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The Good, The Bad, The Coyote Ugly

THE GOOD
*A pair of goals apiece from three Americans: Kyle Beckerman, Robbie Rogers and Landon Donovan.
*TFC, Canada's Team, winning on the road for the first time since the American holiday, Fourth of July, its only away victory last year.
*The wonderful passes by Andre Rocha and Adrian Serioux that led to Dallas's goals.
*Arturo Alvarez's finish in the first minute for Dallas, the seventh goal in the first 10 minutes in MLS this season and fifth in the first five minutes.
*David Beckham's service, much of it wasted.
*Fabian Espindola's flip celebration after scoring for RSL.
*Sasha Kljestan's 25-yard one-timer.
*Beckerman's boomer from 20 yards.
*Bouna Coundoul's juggling save at the goal line on Mansally's header.
*Tony Caig didn't concede a goal. I repeat: Tony Caig did not concede a goal. (What???)
*20,000+ at McAfee Coliseum in Oakland for the Quakes home debut.

THE BAD
*D.C. United's absent attack.
*Rice-Eccles Stadium turf.
*Donovan's early finishing.
*New York's missed chances in the penalty area.
*Greg Vanney's clumsy defending on Jeff Cunningham's winner for TFC.

THE COYOTE UGLY
*Brad Guzan letting Rogers's drive slip through his arms.
*Gonzalo Peralta, otherwise outstanding this spring, failing to shut down Espindola in the first half and heading the ball aimlessly for Robbie Findley's capper.
*Kljestan's stupid red card. (Remember last year's suspension?)
*San Jose rookie Shea Salinas's miss from four yards that would've earned the Quakes their first goal and first point.
*Attendance: 6,733 in Columbus, 8,309 in New England, 11,564 in Dallas, HDC three-quarters full (maybe) for Beckham.

Please add to the list!

By Steve Goff  |  April 13, 2008; 7:39 PM ET
Categories:  MLS  
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Next: USA in D.C.

Comments

HDC three-quarters full (maybe) for Beckham.
==========================================

But this was but one of 15 or more opportunities for people within hailing distance of HDC to see Beckham, barring any further injuries. Attendance-wise, Beckham is AEG's gift to every other MLS franchise.

Posted by: tri-village | April 13, 2008 7:59 PM | Report abuse

The Bad: Christian Miles

Posted by: andrew | April 13, 2008 8:02 PM | Report abuse

Bad to ugly: The quality of the radio broadcast when Limarzi took over the TV duties. (Isn't Dave Johnson available for TV work anymore, so Limarzi can be on the wireless where he belongs?)

Posted by: tri-village | April 13, 2008 8:03 PM | Report abuse

Limarzi is a great announcer. It's incredibly hard to announce on the radio. I thought he did a good job on TV, but tri-village is right, the radio broadcast really dove without him.

Posted by: Sean M. | April 13, 2008 8:13 PM | Report abuse

The Good - Kyle Beckerman and Fabian Espindola

The Bad - The Radio Coverage

The Coyote Ugly - The MLSNET.tv coverage

Posted by: tb | April 13, 2008 8:13 PM | Report abuse

The Ugly: Eddie Robinson's elbow. Please suspend this thug, MLS.

Posted by: Kurt | April 13, 2008 8:18 PM | Report abuse

Goff, you hit the spot again.

Posted by: arlington for United | April 13, 2008 8:25 PM | Report abuse

The Good: Goff
The Bad: Fenty
The Coyote Ugly: Fisher

Posted by: Glaucon | April 13, 2008 8:42 PM | Report abuse

Move LA!!!

Posted by: Edward | April 13, 2008 8:46 PM | Report abuse

The Ugly: MLS' continual insistence on bending the roster rules to favour the LA Galaxy, whose fans just don't give a damn.

Posted by: James | April 13, 2008 8:55 PM | Report abuse

Good: The 'Quakes now have 23 players on their roster, according to their Web site. When the season started, they didn't even have 18 players to fill the bench.

Posted by: tri-village | April 13, 2008 9:09 PM | Report abuse

Ok how about this...for the last 5+ years I have watched/cheered for DCU while watching on Directv - getting the Comcast ch 629. This Saturday I was blacked out????? When I question Directv I'm told that I am in the Cincy market, along with Sports South and MASN. For soccer my market is Crew????? I am in freakin North Carolina! How am I in Crew not DCU market? Why now? I didn't move, the two cities didn't move? I can't even get the Sunday night re-broadcast! I guess my DCU days are over. This is worse than Coyote Ugly. Someone reading this must work at the FCC---HELP ME!

