Saturday, March 28, 2009

La Liveblog: USA vs. El Salvador


Welcome to tonight's liveblog, where US Men's National team travels to El Salvador to face El Azul at the Estadio Cuscatlán. The US is in good shape after defeating Mexico, and a point tonight would be adeqeate but realistically this should be a win. The growth of soccer in the US can be seen in the ability of the national team to win games in Central America against hostile crowds, something that didn't happen with regularity until the start of this decade. El Salvador, meanwhile, drew Trinidad and Tobago in their first game, and will be looking to grind out a point at home against the regional Goliath. Expect an ugly, chippy affair.




While we await the team sheets, here is a bit of linkage for your enjoyment. The NY Times looks at the origin of Landycakes. The US soccer studio 90 show, which looks like it was edited in a blogger's basement, previews the game. Brad Guzan gives UF an EXCLUSIVE interview. Or how about some vintage Marxist journalism about the war between Honduras and El Salvador in 1970 that started over a World Cup qualifying match:

The first match was held on Sunday 8 June 1969, in the Honduran capital, Tegucigalpa.

Nobody in the world paid any attention.

The Salvadoran team arrived in Tegucigalpa on Saturday and spent a sleepless night in their hotel. The team could not sleep because it was the target of psychological warfare waged by the Honduran fans. A swarm of people encircled the hotel. The crowd threw stones at the windows and beat sheets of tin and empty barrels with sticks. They set off one string of firecrackers after another. They leaned on the horns of cars parked in front of the hotel. The fans whistled, screamed and sent up hostile chants. This went on all night. The idea was that a sleepy, edgy, exhausted team would be bound to lose. In Latin America these are common practices.

The next day Honduras defeated the sleepless El Salvador squad one-nil.

Eighteen-year-old Amelia Bolanios was sitting in front of the television in El Salvador when the Hondruan striker Roberto Cardona scored the winning goal in the final minute. She got up and ran to the desk which contained her father's pistol in a drawer. She then shot herself in the heart. "The young girl could not bear to see her fatherland brought to its knees," wrote the Salvadoran newspaper El Nacional the next day. The whole capital took part in the televised funeral of Amelia Bolanios. An army honour guard marched with a flag at the head of the procession. The president of the republic and his ministers walked behind the flag-draped coffin. behind the government came the Salvadoran soccer eleven who, booed, laughed at, and spat on at the Tegucigalpa airport, had returned to El Salvador on a special flight that morning.

But the return match of the series took place in San Salvador, the beautifully named Flor Blanca stadium, a week later. This time it was the Honduran team that spent a sleepless night. The screaming crowd of fans broke all the windows in the hotel and threw rotten eggs, dead rats, and stinking rags inside. The players were taken to the match in armored cars of the First Salvadoran Mechanized Division -- which saved them from revenge and bloodshed at the hands of the mob that lined the route, holding up portraits of the national heroine Amelia Bolanios.

The army surrounded the ground. On the pitch stood a cordon of soldiers from a crack regiment of the Guardian Nacional, armed with sub-machine-guns. During the playing of the Honduran national anthem the crowd roared and whistled. Next, instead of the Honduran flag -- which had been burnt before the eyes of the spectators, driving them mad with joy -- the hosts ran a dirty, tattered dishrag up the flag-pole. Under such conditions the players from Tegucigalpa did not, understandable, have their minds on the game. They had their minds on getting out alive. "We're awfully lucky that we lost," said the visiting coach, Mario Griffin, with relief.

El Salvador prevailed, three-nil.

The same armored cars carried the Honduran team straight from the playing field to the airport. A worse fate awaited the visiting fans. Kicked and beaten, they fled towards the border. Two of them died. Scores landed in hospital. One hundred and fifty of the visitors' cars were burned. The border between the two states was closed a few hours later.


Hopefully things are mas tranquillo tonight, but from the looks of the stadium, the 30,000 strong sold out crowd is going to be right on top of the pitch and and should be very crazy!

8:04
US lineup is in:

The U.S. Starters:
18-Brad Guzan;
2-Frankie Hejduk, 3-Carlos Bocanegra (capt.), 14-Danny Califf, 15-Heath Pearce;
8-Clint Dempsey, 12-Michael Bradley, 16-Sacha Kljestan, 7-DaMarcus Beasley;
10-Landon Donovan, 11-Brian Ching

Bench:
1-Marcus Hahnemann, 4-Pablo Mastroeni, 5-Jay DeMerit, 6- José Francisco Torres, 9-Jozy Altidore, 13-Maurice Edu, 17-Jonathan Spector

Gooch is hurt so Danny Califf will start in the middle. Did Jay DeMerit run over Bob Bradley's dog or something?

