Sebastian Giovinco is far and away the best player in MLS, a bullshit soccer league more invested in protecting its owners from the forces of competition than in producing top-level competition on the pitch. That Giovinco is such a beast in this league makes him an at least plausible candidate for representing the Italian national team. That Italy’s new coach, like the old one, knows that MLS sucks means he’s yet again failed to nab a call-up.
Here’s Italy manager Giampero Ventura explaining his decision to leave the Toronto FC striker out of his recently announced international squad, via ESPN FC:
“Giovinco is a different story. I have done everything to help him but the reality is that he plays in a league that doesn’t matter much,” Ventura said. “And the number of goals he scores is less important because with the quality he has got, he is bound to make a difference in that league.
“The problem is that if you play in that type of league, and you get used to playing in that type of league, it becomes a problem of mentality.”
To an extent, this is a shame for Giovinco himself, who will certainly rue yet another missed opportunity to suit up for his beloved Azzurri. Then again, Giovinco had to have known what he was doing when he traded the great leagues of Europe for the gaudy stats and copious stacks of cash of MLS. Not a bad trade-off, all things considered.