Posted by: Keith in Charlotte | April 13, 2008 9:17 PM | Report abuse

I noticed this weekend's attendance woes too. In New England and Columbus the weather was pretty poor, but the Galaxy really have no excuse for such an empty stadium on a Sunday afternoon with Beckham and Donovan.

I was really optimistic about MLS' viability after last season, but this weekend made me doubt that.

However, its worth noting that many equivalent leagues around the world, in more soccer-friendly countries, have similar attendance numbers. In the Jupiler League (Belgium - probably on par with MLS) only the top three established names average about 20k.

Source: http://www.hln.be/hln/nl/949/eerste-klasse/integration/nmc/frameset/voetbal/belgie_klassement.dhtml

Then again, stadiums in Belgium are much smaller and so the perception of support is much better there.

Goff, how many does DCU expect for Thursday night?

Posted by: hoyanick | April 13, 2008 9:21 PM | Report abuse

The Good
The best soccer blog in the US of A focuses heavily on DC United

The Bad
United fans beginning to discover how much we're going to miss Ben Olsen

The Coyote Ugly
It's impossible for United fans to find one single (on field) thing to put under good after Saturday

Posted by: Kire | April 13, 2008 9:23 PM | Report abuse

Ok how about this...for the last 5+ years I have watched/cheered for DCU while watching on Directv - getting the Comcast ch 629. This Saturday I was blacked out????? When I question Directv I'm told that I am in the Cincy market, along with Sports South and MASN. For soccer my market is Crew????? I am in freakin North Carolina! How am I in Crew not DCU market? Why now? I didn't move, the two cities didn't move? I can't even get the Sunday night re-broadcast! I guess my DCU days are over. This is worse than Coyote Ugly. Someone reading this must work at the FCC---HELP ME!

Posted by: Keith in Charlote | April 13, 2008 9:26 PM | Report abuse

Irrespective of how poorly Peralta played in Utah, Vanney's tumble shows that DCU made a good move in central defense.

Posted by: Nogra Rover | April 13, 2008 9:30 PM | Report abuse

Good: Kljestan's goal (needs to be re-stated as it was a BEAUTY)

Bad: TFC no doubt getting all their goals on the website for goal of the week since the league pretty much does that every time.

The ugly: any of the TFC goals actually winning over Kljestan's which will certainly happen.

RE: LA's attendance: It was a noon kickoff and anyone living in LA knows that we kinda don't get up and out all that early. Most people I know don't have jobs that begin before 9am. Hell, I don't even start until 10:30am.
Also, it was 85-90 for the first time so I'm sure many people took the 'go to the beach' option rather than watch LA thrash the crappy expansion team...except that TFC didn't cooperate.

I've said it once, I'll say it again: NO MORE afternoon kick offs MLS!!!

Posted by: papa bear | April 13, 2008 9:45 PM | Report abuse

good: scheduling of international tournaments early in the season gave us some nice games to watch...

bad: MLS scheduling - DC with some serious air miles between domestic league matches and international duty!! teams in early season tournaments could receive a more favorable schedule from the MLS scheduling gurus... not a great way to bring out the best in our limited MLS rosters.

another bad (not cayote bad - yet): coaching decision vs. RSL?

Posted by: dan | April 13, 2008 9:48 PM | Report abuse

Keith, will getting the DirectKick package change your blackout issues? If so, I would strongly recommend it, many good teams this year. I am also "blacked out" down in Florida for the replay, but I did get to watch the game live yesterday

RE: Vanney...He had a terrible day all around. The stumble at the end was just the icing on the cake.

Posted by: apqjr | April 13, 2008 9:51 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: satan | April 13, 2008 10:01 PM | Report abuse

THE BAD
*Donovan's early finishing.

That's what she said.....

"The Office" fans will understand

Posted by: boda united | April 13, 2008 10:18 PM | Report abuse

THE GOOD: Fulham won.
THE BAD: Reading lost.
THE UGLY: Khano falling on his keister(sp?) late in the Revs game as the ball went straight through him.