8:13
- Just put on my USMNT jersey (the oh so flattering white w/ horizontal stripes model). Drinking Lucky beer.

8:24
El Salvadoran newspapers are full of warnings to fans not to engage in bad behavior, as CONCACAF is apparently not happy with what happened in the Trinidad and Tobago game. Apparently the Estadio Cuscatlan is at risk of suspension for future qualifiers.

8:33
- I'm such a sucker for these IBM commercials. Give me the petaflop!

8:43
- El Azul:

GK - Montes
D - Salazar, Gonzalez, Henriquez, Pachecho
MF - Martinez, Sanchez, Castillo, Romero
F - Quintanilla, Zeyala

I think that this is really more of a 4-5-1 with Zeyala as the target man and Quintanilla as the libero.

8:48 - Game is ESPN2 or Telefutura. Should be fun to see John Harkes and JP in their little isolation commentary booth. Did Pedro Gomez make the trip?

8:53- Full time at the Azteca. Sven and El Tri get a huge 2-0 win against Costa Rica. I was hoping to see him lose and then be fed piece by piece to the sharks in the Mexican press.

8:55 - Don't get me wrong, I actually like auto racing, and will probably be staying up very late to watch F1 tonight. But really, giant billboards accelerating in a straight line is a sport? Or do people just watch for the horrific wrecks?

9:00 - And we are live in San Salvador with JP. The fans are going absolutely bonkers. This should be lots of fun.

9:04 - Califf has been hurt for two months, says Harkes. Why on earth is he getting the start?

9:06 - Hey look, its Alexi Lalas! The Matt Millen of the MLS, everybody...

9:08 - ZOMG Jose Mourinho might coach the USMNT, says Rob Stone....Hahahahaha. Back in reality, my prediction for this game is 2-1 USA. Goals by Landycakes and Dempsey. A Califf miscue leads to one for Zeyala.

0 min - Kick off. And we can actually see the pitch. Excellent. Dempsey with a nice run through the middle and a shot on goal.

3 min- Some scrappy play in the midfield leads to a long shot for Ching. So far, the US is enjoying most of the possession. Another run of passes leads to a header for Donovan that goes wide.

5 min- Zeyala goes down like Drogba. And the Mexican ref tells him to get up. Ouch. Castillo gets a decent run at Hejduk, but his cross is dealt with easily. A long shot from the midfield eventually trickles wide of Guzan.

7 min- After a US turnover, Califf fouls Zeyala. Nothing comes of the enusing free kick, though. El Salvador are really giving the Nats a ton of space. Dempsey tries a bit of fancy football but loses it. Then Donovan comes streaking down the left side, but his cross just misses.

10- Frenetic midfield play, and eventually Castillo comes streaking down the left again. Hejduk is really getting his running in today. Beasley commits a professional foul in the midfield to slow down the move. The ensuing kick is blocked, and Dempsey clears.

13 min - The US is on their heels a bit more here, as Castillo continues to impress. El Salvador wins a corner, but the inswinger is wasted high over the back post. After some head tennis, Dempsey, who is in an attacking midfield role tonight, misses Ching with a throughball.

17 min - El Salvador counters down the right with Zeyala, who plays a neat one two and the ball falls to Quintanilla, who slots it home. 1-0 El Salvador.

19 min - Ching wins a corner on the right. Beasley's corner goes a mile high, but the SLV defense clears. The El Salvador goal is probably fantastic from the point of view of a good game, although it means that El Azul will definitely try to park the bus in front of the box. So this might be just like every Arsenal game I've watched this year.

21 min - This is where Micheal Bradley needs to take control of the midfield. Klejstien, by the way, looks terrible. And Dempsey needs to stop turning over the ball in the final third.

24 min - El Salvador is playing very well, sitting back and waiting for the counter. Harkes makes the good point that the US fullbacks are not coming forward and the team is very narrow. Maybe because Hejduk is scared shitless of getting beaten by Castillo. Donovan draws a foul in the attacking third. Dempsey with a decent strike by the keeper is there.

