World Cup team captains ditch ‘OneLove’ armbands after penalty threat
What is it with soccer and penalty shootouts? The latest news from the World Cup is a story of how one of the tournament’s teams used to play without any penalty kicks, using a system called “OneLove,” which the New York Times describes as a system that “has been used almost exclusively by male soccer teams in the United States and Canada”. The story also mentions that “the World Cup governing body, FIFA, has yet to respond to a request for comment on the ban.” As I recall, the system was born in the early ’80s and, before that, was used by a team in Argentina. (There are probably other systems that have been used, but I’m not clear on them.)
Of course the story doesn’t say why they dropped the penalty shootouts. Maybe the captain of that team is one of the world’s best soccer players and felt that playing with the normal penalties would only increase the chance that he’d get the ball and score a goal. Maybe the team’s coach didn’t like the system and wanted to use it when things went wrong. Or maybe the captain didn’t want to give up the ball when he shot it because he wanted to stay in touch with his partner who was playing on the other side.
Whatever the reason, it’s sad that the captain decided to forgo the normal penalty shootouts, which are a very important part of soccer, and took a risk with the system they had.
I can think of another reason: “OneLove” is not as good as normal penalty shootouts. I know several teams that don’t use such a system, and those have produced more goals than those that use it. So the team who decided to go without did so with the best of intentions, which probably explains their decision.
They weren’t going to take penalties anyway, considering that the team that was on goal didn’t get a single shot on target, much less a penalty.
What is it with soccer and penalty shootouts? The latest news from the World Cup is a story of how one of