Qatar 2022, England-United States: a thousand meanings beyond football

Soccer versus football, the result matters a lot for both national teams

England versus United States. Old Europe, which has now also experienced Brexit, against the new world. The colonizers against the colonized, who after the War of Independence began the race that led them to be the first world power, now in co-ownership at least with China. Soccer versus football, up until a few years ago, an unthinkable comparison between those who invented football and those who have recently discovered it, more out of a spirit of emulation than out of conviction. At the World Cup in Qatar a match is staged that has a thousand meanings that go beyond football.

England and the United States, British against Americans, brothers up to a point. Wicked Albion and the Yankees. On the one hand, the historical masters of football, with the most important league in the world, the Premier League. On the other hand, the wealthy Americans, big investors in European soccer as well, with a championship, Major League Soccer, which is still struggling to attract champions who are not at the end of their careers but which continues to grow.

The field will tell how much distance there is still. But the result counts, and a lot, for both teams on the field. With a distant but sensational precedent. England 0-1 USA, Brazil 1950. When playing, England have the reputation of a very strong national team, the United States that of a national team with no footballing tradition. Yet, the camp subverts values. Today, history can repeat itself or the prediction, which sees England as favourites, can be confirmed. The draw would still be half a defeat for Harry Kane and his companions.