You can’t be serious. Jonathan Mahler has an article in the New York Times today (HT Moulin) that starts out with this gem:

With the 2006 World Cup building toward its climax, soccer has reasserted its claim as the most popular sport on the planet. But in most of America, interest in the game remains – how to put it? – nil.

He then proceeds to go through the rise and fall of the New York Cosmos, trying to somehow draw a comparison between interest in soccer in America today vs. the 70’s. (Hint – he thinks the 70’s were soccer’s heyday in the US). I guess he missed the 1994 (Mens) and 1999 (Womens) World Cup when they came to town or the packed bars with patrons cheering on non US teams in the 2006 World Cup. While the trip down memory lane was fun (I saw a few Cosmos matches when I was a kid), I’m not sure how the popularity and subsequent decline of the Cosmos in any way supports the conclusion that interest in soccer in America is nil. Oh that’s right, he was just parroting the knee jerk ‘Americans Hate Soccer’ mantra that all journalists seem to have implanted in their brains. Pity.

Maybe the NY Times Public Editor should be told that making blanket statements with nothing to back them up is poor journalism. Especially when the recent ratings clearly say otherwise.