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Monday Kickaround

While the USA-Brazil match dominated the spotlight over the weekend, there was plenty of other futbol taking place:

*In MLS late last night, Todd Dunivant's redirect in the first half helped Los Angeles end Houston's 11-game unbeaten streak, 1-0 at Home Depot Center. Donovan Ricketts made several outstanding saves for the Galaxy, which will have Landon Donovan back in the lineup soon. Earlier, Nate Jaqua had two goals and an assist as Seattle routed Colorado, 3-0, before 32,526 at Qwest Field. On Saturday, the Red Bulls' ineptitude continued with a 1-0 loss at Columbus, dropping their record to 2-12-4 with only 12 games remaining, and Real Salt Lake smashed Toronto, 3-0, in front of 18,188. A good week at the box office for MLS, which saw 15,000 in Columbus and 18,000 at HDC.

*SuperLiga group play wrapped up with two MLS teams and two Mexican clubs advancing to the semifinals. On July 15 at Foxborough, reigning champion New England will play Chicago and Tigres will face Santos Laguna.

*While the USA was on the world stage, Mexico was in San Diego struggling to a 0-0 friendly tie with Guatemala in front of 30,000-plus -- a subpar turnout considering the venue.

*In WPS, the Los Angeles Sol (10-1-4) continued its march toward the top seed and an automatic berth in the Aug. 22 championship game with a 4-0 rout of Chicago. Marta scored the final two goals. The match began at 10 a.m. because Home Depot Center needed to be prepared for a SuperLiga game that evening. Elise Weber scored in the 84th minute to lift St. Louis over Sky Blue, 2-1, and into third place in the congested standings. Washington visits Chicago on Wednesday. On a darker note, only two of the past 18 WPS games have drawn 5,000 spectators.

Tonight in USL2, injury-depleted Crystal Palace Baltimore (5-5-3) hosts Real Maryland (5-6) at UMBC Stadium in Catonsville (7:30 p.m.). John Barry Nusum, Alex Ughiovhe and Larry Mark are expected to undergo surgery soon and miss the rest of the season.

*The Ocean City (N.J.) Barons may be an amateur club that plays in a seaside resort, but they do have a nice following: Three buses of supporters are heading to Maryland SoccerPlex tomorrow night for the U.S. Open Cup match against D.C. United. I will have much more on the Barons and the latest from DCU camp later today.....

Video of the bar scenes at Confederations Cup viewing parties in the D.C. area yesterday.

By Steve Goff  |  June 29, 2009; 9:32 AM ET
Categories:  Confederations Cup , D.C. United , MLS , Mexico , SuperLiga , USL , Women  
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Next: Red Bulls in Europe

Comments

could it be possible that our Mexican-American friends in SoCal chose to watch the Stars & Stripes on tv instead of El Tri in-person?!

Posted by: la2stl | June 29, 2009 9:58 AM | Report abuse

I think fans of El Tri have finally had enough of friendlies against sub-par opponents for the sole purpose of profit.

Posted by: arswift24 | June 29, 2009 10:20 AM | Report abuse

>>
could it be possible that our Mexican-American friends in SoCal chose to watch the Stars & Stripes on tv instead of El Tri in-person?!>>

put away the pipe...

Posted by: gode | June 29, 2009 10:21 AM | Report abuse

BACK FROM EUROPE:

Loved watching the USA beat the Spaniards in a bar full of Spaniards while drinking only Budweiser.

Ready to return to full on Black and Red support after diverting by both Olympiastadions and the Allianz.

Posted by: VirginiaBlueBlood | June 29, 2009 10:25 AM | Report abuse

After sleeping on it, here's what I have (in sportsTV countdown format):

4 matches against Italy, Brazil (2), and Spain. The World Cup does NOT get harder than that.
3 straight matches where we played with heart. If we do that in the group stage and we'll make it through.
2 teams not in the final - Spain and Italy.
1 fan encouraged by the team's response to the first Brazil match and hopeful that we can sustain this level of play.

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | June 29, 2009 10:25 AM | Report abuse

I've never lept faster off the couch than after LD's goal on Sunday. When you love the sport as much as we do, it's just elation! What a game.

