Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Forgo The Quality Of Lumber News

Is Michael Orozco the new Jeff Agoos?


Kasey Keller has signed with Seattle Sounders FC for next spring. See MLS Expansion section for details.


New England showed that the US Open Cup is DEFINITELY NOT a priority for them this season as they rested nearly all of their regulars in DC last night (only Shalrie Joseph & Adam Cristman played) and got whooped for it. Sad to see isn't it. I have said it many times in the past couple of months but I will say it again, US Soccer should be embarrassed about the state of this great tournament. I don't fault New England, but I am disappointed. I wonder if the story would have been reversed if NE had the home game instead of DC. The lack of commitment in these games was also borne out in the small attendance numbers.

USA Men's Olympic Team

Group Stage Matches & Scores:
-Thu Aug 7
Japan 0-1 USA - USA goal by Stuart Holden.
Attendance: 37,177
Venue: Olympic Center Stadium, Tianjin
-Sun Aug 10
Netherlands 2-2 USA - Neth goals by Ryan Babel & Gerald Sibon. USA goals by Sacha Kljestan & Jozy Altidore.
Attendance: 45,016
Venue: Olympic Center Stadium, Tianjin
-Wed Aug 13
Nigeria 2-1 USA - Nige goals by Promise Isaac & Victor Obinna. USA goal by Sacha Kljestan(PK).
Attendance: 48,096
Venue: Workers Stadium, Beijing
Match report from US Soccer.
Match report by Jeff Carlisle of Soccernet.
Match report from the New York Times.
Post game notes by Andrew Hush of Soccernet.
Game photos from US Soccer.
Post game quotes by USA coach & players from US Soccer.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

My notes from the match:
-Michael Orozco's Red Card in the 3rd minute was a massively costly mistake. It was not a direct mistake like Sacha Kljestan jumping in the wall against Netherlands that allowed the tying goal in the dying seconds, but putting your team down a man for 87 minutes is a close as you can get to a direct mistake with out making one. It was a very sad way to start the game, and end the Olympics.
-Michael Parkhurst was surprisingly toasted on Nigeria's first goal. He was beaten with a nice move on the end line that allowed a great short range cross to the middle of the box that was easily converted for a score.
-Also on the that first Nigeria goal, Maurice Edu did a terrible job of marking in the center of the box, giving his man waaaaaay too much run to coast in and tap the cross home. Really poor.
-I was very disappointed to see Jozy Altidore subbed out at halftime. The team had moved Robbie Rogers to left back when Orozco was sent off, then put Benny Feilhaber in at left midfield replacing Altidore. It proved to be a lousy waste of a sub as all Feilhaber really did was whine, complain and gesticulate himself into a Yellow Card. All Altidore had done was defend OK and go for goal! We sure could have used him in there down the stretch.
-Dax McCarthy was another sub, and he came on for Stuart Holden, who may have been tired, but is also a lethal finisher out of the midfield. Yes McCarthy put in a couple of nice free kicks, but others could have come off before Holden.
-The final USA sub Charlie Davies showed why he should have been used a lot more in the 3 games. He was fearless charging at defenders, causing all kinds of havoc, and even got his head to a free kick that he directed off the crossbar.
-In a game where the USA was desperate for goals, the coaching decisions proved to be too conservative. Sad to see.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Group B Final Standings:
7 Nigeria
5 Netherlands
0 Japan
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Official team blog
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NBC Olympic soccer website
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Group Standings
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Martin Rogers of Yahoo Sports writes that Stuart Holden finds inspiration in cancer patients that he visits in Houston hospitals.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

US Open Cup

Matches & Scores:
-Tue Aug 12
DC United 3-1 New England Revolution - DCU goals by Luciano Emilio(2) & Santino Quaranta. NER goal by Joe Germanese.
Attendance: 6,797
Venue: RFK Stadium, Washington DC
Match report by Steven Goff of the Washington Post.
Match report by Craig Stouffer of the Washington Examiner.
Match report by John Haydon of the Washington Times.
Match report by Monique Walker of the Boston Globe.
Match report by Kyle McCarthy of the Boston Herald.
Post game notes & DC player ratings by Goff on his blog Soccer Insider.
Post game notes and DCU coach & player quotes from DC's official blog Behind The Badge.
Charleston Battery 1-1 Seattle Sounders - CB adv 4-2 on Penalty Kicks after Extra Time ends tied. - CB goal by . SS goal by .
Attendance: 3,798
Venue: Blackbaud Stadium, Charleston SC
Match report from the Charleston Post & Courier.
Post game analysis & photos by Adam Spangler of This Is American Soccer.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

