the status quo at the expense of creating an institutional structure that might have been able to disseminate the sport to the vast majority of the American public” (Markovits “Offside” 53).

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Biblioteca de Catalunya (photos)

I geeked out at the Biblioteca de Catalunya (Library of Catalonia) in Barcelona this past April. I even spent some time there to work on an academic paper. Academia eventually rules us all!

You can find the full album here along with larger/higher quality versions of the photos: https://www.flickr.com/photos/afroxander/albums/72157710380479047

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Sin Fronteras: A Historiography on the Evolution of Perceptions of the San Diego/Tijuana Region as Separate & Unified Territory

Below is a link and an excerpt of a paper I wrote a few months ago for a course in Mexican history. It is a historiography on the development of the San Diego/Tijuana region of southern California + Baja California as separate territories with an emphasis on people’s understanding of the territory as a separate & unified territory.

The paper can be downloaded at my Academia page.

Below is an excerpt:

Early writings and writings of the San Diego/Tijuana (or vice-versa depending on which side of the literal fence one stands from) border region’s early history after the Mexican-American War illustrate the growth of the region as the emergence of two distinct zones that lures the citizens on each side with different promises. This non-symbiotic relationship between the two nations then steadily changes into a symbiotic one as scholars and academics begin to study the region’s evolution from a pair of separate and individual states to a pair of separate and strongly interconnected states. This interconnection occurs on multiple levels but is most typically understood via socio-cultural and economic lenses.

In recent years, new understandings of the border region have come from the experiences of people, Mexicans and Americans, whose daily lives consist of nearly equal time spent on each side of the US/Mexico border. Some of the writings on this topic began with the analysis of the flow of workers and consumers of both regions that began blending the flow of each country’s economics and labor with one another. Beyond this phenomenon, scholars have also recently defined the experiences of some of these citizens as a “ transborder/transfronterizo” persons who have experienced a lifetime of bi-nationality, that is, a lived experience of traversing a physical, international barrier that begins in childhood and extends into adulthood. Finally, activist groups that understand the border region from a highly politicized lens have also established their own framework of thinking about the border region in SD/TJ as well as other borderland areas.

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Ghosted: How Tickets to L.A.’s Biggest Soccer Match Disappeared

ElTraficobyIvan

On Wednesday night, the LA Galaxy cancelled hundreds of tickets allocated to numerous ticket holders for Friday’s match between the Galaxy and LAFC. Why? I dove in to find out for LA Taco:

https://www.lataco.com/ghosted-how-tickets-to-l-a-s-biggest-soccer-match-disappeared/

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Football Stickers in Barcelona

Here’s another post from my trip to Barcelona. This one’s short: a few photos of stickers slapped up by ultras and other fan groups that I found while out and about (including my own contribution).

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