Posted by: Tim Crawford | April 13, 2008 10:25 PM | Report abuse

Somewhere in either the Bad or te Ugly you should find room for Comcast's decision to not show the game 30 minutes tape-delayed... I guess it's my fault for not checking in with Goff for a few days, but really... I just set my DVR and forgot about it until this morning... Knew I wouldn't be able to watch it live last night.

Posted by: Soy United! | April 13, 2008 10:57 PM | Report abuse

The good: Well that's the last time we get to play on that disgrace of a field at RSL.

The better: Next time we go to Uta (blame the Lexus hybrids)we will tagle buttocks on natural grass and we shall crush them and embarrass them in thier house. However, not before they come to our house and we DESTROY them next week.

The bad: That thing called DCU's bench.

The ugly: Those who blame everything, save the reason why the sun rises in the East, on Gallardo.

The baddest of the worst ugly: MLS sabotaging the international ambitions of its top teams by stupidly scheduling them to play early and often (on the road) in the regular season. I swear this league's number one goal is to screw it's best teams (with the exception of the most royal gem). You win your conference? You get to play your first playoff game on the road. You earn an international berth? You get rewarded with a heavy opening schedule that launches you all over the place (on the road). IDIOTS!!

Posted by: Kosh | April 14, 2008 12:40 AM | Report abuse

Thanks for the YouTube post Satan!

I have no particular dislike for Landon Donovan but my god, what a miss! I've met, er eaten, Thanksgiving turkeys that could've put that one in the net.

Got a line on any recent Erpen karate kicks as well? lol

Posted by: Kire | April 14, 2008 1:34 AM | Report abuse

"In the Jupiler League (Belgium - probably on par with MLS) only the top three established names average about 20k."

I live in Belgium and watch Jupiler sometimes. Believe it or not, the quality of MLS play is noticeably better.

Posted by: Joe S. | April 14, 2008 2:29 AM | Report abuse

The Good: home game this Thursday at 8:00 pm on ESPN2 but I am there at the game
The Bad: Another game on Saturday. One day rest???
The Ugly: MLS scheduling OF. Nutsssss!!!

Posted by: td | April 14, 2008 7:18 AM | Report abuse

The Good: home game this Thursday at 8:00 pm on ESPN2 but I am there at the game
The Bad: Another game on Saturday. One day rest???
The Ugly: MLS scheduling OF. Nutsssss!!!

Posted by: td | April 14, 2008 7:18 AM
=========================================
The bad? DCU plays on Thursday at home against Cbus and then plays 9 days later (on a Saturday) at home against RSL.

The reserves play on Friday at 10am against the Cbus reserves.

I guess that I miss your point.

Posted by: JSF | April 14, 2008 7:55 AM | Report abuse

The LA attendance was fine. A Sunday afternoon and they get 20K. New England's attendance, however, was putrid. Maybe its the location, maybe its the team, maybe its the stadium and that pathetic turf? Who knows? What I do know is that its a massive problem and they need to address it immediately.

Posted by: Hoost | April 14, 2008 8:13 AM | Report abuse

Great thread. Can this become a weekly feature?

Posted by: FC | April 14, 2008 8:17 AM | Report abuse

The Ugly: A poor DCU effort and the obvious exposure of a lack of depth. No wonder Soehn uses the same 14 guys for important games.
The Bad: Soehn's decision to play Carvallo at RSL instead of the TFC game the previous Saturday (you're 100% right again Steve). Here's your first game Jose - artificial turf/concrete, no Martinez, and Peralta will have far and away his worst game. Hopefully, unlike Nolly, it's not you're only start.
The Good: Put away the fine whine United fans - this is just like the start of last year, except we have 3 more points at this stage. The schedule gets more resonable until the Champions League cranks up. Players will get use to playing together, a few will rise in the way Simms, McTavish and Burch came through last season, and Coach will get a more consistent line-up out there. Fans should try a little historical perspective and long-term thinking.
Also Good: Vanney wants Cunningham for a rematch in a steel cage next time.

Posted by: BillyBob | April 14, 2008 8:59 AM | Report abuse

At first glance my impression was that Jose had a howler. Then it was apparent the whole team did. Is there any other league in the world with such a crazy goal differential?

