Soccer – The Most Important of Life’s Unimportant Things

March 16, 2008

Is it just me….

by @ 2:04 pm.
Filed under The Good The Bad and the Ugly

Is it just me, or is the human/machine hybrid theme in the new Puma ads just way too creepy and grotesque?

March 26, 2007


by @ 2:54 pm.
Filed under The Good The Bad and the Ugly

The Good:

The USA jumped all down Ecuador’s throat 3-1 Sunday in Tampa. The somewhat maligned Landon Donavan scored a hat trick, which should keep folks off his case for a while. To me, he’s one of those guys I love when he’s wearing the R,W&B, but despise when he’s playing for his club. Kind of like ol’ Cobi.

The Bad:

Showing no gratitude whatsoever for the Balfour Amendment, Israel seriously damaged England’s shot at the Euro Finals next year by holding them to a draw in Tel Aviv. Steve McLaren is less popular in England than Guy Fawkes right about now, and unless his boys hang a half-a-dozen or so on Andorra Wednesday, he’s probably gone. It wouldn’t hurt England’s chances if Wayne Rooney would grow up, too.

The Ugly:

The coach of Brazil’s Botafogo blamed the ball boys for his teams loss last weekend. Yeah, the ball boys. They were too slow getting the ball to his players, which caused them to lose. I’m very nearly lost for words by such stupidity. Hopefully he woke up Monday morning realizing what a poor excuse for an excuse that is. If he sticks by his statement, it may be time for him to go on Dr. Phil and get some help.

March 3, 2007


by @ 12:21 am.
Filed under The Good The Bad and the Ugly

THE GOOD: The first televised FC Dallas game of the season comes a week from this Sunday when they take on Da’ Crew at Pizza Hut Park. This is the first-ever Pioneer Cup game, in honor of the late, great Lamar Hunt. Fox Soccer Channel is airing it, bless there hearts, and I’m so there. Unless I just decide to road trip to Big D my own self and join the Inferno for some Spring-Training taunting of Jon Busch whoever Columbus has between the pipes.

THE BAD: I joined an outdoor soccer team (The Strikers) here in the Oklahoma City area. Our first match was a 6-2 loss. I played okay, in between long bouts of gasping and wheezing and trying to re-create some of the old DJ speed (and when I say old, I mean the last time I was fast was during the Reagan Administration), and find something resembling the touch and control I believe I once had (though memory, at my age, is always the first to go). Fortunately, it was a pre-season match, as it turns out, and we’re not yet mathematically eliminated from playoff contention.

THE UGLY: I was reading Andrew Fifields’s otherwise fine piece on Manchester United’s Chinese midfielder Sun Jihai when I read the following paragraph:

For Sun, there is at least a chink of light at the end of a long, dark season. His knee injury – which has resulted in him making just one Premiership appearance all season – has healed and he is in contention to feature in Sunday’s meeting with Blackburn Rovers.

Are you kidding me? a chink of light? What was that man thinking? And how long will he have a job once more people read this? And does the man not have an editor? Unbelievable.

March 1, 2007


by @ 11:21 am.
Filed under The Good The Bad and the Ugly

THE GOOD: Brad Friedel shuts out Arsenal to drag Blackburn Rovers kicking and screaming into the 6th round of the FA Cup.

It seems the guys from the Guinness commercials are running Arsenal these days.

“Leave your best goal-scorer out of the two most important cup ties of the season? BRILLIANT!”

THE UGLY: It was hardly a “brawl”, more like old ladies swinging handbags, but the last few minutes of the League Cup Final between Chelsea and Arsenal, combined with the very scary sight of John Terry laying rigid and unconscious on the ground, have to make that one of the ugliest games in the history of the competition.

February 5, 2007


by @ 9:48 pm.
Filed under The Good The Bad and the Ugly

FC Dallas has started training camp! Opening day is closing in on us. Gracias a Dios. Speaking of the greatest team on earth (well, the Metroplex, anyway), they held a 40-player combine last week, trying to rustle up some otherwise neglected talent. Great idea, and great execution of the combine. This is a new deal for the team, and is a huge leap in professionalism and scouting. Also, GM Michael Hitchcock has taken it upon himself to start an FC Dallas Blog. Unlike a lot of teams, which would just fill it with PR department crap, Hitch and Coach Morrow actually pack the blog full of inside information and juicy tidbits that a hardcore soccernerd like myself just can’t get enough of. Bravo, gentlemen.

Oguchi Onyewu was robbed, ROBBED I tell you, of a debut goal for Newcastle by none other than ol’ Charlie Blackmouth, his USMNT buddy. I saw the replay, and let me tell you, Gooch was only about three yards away from Carlos, and he drilled that ball right into his breadbasket. I’m guessing Bocanegra woke up Sunday with a little “swoosh” shaped welt on the inside of his thigh. Serves him right.

I heard there was some big football game on Sunday night, so I turned on CBS. Imagine my horror when I saw the players running around in spacesuits with some crazy pointy ball, and using their HANDS for cryin’ out loud. I wasn’t absolutely sure I wasn’t having a nightmare, because in the middle of it all I saw Prince playing guitar in the middle of the field, singing “Purple Rain”, and it was actually, like, in the rain. I need a vacation; I’m startin’ to lose it.

January 20, 2007

THE GOOD, THE BAD, AND THE UGLY: 20 January 2007

by @ 1:01 pm.
Filed under The Good The Bad and the Ugly

Dario Sala checks in with a post to the FC Dallas Blog. Dario and Margot are absolutely wonderful people; Cindy and I love them dearly. Everyone in section 116 is hoping he’ll be with FCD for years to come.

Petr Čech back in goal for Chelsea! He’s wearing the crazy-looking rugby helmet, but who cares? The guy almost died from a skull fracture a few months ago, now he’s back to his old self. He lost today (see below), but the goals he gave up can hardly be blamed on him. He is still aggressive and unafraid, and that’s all anybody was wondering about.

Andre Ooijer of Blackburn Rovers suffered a nasty looking leg injury when Manchester City’s Bernardo Corradi fell into the back of his knee. It was awful to look at. I haven’t heard any further news on the extent of the injury, but it can’t be good. Corradi isn’t at fault in the least, it was just one of those things. UPDATE: Ooijer is out for the season with a broken leg. His knee wasn’t damaged, however, so he should play again next year.

Chelsea, my darling wife’s favorite team, crash out to Liverpool 2-0. Defensive injuries aren’t helping, but it’s odd that they were unable to generate any offense at all.

January 19, 2007

THE GOOD, THE BAD, AND THE UGLY: 19 January 2007

by @ 2:40 pm.
Filed under The Good The Bad and the Ugly

The award for best name in the history of soccer has to go to QPR’s Shabazz Baidoo.

The two Irelands are making sounds about combining their national teams. Irish Rugby has already taken this step, and it has strengthened not only the international stature of the Irish side, but also hopes for Irish re-unification as a whole (though not without problems). It only makes sense that sports should be an instrument for peace, not strife, in the world. Something that brings so much joy to so many people has to have some positive karma left over to spare, right?

Bruce Arena and Eric Wynalda working together in the booth for USMNT broadcasts. Not that it won’t be entertaining, but it could lead to the first play-by-play vs. colorman fistfight in the history of broadcasting.


I’m not sure who the idiots are here. Is it Peter Kenyon and Roman Abramovich for alienating the best manager in all of football, or the English press for making up a story where there isn’t really a story? Either way, it’s ugly.

January 18, 2007


by @ 2:04 pm.
Filed under The Good The Bad and the Ugly

THE GOOD: Anytime Dan Loney writes a new column, it’s to the good. As a good Galaxy man, you just knew he’d have something to say about the whole Beckham deal.

THE BAD: My favorite under-achieving English side, Queens Park Rangers, are hovering perilously close to the relegation zone. 20th place in a league where 22-24 go down to League 1 (which, despite its name, is the 3rd tier of English football).

THE UGLY: Real Madrid chairman Ramon Calderon stabbed his players in their collective backs while speaking to a group of University students this week. He obviously didn’t think his remarks were oficialmente, as they say in Spain. Among the slurs, (as reported on . . . [H]e suggested that Beckham was “going to Hollywood to be half a film star,” and that his technical team “were right not to extend his contract, and that has been proved by the fact that no other technical team in the world wanted him except Los Angeles.”

“There is vanity, egoism and they all think they are superstars,” Calderon told the students when describing the Real Madrid dressing room.

Way to pull the troops together there, big guy. Did you forget, señor, that yours is an elected position? As I understand it, you’re employed at the pleasure of the stockholders of the club (read: fans). I’m sure they appreciate you gutting the team in the middle of the season. You and Fabio Capello have driven away Beckham, now you’re driving away Ronaldo, and the team is in third place, two points behind Seville for cryin’ out loud. Good luck in your next job.

January 17, 2007


by @ 9:29 pm.
Filed under The Good The Bad and the Ugly

Brucio, everyone’s favorite soccer blogger, is feeling better and posting again on the indespensable DuNord.

Preki, everyone’s favorite former National Team player, has been named coach of Chivas USA. If he’s as brilliant on the sideline as he was on the field, beware The Goats this season.

