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Fourth-Place Medal

Dutch speedskating coach hates football, maybe America too (Video)

Mike Oz
Fourth-Place Medal

Speedskaters from the Netherlands have won 21 of the 30 medals handed out in their sport during the Sochi Games. They are, simply, dominant in speedskating. Team USA, on the other hand, hasn't won a single medal.

Well aware of those two facts, Dutch speedskating coach Jillert Anema went on CNBC on Thursday and railed against America — not only our recent speedskating futility but also our love for football and a culture that he says makes us feel like we're always right.

[ Video: More to Sochi Games than competition ]

One of the boldest parts was when host Michelle Caruso-Cabrera asked Anema whether he thought the controversial new Team USA speedskating suits contributed to the poor performance. His response:

The suit was one of the reasons. But not because it was bad. It is because they believed it was bad. In skating, you have to believe in yourself like Americans always do. Americans always believe they're right, always believe that they're the best. That's not true ... when you look at the rest of the world.

You can stay inside in your own country, you can make your own game, like American football. Do it your own and think you're the best of the world. But no way. When you play soccer, man, you're just not half — you're not belonging to the top 30 of the world, so quit. When you come every four years, you come to Olympic Stadium and you want to fight the rest of the world, then you know your place. You got zero medals. Zero, man.


Wow. That's monster trash talk. He's smiling and laughing through his rant, so he must enjoy being a villain, or he's playing the part for TV and having fun with it — like a pro wresting heel cutting a promo.

We should point out, though, that at the time of this writing, Team USA has 25 medals overall in Sochi, the most of any country. So "zero" isn't quite accurate, coach. The Netherlands has earned 22, but only one outside of speedskating. 

View photo

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Men's 10,000M speedskating medalists Sven Kramer, Jorrit Bergsma and Bob de Jong, all from the Netherlands. (A …

The interview went on, with Caruso-Cabrera and co-host Joe Kernen challenging Anema and digging more into his problem with football and why he thinks it costs the U.S. in sports such as speedskating. 

You have a sport and a lot of your talent is wasted in that sport because you kill each other in American football. It's so rough, and because you like it and you've got all the money into that sport, there's not a lot of money in the other sports. Just nobody in the world wants to compete in that sport with you.

In a part of the interview that's not in the video above, Anema was even more blunt about football, saying Americans "waste a lot of time, good talent on a sport that sucks." He did say he liked basketball, though, and counts the Milwaukee Bucks and Utah Jazz as his favorite teams.

[ Photos: Faces of silver: U.S. women's hockey ]

He compared the Dutch dominance in speedskating to Team USA's dominance in basketball. For good measure, he added this taunt:

"You won't beat us, not in four years, not in eight years."

Well, at least the Team USA speedskaters will have bulletin board material for 2018.

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Mike Oz is an editor for Big League Stew on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at mikeozstew@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

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