Real Life Ted Lasso


JT Bellina, Reporter

In the past couple weeks, there’s a good chance you may have heard the name Jesse Marsch. The new American coach of England’s Leeds United has become an internet sensation since his arrival at the end of the 2021-2022 English Premier League season. Marsch has already proved to be able to do the work to bring Leeds success, and his flamboyant actions on the sidelines have only brought more attention to the sport and its growing audience in the United States. 


While soccer is one of the most played sports in the United States, earning the respect of our neighbors across the Atlantic hasn’t come easy. The beautiful game which they call “football” has never truly been successful on the domestic or world stage for the United States, and our use of the word “soccer” is enough to make them cringe. With the English Premier League being the most prestigious league in the world, an American coach being at the helm of a team is a step in the right direction. 


In the long history of the Premier League, three American managers have had the privilege of managing a club in the United Kingdom. With the first two having an abysmal coaching experience, Jesse Marsch has arrived to change the status quo that has kept the United States out of the world’s sport. 

If you have seen the award-winning Apple TV show Ted Lasso, many of Marsch’s antics make the two managers appear incredibly similar. Although fictional, Lasso is an incredibly charismatic character who seems to win everyone over in the end. Similarly, Marsch’s initial hiring caused a fair bit of turmoil among the English public; however, his energy and unique coaching style has made him the frontrunner in American coaching. Leeds United’s success can substantially be attributed to the comradery that Marsch has been able to instill in the squad, which can be compared to Lasso’s famed “Believe” sign that sits above his door frame. 


While both Ted Lasso and Jesse Marsch share similar characteristics, by no means does the comparison suggest that Marsch is new to the sport. Marsch worked his way up through the youth system just as any other soccer player in the United States. He then played at the college level, and eventually made it to the professional level in the United States. He would later coach in the United States, Austria, and Germany, but in the world of soccer, there is arguably no bigger achievement than to coach in the English Premier League. 


With soccer in America continuing to gain popularity, it is likely that support for Leeds United will gain plenty of followers in the states as well. Not only is the club led by an American manager, the team is also guided by two very young, promising players from the United States. Tyler Adams and Brenden Aaronson, two players that have been crucial in Marsch’s early success, have also drawn a massive amount of attention in the United States. With the team in fantastic form along with the recent upset of one of the Premier League’s giants Liverpool, Marsch’s job in England appears to be safe. With the support of both the Leeds United fan base and many soccer fans in the United States, it is likely that Jesse Marsch will continue to be an important figure in the future of American involvement in soccer.