Who is on Your Soccer Mount Rushmore?

Happy Presidents Day HotFooty faithful. Mount Rushmore is a shrine to our most beloved presidents. They are the men who shaped this great nation and made it a place people want to come to…rather than leave. Despite the current political climate people still want to come to America and no one seems to actually leave. So thats good.

Which four faces are on your #SoccerMountRushmore?

These should be the players that shaped and inspired YOUR passion for the beautiful game. Not the game itself. If you lived in the U.S. at  8 years-old when Kenny Dalglish played at Liverpool and you include him…you’re suspect!

Now, it’s time to make like Gutzon Borglum, grab a chisel and sculpt MY soccer Mount Rushmore.

Roberto Baggio

 

This was the first name of a soccer star ever committed to my memory as a kid. I loved saying it. Robertooooo Baggggggiiooo!  I loved the number 10 and I loved watching him tear it up in 1994 at Foxboro Stadium. To me he was majestic and mysterious like an unopened-vintage chianti. His pony tail/mullet situation was electric and he made me want run outside and play soccer. I used to kick a ball against the retainment wall in my driveway for hours then run around the house waving my arms. Work up a little appetite and settle in for some Ellio’s Pizza.

He was also the first person in sports to break my heart when his PK flew over the net against Brazil. I was devastated but, I lived to tell the tale and that is an important lesson for a child.

Gianluigi Buffon

Buffon was the man who closed the deal for Italy. He erased the memory of the 94 World Cup by bringing it home in 2006. I remember watching his saves against Ukraine in the quarter finals and noticing that his hair fell ever so gently across his brow as he rocked a 5 o’clock shadow. All I could think was, “if I could be someone else, I want to be this guy!.”

Mia Hamm

Mia Hamm was the driving force behind women’s soccer in America. In a lot of ways she was the face of the game in this country period. She had tons of sponsorships and was all over the television. The USWNT is a force to be reckoned with now because of the foundation she set. Enjoy the spotlight Carli Lloyd and Alex Morgan but, don’t forget who built the stage.

I would argue she has had a bigger impact warming up the U.S. to soccer than Landon Donovan but, I’ll save that for the podcast.

Let us not forget she married Nomar! Come on…frigging Nomar kid.

Tim Howard 

“Speak Loudly and wave big-fluffy gloves.” – Dan Leeman – Tim Howard

The Secretary of Defense, Tim Howard,  is the Teddy Roosevelt of my Mount Rushmore. Much like Yellowstone or the Grand Teton he represents the majesty of the USMNT. Those are National Parks and Roosevelt set those up…so there you go.

Timmy gave inspiration to kids who shied away from soccer in fear of appearing “soft.” You wont see him flopping or crying. He is going to punch posts, dive around like a rabid orca and scream his brains out. He makes it cool to play soccer in a country where football and baseball are king.

When I watched him against Belgium I thought, “he is a rock, he is a mountain!”

 

Send us your soccer Mount Rushmore  and we will read out our favorites on the HotFooty Podcast. You can also tweet us  @HotFootyNews using #SoccerMountRushmore.