27 min - The US could use a bit of steel in the midfield right about now. Wouldn't be surprised to see Mastroeni in the second half.

38 min - Sorry about that, had some technical difficulties. Meanwhile, the US looks terrible in pretty much every phase of the game. They look almost shellshocked. The veterans really need to step up now.

41 min - Now we have reverted to long balls to Ching. Brilliant. I think Bradley needs to think about some subs at halftime. Another holding midfielder, and maybe someone like Torres.

43 min - Ching gets bowled over, and the US scores on the ensuing free kick. To bad about the offside trap that put all 5 of them offside.

45 min - A El Salvadoran player is down on the field and gets stretchered off. I hope you are all ready for 45 minutes of this in the second half. Meanwhile, Danny Califf gets lectured by Landycakes. Looks like he wants the d to push up more.

Half time - El Salvador wins another corner, but this time it goes right to Guzan. He almost hits a decent outlet pass, but just misses. And then the whistle goes. And then we get to see Alexi Lalas. I'm off for more bourbon.

Half time - So that Jose interview was promo for the World Soccer Challenge, right? Because there is no way in hell he ever comes over here to manage. In any case, I should probably plug the UF roadie to Baltimore. Chelsea, AC Milan, lazy preseason football to milk money out of dumb Americans! More info here.

45 min - Finally, a shot of the booth! Harkes has the look of fear in his eyes. And we are off for the second half.

47 min - El Salvador continues to enjoy nice possession, as Quintinalla puts a good cross through the box. The US fullbacks need to press up the field more and force the El Salvadoran wingers to defend.

49 min - A long ball to Ching is headed back to Dempsey, but the shot is very weak. He is kind of all by himself up there. Torres and Altidore are warming up.

52 min - Its like everyone is huffing paint out there. Or chickens with heads cut off, etc...Finally Beasley gets a ball down the left, but totally fumbles the throw in. Haven't these guys played together before? Now a ball on the right to Ching, who does a great job crossing it into the box, but nothing there.

54 min - Mini Bradley commits a dumb foul on the top of the box. Bob looks on in displeasure. Fortunately Quintanilla rockets the free kick over the wall and into row Z.

57 min - Califf looks to be the culprit in the deeper than it should be US backline. Bocanegra keeps telling him to move up, but he looks a little tentative out there. Bradley picks up a card for a tackle in the midfield. We could see a sub for him soon. In fact, it would be nice to see subs right about now.

60 min - This has really been a dog shit for breakfast performance from the US so far. Dempsey wins a free kick next to the corner flag, and Beasley swings a nice free kick into the box that is headed over. The keeper appears to have hurt himself. This may take a while. And we are about to see Jozy Altidore! Get in!

62 min- Pierce is taken off, and we are going three in a back, baby. Perhaps the 3-4-3, or is Donovan going to slide back into the midfield to create some offense?....Meanwhile the keeper is still down in the goal.

64 min - A US freekick from about 45 yards out. Landon delivers a nice one, but El Salvador is able to counter. This time, at least, the US is able to handle Castillo easily.

67- Now its all US as El Salvador is sitting back waiting for the counter. But its all long balls right now. Not a lot from the midfield. Bradley makes a good run who passes it to Jozy. But Jozy has the touch of man who hasn't played since December and coughs it up. Meanwhile, Klesjtian has a go from 25 yards but its over the bar.

70 - A nice move between Beasley and Kles ends in a Bradley shot to the knees. But Montes is apparently healthy enough to get to it. He looks soooooo injured right now. And then he goes out Paul Robinson style for a ball in the box and is nearly beaten by Ching.

72 - Klejstian finally gets the hook and on comes Torres, who is rapidly becoming my new favorite MNT player. But then Castillo gets free in the box and puts one by Guzan! 2-0 El Salvador. This is a shocker. And they are climbing the fences in San Salvador!

75 - Montes finally peaces out, and now its proverbial gut check time for the US. Does anyone have the ability to make something happen here? A bit of magic is sorely needed. And I'm not sure who on the field has that ability.

77 - Jooooooooooooooooooooooooozy. 2-1 El Salvador. A hell of a ball from Hejduk, and Jozy slots it cooly with his head past the keeper.

80 - Every time we get a whistle half of the El Salvadoran team falls like a grenade just went off. This is high quality gamesmanship here. We should be getting at least 5 minutes of stoppage time.

82 - The US continues to pump long balls into the box, and El Salvador doesn't know what to do. A lot of second chances for the US. Meanwhile Quintanilla goes down and Bradley starts to talk shit. Get in!

86 - Its all happening now! The US needs to look at Hejduk who is in acres of space out on the right side. I can barely type...

88 - FRANKIE FRANKIE FRANKIE. A corner that the goalie doesn't even get close to, and Hejduk heads it in. 2-2. GET IN!

90 - A very dangerous free kick is dealt with by the wall, and Landon gets behind the defense on a long ball but the reinforcements don't manage to get a shot on goal.

94 - This game is there for the taking if the US can get a decent change. Meanwhile Bradley goes out with a cut and Edu comes on. Lets get one more!

96 - Jozy sets up Ching for a sitter, but he shoots it right at the keeper. Agh....Another long ball it the box that the keeper misses, and the bike from Jozy goes just wide. And we have a bit of a skirmish. The whistle tweets for full time. Wow.

I don't know about you all, but I was on tenterhooks at the end there. The US looked very rattled in the first half, but managed to cobble together a nice response thanks to Jozy and Frankie Hejduk. Its hard to be disappointed with a road point, but you can bet Bradley is seething. We might see a much different midfield on Wednesday against T&T. I loved Torres and would like to see him again. Thanks for stopping by and have a great night.

215 comments:

1 – 200 of 215   Newer›   Newest»
jjf3 said...

Ian,
you mind if I occasionally comment on MEX-CRC over here pre-game?

Ian said...

Yes, please. Vamos Ticos!

jjf3 said...

whoops, Ochoa almost made me look bad for talking him up earlier, but he cleans up his mess...beautiful attempt by CRC to bust the offside trap, the ball just a little too long...

Ian said...

Is that game on TV somewhere?

Ian said...

Never mind, just found it on Telemundo

jjf3 said...

HT: Mex 1-0 CR

Pretty even match in the first half, Bravo's goal on a defensive breakdown on a nice through ball and a rebound off the keeper the only difference. Mexico with a little more of the chances, but given that they're at Azteca, not a surprise. The Ticos have not been afraid to attack, but Mexico's Guardado on the left flank has become more dangerous as the game has gone on...

jjf3 said...

Weird commercial fact - commercials aimed at Mexicans presume that Ochoa is the national keeper, something Sven just seemed to figure out today. I have no idea what that means, but there you go...

jjf3 said...

PK to MEX - I'm not sold on 1st look, but it was stupid regardless. On 3rd look, shouldn't have been.

jjf3 said...

Pardo makes it 2-0 on the PK. Should not have been a PK, but it was stupid contact in the box.

jjf3 said...

Califf over Demerit? Really? With Sasha in midfield, which means Bradley can't roam forward as much? Very interesting/questionable choice, especially in what will be a very hostile environment...

jjf3 said...

Speak of the devil - Guardado launches a 25-yard rocket that is barely saved by the Tico keeper

That 2nd goal has freed up Mexico - they are clearly in ascension right now...

The Likely Lad said...

why you sayin' ryszard is marxist... or his writing marxist? that book -- which is brilliant -- isn't really political. not accusing, juuust askin'?

p.s. had wilson palacios featured for the honduran army back then i say they'd have faired better

The NY Kid said...

damn, now Freddy can't even make it onto the match for Bradley!

jjf3 said...

And if Mexico's PK was deserved, then CRC's call for one now was as well. Ochoa is hugely skilled, but he hasn't been a keeper for all that long, and he just showed it, getting a late jump on a ball, and eventually kind of bringing down (par-dive, part contact) a Tico who got to the ball first...

Ian said...

LL - I read it about five years ago, so I might be hazy, but my recollection is that he was pretty sympathetic to the various resistance movements he was writing about. Maybe Marxist is too strong a word.

jjf3 said...

LL - the way Palacios has played this year, he could have single-handedly defended the entire country

The Likely Lad said...

@ian a) certainly sympathetic.. dont think he ever gave himself away. journalism. remember when? but yea, point taken.
b) just pimped your heroic efforts here on twitter... y'all should spread the word too

@jjf3 well said, sir. also, he could've launched a mini-assault (maybe miss some targets, but still wreak havoc) on interests inside el salv

phil said...

