Thursday, March 23, 2006

Manana Banana News

Germany 4 - 1 USA (o-o at the half)
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The du Nord 3 USA stars of the game:
3. Cory Gibbs – he got no help from the winger in front of him, and was playing out of position at left back, yet he saved the USA bacon about 6 times with speed and timing on his fierce tackles.
2. Steve Cherundolo – passes are dead on, speed is all there and a fluke goal looks good on a resume.
1. Pablo Mastroeni – it was like the dreadlocks were back for Pablo. He was lean and mean. When they pulled him out of the match, the defense fell apart. Seriously. Check the times of when things melted down. They coincide exactly with him coming out of the game! We need him badly!
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Ha. Well I guess we just throw that one in the nearest jumbo dumpster and move on. Germany got goals by Schwienstieger, Nueville, Ballack & Klose. USA got theirs from Cherundolo when he tried to go long for Johnson who got run over by Oli Kahn and the 60 yard pass trickled past everyone and into the net. You had to figure we were due for one of those stink bombs. The wins have been too easy, and the hype growing a little too big. Not to mention the idiotic #5 ranking. I have said it many times, and will say it again right now: USA is a top 15 team in the world, where they fit in that top 15 is debatable. The game meant little or nothing to me, as it was meaningless to the USA and everyone knew it. I am sure Arena & Keller are mad cuz they got embarrassed. Yes, Greg Berhalter stunk. HE STUNK! But he always has and always will. He was always a step below Agoos on my chart. So this performance should come as no surprise. I thought Cory Gibbs did everything he could out there. He is not a left back though. He is a central defender. It would have been nice to see him get a chance to play in the center of the defense. As for Convey - he is an attacker who has never played much defense. We know Ching is useless, so is Klein and Zavagnin. It won't take more than 5 years and guys like this will not be able to make MLS teams cuz they are too slow and unskilled. Big deal. The USA didn't bring an attacking midfielder for this match after Donovan dropped out, so I expected a big hole in the middle of the pitch, and there it was. Mastroeni did very good out there too, but Arena subbed him out. Twellman needs service and got none. Johnson needs service and got little.
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Only one injury to report from the match: Josh Wolff suffered a concussion and required five stitches in his lip in the middle of the first half.
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Audio & Video from Team USA post match via US Soccer.
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Post game reports from around the country:
Big Apple Soccer - match report by Michael Lewis
Houston Chronicle - analysis by Glenn Davis
New York Times - match report by Jere Longman
North Jersey Herald - match report by Ives Galarcep
USA Today - match report by Kelly Whiteside
Los Angeles Times - match report by Grahame Jones
Soccer Times - analysis & player ratings by Robert Wagman
Soccer America - player ratings by Paul Kennedy
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Did you see all the diving that German midfielder Sebastian Schweinsteiger was doing. Cheeeee-rist. He must have gotten his hands on an advance DVD copy of Jamie Watson Teaches The World To Dive.
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An amusing thread on Big Soccer - In Pictures: Berhalter's Day.
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After the match BQ sent me this story from the Fox Sports web site that savages the USA. But it was written by Jamie Trecker who hates USA soccer and takes every cheap shot he can get his hands on. So I discount it immediately when his name is attached.
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But more importantly, here is a calm, smart, totally accurate Big Soccer post that breaks down yesterday's game in a frame of mind more akin to REALITY! Fantastic to read.
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There is a podcast from new US Soccer Federation President Sunil Gulati that all fans should listen to.
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All the Manchester City website says is that Claudio Reyna "could face between three and four weeks on the sidelines with an injured left shoulder." No word on what the injury actually is.
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According to London trash tabloid: "Bolton boss Sam Allardyce has joined Everton in the chase for USA striker Josh Wolff." How many times have Everton said they are not interested before these writers get it?
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Scott Soshnick at Bloomberg rips the vast majority of American sports fans!!!! He nails 'em to the frickin wall!
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Adidas is going to build a mini-replica of Berlin's World Cup stadium in the center of the city in front of the Reichstag parliament building to show games all 64 games to the public. It will seat about 10,000. It will cost you 3 Euro to get in.
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Do you like statistics - check this out: Football Database
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More rumors swirling that Chelsea will take on an MLS All-star team at Bridgeview this summer.
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Kansas City says they are not going after John O'Brien. With LA saying the same thing (see yesterday), that takes us down to 10 teams left to duke it out.
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The Jackson Clarion-Ledger in Mississippi does the "small town boy makes good" routine for their home-slice Floyd Franks Jr, a first year pro who is suiting up for Chicago.
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Jonah (not Johan) Freedman's all knowing, all seeing World Power Rankings at Sports Illustrated!
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Miguel Melendez of the Orange County Register has words with MLS head men Don Garber and Ivan Gazidis. These are almost exactly the same things I reported on from my trip to MLS Cup last fall, but it's nice to see all of this in print.
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Others have pointed out that Spanish language newspaper La Opinion is reporting a midsummer tournament between 4 teams from MLS and 4 from Mexico in 2007. Now we're talking!!
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CONCACAF Champions Cup Semifinals return this week featuring Costa Ricans v Mexicans:
Toluca 2-0 Saprissa -Carlos Esquivel Silva got both goals (return match is March 29)
Alajuelense v America on March 23 & 29 - see the match tonight on a slight delay at 10pm central time on Fox Soccer Channel.
Note: They do NOT use the "away goals count double to break ties" rule. All ties will be settled with PK's after extra periods are played.
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The Carolina Challenge Cup - A preseason tournament annually held in Charleston, South Carolina, home of the Charleston Battery featuring 4 teams in a round robin style. 3 points for a win and 1 for a draw.
Sunday
Houston Dynamo 1-0 Charleston - goal by Ronald Cerritos
DC United 1-0 Red Bull New York - goal by Jaime Moreno & the Bulls finished with 9 players after Youri Djorkaeff and Taylor Graham were both red carded after a second yellow
Wednesday
Charleston 1-0 New York - Ben Hollingsworth ran thru the NY defense to slot home the winner
DC 1-1 Houston - Alejandro Moreno scored on a corner kick for Houston, while Jaime Moreno scored on a PK for United.
Saturday
Charleston v DC
Houston v New York
Standings:
4 Houston
4 DC United
3 Charleston
0 New York
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Dutch Cup semi finals last night:
PSV Eindhoven 2-0 AZ Alkmaar
Ajax Amsterdam 4-1 Roda JC Kerkrade
The final is May 7 in Rotterdam
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First of two semi finals in the Portuguese Cup:
Porto 1-1 Sporting - Porto win 5-4 on penalties.
Vitoria Setubal v Vitoria Guimaraes
The final is on May 14 in Lisbon
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Copa Italia - semi finals first leg:
Palermo 2-1 Roma - Massimo Mutarelli scored both for Parma, with Simone Perrotta bagging one for Roma in the first minute of the game.
Inter 1-0 Udinese - the only goal was scored by Santiago Solari
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Here are the 6th Round/Quarterfinal matches slated for this week:
FA Cup Quarterfinals
Mon Mar 20
Manchester City 1-2 West Ham - Dean Ashton got both for West Ham, Musampa got a very late one back for Man City who had defender Sun Jihai red carded in the 56th min. Claudio Reyna did not play due to the injury.
Tue Mar 21
Birmingham 0-7 Liverpool - Holy Smokes! Did you see this one coming? At Birmingham? Wow. One of the most thorough ass kickings in years. Hyypia scored first, then 2 by Crouch, Morientes next, Riise after that, a B-ham own goal, and finally Cisse. Ooooooof. Does B-ham coach Steve Bruce get to keep his job? I remember when Dallas got snuffed 4 or 5-0 by Willmington in the US Open Cup and even they fired Mike Jefferies after that. Hell, LA got rid of Sigi Schmid after my Thunder beat them 1-0 in the Open Cup, and that game was played here.
Wed Mar 22
Chelsea 1-0 Newcastle - John Terry scored the games only goal on a corner kick. Sean Wright Phillips did some excellent diving for Chelsea.
Thu Mar 23
Charlton v Middlesbrough
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Copa Libertadores Group stage!! This week’s matches and scores:
Mar 21
Chivas Guadalajara 2-1 São Paulo FC - Grupo 1
Estudiantes LP 1-0 Independiente Santa Fe - Grupo 2
Universidad Católica 2-1 Deportivo Cali - Grupo 4
Mar 22
Newell's Old Boys 0-0 Goiás EC - Grupo 3
Corinthians 1-0 Tigres UANL - Grupo 4
Internacional 3-2 Pumas UNAM - Grupo 6
Mar 23
Libertad - El Nacional - Grupo 8
Rosario Central - Palmeiras - Grupo 7
Atlético Nacional - Cerro Porteño - Grupo 7
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Wednesday's Libertadores match wrap from Soccernet - Corinthians had their hero Carlos Tevez miss a pk, but get the game winner later.
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Today's Ballack Watch: He is taking a well deserved rest today after the beating he laid on Greg Berhalter yesterday.