At the top of today's entry I wrote that New England bailed on this game, and to prove it here are the players who took the field for them last night:
Doug Warren, Rob Valentino, Gary Flood, Amaechi Igwe, Wells Thompson, Shalrie Joseph, Pat Phelan, Khano Smith, Joe Germanese, Adam Cristman, Brandon Manzonelli (Brandon Tyler 75)
-Wow, now that is second string! DC played all of their regulars who were healthy or not suspended.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Wells Thompson - New England - two Yellow Cards
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Match & Score:
-Wed Sep 3
DC United v Charleston Battery - 6:30pm central on Fox Soccer Channel
Venue: RFK Stadium, Washington DC
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

MLS Scoreboard

Week 21
Matches & Scores:
-Thu Aug 14
Chivas USA v Los Angeles - 10pm on ESPN2
Venue: Home Depot Center, Carson CA
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

League Standings
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

MLS News


Luis Arroyave of the Chicago Tribune has a guest post on his blog The Red Card today. It's Charleston Battery midfielder Stephen Armstrong. When Charleston was in the Twin Cities last week and lost to my Minnesota Thunder Armstrong was seen by all the fans but not the referee to have grabbed a Minnesota player by the throat quite aggressively. He is very lucky to have gotten away with that cheap shot.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Orrin Schwarz of the Daily Herald with an article in the form of a letter to league commission Donald O. Garber complaining about referee Kevin Stott and his decision to give Shalrie Joseph a 2nd Yellow Card for slapping the ball out of Blanco's hands. By the end you realize it is sarcasm and Schwarz is actually advocating for more refereeing like this to clean up the game and get it moving. I agree.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Nick Firchau of the Southtown Star says the Fire expect new forward Brian McBride at practice on Friday. When he will actually play with his new team is up in the air.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~


Brian Forbes of the Denver Post reports that the Raps have indeed acquired veteran defender Cory Gibbs, after LA passed on him. But is he fit enough to play?
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Forbes of the Post also has a story on midfielder Mehdi Ballouchy, who is finally showing signs that he can play in this league.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~


Steve Sirk with his always action packed Notebook from the Crew website. No, it's not team propaganda. It's the good stuff. Real good stuff. And lot's of it.
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Shawn Mitchell of the Dispatch says the Crew are ready for the league stretch run.
-Mitchell with a few other team notes on his blog Covering The Crew.
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Mitchell with an article on the folks who make the pitch at Crew Stadium pristine.
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Dispatch columnist Michael Arace on new Crew Pat Noonan.
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Buzz Carrick of 3rd Degree give us his practice observations of FCD for this week. Day 1 for Jeff Cunningham.
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They laid all new turf at Pizza Hut Park this week. Their next home game is At Aug 30 v Columbus. That new grass should be looking sharp by then.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

The team is trying to pimp forward Kenny Cooper as "Super Cooper" and give away some corny "Superman" rip off t-shirts. (Same color scheme, just replace S with C.) Please guys, he is FrankenCooper. Let's rock with that one!
~ ~ ~ ~ ~


Pete Grathoff of the Star looks back at KCW coach Curt Onalfo's battle against Hodgkin’s disease. It was discovered on his 24th birthday.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~


Grahame Jones of the LA Times talks to players Davis Bochum and Landon Donovan about the loss of Gullit. And some on Donovan's future at the team too.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Phil Collin of the LA Daily News talks to new LAG temporary leader Cobi Jones.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~


Pat Walsh at looks at the new additions to the team and wonders if these are the guys to help turn it all around.
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James Edward of the Deseret News confirms that Cleetus Mathis is training with RSL, but no word on him actually re-signing with the team.
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Center Line Soccer collected questions from fans and presented them to Equakes defender Nick Garcia to answer.
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MLS Coaching Hot Seat

Now that Gullit is gone, the next one in line has to be Fernando Clavijo in Colorado (wow do they stink, yet seem talented). But the question has to asked, are the Rapids too cheap to fire a coach and have to pay him for the rest of the season while paying a new coach at the same time. They usually act that way, let's see what happens.
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MLS Rumor City - Don't Tease Me Bro!