American television pisses me off sometimes. I have to resort to Univision for the US-El Sal match, but I can have all the figure skating I want on NBC during the same time slot. I can follow along with the Spanish commentary just fine, but goddamn, when the national team can't beat figure skating on a Saturday night...

The Fan's Attic said...

AMERICA!!! FUCK YEAH!!!

Alright gents, have a good time tonight. I'm off to a Blazer game.

jjf3 said...

So, where is the US game on TV? I though ESPN2, but Dish thinks they're showing drag racing til 9. I can get Telefutura, but do I have to? Or did it get bumped to Classic, which also doesn't seem to know anything about it?

Teeknuts said...

How can anyone watch drag racing. I can even understand NASCAR somewhat, but damn, this is so uninteresting.

The NY Kid said...

it's showing as ESPN2 at 9pm here in Michigan

jjf3 said...

Good thing I didn't need to record this. DishN here in Houston thinks drag racing for another hour, then World's Strongest Man for the following hour. ESPN's been saying ESPN2 since like early this past week...guess Dish never got the message.

And Mexico finishes it off 2-0. Sven lives for another 4 days...

Teeknuts said...

That hanging thing they had there looked like an event from GUTS. Man, I loved that show.

The Likely Lad said...

please let califf play the most dominant central defense we've ever seen... so we never see Gooch in a USA shirt again.

jjf3 said...

LL - I'll go with, let Califf get saved so many times by Guzan that DeMerit actually plays. I don't mind Gooch as much as some, but I really don't understand why DeMerit isn't starting today...

Tuffy said...

I saw a snotty comment somewhere today about how all the top drivers on some schlub's Top 10 in History list were all F1 drivers and how a NASCAR driver could never be on it and blah blah I live to pick fights. How petty about Petty, right? And how could anyone pass an F1 driver; isn't that illegal?

Goat said...

Anyone know how Demerit's been doing lately? Has he been injured or something?

Goat said...

Is there something about being the USMNT goalkeeper that makes them go prematurely bald?

phil said...

Landycakes speaking Spanish is always a bit of a shock to me.

Goat said...

Phil, that always makes me like him a little bit.

jjf3 said...

@Goat - apparently its some sort of genetic thing.

@Tuffy - its worse in F1 now than it used to be, but F1 has always been more of a manufacturer's sport than a driver's sport. Cutting-edge technology mixed with courses about 3 cars wide at their most "open" do not emphasize driver skills. Then again, driving cars that go 0-100-0 in about the blink of an eye probably takes some talent...but, yeah, any list that is NASCAR free is bullshit...

Goat said...

NAS-CAR?

phil said...

USMNT is really f-n sloppy at midfield with their passing. Ugly.

Goat said...

Ugh, that went horribly awry.

Tuffy said...

If Landon Donovan was an infantryman, he would always return with an empty clip from the target range and a full one from the battlefield.

jjf3 said...

@Goat - DeMerit - I'm not certain of this, but he spent the early part of the season injured in some way, and he's not always playing at Watford, though I think I saw that he captained a game he did start, which is weird to me. If you captain him when he plays, why isn't he playing every match?

/may be more to the story than I know

phil said...

I agree, Goat. I think it's great that he does.

Tuffy said...

Wait, there's someone Beasley can outmuscle? Does that person have a wasting disorder?

Goat said...

Tuffy-is MLS the target range and Europe the battlefield?

phil said...

If Landycakes were an infantryman, they'd not even allow him a gun.

Tuffy said...

Aw man... I will watch any competition that requires riot police. SWEET.

Goat said...

If he was smart, he'd market a brand of Twinkie-like snacks called Landycakes. I'd buy 'em.

phil said...

Gah. Dempsey with a horrifically lazy attempt at a through-ball.

Tuffy said...

I heard the US team practiced this week. What did they practice? The cello? It wasn't any kind of offensive soccer play.

Lingering Bursitis said...

@Goat: Landycakes would be glorified twinkies. Save your money!

phil said...

@ Goat: As as you tasted them, you'd be disappointed.

Tuffy said...

... or any defensive coordination.

The NY Kid said...

oops.

jjf3 said...

Aw fuck that was awful...Jesus

Kopper said...

wow... that didn't go according to plan... nice moves by El Sal, embarassing D by US.

phil said...

We look like a soggy sh*t sandwich.

Goat said...

They're going to lose this thing.

Goat said...

Can't we go back to making fun of Landycakes?

phil said...

@ Goat: I was going to say I can't imagine a more ineffective offensive footballer than Landycakes, but then I started watching Ching.

Tuffy said...

Okay, if you don't use your hands on the save, you're pretty much asking the opposing team how your ass tastes.

Goat said...

I find Ching horribly disappointing. He always seems to find the goal for the Dynamo but looks like he plays scared for Los Gringos.

The NY Kid said...

@Tuffy - I do that regularly to entertain myself in games where we have a huge lead.

I'm a dick.

phil said...

Dempsey is f-n sleepwalking out there, and our sloppy midfield play continues...

Tuffy said...

At which point does "I'll get the ball into Landon for a header" sound like a good play?

The Likely Lad said...

this is fckin prison rules. sirens going off. a million whistles-- none being blown by the ref. the lads need to kick back. get mean.

Tuffy said...

Any football-related work by Beasley that doesn't involve streaking down the left side with the ball is wasted effort.

jjf3 said...

@Goat
I've used this analogy before, but I think he is like an American Heskey. When he gets to the national level, he knows he's in over his head (he's not a "natural scorer"), so he does what he can. Occasional header, decent defense, but he's better as a guy who uses up two defenders while setting up his support striker (where Rooney becomes Donovan)...

J said...

I can't remember the last time I saw the U.S. play this poorly.

The NY Kid said...

the US responds by shitting the bed as they get bombed with bags of urine.

Kopper said...

Are you kidding me? "A good strike, a solid strike," on that set piece? It was a pass to the keeper.

The NY Kid said...

@jjf3 - HEY! Heskey scored today. Okay, it was a friendly. Against Slovakia. And he hurt himself 5 minutes later.

I forgot my point.

phil said...

Rooney only becomes Donovan if you lop off his legs and give him a full frontal lobotomy.

jjf3 said...

@NYK - and this could be the day Ching scores too...it would be just as random an event...

Lingering Bursitis said...

jesus, anyone would think their domestic season only just started or something

The NY Kid said...

if Klejstan keeps playing like this we are going to have to leave him a Facebook comment

jjf3 said...

@phil - don't disagree, but you work with the teammates you're given...

phil said...

What an embarrassing performance.

phil said...

You gotta get DeMerit and Altidore on the pitch. This is just awful.

The Likely Lad said...

@phil agree agree agree... and bradley has to stop taking potshots from 25-30 yards. not playing mexico.

Tuffy said...

Now who can kick this ball six yards above the box...

Tuffy said...

Not that I called it, but I called it.

phil said...

Ugh. Wasted.

Kopper said...

Donovan can!

jjf3 said...

this has not been a good 30 minutes. USA looks like they all met yesterday...that said, we haven't crumbled after the first goal...

Oh, and has anyone ever seen Donovan score a free-kick?

The Likely Lad said...

"Wall made themselves big"... really? really? He "shot" the ball 15 feet above the crossbar! the SLV wall couldve crumbled at the kick and it woluldve been goal kick

Kopper said...

35 minures in, 80 comments. We will paginate unless we lose steam.

J said...

Maybe in the 3-0 vs. Poland before Euro 2008.

Steve said...

not sure I could put together a more toothless squad if I tried. Boy, do I dislike (hate? too much?) this USMT squad. Landycakes, Ching, Beasley. Ugh.

our 5-a-side rec team plays better offensive football.

phil said...

Agreed, Steve. This is shite football.

The NY Kid said...

c'mon, Steve. DaMarcus is too invisible to be unlikable

Steve said...

I don't know how y'all feel about him, but I wish ESPN had signed on Andy Gray permanently.

Tuffy said...

The only one onside was Brad Guzan.

phil said...

And now we can't stay onside on a fucking setpiece. You've got be kidding.

phil said...

Andy Gray is a Chavski wanker...but also a great football commentator.

The NY Kid said...

there are times when I wonder how Harkes can be so clueless when he actually played the game. And then I remember that he is John Harkes.

Teeknuts said...

That was very very sad.

Steve said...

get ready for Lalas to drop some knowledge

J said...

And Lalas claims Ching will score.

phil said...

Wow. What completely pathetic half of footy. Bradley needs to unf*ck this situation, right now.

phil said...

The Telefutura crew is almost giddy.

jjf3 said...

NYK: I'm a huge baseball fan, and Joe Morgan - the best 2B of all time - may be the single dumbest fan of baseball who ever lived. Sabermetricians (ie - baseball geeks - are the ones who realized just how great he was, yet he constantly marginalizes them), because he has no clue. He was raised to believe that it was all some magical thing that some people understood, and others couldn't...

The NY Kid said...

worst half of US footy this year? or worst half ever?

Teeknuts said...

This commercial for the USMNT fell a little flat after witnessing that performance

Andrew said...

In Latin America these are common practices.

God, the jokes that could be made with that line. Anytime anything crazy happens, just explain it with that line.

The NY Kid said...

everyone is staying up for the Bahrain v Japan WCQ, right?

RIGHT?

phil said...

@ TYK: worst half I've ever seen from them. Easily.

Andrew said...

@teek: yeah, for real. Awkward.

God forbid we get through a whole halftime without Beckham news,

jjf3 said...

worst half in recent memory. This team needs the hair-dryer treatment...

Oh, and ESPN - fucking fire Alexei already. He's MATT FUCKING MILLEN. Except perhaps even worse...

Goat said...

Teek--the song from that commercial, "Over There" is from WWI when thousands of Americans went overseas and got slaughtered after thinking it was going to be a cakewalk. Perhaps they could have chosen a better song.

J said...

Ian, what kind of bourbon are you drinking? I don't know where you are, but you might be interested in this: http://www.beerandbourbon.com/

Teeknuts said...

Goat - Yeah I remember guys singing it in that horrible Leatherheads movie. I still don't know why I saw that stinker.

Andrew said...

And we won't come back till it's over over there

So, we're only planning on playing in two games in South Africa?

The NY Kid said...

ha - Teeknuts lurves Clooney!

Goat said...

'Cause you've got a crush on John Krasinski?

Goat said...

NYK--great minds, etc.

Teeknuts said...

Sadly, that wasn't the worst movie I saw in 2008. That honor belongs to Strange Wilderness.

Andrew said...

@Teek: that movie was good only for the laughing shark bit.

Andrew said...

The video production down there reminds me of high school football highlights.

From 1992.

Teeknuts said...

The sad thing is that I would probably watch a show that was all old nature films with really bad voice overs

phil said...

Brian Ching, the king of three-touch football

Andrew said...

Have we ever had a quality striker? McBride was good, but too inconsistent for my liking.

Teeknuts said...

I'm assuming during half time they watched basketball highlights, cause nothing's really changed

Steve said...

since when did Beasley become a possession midfielder? Why is he at the half line when we have the ball? WHY?

The NY Kid said...

@Andrew - Joe Gaetjens

phil said...

Beasley is worthless. Tentative, unimaginative, and now he looks winded.

Andrew said...

@NYK: I lawlz'd, and then realized that not only were you serious, you were right.

phil said...

This is getting hard to watch.

Steve said...

@phil - spot on. he had to walk in from the dressing room.

it's all that playing time he gets for Rangers.

Goat said...

Too bad he was Haitian.

J said...

Who had 56 minutes on the Bradley yellow?

Goat said...

Bradley seems to be reverting to old form where he commits horrible fouls when he gets frustrated.

Teeknuts said...

Nice work by the cameraman there, completely missing the ball.

The NY Kid said...

@Goat - ah, but he was in the process of becoming an American citizen!

But clearly all of the best US strikers are Haitian.

phil said...

Here we go. How many more will fake cramps before the half is over? I'm setting the over/under at 4.

Andrew said...

Does El Salvador not have a trainer?

Oh, Dellacamera, thank you for reminding me there are no time-outs in soc-cer. Dickhead.

phil said...

JOZY!

The NY Kid said...

the ref is Mexican?

I call shenanigans!

Steve said...

wtf is going on?

phil said...

This is the worst case of cramps I've ever seen, and I'm married.

Then again, maybe it's not cramps.

jjf3 said...

I like the 3.5-4.5-3 set up with either an injured or back up keeper

Andrew said...

Fake keeper cramps to reduce the length of the game?

In Latin America these are common practices.

Steve said...

they're streching out his torn acl.

jjf3 said...

Yes it is, but that looked like a little more than time-wasting. That said, more 20-25 yarders are in order...

Andrew said...

Is that a bomb shelter siren going off?

Andrew said...

I always wondered what potential Bring Ching had as a national team player. Apparently, his ceiling is "El Salvador."

