Here's a pet peeve of mine: sports commentators who excessively use the indefinite article "a" or "an" in front of the proper name of an athlete. Charlie Stillitano on SiriusXM FC's Football Show is the king of this practice, but he is not alone.
"You need a Graham Zusi and a David Beckham in that midfield to match the striking power of a Leicester City with a Jamie Vardy at forward."
Now, incidentally, it's one way to know that you've made it as an athlete, when you get the indefinite article. It connotes a unique set of skills, talent, and experience, such that one might want to manufacture many of you and just slot one of you into position. You are a particular model of a player, and someone needs a you.
But sometimes this indefinite article-ism is even used in non-hypothetical ways, to literally describe a team and its actually existing roster.
"DC United has a Perry Kitchen, a Davy Arnaud, a Marcus Halsti, a Nick DeLeon in midfield. They've got a Ben Olsen screaming on the sidelines." No kidding.
It's g-dd-mn annoying. Really annoying when the indefinite articles get attached to entire clubs or countries (as in the Leicester City example above) or when the definite article gets used in front of pluralized clubs and countries.
"Is there any way the USMNT will compete against the Germanies, the Brazils, the Argentinas of the world?"
I've decided that the only way I can abide by this figure of speech is if it's actually a subtle and sophisticated nod to a genuine belief held by the speaker in Plato's Theory of Forms, whereby the Perry Kitchen we see on the field is just partaking of the ideal form of Perry Kitchen. He is a Perry Kitchen, an instance of Perry Kitchen, but not THE Perry Kitchen par excellence.
Basta. Without further ado, your Black Friday Freedom Kicks.
3 local teams resume play in NCAA soccer tournaments - Washington Post: This article shows you where you can catch the live streams of UVA women vs. Rutgers at 2 p.m. today and Maryland men vs. Notre Dame at 2 p.m. on Sunday. You're welcome.
The most thankful people in soccer | FC Yahoo - Yahoo Sports: I pretty much agree with this list.
Portland Timbers Nat Borchers Liam Ridgewell lead defense - ESPN FC: I know we have a lot of Portland Timber hipsters amongst us, so this one's for you.
How the remaining MLS Cup Playoff clubs are doing Thanksgiving | MLSsoccer.com: Sounds like FC Dallas is the least slackiest of the clubs on Thanksgiving.
Didier Drogba: MLS is more challenging than Premier League in some ways | MLSsoccer.com: He also gets in a dig at Chelsea. Heh.
More than perception at stake for foreign coaches in MLS - Empire of Soccer: Here's a little article on the new coaches at NYCFC and Chicago.
Liverpool and Tottenham advance with wins in Europa League - ESPN FC: Liverpool seems to be turning itself around. (Hooray!)
Soccer fund says it's not giving in to hackers' leak | The Salt Lake Tribune: Soccer is having its own Ashley Madison moment.
Away fans banned from soccer matches in France - Sydney Morning Herald: The terror attacks and the upcoming Climate Summit have got French police busy enough. So away fans will have to stay...away.
Time change for soccer final in Tunisia following attack - USA Today: Speaking of terror attacks, an IS bomb attack in Tunis has altered plans for the African Confederation Cup between Etoile Sportive du Sahel and Orlando Pirates.
Wheelchair soccer offers competitive outlet for athletes : St. Louis Post-Dispatch: This sounds awesome.
And your Friday Freedom Kicks treat is John Oliver on DC Statehood.
In the B&RU commentariat, we've got a fischy, a Brendanukkah, and a cdinoke to take on the Will Nelsons and the TassieTigers of the world.