Steven Goff of the Washington Post on his blog Soccer Insider reports that 2 more Gambians are in LA on a try out with the Galaxy.
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Brian Lewis of the New York Post on his blog Extra Time gives us the latest on the Red Bulls pursuit of one more striker before the transfer period ends on Friday.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Toronto are said to be interested in former Fulham centerback Philippe Christanval.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

MLS Expansion News

Matthew Gaschik of the Seattle Post Intelligencer reports that Seattle will announce that they have signed goalkeeper Kasey Keller for their debut in MLS next season.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

And Craig Stouffer of the Washington Examiner on his blog The Pitch reports that Seattle has also signed the twin brother of New England midfielder Sainey Nyassi, Sanna, to a contract for next season.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Got an email from Nick Laveglia of the Borough Boys who are rallying support for a 2nd team in the New York City area - specifically Queens. Here is the text of their latest accomplishments, that look great:
Since the inception of the Borough Boys Governing Board in January, we have made great strides to get a Major League Soccer team for New York City. With the help of City Council member Hiram Monserrate, an early supporter of a Queens soccer stadium, the Borough Boys met with Sports Commissioner Ken Podziba and key members of the Mayor’s economic development team to discuss bringing an MLS team to New York. City officials announced that they supported the concept, and agreed to follow up with League Commissioner Don Garber and a number of investors who had shown interest in the project to pursue the plan further.
We followed up this success with a short meeting with Commissioner Garber. He confirmed that he was meeting with City officials, and Ken Podziba specifically, to discuss a New York City MLS franchise.
The Borough Boys then put together a meeting between Fred Wilpon, the owner of the New York Mets, and Council member Monserrate, whose district includes Shea Stadium. We were amazed to find out that Wilpon’s team already has a detailed plan, including the financials, to build a soccer stadium on the grounds around Shea Stadium. Wilpon and his team understood full well the popularity of soccer in the neighborhoods adjacent to the stadium, and speculated on the huge success of not only an MLS team there, but the possibility of international friendlies throughout the year. Council member Monserrate spoke of the popularity of the sport among his constituents and the Queens community, and that it would be greatly appreciated by so many fans of the beautiful game. We all agreed to move forward together to make the project work.
Now the league has announced that it is accepting bids for two new franchises to be the 17th and 18th MLS teams. So, the Borough Boys are initiating Project 17, an effort to make sure that New York gets in at least one bid, and to convince the league that NYC would be the pride of professional American Soccer.
Expect announcements from investors and city officials in the coming days.
Visit us here to find out more about the story of the Borough Boys.
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Former MLS Player News

Juan Toja started today for Steaua in the Champions League. They drew 2-2 at Galatasaray. A very good result.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

USL First Division Scoreboard

Matches & Scores:
-Wed Aug 13
Montreal v Rochester
-Fri Aug 15
Carolina v Miami
Seattle v Puerto Rico
-Sat Aug 16
Rochester v Minnesota
Atlanta v Charleston
Portland v Montreal
-Sun Aug 17
Vancouver v Puerto Rico
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

USL First Division Standings

Standings (games played) (goal difference):
37 Puerto Rico (21)
(GD +13)
37 Vancouver (21) (GD +2)
35 Charleston (22)
32 Seattle (23)
31 Atlanta (21)
29 Rochester (22)
27 Minnesota (22)
- - - - - - - - -
25 Portland (23)
24 Miami (22)
22 Montreal (19)
21 Carolina (22)
(The top 7 teams advance to the playoffs.)
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Team USA News

On Thursday we should see the roster for the first group stage World Cup qualifier in Guatemala.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

USA U20 News

2 Friendlies this week in Sunrise FL
Matches & Scores:
-Tue Aug 12
USA 0-1 Guatemala - Guat goal by Dario Gomez.
-Thu Aug 14
USA v Guatemala
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Soccer In America

Mexican club Pachuca has set up a youth team in suburban Washington DC called Pachuca FC USA.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Americans In Europe

