MLS Daily Sweeper, 03.27: Josh Wolff, Punishment, Ugly Distractions

I am slowly killing myself…most slow down…

– One left over piece of business from the U.S. win over Poland, something I forgot to mention in my earlier post: I would take Josh Wolff over Eddie Johnson at forward.  Yeah, he’s older, but I think he is also a better player.  And, no, I am not kidding. J Hutcherson hints at why in his write-up for USSoccerplayers.com.

Soccer y Futbol reports that Deportivo Saprissa avoided a stadium ban for the, um, “monkey shines” their fans got up to when Mexico’s Atlante FC came to visit for the CONCACAF Champions Cup.  There’s stuff in there about how they intend to cope (pleading, mainly, backed by some security measures that seem pretty hard to enforce…so…hope is your strategy?).

– Luis Arroyave’s Red Card blog (finally) gives the latest on the Wilman Conde situation…and it ain’t good, at least not from his teammates’ point of view.  And, for the record, the fans aren’t wild about it either.  He also posted some nifty Q & A’s with plentiful of points of interest for Chicago (and Lost) fans – Part I and Part II.

– Finally, a couple sites posted “bold predictions” – and I say, good for them!  I liked what I read from 3rd Degree, but only got to the first couple on WVHooligan’s post before coming here.  Gotta get the hell offline, man….I’m going crazy….kinda like this guy (not soccer-related and long, but pretty worth the read).

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MLSLIVE.tv Is Up!

Yippee! I feel like that guy! We can all subscribe to more online soccer programming than any of us should need! Divorce, ho!

To be honest, the motivation for this post has at least as much to do with advertising the wonderfully scatalogical post I composed on this below as the announcement itself. And to, once again, give props to the woman at MLS HQ who answered my call.

Ah, off to waste money so’s I can waste time…and to think I almost missed the Crew’s opener.

Panicked by the Wait for MLSLIVE.tv? Check Back Tomorrow(?)

(Having made the mistake of searching Google images using the word “shitting” and with safe search off, I can only recommend against doing so in the strongest possible terms. I’m happy to have found an image but, Holy Hell, I didn’t need to see 95% of that.)

Two weeks ago, I endured a god-awful aggravation while trying to find out when the good folks in Major League Soccer’s video/audio section would make MLSLIVE.tv available. It turned me off from calling till the desperation got the better of me…something that happened about a half hour ago. Fortunately, I spoke to a wonderful woman this time around, who helpfully left her desk not once, but twice, to chase down the answer.

Here’s the word: the relevant parties are building the page today and subscriptions for MLSLIVE.tv should be available for purchase tomorrow – as in Friday, March 28. Here’s to hoping the support desk got good information. And, if she didn’t, I won’t fault the woman I spoke to for it. She did her job; it’s time for everyone else to do theirs.

MLS 2008 Western Conference Preview: Contenders, Dark Horses, Filler, and C.H.U.D.s

Having already unloaded all my caveats in yesterday’s Eastern Conference Preview, there’s nothing to do here, but get to it. For your convenience, here are the resources borrowed and applied in creating what comes below: WVHooligan’s most current list of off-season player movement and Climbing the Ladder’s best guess at starting elevens for Major League Soccer’s (MLS) Western Conference sides. The same labels will apply as well: Contender, Dark Horse, Filler, and C.H.U.D. For your convenience, here’s a copy/paste on the meaning of the terms from yesterday:

“The first two are pretty obvious – e.g. ‘Contender’ attaches to a team with a clear shot at the title, while ‘Dark Horse’ flags a team with the talent and depth to steal the title, but only provided good form and luck through ‘08. For ‘Filler’ teams, the playoffs are within reach, but the title…well, it ain’t gonna happen. Finally, ‘C.H.U.D.s’ – aka, ‘Cannabalistic Humanoid Underground Dwellers’: these are the teams that will suffer through a season in the confines of MLS’s cellars, only coming out from time to time to feast on the flesh of the living.”

So, let’s get to it…teams are listed in descending order from Contender to C.H.U.D. Continue reading

Poland 0-3 U.S. – Um, wow.

Here’s the funny thing about last night: we won the game. By that I mean, we have won games in the past – e.g. by the means of scoring at least one more goal than the other team – but the remarkable thing about last night was that we won. And this was in Europe and against a decent team and we looked better, collectively, certainly, but also, in some places, on an individual level. Well, all right.

As you’ll gather below, I’m just in love with the U.S. Men’s National Team right now – or the Yanquis, as I like to call them. Rather than bore you with a blow-by-blow run-down, I’ll bore you with several quick, hopefully interesting observations:

– Was Landon Donovan man of the match? Tempting thought. If nothing else, the man actually delivered solid set-pieces, several of them – a “holy shit” kind of thing all by itself. And I don’t care what anyone says or thinks, he did damn well on that breakaway in spite of missing the goal.

– Speaking of set-pieces, I would be freakin’ the frank out if I was Polish, or just supported their national team; they were all over the place on set-pieces. And against the U.S.

– If you’re wondering about the odd use of the word “frank” above, that was inspired by the show about the ghost hunters from Rhode Island that broadcasts on the Sci Fi Channel. Freaked out and unable to say “fuck,” one of the guys said something like “that is so frankin’ weird.” I just liked the sound of it. Back to the game… Continue reading