4 Comments:

Blogger kebmodee said...

i've been checking hourly waiting for you to post...

nice comments about the us game. only thing i disagree with is your comment about agoos. he was way overrated.
ballack was a diving machine too. ultimately, not a big deal and bruce got to see some question marks under a lot of pressure and the germans get to feel better for a while.

3:55 PM  
Blogger D said...

And yet.. Berhalter is on your "My World Cup Team" list... time for a change?

8:25 PM  
Blogger brucio said...

i totally agree with agoos being way overrated
it was my subtle way of pointing out just how little i think of berhalter

11:06 PM  
Anonymous angelo said...

Unfortunately you better prepare for diving and melodramas by players. Here in europe it's a plague that no one has been able to remove and every year it gets worse.

I say you have to prepare because in the World Cup you will have to face Italy and those 90 minutes will be some of the worst you'll ever see. Italians player will dive, pretend to haven't touch you while they instead aimed directly at your body, moan after every whistle and so on.

Trust me when I say it is a pitying show and I am forced to see it every Sunday as Inter unfortunately cannot switch leagues. BTW I am not saying that Inter players are immune to this but they seem determined to avoid that and only rarely employ them (shame on the players when they do that).

To have some fun on this serious problem I suggest you to watch this fictional and ironic google video:

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=7869534156840961168&q=tattica+juve

5:21 AM  

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