There's a real life Ted Lasso situation playing out and it's all centered around the Chelsea Football Club — at least according to social media. Without giving too much of the plot away, the Apple TV+ show focuses on an American college football coach who was tapped to take over coaching duties for an English soccer team and it seems Americans are mucking it up in real life.
In March, 19-year Chelsea Football Club owner and Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich was forced to sell his team after the British government brought sanctions down stemming from the Russian invasion of Ukraine. By May, the deal with Todd Boehly, an American businessman and part owner of the Los Angeles Dodgers, was complete.
Chelsea's head coach Thomas Tuchel leaves after the Champions League group E soccer match between Dinamo Zagreb and Chelsea at the Maksimir stadium in Zagreb, Croatia, Tuesday, Sept. 6, 2022. Thomas Tuchel has been fired by Chelsea only one month into the season. The decision by Chelsea’s new ownership comes a day after the team lost to Dinamo Zagreb 1-0 in its first group match in the Champions League. Chelsea has lost two of its first six games in the Premier League. (AP Photo/Darko Bandic)
The team was sold for the equivalent of $3.2 billion — the highest amount ever paid for a sports team. (Proceeds from the sale were supposed to support victims of the war in Ukraine but apparently funds have yet to be forthcoming.)
The first full season under new ownership got underway last month, and for Chelsea, the reigning FIFA Club World Cup champions, it was a rough start. After falling to Dinamo Zagreb in a 1-0 defeat on Tuesday, head manager Thomas Tuchel was given his walking papers. And this is where we begin to cue to violins and raise the question: Are Americans ruining the world's beloved futbol?
There is definitely an argument to be made. Being just a year and some change removed from winning the club's first FIFA title to starting the latest season with just three wins it would be fairly easy to paint the picture of Americans getting in over their heads when it comes to running a football club (like perhaps Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenney in Wales).
Twitter users had some fun with the idea of an American taking over the reigns of the soccer club: