US Open Cup Winners Word Cloud

More fun with word clouds. Using this Wikipedia list of US Open Cup winners dating back to the inaugural edition in 1914, I created a word cloud of the names of the cup-winning clubs/teams. In this word cloud, both the colors and sizes of the names reflect number of US Open Cup championships, which range from 1 (many) to 5 (Bethlehem Steel and Maccabi Los Angeles). So many of these club names are glorious. So organic. So revealing. Factory/company clubs. Social clubs. Political clubs. Sports clubs. True "clubs". Wonderful! Not the manufactured, market tested franchise names that dominate the modern sporting landscape.
(click to enlarge)

I'm particularly fascinated by Philadelphia Ukrainian Nationals, whose somewhat convoluted Wikipedia page claims was "the first team in United States history to have home games televised". That's an amazing piece of trivia.

It is also nice to have a reminder that association football in the United States did not start in 1995 with MLS. Or in 1994 when the US hosted the World Cup. Or in 1990 when the US qualified for a World Cup for the first time in 40 years. Or in 1975 when Pele came out of retirement to play for the New York Cosmos in the NASL. Or in 1967 with the advent of the NPSL (and, contrary to what The Guardian might have you believe, was far from the first pro soccer league in the US). Soccer's roots in this country are far older than all of this, if not as deep as they might be given that the game has been played in the US since the 1800s.


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