The US fails to make the World Cup, and the people who care the most, aside from the players and coaches themselves, are people who are not even American. With American Football in full swing, Baseball playoffs, NHL and NBA both getting started, most Americans did not even know there was a national team Soccer game on last night. TVs did not even show it. If it wasn’t because I read an English newspaper like the Guardian I wouldn’t have known either. Soccer is maybe the 4th most popular sport in the USA.
It might even be tied or lower than the popularity of Hockey in the USA. Soccer was never going to catch big in this country (not like Football, Baseball and Basketball). Not when kids have so many sports to choose from at a young age.
I have a friend who has 3 sons who played Soccer in grade school but by the time they were in 7th grade (12yrs) they had chosen Football and Baseball respectively and his eldest actually got a sponsorship at a Division 2 College for Baseball. Both his daughters played Soccer but liked Volleyball more. Soccer just does not have the popularity of the much bigger sports in this country. While it may eventually, because of the large influx of Central American immigrants I doubt it will take over the big 3 sports in the USA. Talent just goes elsewhere, other sports or Europe.