Thursday, April 26, 2007

Screamin' Like Old Bloody News

Two soccer related documentary films, The Power Of The Game - and - Sons Of Sakhnin United, make their debuts at the Tribeca Film Festival in New York City this weekend. Both look incredible. Please let me know if you plan on seeing them. Power Of The Game is 6 stories of soccer & society from around the globe leading up to and tying together last summers World Cup. Sons Of Sakhnin United is about a multi-ethnic soccer team in Israel who must not only try to win on the field but face even bigger obstacles off.

MLS mid-week games:
Wed April 25
-Kansas City 3-0 Toronto - goals by Eddie Johnson, Kerry Zavagnin & Yura Movsisyan.
Match report by Bob Luder of the KC Star.
Match report by Larry Millson of the Toronto Globe & Mail
Thurs April 26
-Dallas v New York - 7pm on ESPN2
Preview from Jeff Carlisle of Soccernet.
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My notes from Wed's KC v TFC MLS match:
-It really poured rain throughout the first half, but stopped in the second. The field held strong. I have always thought KC's Arrowhead Stadium had a nice surface.
-I did not realize this, but Jimmy Conrad is KC's captain, not surprisingly.
-It's great to see that KC has moved their main supporters section from the southeast corner of the stadium, to the north side middle. Much like the 2 main DC United supporters sections at RFK. What an excellent move by the team. I would be curious to know how the fans feel about this.
-New KC midfielder Carlos Marinelli had an impressive start for his team. His passing was crisp and adventurous. Hopefully this is not a fluke. The league needs more guys with this kind of skill.
-#1 over all draft pick Maurice Edu got his first start for Toronto.
-Edu is playing on the right side of midfield in front of newly acquired right back Marvell Wynne, who was last years #1 overall draft choice. That is great on the resume, but it's a lot of inexperience for the right side of the field.
-The other new Toronto acquisition, Kevin Goldthwaite started the game at left back.
-The referee, Andrew Chapin, is the spitting image of Tim Blake Nelson's Delmar character from O Brother Where Are Thou?
-KC's first goal came from a great right sided cross by Sasha Victorine (has he started the season well or what?) to Eddie Johnson who headed home after easily splitting two defenders. Very poor marking.
-Toronto did play much better as the 1st half wore on and the second half began, but they just can't score off only half decent chances.
-Alecko Eskandarian is doing his best to be dangerous up top for TFC. But he sure isn't getting much help.
-KC regained control after about 10 minutes and then promptly scored again. This time Eddie Johnson cruised into the box with the ball at his feet causing mass chaos. Kerry Zavagnin scored his first goal in what seem like forever in the middle of the mad scramble. (Let me put it this way, your team is in rough shape when Zavagnin is camped out in your box and scores.)
-KC brought in sub Yura Movsysian. He looks like a young Christian Vieri.
-And then Movsysian scored his first goal! He cruised into the box on Marvell Wynne's defensive side, just like Johnson did, then just power smashed the ball past Toronto keeper Greg Sutton.
-I will give Toronto credit in this game for never stopping playing hard. The first two matches I think they gave up a bit. This game they did not.
-So far TFC is 0 wins and 3 losses with 9 goals conceded and none scored. Ouch. Tough way to start, but not real shocking. It's called expansion.
-KC keeper Kevin Hartman set a new MLS record with his 63rd clean sheet.
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Here's another one of those ridiculous looking Bobby Boswell dresses up as a Sexy Tiger pics. Stolen from Soccernista (and yes we are busy slapping each other on the back, telling each other we are brilliant).
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A 17 year old intern at American Soccer News covered the last New York Red Bulls game, and gives a fairly entertaining insiders view of the press box and all the backstage action.
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Kristian Dyer at Soccernet does the Q & A with New York head honcho Bruce Arena. Very cool.
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Michael Lewis at Big Apple Soccer talks to NYRB defender Hunter Freeman who will do battle again tonight with Dallas forward Kenny Cooper. Last week Freeman got the better of Cooper. Turns out they played on the same youth team for 2 years. This could be a great personal rivalry.
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Luis Arroyave of the Chicago Tribune looks at how New York's young standout Jozy Altidore can avoid some of the Freddy Adu over-hyping pitfalls.
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Beau Dure of USA Today looks at the Red Bulls red hot start to the season.
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Ives Galarcep at the North Jersey Herald says the real star of the Red Bulls has been their defense.
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Tobias Xavier Lopez of the Fort Worth Star Telegram writes about NYRB captain Claudio Reyna aka Captain America.
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The Dallas Morning News with the latest on the visa approval wait for new Dallas midfielder Pablo Ricchetti, plus other FCD news.
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Looks like defender Michael Parkhurst is recovered from his shoulder injury and ready to travel this weekend when New England heads to Dallas on Sunday.
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Dylan Butler of the Queens Times Ledger tells the New England management to stop screwing around and pay midfielder Shalrie Joseph the big bucks he deserves or let him go to someone who will. I will say though, I think Butler is wrong about the amount of money Celtic offered for Joseph. I think $1 million was the top amount not $2 mill, which is still insultingly low. Cough up $3 million and a deal would be done, any less than that is nonsense.
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LA Soccer News has a Q & A with Chivas USA first year English forward John Cunliffe.
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Slam Sports in Canada with a look at the history of soccer in Toronto and the lead up to Saturday's first ever home game for Toronto FC. I hope it's a great day for the squad and the fans.
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Glenn Davis of the Houston Chronicle is pretty convinced that Cuauhtemoc Blanco will be disruptive to team chemistry when he arrives in Chicago. I think Glenn should give it a rest for now and just wait to see what happens.
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(I had written stuff here about the latest in Salt Lake stadium controversies. But I knew at the time I wrote it that the issue was not important to the soccer on the field and I should just stay away from it. Unfortunately I let my brain get in the way and I wrote a critical rant. As a day or two went by I realized it was all pointless so I have taken it down.)
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Greg Lalas is host of a new edition of the MLSnet online video show Extra Time. Seems like it's made for beginners to me, but check it out, cuz I might be super jaded.
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Luis Bueno & Andrea Canales of LA Soccer News, and Miguel Melendez of the Orange County Register with a roundtable discussion of this early MLS season.
