While writing a piece for The Daily KRuMB, I realized that the U.S. Men’s National Soccer Team doesn’t have a nickname that has truly stuck. The U.S. Men’s National Rugby Team does, but not the soccer squad. It got me thinking. How many of the teams in this year’s World Cup have a nickname by which they are popularly known. Here they are by Group. In two cases (United States & Slovenia), I used the actual name of the nation because there is no standard nickname by which the squad is known. In all other cases, I provide only the nickname and not the name of the country. I leave it to you to put them together.
The Black Stars
La Furia Roja
As you can see from the above list only two teams of the thirty-two playing don’t have nicknames. The United States & Slovenia. In my research, I did find several nicknames that the United States squad has been called over the years: “Sam’s Army”, “The Stars & Stripes”, “The Eagles”, “The Red, White & Blue”, “The Yanks”. Yet not one of these has really stuck with the team. “Sam’s Army” has kind of migrated away from the USMNT and toward the travelling fans of the USMNT. “The Stars & Stripes” never really had a chance – mostly, I think, because there are no Stars on the USMNT kit. “The Red, White & Blue” is just clumsy and not easy to write nor say with any regularity. “The Eagles” is the national rugby team’s nickname and I think they might take umbrage if the USMNT usurped it. I vote for “the Yanks”. It has a semi-disparaging tone to it, but I think – as American’s do – that the USMNT can embrace that and rise above it. Some English pundits are calling Group C the EASY (England, Algeria, Slovenia, Yanks) Group. I think we should ride that “Yanks” title into the first game and tame those Three Lions.