I’m a life long soccer fan and player. I love the sport. In fact, I have no problem admitting my obsession is borderline pathological.

The great irony of this is that I hail from the very soccer "unfriendly" state of Georgia in the United States. Sure we have 80,000 active players, but we have no MLS team, we now have no USL team…in fact, as of this writing we are a state devoid of any professional soccer. Maybe the scarcity drives my demand because I can’t get enough.

For many years, I remained on the fringe of professional football. I didn't follow any particular club religiously, although the English Premier League was my favorite league and of the teams there, Manchester United was probably my favorite team.

A hackneyed theme I know. Having never had the occasion to watch professional club football before, I happened to tune in to that famous 1999 FA Cup Semi Final when a then youthful Ryan Giggs dribbled three quarters of the pitch to score the game winner against Arsenal. At that moment I decided they would be a club I would follow…little did I realize at the time that Manchester United is the Dallas Cowboys of English football. And I was never really "in love" with Man Utd.

Then, one day while watching a Merseyside FA Cup Derby between Everton and Liverpool - a sudden sensation of belonging overtook me and I become an Everton supporter! You can read more about that experience here.

So, after a couple of years tinkering around the internet, I decided to start my own blog. And if you blog, you have to love what it is you’re blogging about. For me, that’s a pretty easy move. There are at least 10,000 new soccer blogs a day, so hopefully you find either my content or style interesting enough to return from time to time.

Oh, so what’s a “gruffgoat” you may ask? It’s just an old message board handle I picked up some years ago lurking around. One day I just threw it on the front end of a blogspot address and the next thing I knew, I had a wildly popular *ahem* international blog on my hands called, “Gruffgoat’s Soccer Blog.” I hope you enjoy it.

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