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The Washington Examiner with an article on the slew of new South American players in MLS this season. Should make Paul Gardner at least a little bit happy.
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This is cool to see - a small town South Dakota newspaper with an editorial about the rise of the real football in America! From the Black Hills Pioneer. You also gotta love that the author's name is Richard Lewis.
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Paul Demko at Blue Sky Soccer talks to Minnesota Thunder coach Amos Magee about his team, and their second road trip of season, this one to Atlanta, for Friday nights game that can be seen on FSC at 7pm central time.
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US Open Cup - MLS qualifier matches and scores:
Saturday April 28
-Salt Lake v Colorado
Tuesday May 8
-Los Angeles v New York
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Andrea Canales at LA Soccer News is not pleased with how US Soccer & MLS are treating the US Open Cup. Me neither.
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USA U16 team in the Ballymena International Tournament:
-Team USA is in Group B along with Scotland, Czech Rep & Ireland.
-Group A is Canada, Finland, Northern Ireland and Switzerland.
-Here is the USA group schedule & scores:
Mon - USA 1-1 Scotland - USA goal by Parker Walsh.
Tue - USA 3-2 Czech Republic - USA goals by Dersu Abolfathi, Kofi Sarkodie & Ryan Finley.
Wed - USA 1-2 Republic of Ireland - USA goal by Gale Agbossoumonde.
Fri - April 26 v Israel - for 3rd place trophy
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CONCACAF U17 World Championship Group B Qualifying Tournament.
-All games will be played in Kingston Jamaica.
-The top 3 from this group will advance to the finals in Korea in late summer.
-Here is the match schedule:
Sat April 28
-Costa Rica v Trinidad & Tobago
-Jamaica v Canada
Mon April 30
-Canada v Costa Rica
-Trinidad & Tobago v USA
Wed May 2
-USA v Canada
-Jamaica v Costa Rica
Fri May 4
-Canada v Trinidad & Tobago
-Jamaica v USA
Sun May 6
-USA v Costa Rica
-Jamaica v Trinidad & Tobago
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Mike Woitalla of Soccer America does a Q & A with midfielder Sunny Guadarrama who plays for the reserve team of Santos Laguna in Mexico. Sonny has played for some USA youth teams, and currently plays for Mexico's U20 team. He will play for which ever senior side that calls him first. His brother Willy plays for Kansas City. Good stuff.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ talks to USA U20 coach Thomas Rongen about the team he will take to the Youth World Cup this summer.
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A Big Soccer poster called Scotty transcribed an Italian magazine interview with American soccer fans favorite whipping boy Giuseppe Rossi. He talks about growing up in America, feeling Italian, passing on Team USA, and other topics.
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Frank Dell'apa at Soccernet looks at 3 young Italian-Americans, including Rossi, playing in Italy.
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American keeper Brad Friedel tells the BBC that he will do whatever it takes to make sure his Blackburn team gets back into European competition next season. Unfortunately they are 7 points out (and 3 teams back) right now, with only 4 games to play. Those are not good odds.
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The CONCACAF Champions Cup final:
-Pachuca 0-0 Guadalajara -the series ended tied 2-2 on aggregate, so the game went to PKs, with Alberto Medina of Chivas missing and giving Pachuca the win 7-6.
-Huge congrats to Pachuca who have converted this gringo into a fan. Now I gotta find me a Pachuca t-shirt. XXL please.
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Copa Libertadores - this is the final week of the group stage:
Apr 24
Gremio 1-0 Cerro Porteno
Deportes Tolima 3-4 Cucuta Deportivo
Apr 25
Necaxa 2-0 Alianza Lima
Sao Paulo 2-2 Audax Italiano
River Plate 1-0 Colo Colo
LDU Quito 3-1 Caracas
-Match reports via Sports Illustrated.
Apr 26
Toluca - Cienciano
Boca Juniors - Bolivar
-Necaxa & Sao Paulo advanced last night.
-Flamengo, Santos, Colo Colo, Caracas, Libertad, America, Parana, Nacional, Velez Sarsfield, Defensor Sporting, Gremio & Cucuta have already advanced to the knock out stages. The last 2 will join them tonight.
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UEFA Champions League Semifinals - Matchday 11 scores:
-Tues April 24
Manchester United 3-2 AC Milan - Man U goals by Cristiano Ronaldo & 2 for Wayne Rooney. Both Milan goals by Rikki Kaka.
-Wed April 25
Chelsea 1-0 Liverpool - goal by Joe Cole.
-Second leg matches are next week on Tues & Wed.
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Did you know - Didier Drogba has played in 55 of Chelsea's 57 games in all competitions this season. And he has scored 31 goals. Phenomenal!
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Rob Hughes of the International Herald Tribune reviews last nights Champions League match, and basically says what most of us already know, Chelsea coach Jose Mourinho is lacking in class.
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UEFA Cup semifinal first leg matches:
Espanyol v Werder Bremen
Osasuna v Sevilla
-Return leg matches in 7 days.
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I missed this one the other day from Hughes at the IHT: Egyptian club Al Ahly celebrated their 100th anniversary this week. And to make sure the party was right, they paid a lot of money for Barcelona to fly down on Tuesday night and play against them in a friendly. Barca is like the Harlem Globetrotters or something. (thanks to Matth for sending me this)
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Goalkeeper Jens Lehmann has signed a one year contract extension to play again next season for Arsenal.
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The Guardian with an article on former World Player Of The Year, MLS Chicago & DC player, ex-Bulgarian national team coach, and now Celta de Vigo coach, yes, it's the fun loving psychotic leg breaker himself Hristo Stoichkov.
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It looks like Sports Illustrated has done some kind of deal to post stories on their website from World Soccer magazine. Here is one about Sevilla striker Fredi Kanoute who is having an excellent season.
-Jonah Freedman at Sports Illustrated tells du Nord "...we'll be running about 4 stories from World Soccer per month." Excellent. He said the connection comes via this angle - "World Soccer is a part of London-based IPC Media, which SI's parent company (Time Inc.) also owns". Ah yes, Time Warner, a company I am all too familiar with.
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After many months of back and forth and hurrying up just to wait some more, Middlesbrough have officially signed defender Jonathan Woodgate, who had been on loan to them this season from Real Madrid.
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Young Bayern Munich & Germany striker Lukas Podolski has torn up the cartilage in his left knee and will probably be out of action for the next 6 months.
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The date is set: Ireland v Ecuador - Wed May 23 at Giants Stadium in the New Jersey Meadowlands.
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Lastly, my hero, the real Ronaldo, on the Simpsons!