The NY Kid said...

HA! Ian eats dog shit for breakfast!

phil said...

That was a gorgeous ball from Beasley. Wasted, but gorgeous.predn

Steve said...

damn.

jjf3 said...

fuck

Andrew said...

Oh fuck this.

Teeknuts said...

Christ. That's all there is to say

Kopper said...

I wish I were Canadian tonight...

Steve said...

i forgot to say earlier how much i hate hejduk.

phil said...

F-N HORRID goalkeeping by Guzan. Just fucking atrocious. Awful, awful, awful keeping.

Teeknuts said...

It's comedic how quickly the keeper goes down after that.

Andrew said...

Keeper down! There's a keeper down!

The NY Kid said...

well, this didn't go well.

phil said...

Beasley releases the guy so he can have plenty of room to cross the ball in, Hejduk can't be bothered to leave his damn feet, and Guzan looks like a my two-year old nephew trying to catch a beach ball.

jjf3 said...

What a fucking mess for the USMNT. Bradley needs to answer some serious questions, unless we find a way to fight back...(don't expect it - we look lost right now)...

Andrew said...

This is worse than college soccer.

Andrew said...

JOZY JOZY JOZY

J said...

Perhaps Jozy should start these games?

Teeknuts said...

Well, it's gotten a little better. Nice ball in by Ching.

Andrew said...

Get in, you Yanks!

jjf3 said...

FUCKING YES!

Put them on their FUCKING heels, dammit!

Steve said...

Jozy!!

The NY Kid said...

oh, the Haitian Sensation!

phil said...

JOZY! A REAL FORWARD! GET IN!

Teeknuts said...

And that's the 4th stretcher, if I'm counting correctly.

Andrew said...

Fuck these El Salvadorians. If there isn't 8 minutes added on after 90, I will personally voice my protestations to Concacaf.

jjf3 said...

Fuck it Andrew, we don't need 8 minutes. Give us 4, and we're taking a point away....

Teeknuts said...

Aaannnnnnnddd theres number five. I'm expecting at least 3 more.

Andrew said...

Whenever the siren comes on, an ES player drops. This is comical.

phil said...

Didier Drogba is intrigued by the El Salvadorean ideas, and would like to subscribe to their newsletter.

These guys lying around on the pitch is getting ridiculous

Andrew said...

Holy. Fucking. Shit.

J said...

Can the ref give a red card for diving/time wasting?

Andrew said...

This game just got compelling.

jjf3 said...

@J:
he can, if he chooses to do so...

jjf3 said...

that said, it happens about once a decade...

Andrew said...

THERES TWO!!! THERES TWO!!!

The NY Kid said...

FRANKIE!

Teeknuts said...

Holy shit. Did that just happen?

Kopper said...

holy fucking shit!

jjf3 said...

2 fucking 2!!!!!!!!!

hockalees said...

Man, the El Salvadorans have more cramps than Wellesley College.

phil said...

GET IN! FREDDY! USA! USA!

J said...

He has to be close though. Frankie!

Teeknuts said...

they better not concede here, so help me god...

Steve said...

frankie, i still hate you. but good job.

Andrew said...

Seven minutes. Let's get all three points.

J said...

I have not seen 7 minutes of stoppage time before. It's only fair though.

Kopper said...

it would be poetic justice for us to score in extra time

jjf3 said...

I still haven't figured out where Torres "fits" in this team, but I want him in the team. His left foot, youth, and ability to keep his head up are more than useful....

Andrew said...

Fuck me, let's complete passes.

hockalees said...

Every time that siren sounds, Angel gets his wings.

Kopper said...

Norwich City would murder the USMNT on nights like tonight. Come to think of it, we should beat them 3 out of 5 anyways.

jjf3 said...

Ugh, that's a typical Ching moment...

Andrew said...

It wasthatclose to three for us.

The NY Kid said...

what a clearance

J said...

Why couldn't they play this way the entire game?

Andrew said...

Those last 25 minutes was captivating. Glad we fought back.

phil said...

How does that not get in the net!?!?! Gah. Poor Ching.

Teeknuts said...

It's pretty obvious that the keeper getting injured was the best thing to happen to the US.

Kopper said...

What a frusturating game. We scored because of Frankie and Joey. There were so many terrible individual perfomances by other players, it is just almost too much to bear at times.

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