Believe: an open letter to US Men’s National team supporters


If you’re like many US Men’s National team supporters, you know that this team has had many lackluster performances in this cycle ow World Cup qualifying. This has created a major rift among the American soccer fans. There are many criticizing the way this team has dropped points against countries they normally beat. Losing crucial home matches, and not filling the buildings with a pro-USA crowd. This has been a tumultuous time, and it has caused much unrest in the American fan. supporters scream: “This was supposed to be our time,” and “the talent we have should produce better results than this.” All the while chanting “I Believe that we will win” during matches. That is what is needed now, It’s time to believe.

Two matches left.

The US have two matches left. They are playing opponents that they should be able to beat (Panama at home, and Trinidad and Tobago). They play Panama tonight, and T&T on Tuesday. Panama a formidable side, but the US are coming off of the underwhelming spell that should light a fire under them. Getting three points from Panama would increase USA’s qualifying chances from 83% to 93%. The US go to Trinidad and Tobago on Tuesday to end their qualifying campaign. This match will prove if this squad can get back to winning ways outside of the US.

The players brought in know how to get the job done. The Job is to win, and believe in what this team is capable of. With all the noise that pundits and supporters make, it can be easy to think that this team will mismanage this chance. This pessimistic view kills the spirit of this beautiful game.

The Need for a winning team.

The fans response to the US Men’s national team games has been rising. More and more people are watching the sport of soccer. They want to se their country win, because USA produces winners. This hasn’t been the case in world soccer yet. New fans are turned off by losses to weaker teams, and create a culture of fair weather fans.

Part of the beauty of watching soccer is that it’s a struggle. It can be beautiful and heartbreaking. It creates a fan experience that is second-to-none. That’s why fans are called supporters. They support the team through thick and thin. Recently the results have been thin. It has been a tough time to be a USMNT supporter. However, that can push a team to go above and beyond.

Taking a page from 2013/2014 Mexico.

In 2014 CONCACAF powerhouse Mexico was struggling. They had a mighty talented side, but could only win two games! Mexico went onto a playoff against New Zealand, won the game, then went onto the World Cup group stage. They got second place behind hosts Brazil in the group stage, and advanced to the round of 16 where they fell to the Netherlands 2-1. This team defeated mighty odds to make it to the knockout rounds of the World Cup. This cycle, the USMNT are in the same space, and will look to do better than Mexico did four years ago.

USA will give it all they have to move out of fourth place. Getting a minimum of four points from the last two games should do the job. However, if they fail to do this they will have to play in a playoff just to make the tournament. Should the US fail to get out of fourth place, they will play a playoff game agaisnt either Syria or Australia. They could be exactly like Mexico four years ago, if they fail to get points from their last two qualifiers, or they could be better than that team by winning. Either way no hope should be lost if USA does not move out of fourth place.



It’s time for the US to put up or shut up. Earlier this week Bruce Arena sent out a letter telling all that this team is going to play with the intent to win their next two games. They will get after things from the get-go. The confidence is there from the team, now it’s time for fans to be true supporters.

Believe! Don’t feed into the pessimistic takes floating around about how this team will not qualify for the World Cup. They will do so! Whether that be by securing an automatic qualifying spot, or by earning the playoff. This team will be in Russia in 2018! Believe it! When you’re watching USA play in high stakes games over the next few days, be true supporters. Believe that this team will win. Truly support this team no matter the outcome. Don’t turn away of they get fourth place. Support them even harder id they do. It’s time to take the US’s main chant to heart! Say it loud and proud: “I Believe that we will win.”



Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports