Tuesday, June 09, 2009

USA 2-1 Honduras - CONCACAF World Cup Qualifying

Here are My Thoughts from the game:
-First of all, I had a great weekend staying in Chinatown and seeing two soccer matches - Chicago 0-1 Houston and USA 2-1 Honduras.
-I got to see loads of people I know, but didn't meet nearly enough new people due to the insane chaos that surrounded the "Honduras home game". It was next to impossible to find anyone - even hard to find my own friends at the game. Wow.
-My traveling crew from the Twin Cities was fantastic as always. We hit some fine pubs and eateries during our weekend: Elephant & Castle, Wishbone, Villains and Lucky Happy Dim Sum.
-The Honduran fans were extremely friendly, and I even met some from the Twin Cities. I really hope I can meet up with them around here and cheer their team on as they beat Mexico!
-And here I am in the crowd, as captured by the TV camera, surrounded by friends:


And now the big match:
-Sat Jun 6
USA 2-1 Honduras - USA goals by Landon Donovan(PK) & Carlos Bocanegra. Hon goal by Carlos Costly.
Venue: Soldier Field, Chicago IL


The du Nord 3(12) Stars of the Game:
3. Jozy Altidore, Conor Casey, Tim Howard, Clint Dempsey & Pablo Mastroeni - Solid & hard working leading to a great team effort.
2. Carlos Bocanegra, Landon Donovan & Benny Feilhaber - the 2 goal scorers and the 2nd half spark plug.
1. Oguchi Onyewu, Jonathan Spector, Jonathan Bornstein & Ricardo Clark - all 4 had top notch flawless performances, especially defensively.
-Beasley & DeMerit were the other two Americans who played, and I only left them off the list because they didn't get enough minutes to qualify for me.
-Dempsey makes the list even though he made the huge mistake that led to the Honduras goal.
-Mastroeni makes the list for a solid half of play that I did not notice until I watched a replay of the game.
-Feilhaber makes the list for a great contribution as a second half sub who brought a lot of energy and positive play.


Special note to John Harkes: The name is "Mass-trow-en-ee", not "Mass-tree-on-ee", you idiot! Where did you go to school? The Christian Miles School of Pronunciation?


Carlos Bocanegra scored the game winning goal on a diving header that Clint Dempsey knocked down in the box from the far post off a Landon Donovan corner kick. My friend Neal loooooooooves to scream "Diiiiiiviiiiing Headeeeer" every chance he gets, so he must be very pleased by this one.


Bocanegra appeared to tweak a hamstring muscle shortly after scoring that goal,and was subbed out. That does not bode well for the start of the Confed Cup next weekend. I do not expect to see him in the starting 11 in South Africa.


Landon Donovan was the player flying into the penalty area when Honduras centerback Mario Beata was flagged for a handball that led to the PK.


While in the stadium I thought both Mastroeni and Donovan looked fairly bad during the game. But re-watching the game late on Sunday night it was obvious they both played really well. Mastroeni was only overshadowed because Feilhaber was just a lot more effective in the second half going forward.


I just have to call that referee The Stickler! Every single free kick was only allowed to be taken from the exact spot he dictated! Have you ever seen a ref do that? His given name is Mauricio Morales, and he is from Mexico.


The ref did screw up one call quite badly, and that was the non-call on a foul in the box on Ricardo Clark in the 38th minute. Clark was racing toward goal with the ball at his feet and was clearly hacked down. That was definitely a penalty. I have no idea how that goes uncalled by The Stickler or the assistant.


Landon Donovan now has 39 all time goals for the USA, with 11 of those coming in World Cup qualifiers. An oddity of that stat is that 7 of his last 9 goals have come via the Penalty spot.


I thoroughly enjoyed myself singing along with "We're An American Band" that was blasted through the PA system right after the game ended! It should have been louder! That tune if one of my fave childhood anthem. I bought the 45 when it came out, and it was not only in a picture sleeve, but it was on gold vinyl! Yes!


And a final note - I heard the broadcast crew say that in Conor Casey's last 24 MLS games played he has scored 22 goals. That is incredible! I think if he get's a couple more games under his belt with the USA to get familiar with he teammates he could explode offensively. How cool would that be?!?!


Let me leave you with this:

The USA team has already flown to South Africa for the Confederations Cup that kicks off on Saturday. Here is the 3 game USA group stage match schedule:
-Mon Jun 15
USA v Italy - 1:30pm Central on ESPN & Telefutura
-Thu Jun 18
USA v Brazil - 9:00am Central on ESPN2 & Telefutura
-Sun Jun 21
USA v Egypt - 1:30pm Central on ESPN2 & Telefutura
-I will be at the Sweetwater watching all 3 of these, and hopefully more games (when our team advances).


Blogger timpramas said...

Clark as fouled int he box and a penalty should have been called. Clark, however, took one touch too many. He should have shot or passed instead of taking one more touch toward the end line. I think the referee did not call the penalty because he thought Clark was about to lose possession. From the ref's angle, he might have been worried that Clark was diving or exaggerating the contact by falling down as the ball was getting away. By the way, other than that missed call, I thought the game was weel-officiated and the the hexagonal games involving the US have also been well-officiated.

9:41 AM  
Blogger brucio said...

that is where the assistant steps in and sets the referee straight

if it was a foul at midfield, then it is a foul in the box, and to my eyes in person and later viewing from dvr it was a clear foul - the defender made little effort to play the ball

12:09 PM  
Blogger ectomes said...

Wow -- I'm in that screencap with you, Bruce. You can't see my face; just my hand clutching the white, plastic beer cup.

Thanks for posting it!

12:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Brucio wrote,
"Special note to John Harkes: The name is "Mass-trow-en-ee", not "Mass-tree-on-ee", you idiot! Where did you go to school? The Christian Miles School of Pronunciation?"

Brucio, aren't you the guy who goes ballistic whenever someone corrects YOUR spelling or YOUR punctuation ?

If you're not concerned with the details of spelling and punctuation, then why should you be giving special attention to the detail of someone else's pronounciation ?

1:56 PM  
Anonymous EricJ said...


not to speak for him but, HEARING someone butcher a name is much more aggravating than seeing it spelled wrong on paper.

just a thought.

2:41 PM  
Blogger ASAM Travel said...

is it just me or does harkes seem to have a hop in his step when the usa are losing? almost like he's smirking.

3:25 PM  
Blogger pecochran said...

I thought Clark's was a total dive from inside the stadium. Reading recaps, it seems as though I was wrong. But from my angle, it certainly didn't look like a definite penalty in real time.

3:34 PM  
Blogger brucio said...

dear anonymous loser who wrote: "Brucio, aren't you the guy who goes ballistic whenever someone corrects YOUR spelling or YOUR punctuation ?"

uh, no

i have some fun with it and make jokes

then i try my best to correct them while never admitting the mistake in the first place

also, and this is something you might not know.....

i am not a professional paid ridiculous amounts of money to be an analyst on espn coverage of major soccer games in america

i am just a big dumb dude who shoots his mouth off on a blog

big difference

but thanks for the words

4:14 PM  
Anonymous Neal said...

I agree, no PK on Clark. He looked to go down to easy, from my view, standing next to Brucio. My review on video two days later didn't change my mind on initial reaction.

(difference in opinion is good, otherwise we'd all be betting on the same horse)

4:25 PM  
Anonymous Doug said...

I agree with Brucio about Harkes' inability to pronounce Mastroeni's name correctly. It's not a difficult name and he botches it every time! It's mind-boggling. While I am on my soapbox, another player with a simple name that is frequently mispronounced is (Brandon) Prideaux. It's pre-DOH, not pru-DOH. I'll go away now, thanks.

8:12 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just find it amusing that Brucio cannot handle it when anyone points out when he misspells people's names, or other words.

When someone points out his mistakes, Brucio always lashes out at them out of embarrassment.

He is a middle-aged man, yet he has still not learned how to use an apostrophe. He doesn't know how to tell the difference between the plural form VS the possessive form.

How sad. :(

3:53 PM  
Blogger brucio said...

at least this embarrassingly pathetic middle aged guy signs his name

4:29 PM  

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