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18 Things In 18 Seconds: VAR, Donald Trump And The USMNT

The18.com's Greg Ellis goes up against the clock talking about 18 pressing soccer issues in 18 seconds each. Topics include VAR, Atlanta United's fancy new stadium and the USMNT possibly blowing their World Cup bid.

The18.com knows you don't have time for waste when it comes to your soccer news. That's why we've created the fastest rundown in soccer. Greg Ellis takes you through 18 different soccer topics, and spends 18 seconds on each. This time he goes over the USMNT World Cup qualifying debacle, VAR, Carlos Tevez making millions for not doing anything and does his best Donald Trump impersonation regard Atlanta United's new stadium. If you liked this episode Watch Episode One of 18 Things In 18 Seconds.

#1: It's time to talk seriously about what happens if the USA don't qualify for the World Cup. Everyone, in the USA, will be sad, Bruce Arena will get fired and we will never see the new national soccer stadium erected in his name, the Bruce Arena Arena, but at least Christian Pulisic is cap-tied. Even though the USA currently boasts the most talented generation of young players its ever had, it would be hard to see the positives.

#2: If the unmentionable does happen and the USMNT don’t qualify for the next World Cup, who do you think should be manager after Bruce Arena? Bring back another former coach in Jurgen Klinsmann or, maybe… sticking with the Europeans.. I hereby throw my hat into the ring.  Hear me out: I speak the language, I live here, so no relocation fees, my fantasy premier league team finished 4th in my friends’ league last season (which is strictly a champions league place), and I can read autocue quite quickly. The offer’s there guys. 

#3: Here are some soccer terms you need to know if you consider yourself a true fan: trequartista, V.A.R., offside, false nine, away goals rule, Europa League, cup-tied, cap-tied, advantage, target man, wingback, release clause, matchday squad, flat back four, promotion, relegation. Right. Go learn those then. Impress your friends at parties, if they’re easily impressed by random soccer terms of course.  #

#4: Major League soccer has been using Video Assistant Referees this season, and it’s been a very controversial issue so far. Let's find out how it's going so far. [does the VAR square motion] (pause) Ha ha! That was a great joke. Who even writes these? 

#5: Barcelona's Neymar replacement, Ousmane Dembele, was injured this weekend and has been ruled out until at least January 2018 following thigh surgery. Messi and Iniesta still haven’t signed their new contracts but, somehow, Barcelona are still ahead of a loaded Real Madrid side. 

#6: The German Bundesliga is also experimenting with Video Assistant Referees, so let's see how they're doing! [does the VAR square motion] (pause) Apparently we are repeating this “joke”. I will find whoever wrote this and bring them to justice.

#7: This season’s edition of the preeminent soccer video game, FIFA 18, is the 25th in the franchise, which dates back to 1993. The first game, FIFA International Soccer, was released on the Super Nintendo and Sega Genesis (Mega Drive where I’m from). This year’s game is slightly more advanced and available on Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, Xbox One and Nintendo Switch. . You still can't beat your big brother though. 

#8: Tickets to the 2018 World Cup will be little as 105 U.S. dollars for a group-stage match and range from 455 to 1,110 dollars for the final. Seven-match packages can be bought for as little as 1,480 dollars to follow your country throughout the entire tournament, should it reach the final, which, like mine, it probably won't.

#9: Despite having played with Arsenal for nearly a decade, Jack Wilshere is still just a 25-year-old lad. Since his first-team debut in 2008 at the age of 16, the once-precocious, oft-injured midfielder has made barely over 100 league appearances with the Gunners, for whom he still plays, occasionally.

#10: Atlanta’s Mercedes-Benz Stadium set the record for largest stand-alone crowd for a Major League Soccer match at 70,425 on Sunday, Sept. 17, as Atlanta United and Orlando City played to an entertaining 3-3 draw. The previous record was 69,255 for the L.A. Galaxy’s debut at the Rose Bowl in 1996.

#11: Having been contested 20 times since 1930, eight different countries have won a World Cup title. They are: Brazil with five, Germany and Italy with four, Argentina and Uruguay with two and France, England and Spain with one each. No team outside of Europe and South America has won a World Cup, but we're totally sure the U.S. will win it in 2018. 

#12: Seven different women have scored five goals in a match for the U.S. Women’s National Team. Brandi Chastain was the first to do it in 1991 against Mexico. She was followed by Michelle Akers, Tiffeny Milbrett, Abby Wambach, Amy Rodriguez, Sydney Leroux and, most recently, Crystal Dunn in 2016 against Puerto Rico. 

#13: Happy 19th birthday to former Boy Wonder Christian Pulisic! The Hershey, Pennsylvania native is now a man and will be looking forward to doing things like legally drinking throughout Canada and gambling away his professional earnings in Nebraska in his new lease on life. They grow up so quickly, don’t they?

#14: Toronto FC’s march to the 2017 MLS Supporters’ Shield has continued unabated of late, and the Canadian side now have their sights set on becoming the greatest team in MLS history. The 2011 LA Galaxy currently hold that title, but Toronto has to win just two of its final five games to eclipse LA’s historic point total (67).

#15: Carlos Tévez’s Chinese odyssey has turned remarkably sour just eight months after commencing. Dubbed the “Very Homesick Boy” by local media, the Argentinian striker is pocketing $850,000 a week and $41 million annually, but he’s been accused of being overweight and indifferent while scoring only three goals in 13 appearances.

#16: Eagle eyed viewers will have noticed one small change in the EPL this season with clubs being allowed sleeve sponsors for the first time in history. The limited advertising space has been dominated by tire companies, but the clear winners are Everton, who’ve been proudly displaying an ad for mobile game Angry Birds, and Manchester United, who currently are in talks with the dating app Tinder. Honestly. 

#17: A major talking point this month has been the application of the “Playing in a dangerous manner” law in the world of football, chiefly with regards to players kicking each other in the face. Even if it’s not deliberate, playing in a reckless manner and endangering the safety of the players around you is a red card. There's really no debate here.

#18: A recent tactical trend around the globe is the short corner. Instead of lumping the ball straight into the ‘mixer’ from a corner kick, many sides are electing to play it short and go from there. If you find this trend infuriating, you’ll want to avoid watching Atlanta United play. According to Opta, the MLS side has played 60 percent of their corners short, 23 percent more than any other club.

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