Posted by: EssEff | June 29, 2009 10:32 AM | Report abuse

...Loved watching the USA beat the Spaniards in a bar full of Spaniards while drinking only Budweiser...

Posted by: VirginiaBlueBlood | June 29, 2009 10:25 AM

Sounds like a great trip.

But isn't Budweiser a Belgian beer now?

Posted by: CDRHoek | June 29, 2009 10:36 AM | Report abuse

Loved watching the USA beat the Spaniards in a bar full of Spaniards while drinking only Budweiser.
==========================

Well dun lad.

Posted by: OWNTF | June 29, 2009 10:39 AM | Report abuse

Atlanta, in the middle of the week, outdrew San Diego by 20k for a Mexican friendly.

Boom, roasted.

How can you love drinking Budweiser? Maybe it was the original Bud, if you were in Germany?

Posted by: Reignking | June 29, 2009 10:43 AM | Report abuse

following 270:

...and a partridge in a pear tree!

Posted by: troy6 | June 29, 2009 10:43 AM | Report abuse

Goff: GREAT coverage of the USA-Brazil game in today's print edition. I highly recommend all check it out, if you haven't already. Absolutely beautiful. Coverage like this is one of the reasons I subscribe to the Post. Thanks, Sports Editors and Goff.

Posted by: nairbsod | June 29, 2009 10:47 AM | Report abuse

It was beginning to feel a lot like Christmas until the 46th minute.

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | June 29, 2009 10:48 AM | Report abuse

Don't be hating on the King of Beers, man. When you say Bud, you've said it all. And if you don't fancy Bud, then Schaefer . . . is the . . . one beer to have . . . when you're having more than one. But also, if you've got the time, Miller High Life has the beer. And, lastly, when you're out of Schlitz, you're out of beer.

U-S-A! U-S-A! U-S-A!

Posted by: OWNTF | June 29, 2009 10:52 AM | Report abuse

How can you love drinking Budweiser? Maybe it was the original Bud, if you were in Germany?

Posted by: Reignking | June 29, 2009 10:43 AM

Czech Republic - but point taken.

Budvar is delicious!!

Posted by: Kev29 | June 29, 2009 10:55 AM | Report abuse

Do I not care about Superliga because of the teams involved (not top teams, not DCU) or because FSC is not broadcasting it?

Posted by: LookingDangerous | June 29, 2009 10:55 AM | Report abuse

Do I not care about Superliga because of the teams involved (not top teams, not DCU) or because FSC is not broadcasting it?

Posted by: LookingDangerous

So many reasons -- #1 being the Confed Cup / USMNT play. I didn't even know about some MLS games last week.

Posted by: Reignking | June 29, 2009 11:00 AM | Report abuse

Actually, the original Budweiser is Czech:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/%C4%8Cesk%C3%A9_Bud%C4%9Bjovice

Posted by: universityandpark | June 29, 2009 11:02 AM | Report abuse

What a roller-coaster ride that was yesterday. Our guys were up 2-0 at the half and a part of me thought we could do this. But then there was that other part that kept saying - "this is Brazil, son". Our guys played Brazil yesterday, played them hard and battled with them true. They just ran out of steam. I congratulate them for their efforts, their passion and their heart. They did us proud.

For me the difference, as has always been the case, was the benches. BB holds off making subs because he knows what he has in reserve. Brazil brings on Elano and we bring on...Connor Casey? I hope this Gold Cup helps us determine what our bench is, because the Confed Cup has helped identified those who should be in the starting 11 less than ayear from now. Plue it looks like we may finally have a style of play.

BB really needs to use the time remaining to seriously evaluate the pool and bring in the players who can help the cause. This was a huge learning experience for the young guns who did not play, but I don't want any more free rides for guys to warm the pine. We need guys who can step in and contribute -- help sustain the level of play when they are call upon as subs.

Seeing our guys hurt and cry they way they did yesterday, says a huge deal. They did not want second place, no honorable mention. They WANTED this thing, and that's how the hunger is born. They have felt the sting of the loss. They had it and it was TAKEN from them. They will grow stronger, wiser and hungrier from this experience. This is how championship sides are born -- forged in the agony of defeat. For all the stick that have taken from this tourney, all the calls of "luck", or the need for a "foreign coach", or whatever...here's hoping we just witnessed the birth of a championship side. These guys can do it, with the right parts and support our team can compete with anyone out there right now.

