MLS Week 23 Perspecto-Scope: Of Cream, Milk, and Curds

I’ve been struggling to come up with a theme for the past week’s action in Major League Soccer (MLS).  “Big Cities Rising,” “Eastern Conference (and Chivas) Rising”: none of them quite captured the essential dynamic of the week with the due touch of “pizzazz!”  And writing out “DC and Chivas are really good; everyone else, not so much” accurate as it is, doesn’t exactly sparkle as a headline.

Reality is reality, though, and the two-game, four-point performances turned in by both DC United and Chivas USA are the stories of Week 23.  Add the fact that these teams tied one another to open the week and it’s hard to shake the sense these two float delicately above the rest, the Cream of MLS.  While several relevant teams also pulled out wins this weekend, each contained some admixtures of dirty, disgusting milk (sorry; got tripped up in my metaphor; cream does rise, right?).  And that’s when the title, for what it’s worth, came to me. Continue reading

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Daily Sweeper, 08.23: Denilson; U-17s – Dude, We’re Gonna SUCK in 2018!

– Well, lookie there.  Looks like FC Dallas finally landed a Big Fish to match their little one (that’s Carlos Ruiz):  ESPN reports that one-time world-record signing (suck it, Real Betis!) Denilson will join FCD for the season stretch (and, presumably, beyond; details are thin).  While I’m confident he’ll be a (canyon-sized) step above the average Major League Soccer (MLS) player on the technical side, I think the word “underwhelmed” best describes my reaction on the few occasions I saw Denilson play.  That said, I’m going from a small sample; I think Denilson will do fine here, if not even better.  (A personal note: Kick some ass, son.  Lift the curse those poor bastards have labored under for so, so long.)

In a related note, WVHooligan points to the ugly necessity of letting someone else go – specifically, a senior international.  That short list includes Marcelo Saragosa, Adrian Serioux, Pablo Richetti, and Carlos Ruiz (holy shit!  Juan Toja is a super-bargain).  WVH figurs Saragosa will be the unlikely departee, but, if I were FCD coach Steve Morrow, I’d give serious thought to off-loading Serioux.  Forget the injuries: he’s been pretty underwhelming while he played.

– A loss to world power Tunisia has the U.S. U-17s on the brink of elimination in…whatever the hell tournament they’re competing in.  Like (I suspect) a number of people, I didn’t have a chance to see this one, which makes the fact that Project 20?? took the time to rate the players all the more valuable.  I, on the other hand, have nothing to add to what I wrote in the title…except to say I’m hiding a crippling fear behind a veil of sarcasm.

– Kasey Keller is headed to Fulham.  Good stuff for Kasey – who I like so much that I drove on the street named in his honor – but this still strikes me as kinda wacky.

– Sideline Views pulled up some interesting (read: crushingly depressing) stats on the Kansas City Wizards’ drawing power.  Second-best?  For the year?  Crikey….