LONDON, ENGLAND – DECEMBER 03: Bob Bradley manager of Swansea City looks on prior to the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Swansea City at White Hart Lane on December 3, 2016 in London, England. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)

Bob Bradley and his American accent has made the rounds among English fans and media since he was appointed manager of Swansea City and became the first American to manage a Premier League team.

To some, even those from BBC’s Match of the Day seem just as horrified to hear anyone say the word “PK” instead of “penalty” and seem to have the reaction as if someone went up to Queen Elizabeth and called her “Lizzie” instead of “Your Majesty.”

But after watching nearly five hours of Bob Bradley press conferences since becoming Swansea manager, The Wall Street Journal showed that Bradley hasn’t brought over the “Americanisms” all that much and has mostly adapted to the British lingo.

Source: The Wall Street Journal
Source: The Wall Street Journal



















This shows a different side of the perception that has been brought upon us for the last couple months. For one thing, Bradley has never said the dreaded word “soccer” that, like the word “MacBeth” to Shakespearean actors, should never be uttered. At least, that’s what it seems for some people even though the word “soccer” comes from England itself.

Anyway, I’m being sidetracked. Bradley’s biggest indictments to the British soccer lingo are saying “game” instead of “match,” saying “field” instead of “pitch,” and pronouncing the word “Premier” differently.

But is this really what people should be discussing about Bob Bradley? Why does his accent have anything to do with how he runs a team? I get the reasoning of some who say that if Bradley wins, no one will be talking about his accent. And that is true to a point. No one talks about Jurgen Klopp’s German accent or Arsene Wenger’s French accent.

At the same time, you can criticize how Bob Bradley has run Swansea without even mentioning the accent. Swansea is currently 19th out of 20 teams and will be in the midst of a relegation battle. Since Bradley took over in mid-October, Swansea has a 2-2-6 record and have been outscored 25-14. His team doesn’t have a goalkeeper or back line who can adequately keep goals out and Bradley for some reason refuses to “park the bus” and play ultra defensively which has caused them to allow the most goals in the Premier League.

There you go, British media. I just did your job for you and pointed out things that you can legitimately criticize Bob Bradley on that had nothing to do with his accent or what he said.

Look at the teams around Bob Bradley’s Swansea. The bottom five teams in the Premier League are filled with British managers and Bradley. Sean Dyche’s Burnley is 16th, Crystal Palace’s Alan Pardew is 17th, Sunderland’s David Moyes is 18th and Hull City’s Mike Phelan is 20th. The only British manager who is not anywhere near the relegation zone is Eddie Howe and Bournemouth, who is currently 10th.

Imagine if an American media targeted the fact that four of the five British Premier League managers are occupying four of the bottom five places and just said it was because they were British and nothing that had to do with actual on field play. Imagine if we did this in MLS. I don’t seem to remember American soccer media criticizing Owen Coyle and his Scottish accent when he was at Houston, or Patrick Vieira’s French accent at NYCFC.

Even Jurgen Klinsmann, who by the end of his reign as U.S. Men’s National Team manager, had a lot of American media members wanting him fired, wasn’t criticized for his German accent. There were plenty of things to criticize Klinsmann about that you didn’t need to go the lazy route and hit the low hanging fruit. The same applies to Bob Bradley. There is plenty to point out about Bob Bradley that he hasn’t done well or needs to improve and it has nothing to do with saying the word “PK.” Criticizing that says more about you than it says about Bob Bradley.

[The Wall Street Journal]

About Phillip Bupp

Producer/editor of the Awful Announcing Podcast and Short and to the Point. News editor for The Comeback and Awful Announcing. Highlight consultant for Major League Soccer as well as a freelance writer for hire. Opinions are my own but feel free to agree with them.

Follow me on Twitter and Instagram @phillipbupp

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