David Vanole, the goalkeeper during the United States National Team’s run-up to the 1990 World Cup, died at the age of 43 Monday. He was the first ‘keeper I remember seeing back then, as I began to watch and appreciate the National Team. Requiem aeternam dona eis, Domine; et lux perpetuam luceat eis.

Championship side Birmingham (say it: “birminum”) waled on poor Newcastle 5-1 in the FA Cup 3rd round replay today. The Magpies were at home, too. Heads will roll. Soon.

November 17, 2006


by @ 2:13 pm.
Filed under The Good The Bad and the Ugly

THE GOOD: MLS Cup weekend was a blast. From the Meet and Greet on Friday evening to the post-game tailgate, the whole thing was great. Yours truly played in the Supporter’s Cup on Saturday morning, valiantly minding the goal and leading Team Sala to the finals, only to see a comined team of Houston and New England supporters triumph by a score of 4-1. So I could barely move all day Sunday without shooting pain in all my extremeties? It was soccer!

At halftime of that momentous battle, I asked Dario Sala (who, I guess, needed a few laughs and stopped by to watch), if he had any tips for the second half. He just shook his head, sadly, and said “No, but, DJ . . .you can do better than that . . .”  Then he busted out laughing. I laughed so hard I almost spewed Gatorade on the man.

I met Bruce McGuire of Du Nord! What a great guy. I could have spent hours and hours just chatting with him; I hope I get a chance to do just that one of these days. I saw my old buddy Dan Loney, too. I’m telling you, get me, Bruce, and Dan together talking soccer . . . well, I’m just saying there hasn’t been a more amusing trio in Texas since The Three Stooges appeared on Austin City Limits.

I also met Goalkeeper of the Year Troy Perkins at the Supporter’s Summit. You just can’t imagine a nicer kid. I think I can safely call him a ‘kid’, not out of disrespect, but just because I’m at the age (to my chagrin) where I’m old enough to have sired most of the young stars of the league. Not that I did, mind you . . .

Eric Wynalda was very gracious with his time, chatting with a group of fans and signing an autograph made out to the only Chicago Fire fan in the Oklahoma City metropolitan area, Mike Segroves.

Congratulations to the Inferno for planning and pulling off the whole weekend. It took a lot of volunteer work to get all the pieces together, but everyone in attendance agreed Dallas fans have set a very high bar for future supporter’s groups who find themselves hosting MLS Cup activities.

THE BAD:  For the second year in a row, the game was pretty much an afterthought for me, because, let’s face it, my boys weren’t in it.

THE UGLY : Watching your arch-rivals celebrate a championship on your very own home field . . . it’s like eating lots of re-fried beans and washing them down with a case of colyte.

November 8, 2006


by @ 9:51 am.
Filed under The Good The Bad and the Ugly

The Good: Chelsea got beat down by Tottenham last weekend, and that means someone other than Chelsea holds first place in the Premiership. Of course, that someone is Manchester United, so it’s not a perfect world by any means.

The Bad: BOLD MLS CUP PREDICTION – I hate to say this, but I believe Houston Dynamo are going to be the next holders of the Rothenberg Trophy. I’d prefer the Revs to get their first championship – goodness knows the longsuffering fans in New England deserve it, and they have the talent. In any case, I think it will be an entertaining match, with, I’m guessing, at least 5 goals scored. I’ll be going to Frisco for the festivities, Lord willin’ and the creek don’t rise, so I should have a report on the whole deal early next week. Of course, I’m also planning on playing in the second annual Supporter’s Cup tournament on Saturday, so I could very well be in traction early next week.

The Ugly: The Colorado Rapids announced this week they’ve sold naming rights to their new stadium to (drumroll, please): DICK’S SPORTING GOODS. Sometimes, there is justice in the universe.

November 5, 2006


by @ 9:29 pm.
Filed under Major League Soccer, Miscellany, The Good The Bad and the Ugly, The International Game

The Good: Congrats to the New England Revolution for getting to MLS Cup for the 3rd time in their history. The last two times they’ve lost to LA Galaxy 1-0. Well, no Galaxy this time, so perhaps this is the year. I’m hoping if they win Mr. Kraft will spring for a new stadium and get them out of Foxboro forever. I had considered selling my tickets to the game when Dallas got knocked out, but I think I’ll go. Let’s face it, it’ll proabably be the last time we’ll see Clint Dempsey in an MLS uniform. And, I like the Revs better than any other team in the East, and seeing them win would assuage (a little) the pain of not seeing my own team there.

The Bad: The Rapids were unmasked for the overachieving, prima donna pretenders that they are. Enjoy your winter.

The Ugly: What is the story with this?

Ugliest Soccerball Ever

The English Premier League is actually using this as their winter “high visibility” ball. Did they lose a bet to someone at Nike?

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