We thank you guys. You did it for us, for the love of the colors, for the pride of the shirt and for the glory of your country. USA! USA!!

Posted by: Kosh2 | June 29, 2009 11:04 AM | Report abuse

It was beginning to feel a lot like Christmas until the 46th minute.

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | June 29, 2009 10:48 AM
_________________________________________

Of course it felt like Christmas, seeing all those people in the stands, all bundled up, on the equivalent of our December 28.

Posted by: universityandpark | June 29, 2009 11:13 AM | Report abuse

Here's a video of fans watching the game at the Mad Dog in the Fog in San Francisco.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=00asGNA4dBw

Posted by: CACuzcatlan | June 29, 2009 11:14 AM | Report abuse

The Post's midweek travel section just gave Ocean City a very favorable writeup. Perhaps the wrong team is hosting this match. Wouldn't y'all want an excuse to head to the beach?

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/06/23/AR2009062303330.html

Of course, you'd have to BYOB. Is it any coincidence that the Barons Web site slips in a mention of Circle Liquors, just outside the city limits, in its directions to the stadium?

http://www.sjbarons.com/OceanCityBarons/DirectionsCareyStadium/index_E.html

Posted by: universityandpark | June 29, 2009 11:17 AM | Report abuse

The Sol match at HDC actually drew nearly 5,000 people, which is noteworrthy, not just because it was in the morning, but because it was switched to the morning on short notice.

Posted by: universityandpark | June 29, 2009 11:27 AM | Report abuse

Budweiser is American as it gets overseas. No Sam Adams. No Microbrews. Budweiser was the last to fall from Coors and Miller soooo....

Posted by: VirginiaBlueBlood | June 29, 2009 11:28 AM | Report abuse

An American beer is that last thing that I would drink in Europe!

Posted by: Reignking | June 29, 2009 11:37 AM | Report abuse

I applaud VBB for his show of patriotism and courage of palate in drinking a Bud.

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | June 29, 2009 11:48 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: SportzNut21 | June 29, 2009 11:56 AM | Report abuse

Budweiser is American as it gets overseas. No Sam Adams. No Microbrews. Budweiser was the last to fall from Coors and Miller soooo....

Posted by: VirginiaBlueBlood | June 29, 2009 11:28 AM

I hear ya! I was just having a little joke about the A-B sale. Good for you sacrificing some taste buds by downing Buds while in Europe in a bar full of Spaniards!

Posted by: CDRHoek | June 29, 2009 12:02 PM | Report abuse

in Ireland i was shocked by how many people (not Americans) were drinking something called Budweiser Ice Cold which runs through a tap that is encased in ice and glows white. i could see the advantage of it on a 95 degree August afternoon, but since it was 55 and overcast in April i just shrugged and ordered more Guinness.

actual soccer comment: one thing that i think has gone under-mentioned is the fact that the team improved over the course of the tournament, and one of the reasons that it did is because guys got a chance to play together over several games and that's because Bradley (mostly) resisted the urge to make huge changes to the lineup. there was actually some chemistry that developed. and that's probably why he kept using the same subs - to try to make use of any developing chemistry. it's easy to keep pushing for the addition of Adu, Torres, etc., because we want to think that they'll step on the pitch and be everything that we want them to be, when in fact it's more likely that they would be worse than what we have out there.

that said, i'm totally on board with Beasley and Mastro being banished, and Bornstein and Kljestan relegated to the end of the bench for emergency use only. i think if we had Bradley, Edu, Cherundolo and Hejduk all available, we would be able to avoid relying on those other guys. but injuries are a part of life, so i hope those guys learn from this experience and continue to go out and get better so that they can be useful down the road if and when they are needed. overall, i feel a lot better about the state of the team and our depth. and i think Coach Bradley showed he's not completely in over his head here. it will be interesting to see how we do in our next batch of qualifiers (@Mexico, home vs. ES and @T&T). we should manage at least 5 points from those 3 games making the last 2 against Honduras and Costa Rica a bit moot, unless that CR match @RFK is for 1st place in the group, which we need to try to get at all costs to avoid a bad draw.

also, Dempsey getting the 3rd best player award? were the FIFA officials watching him play during group play? because he was awful up until that goal against Egypt. but i guess their judgment was clouded by the Premier League glow that Landon and Gooch don't have (probably the same reason that Howard was rewarded with the best GK award - that and the 20,000 shots he faced).

