Soccer Ball Americans often have a low view of soccer players (though that is changing in recent years). They don’t think of the sport as physical as football or even basketball. However from my experience, soccer players are every bit as tough as their counterparts in other sports.

Case in point, for the past two weekends in L.A. it’s been rainy and cold (don’t laugh, cold for L.A.). Both weekends we had games scheduled on the most perfect pitch and a full squad showed up. However, there have been several times that we couldn’t get a full squad for my morning basketball game at the Y because it was raining, and we’re playing indoors!

Rain Back to the subject at hand, there’s nothing like playing a solid game of soccer (or Football for my European readers or futbol for my spanish speaking readers) with rain pouring down. The artifical turf (the kind with the rubber pellets) actually grips the ball pretty well compared to grass which sends the ball skidding like a runaway luge team. The only difficulty is that the ball itself gets a bit slick, creating many opportunities for “whiffing”.

On rainy days, it’s helpful to have hair. For instance, I sent a perfect cross to the center and my teammate planted his forehead firmly on the ball, only to have the ball slide off and away. He’s completely bald.

Unfortunately we lost due to an own goal on a corner kick which made the score 2 - 1. I hyper-extended my arm at the elbow, so I’m in a bit of pain today, but I think it’ll heal up nicely.