The World Cup kicks off this Thursday. National-team nicknames are as much a part of the four-year event as the World Cup song. The Brazil national team, the home team, is commonly known as the Canarinho (or the Canary). Ghana’s team is nicknamed the Black Stars, inspired by the country’s flag, while the moniker for the Japan national team is Samurai Blue. And frequently, a team frequent has more than one sobriquets. The U.S. national team is sometimes called the Yanks or the Stars and Stripes.
Slate writer Ben Mathis-Lilley thinks we can do better, and has come up with the American Dream as a more befitting alternative. He argues that a good nickname can help boost the domestic popularity of U.S. soccer, and can give the U.S. team a more cohesive identity.
What do you think of the American Dream? Call us with your suggestion.
Mike Woitalla, Executive Editor, Soccer America Magazine. He has covered soccer in 18 countries and is the co-author of former U.S. captain Claudio Reyna's book, "More Than Goals” (Human Kinetics, 2004)