Posted by: dimesmakedollars | June 29, 2009 12:14 PM | Report abuse

. . . . up until that goal against Egypt to put us through, and that goal against Spain the #1 team in the world that hadn't lost in a gazilion matches and that goal against Brasil to put us up 1-0 ten minutes in.

Other than that he didn't do sh*t.

Posted by: OWNTF | June 29, 2009 12:26 PM | Report abuse

"also, Dempsey getting the 3rd best player award?"
Posted by: dimesmakedollars
==============

I got the feeling that Brazil and the US got many awards because we were in Johannesburg for the presentation (Fabiano got the Silver Ball.).

Dempsey had 3G 1A, tying him with Villa and Torres. But, according to the FIFA table and USSF, he ended up in 4th because he logged more minutes than the Spaniards.

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | June 29, 2009 12:41 PM | Report abuse

following 270:

...and an Eric Cantona

Posted by: la2stl | June 29, 2009 12:44 PM | Report abuse

@OWNTF - heh, when you put it that way...

but really, he was demonstrably bad in those first few games and seemed to not be playing with any heart whatsoever. it was only in the last 2 games where he started to play hard, get back on defnese, etc. if Spector doesn't find his head against Egypt, he doesn't even have these last 2 games to look good in. does scoring goals absolve all sins?

Posted by: dimesmakedollars | June 29, 2009 1:42 PM | Report abuse

FIFA's "Castrol Index" (I never heard of it before today) ranked Dempsey the second best player in the tournament.

http://www.fifa.com/confederationscup/statistics/castrolindex/faq.html

Posted by: OWNTF | June 29, 2009 1:52 PM | Report abuse

The Sol match at HDC actually drew nearly 5,000 people, which is noteworthy, not just because it was in the morning, but because it was switched to the morning on short notice.

=====

I was definitely impressed with that. Something else that's keeping WPS down is that many of the recent games have been on Wednesday evenings rather than weekends.

I'm going to be very interested in seeing how many people show up on Sunday when Marta comes to town.

Posted by: kevinwparker | June 29, 2009 2:36 PM | Report abuse

the Castrol Index, huh? will we soon see Adidas sponsoring a ranking of NASCAR pit crews?

i have no idea what sort of value to place on those rankings (other than "none"), but looking at their best 11, Donovan would have made it had they correctly identified him as a midfielder instead of a forward.

Posted by: dimesmakedollars | June 29, 2009 3:58 PM | Report abuse

The ratings are weighted by the position on the field and whether the player has a positive or a negative effect. So if a player has more passes than giveaways in the offensive 1/3 yet does absolutely nothing in the other 2/3s, his rating will be high. Defenders who don't get forward much (i.e. non-Brazilians) won't have high ratings. There are more defenders (6) at

Castrol rated Dempsey better than Kaka and the Iraqi GK as the best at his position. In other words, the Castrol ratings are stupid and useful only for my commenting on how stupid they are.

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | June 29, 2009 4:52 PM | Report abuse

Sorry, dotcom truncated after a "less than" sign.

There are more defenders (6) at a less than 4 rating than midfielders (0, the only good comparison group). Gooch had the lowest rating of all Ds. My speculation is that it's because he made many clearances that either went out out bounds or to an opponent at mid-filed, hence turnovers.

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | June 29, 2009 4:57 PM | Report abuse

Well Gooch su*ks too. They all su*k. Especially Dempsey. All of 'em except Torres and Adu. And Jermaine Jackson or whatever the Kraut's name is.

Posted by: OWNTF | June 29, 2009 6:31 PM | Report abuse

Second best player is the reason why Dempsey received silver boot. I guess you didn't watch the ceremony.

Posted by: DCUnitedFootball | June 29, 2009 6:41 PM | Report abuse

@DCUnitedFootball: Dempsey won the Bronze Ball (3rd best player in the tournament), not silver boot (there is no such thing).

Posted by: mediaman1976 | June 29, 2009 8:34 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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