Blogger M said...

As a Wizards fans, there are pros and cons to our new position, we love the new view, being closer to the field and being next to the GA section instead of across the tunnel as we are able to get more people to join the section for the chants and such. The only draw back is that we are now further from the players when they come on and off the field. Overall though people seem to be extremely happy with the new location.

9:17 PM  
Anonymous Nick said...

I also jumped on the Pachuca bandwagon during their magical Sudamericana run last fall. That performance they gave against Houston left me breathless, and it wasn't the first time. It was the same team that went into Chile with 75,000 fans in the stadium (including the president of the nation) and took the trophy in the final by attacking Colo Colo on their own field for the full 90 minutes. Colo Colo and the 75K left shell-shocked. For my money, Pachuca and Barcelona are the two most entertaining teams in the world to watch right now, hands down. If you get that jersey, get me one as well...

11:19 PM  
Anonymous McCrum said...

Blanco causing trouble with team chemistry? There's got to be some good chemistry first for him to mess up. That clubhouse is a wreck as far as what I have heard. I don't think Blanco can do any more harm.

What's going to cause harm is the fact that this looks like pandering to the Mexican fan base in Chicago. Why not just play better soccer and keep treating them with respect instead of management in LA pulling in a single player in the hopes of selling more tickets, I'll never know.

7:27 AM  
Blogger brucio said...

I wanna thanks M, Nick & McCrum for their great, and i do mean great comments!

10:05 AM  
Anonymous NJ=Italy? said...

Please don't refer to Rossi as an Italian American, He chose Italy so therefore he's an Italian. He doesn't deserve to be called American anymore.

10:30 AM  
Blogger David said...

That intern has a future in this profession. As someone who works on the other side of athletic media relations, I know he hit the nail on the head in terms of game day experience.

Good job.

10:40 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I watched the COL-HOU game. I replayed the goal several times on my TiVO. I don't think the ball was completely over the goal line until DeRo put it over.

And it's Paul Dalglish. Stop calling him Kenny.

10:38 AM  

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