When I played in a roller hockey league in the Valley, there was a team of deputy sheriffs that always started fights and played out of control — worst in the league by far. This post from an L.A. soccer blog reminds me of that. Jennifer Doyle at From a Left Wing: the Cultural Politics of Soccer says that a team of LAPD officers joined her league in the Pico-Union area and quickly developed a reputation for too-physical play and berating the refs. After complaints, she says, the cops dropped out and their manager admitted exasperation with his players. From the blog:
The whole experience was something of a nightmare. The LAPD squad is muscle-bound and incredibly fit. They are a tough team. They can run you into next year, and they don't shy away from using their size advantage to win the ball. Nothing wrong with that. But they also have a coach who shouts from the sidelines: "Take him out out!" "Take him down!" and "Get him!" - while wearing a dark blue jacket with the letters LAPD across his back. Guys from several teams reported more disturbing remarks made on and off the field by LAPD players - e.g. "This [the game] is all you have, you have nothing to go home to."
As fit as they are, their ball handling is just OK. When confronted with the better teams in our league - who play a fast passing game dependent on great footwork, bursts of speed and an ability to change direction and turn in a blink - the cops were sometimes undone by the very thing they normally rely on: their size, and their physicality. It's an old story: the confrontation between a militaristic defensive game and the flash, bob and weave of joga bonito.
In general, when things didn't go their way, they got visibly and audibly frustrated, and played not better but just meaner, and harder.