Oguchi Onyewu's team Standard Liege hosts Liverpool today in the Champions League, but Gooch will not dress due to a suspension from last years tournament.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Olympic Soccer News

FIFA's Olympic News Site
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Olympic Soccer Scoreboard

Men's Olympic Group Stage Matches & Scores:
-Thu Aug 7
Australia 1-1 Serbia
Argentina 2-1 Cote d'Ivoire
Japan 0-1 USA
Netherlands 0-0 Nigeria
Belgium 1-0 Brazil
China 1-1 New Zealand
Honduras 3-0 Italy
Cameroon 1-1 S Korea
-Sun Aug 10
Argentina 1-0 Australia
Cote d'Ivoire 4-2 Serbia
Japan 1-2 Nigeria
Netherlands 2-2 USA
Brazil 5-0 New Zealand
Belgium 2-0 China
Cameroon 1-0 Honduras
Italy 3-0 S Korea
-Wed Aug 13
Argentina 2-0 Serbia
Australia 0-1 Cote d'Ivoire
Nigeria 2-1 USA
Japan 0-1 Netherlands
Brazil 3-0 China
Belgium 1-0 New Zealand
Honduras 0-1 S Korea
Cameroon 0-0 Italy
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Men's Group Standings
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Advancing are 3 teams from Africa, 3 from Europe and 2 from South America.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Men's Quarterfinal Matches & Scores:
-Sat Aug 16
1 Nigeria v Cote d'Ivoire
2 Italy v Belgium
3 Argentina v Netherlands
4 Brazil v Cameroon
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

= = = = = =

Women's Quarterfinal Matches & Scores:
-Fri Aug 15
1 Brazil v Norway
2 Sweden v Germany
3 China v Japan
4 USA v Canada
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Advancing are 3 from Europe, 2 from North America, 2 from Asia and 1 from South America.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

England News

Frank Lampard has signed a 5 year contract extension with Chelsea.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Rob Hughes of the International Herald Tribune with an article on Manchester United manager Alex Ferguson, and potential ideas for life after Man U - helping young injured players win large settlements and righting the ship in LA. Hahahahahaha. That's a good one.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

The Guardian with their Premiership team-by-team season previews:
-Aston Villa
-Hull City
-Manchester City
-Manchester United
NEW-Stoke city
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

European News


Unless they meet in cup competition there will be no Derby du Nord this season after Lens was relegated at the end of last season. Damn, who will Lille have to hate now?
~ ~ ~ ~ ~


Bayern Munich will be without star striker Luca Toni when the season kicks off this weekend. He has a calf injury.
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Fiorentina's new forward pair of Adrian Mutu and Alberto Gilardino got off to a great start with a goal apiece in a 2-0 Champions League win over Slavia Prague.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

The father in law of Roma midfielder Daniele De Rossi has been murdered. He was shot twice. He has had violent run ins in the past.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Inter forward Adriano suffered a thigh injury that is thought to be severe. No guess has been made on how long he will be out.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~


League Standings after 17 of 30 rounds:
33 Rubin Kazan
31 Dinamo Moscow
28 Amkar Perm
28 Spartak Moscow
26 Samara Kryliya Sovetov
25 CSKA Moscow
25 Zenit St Petersburg
24 Spartak Nalchik
24 Lokomotiv Moscow
21 Terek Grozny
19 FK Tom' Tomsk
19 FC Moscow
17 Saturn Moscow
16 Luch Energiya Vladivostok
13 FC Khimki
11 YFK Shinnik Yaroslav
~ ~ ~ ~ ~


Samuel Eto'o played for Barcelona in the Champions League today, making a move to another big club very unlikely this season, seeing as he is now Cup-tied.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

UEFA Champions League

Arsenal will be without star midfielder Cesc Fabregas against Twente on Wednesday due to a hamstring strain.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Third Qualifying Round - 1st leg
Matches & Scores:
-Tue Aug 12
Fiorentina 2-0 Slavia Praha
-Wed Aug 13
Sparta Praha 1-2 Panathinaikos
Spartak Moskva 1-4 Dynamo Kyiv
Levski Sofia 0-1 BATE
Shakhtar Donetsk 2-0 Dinamo Zagreb
Anorthosis Famagusta 3-0 Olympiacos
AaB 2-0 Kaunas
Galatasaray 2-2 Steaua Buchuresti
Juventus 4-0 Artmedia
Brann 0-1 Olympique Marseille
Schalke 1-0 Atletico Madrid
Twente 0-2 Arsenal
Partizan Belgrade 2-2 Fenerbahce
Standard Liege 0-0 Liverpool
Guimaraes Vitoria 0-0 Basel
Barcelona 4-0 Wisla Krakow
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

2nd leg matches on Aug 26/27
~ ~ ~ ~ ~


Second Qualifying Round - 1st leg matches Aug 14. 2nd leg matches on Aug 28. Here are the matches.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

The match between WIT Georgia of Tbilisi and Rapid Vienna was canceled due to the Russian military invasion of Georgia. They will only play the 2nd leg.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

World News

Ravi Ubha of the Seattle Post Intelligencer with his weekly world soccer notes - the Beautiful Game.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

This Is The End

A picture of FC Dallas general manager Michael Hitchens with that dude who replaced the dude who replaced the irreplaceable Cliff Burton in Metallica.


Blogger kj said...

The idea of a second NY area team is one of the most ridiculous things ever. Maybe they should fix the team they have there first.

8:59 AM  
Anonymous Ken said...

I'm really pissed by the meltdown that was the US men's Olympic team. Inexcusable. And the whining exhibited by Adu and others showed a complete lack of maturity. That behavior is fine in the domestic leagues, but in major tournaments our players need to learn to keep their heads, shut up, and get on with it. I don't think I've ever been this disapointed in a US Nat team. I don't wanna talk about it anymore.

But Mutu's free kick goal against Slavia was sublime.

9:14 AM  
Blogger Andy said...

KJ agree completely. The orginal "flagship of MLS" franchise has shown nothing in support of the existing one why would you enter in a second lame duck in the market. A location not in the burrough's is stopping them from supporting it now, is that really the reason/push for adding another? They've gotten the league breaks, the players, the coaches, the living legends and still can't do it right, what would a second do better within MLS' limitations. It's got to be a better arguement than a location of stadium as the cause.

And in the spirit of the trail end of the post and the weekend - I'm just a dude, playing a dude, disguised as another dude who posts here from time to time.

11:19 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

to nitpick a little, the replay i saw of the dutch's free kick goal showed the ball rolling underneath the guy next to sacha. not sure who it was. nevertheless, i agree with your thoughts on how dumb it was to jump under the circumstances. so disappointed with the team performance. these poor decisions by the players, orosco and bradley's dumb yellow, etc, all reflect on coach nowak and by extension bob bradley. lets hope qualifications go better.


2:41 PM  
Blogger Alex said...

It's disappointing about the Revs -- but they also had superliga and regular mls games which is probably making them exhausted.

Why weren't the US Open Cup semis on tv?!

As far as the Olympics -- I really question Nowak's selections. Why only bring 4 defenders and force Edu to play in the back? And, why do they do short corners all the time, specifically against Nigeria when you have McBride as a target man, and their goalie was sketchy.

2:47 PM  
Blogger Free Bet said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

3:16 PM  
Blogger brucio said...

hey kevvo
here is the picture of the free kick
its quite obvious who jumped and where the ball went
sad to see

3:35 PM  
Anonymous randy said...

Comparing Orozco to Agoos is cold, cold, cold. Agoos had a career of bonehead plays--fortunately, we'll never need him like we needed Agoos. So, I am sure he gets more chances, but he'll run out rope way before Agoos ever (never?) did.

As always, I love and appreciate your work on the blog.


4:11 PM  
Anonymous Jameson said...

let's hope orozco simply learns from his massive blunder and it lights a fire in him to earn a spot on the senior team. i liked his play in the first two games.

7:20 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Kljestan sucks.

8:39 PM  
Blogger brucio said...

"the brilliant Anonymous said...
Kljestan sucks."

yeah, yer right, that goal against the Netherlands was terrible, any old anonymous mook could have scored that one

9:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

and any old anonymous mook could give the ball away too frequently and not know how to stand in a wall.

11:25 PM  
Anonymous KirkBhoy said...

Thanks for the Toja update Brucio.

8:11 AM  

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