Posted by: peridigm | April 14, 2008 9:16 AM | Report abuse

The bad? DCU plays on Thursday at home against Cbus and then plays 9 days later (on a Saturday) at home against RSL.
The reserves play on Friday at 10am against the Cbus reserves.
I guess that I miss your point.
Posted by: JSF | April 14, 2008 7:55 AM
xxxx
I completely miscalculated. Thanks for the clarification.
Now we can say The Bad: my reading of the DCU games!

Posted by: td | April 14, 2008 9:33 AM | Report abuse

The Really Ugly is that Becks is getting more frustrated in his pre-written press quotes and that you can see that there's not enough quality on this team anywhere.

Let's face it - LA is/will be the MLS laughing stock for years but great for road games - "Come see your local MLS team kick the crap out of David Beckham and his merry band of MLS Reserves"

Anybody see what the betting lines in England or in Vegas are for how long it is until he walks away from his Los Angeles money and heads back to ANY team in England?

No one should be really bent out of shape about that. It's not a statement against the league. It's more a statement against just what a bunch of garbage has overtaken the Galaxy. There's not one person in that club other than MAYBE Cobi Jones who has any business being in professional soccer. ABC is going to LOVE the RFK side pounding Cosmos II - I'll put down a week's salary on 4-1 United over Galaxy.

Posted by: Virginia Blue Blood | April 14, 2008 9:50 AM | Report abuse

Well done as always. I second the GBU becoming a weekly if possible.

Posted by: Sean | April 14, 2008 9:50 AM | Report abuse

the good: the beautiful game

the bad: Garbers commentary on United's effort in the champions cup

the coyote ugly: the horrific field conditions for proper futbol at Salt Lake City.

Posted by: rob | April 14, 2008 10:28 AM | Report abuse

So the Galaxy is now getting slammed for its attendance? Give me a break Goff!!! Slam us for our pathetic backline and Donovan's early misses...that is not only understandable but also expected. But let's take a look at the attendance numbers for yesterday's games:

Galaxy v. Toronto 20,426
Quakes v. Fire 20, 038
Real v. DC 13,193
Dallas v. NY 11,564
KC v. Dynamo 9,627
New England v. Rapids 8,309
Columbus v. Chivas ?????

If the crowd looked sparse it was because of the hot weather. I spent the first 30 minutes of the game up on the concourse looking for shade like most of the people. When I got into my car after the game my thermometer said it was 104 degrees!

Posted by: howie1976 | April 14, 2008 11:42 AM | Report abuse

@howie1976

I'm sure the intent was why the crowd wasn't looking good for a game that invovled the Galaxy in what should have been a good 3 pt victory. I mean, this is the club that has touted it's average of 27,000 fans for a long time and should have all the reason for turn-outs with the Beckham running around the pitch.

I'm sure Goff was refraining from tearing apart the LAG because the media will in other forms all week and the people from across the pond are going to try to figure out where a beyond frustrated Beckham is going to beg to go in August.

Posted by: Virginia Blue Blood | April 14, 2008 11:47 AM | Report abuse

I can see Cronin being replaced by the Cuban goalie and LA being Cuba West.

Posted by: mason-dixon | April 14, 2008 12:14 PM | Report abuse

it was 104 degrees in Carson....

Posted by: frank | April 14, 2008 12:19 PM | Report abuse

howie1976: Not for a second do I believe the official attendance numbers announced on MLSnet's website. Maybe 20,426 were sold, but there's no way there were any more than 16-17,000 people at the HDC yesterday.

MLS has a history of inflating the numbers.

Posted by: James | April 14, 2008 9:44 PM | Report abuse

James:

Well I was at the game and I can honestly tell you that if you could have seen all the people in the upper deck, on the shady concourse and on the side where the cameras were not pointing, you would not be refuting the 20k number.

However, when I got home I watched the game on TV and it did look empty compared to how it really was.

Posted by: howie1976 | April 14, 2008 10:43 PM | Report abuse

20K+ at the HDC... i think you mistook bad attendance with that other team in LA...they couldn't get 20K for a non galaxy game if they GAVE away tickets. this was a 12pm start in 95 degree weather, on a day when the dodgers and lakers were playing @ home... if i'm not mistaken we outdrew the lakers... our attendance is fine... and yes galaxy fans give a damn... we are just very depressed right now. leave us be

Posted by: ricardo | April 15, 2008 2:25 AM | Report abuse

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