President Donald Trump referred to as soccer a “harmful” sport and stated he can be uncomfortable along with his youngest son, Barron, taking part in it.
Requested if he would enable the 12-year-old to play the sport throughout a CBS interview coinciding with Tremendous Bowl Sunday, the president hesitated.
“It’s [a] very robust query. It’s an excellent query,” Trump stated. “If he wished to? Sure. Would I steer him that method? No, I wouldn’t.”
In his interview, set to air forward of the Tremendous Bowl, Trump stated he doesn’t like “the reviews” on soccer, possible referring to research that present a powerful connection between individuals who play the game and severe mind accidents.
“I simply don’t just like the reviews that I see popping out having to do with soccer ― I imply, it’s a harmful sport,” he stated. “I believed the gear would get higher, and it has. The helmets have gotten much better however it hasn’t solved the issue.”
He continued, “I hate to say it as a result of I like to look at soccer. I believe the NFL is a superb product, however I actually assume that so far as my son ― properly I’ve heard NFL gamers saying they wouldn’t let their sons play soccer. So… I might have a tough time with it.”
Together with a number of NFL gamers saying they wouldn’t let their kids play the game, highschool soccer participation has steadily dropped lately amid heightened damage considerations. Soccer enrollment on this degree has dropped 6.6 p.c within the final decade, based on the Nationwide Federation of State Excessive Faculty Associations.
Analysis has proven that the declines are significantly stark amongst white suburban and upper-class households. Black participation has remained regular, and highschool soccer participation has elevated in states with the biggest proportion of black populations.
Soccer has turn into a “troubling image of how financial alternative — or an absence thereof — governs which boys are incentivized to place their physique and mind in danger to play,” The Atlantic stated in an article revealed Saturday.
Trump’s feedback to CBS seem at odds with previous statements he’s made about soccer, resembling in 2015 when he apprehensive the game was getting too smooth.
“I hope they don’t soften the sport up an excessive amount of,” Trump stated throughout an look on Colin Cowherd’s Fox Sports activities radio present in November 2015. “I used to be studying yesterday they won’t do [kickoffs] anymore and finally you’re not going to have the identical recreation. They must watch out with that. Don’t make it too politically right. What we’re doing within the nation is that all the pieces needs to be [politically correct]. It’s a violent recreation.”
Trump’s newest feedback on the game echo considerations expressed by former President Barack Obama. “I’m a giant soccer fan, however I’ve to let you know, if I had a son, I’d must assume lengthy and exhausting earlier than I let him play soccer,” Obama informed The New Yorker in 2014.
Referring to skilled gamers, he stated, “These guys, they know what they’re doing. They know what they’re shopping for into. It’s not a secret.”
Reporter Travis Waldron contributed.