Wednesday, May 28, 2008

We're going to Wemberly


Paycheck not big enough to make Cappello-style tax dodging worthwhile

In just over two hours time, the USA will take the field at Wembley against mighty England. A grudge match that is at least 100 years older than the invention of association football! While us Yanks may have taken the lead in all things political, economic, and cultural, those limey bastards still play a pretty mean game of footie.


Some things to consider:



Whenever English players put on the England shirt, they play like shit. Millions of trees have been felled in the service of journalists seeking an explanation, but right now its an immutable law of global football. Also, the Man U/Chelsea players are not going to be giving anything close to 100% of their efforts in this game, no matter what they say publicly.

When England came over to play the US in Chicago a few years back, it was pretty easy to tell which country funneled its best athletes into (proper) football. The English players were so much more physically gifted and technically skilled than our players, who uniformly looked like the annoying younger brother playing AYSO soccer. Our best players play for Fulham, Herenveen, and the LA Galaxy. England's best players play for Liverpool, Chelsea, and Manchester United. Hah, see, you guys don't have anyone playing for AC Milan either, do you?

For example, the first choice center back pairing for the US is a guy whose benching at Fulham coincided with a miracle run to stay up, and a guy who was deemed surplus to requirements at Newcastle, not exactly a bastion of clean sheets. England's first choice center back pairing, meanwhile, is Brave John Terry and Rio Ferdinand. I think they are both cunts, but I respect their talent. Outside of goalkeeper, our best players probably would struggle to scrape onto the bench.

Now, all of that said, I still hold out hope that we pull off a decent result today. Remember, one team cares about this game much more than the other (literally, like half our team is out of a club right now and desperate for some attention). England's players are looking forward to a summer of WAG weddings, awkward staged beach scenes, and Vegas buffoonery (seriously, TIET and Kickette are pretty much the only blogs with anything to write about right now). I'm clearly the only one drinking the Bob Bradley Kool Aid, though, as the rest of my blogmates uniformly picked England. So call me crazy, but I'm going with 2-1 to the Yanks, as Michael Bradley finally puts in a good game with the Nats.

21 comments:

The Fan's Attic said...

For the record, 3-2 Limeys. Barry, Gerrard, Bentley (future Liverpool midfield); Bocanegra, Altidore.

Nathaniel said...

this game will be as exciting as chelsea's summer tour through the US was.

(that means it won't be)

Lingering Bursitis said...

3-1 Engerland.

Also... "taken the cultural lead"? Does Umbrella-ella-ella-ella count in your final tally of contributions to society?

Ian said...

LB, ever heard of a little place called Hollywood?

Lingering Bursitis said...

Yes. And Beckham lives right nearby, thus lowering the cultural merit by osmosis

The NY Kid said...

2-1 England; Dempsey and a brace for Defoe

Keith said...

@ Fan's Attic:

It most certainly is not the Pool midfield. MON's not going to sell Gareth to Rafa, certainly not after the way he handled their "talks," and if anyone's getting Bentley, it's Villa. And then we'll be taking your spot in the CL, and you woooooon't win sh*te at alllllllllll.

Lingering Bursitis said...

Now now Keith, we have money. And a Champions League spot. Shhh.

Keith said...

Right. But Bentley will want to play first-team football, not come in as a 60th minute sub once Rafa figures out that Pennant, once again, has no clue out there.

Lingering Bursitis said...

If we pay for Bentley, he will play. Noticed the imminent cull at Anfield recently?

Keith said...

Liverpool will not win a damned thing with Tom Hicks owning the team. Mark the words and write them down. And yes, I will literally eat the paper they're written on (with photos to post to UF) if Liverfourth win so much as the Carling Cup while Hicks is in the chairman's seat.

Villa, meanwhile, have been trending upward since Deadly Doug sold, and will be ousting RedScouse from their CL spot within the next two seasons.

Lingering Bursitis said...

Oh Keith, how will you do that without Barry? He linked up well with Stevie this afternoon.


I will hold you to that offer of eating the paper you're writing on [and sending the pics to us, of course]. We'll win things next season. With young Gareth on board, who knows what we could achieve?


[Definitely just baiting you now]

Goat said...

I'll eat pretty much anything to get on UF.

Keith said...

LB, we've got a legend in the making, and his name is Salifou!

Seriously, though, some Villa bloggers believe we'll be better off with Petrov and Reo-Coker in the middle of the park. I laugh that assumption off, as Gareth was our most consistent player last year.

That said, if he does go, I have faith that O'Neill knows what to do with the rest of the squad, and with Sidwell supposedly coming in, we get a player that's at the same point Gareth was a few years ago.

Lingering Bursitis said...

Keith --


understood. I mean, you can't really stop him if he wants to go, and people were salivating at his link-up with Gerrard yesterday in the brief time they had together. The only good thing McClaren did [besides taking his dismissal like a man] was figuring out that those two should play alongside each other.

As for Villa bloggers believing they're better off with Petrov and Coker, they're just in denial. Either way, you're right: LFC will be happy, and Villa will get over it and probably spend their 15 million wisely because MON is a genius and Lerner's a smart owner.


For what it's worth the O'Neill/Lerner rapport makes me insanely jealous. We have a goateed, red-faced Spaniard and a fat Texan.

For an extra 10 million, could we swap owners/managers as well?

Keith said...

Well, we'll know after the Trinidad friendly, when O'Neill and Lerner meet with Gareth and hold up a picture of him wearing the England shirt and armband and say "think you'll see that again in Rafa's rotations?" (That's a no to that second part, by the way)

By the by, I have no official truck with Liverpool, except for the fact that they're the closest of the big four, and trying to poach our skipper. You lot are certainly better than Chelski or the Cowboys of soccer.

Lingering Bursitis said...

Keith:

Rafa would not rotate Barry and Gerrard. He's been rotating so damn much because he hasn't had the personnel that matches well, but those two are a pretty fucking harmonious fit.

Ian said...

Hey assholes, does the title of this post say "talk about your stupid overrated English midfielders" and/or Liverpool?

Right, though so. Lets focus instead on how piss poor everyone on the US team played last night. Did anyone do anything that will get the scouts excited?

Lingering Bursitis said...

Ian, calm thyself and take more Xanax.


Open thread for the USMNT/England torture will go up in 20 minutes or so. Save yer thoughts for then.

Keith said...

LB, he had Mascherano and Xabi all year and rotated them. He started Kuyt for Torres several times. He's Rafa Benitez. I'll believe he won't rotate when he doesn't rotate.

Lingering Bursitis said...

the rotation slowed down when a pattern of consistent good play emerged. Mascha was a fixture in the side unless the opposition was shite. Xabi struggled and found the bench a lot more.


I hear what you're saying, but I think Barry/Gerrard would be immune from the axe. Gerrard was for the most part this season.