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Friday kickaround: MLS zeros, Galaxy-Crew blackout, Beckham is back, Freedom's Facebook and roster issues, Americans abroad

*The scoreless streak has reached 206 minutes. No, not D.C. United's. We're talking about the MLS drought: the last 26 minutes of Sunday night's match between the San Jose Earthquakes and Houston Dynamo, and then a pair of 0-0 mid-week results. Real Salt Lake's Robbie Findley was the culprit Thursday night at Qwest Field with a poorly directed penalty kick that Seattle Sounders keeper Kasey Keller blocked and a bad miss at the near post.

The MLS scoring rate is down to 2.35; last year it was 2.54. RSL is the only team in the league averaging more than 1.5 goals per game (1.54). Tonight, two of the league's lowest-scoring clubs meet at Home Depot Center: Chivas USA and the New England Revolution.

*On the bright side for RSL, Kyle Reynish stood in admirably for injured keeper Nick Rimando; the club drew even with the Los Angeles Galaxy atop the Western Conference standings (although the Utah club has played one additional match); and General Manager Garth Lagerwey, a former United TV color commentator, received a new contract.

For more.....

*I know it's almost impossible to alter the national TV schedule at this point, but it's a shame the Galaxy-Columbus Crew showdown Saturday night is available to viewers outside SoCal and Ohio on the league's online/pay package only.

*Will David Beckham make his 2010 debut Saturday? Next weekend against United is more likely.

*Lisa De Vanna of the Washington Freedom is the latest athlete to find trouble on the Internet machine. She has missed most of the season with a broken leg. Meantime, for Saturday night's critical WPS match against the Atlanta Beat at Maryland SoccerPlex, the Freedom will be without three starters: Sonia Bompastor and Lene Mykjaland, who are with France and Norway, respectively for World Cup qualifying, and Sarah Huffman for a red card suspension.

*Americans abroad:
MF Jermaine Jones and Schalke at Hoffenheim (2:30 ET, GolTV)
MF Sacha Kljestan and Anderlecht at St. Truiden

By Steve Goff  |  September 10, 2010; 9:33 AM ET
Categories:  Americans Abroad , Beckham , Freedom , MLS  | Tags: MLS, WPS  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: D.C. United's Bill Hamid to have shoulder surgery; Andrew Quinn released, Chase Harrison signed
Next: Gulati discusses U.S. World Cup bid


I wonder how Brian Ching feels when he watches the RSL highlights. I read Usain Bolt wants to try soccer. Maybe Bob Bradley should sign him up. He can certainly "get in behind" and "open up defenses."

Posted by: OWNTF | September 10, 2010 9:48 AM | Report abuse

i had mls direct kick with direct tv, but just switched to FiOS. does anyone know if it's possible to buy individual games to watch on the "MLS match day" site? any other advice besides atdhe or some such site? thanks!

Posted by: birdynumnum | September 10, 2010 9:52 AM | Report abuse


Posted by: biga116 | September 10, 2010 9:55 AM | Report abuse

Kasper should be fired for allowing Beckham's swift recovery...

Posted by: JkR- | September 10, 2010 9:57 AM | Report abuse

Ah that pesky internet machine, always getting athletes in trouble. I think De Vanna was just trying to get her page hits above Heather Mitts' and Leslie Osborne's.

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | September 10, 2010 10:51 AM | Report abuse

Tony Limarzi for United GM!

Posted by: benonthehill | September 10, 2010 11:00 AM | Report abuse

Maybe DeVanna should have looked at the 2nd most read technology article in The Age (the one her news no doubt displaced at #1, see list on left side). It was titled "How the Internet Makes Us Stupid."

Garth Lagerway was right under DCU's noses in the broadcast booth for how long?

Conclusion - Payne is spending too much time on the Internet.

Posted by: cmjhawk86 | September 10, 2010 11:05 AM | Report abuse

The red card received by Huffman was totally uncalled for-she and one of the red stars players got their feet tangled up both going for the ball in the last match. The ref gave Huffman a 2nd yellow card .Ted Unkle is a poor ref, and never called any of the red star players when they were fouling Wambach. I guess the ref was the only 'winner' in the last FREEDOM game.

Posted by: 10bestfan | September 10, 2010 12:14 PM | Report abuse

2.35 Goals per game? Ouch. That's less then the dreadfully defensive French League 1.

Posted by: mizage | September 10, 2010 12:19 PM | Report abuse

Seems like MLS is high on athleticism that translates to strong defense. Relatively, the league lags behind on attacking creativity, ball skills, and finishing prowess.

In addition, the refs seem to channel the EPL. Creative players are not protected. Defenders are allowed to play physical and hack at players' ankles from behind without fouls being called (this is not even allowed in EPL). Ten yards are almost never given on set pieces.

The result is low goal output.

Posted by: footiefan101 | September 10, 2010 12:54 PM | Report abuse

would love to see MLS award 0 points to each team involved in a 0-0 game. There are certainly instances of exciting 0-0 matches, and yeah, you can have an overall dreadful match that ends 1-1. But this league needs goals to continue to grow, and you sure wouldn't have to watch RSL kill the last minutes of the match last night if they weren't going to get anything for their efforts.

Posted by: foul_throw | September 10, 2010 12:58 PM | Report abuse

What would Blatter have to say about the lack of scoring?

Posted by: Reignking | September 10, 2010 1:37 PM | Report abuse

What would Blatter have to say about De Vanna's Facebook page?

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | September 10, 2010 1:44 PM | Report abuse

IMHO, the reason for the low goals per game average is that the refs do almost nothing to protect attacking, creative forwards from being held, kick (usually from behind), tripped, or shoved to the ground. If players were called for bandolier-type arm-locks around the chests of attacking forwards, that alone might open the game up wee bit.

[But actually calling a foul and foul would, of course, make too much sense.]

A Cynic

Posted by: edmundburke247 | September 10, 2010 2:12 PM | Report abuse

"Lisa De Vanna of the Washington Freedom is the latest athlete to find trouble on the Internet machine."

This thread is useless without pics.
/I know it's not a thread, but still...

Posted by: DrBeaker | September 10, 2010 2:29 PM | Report abuse

KP had Garth right under his nose as a part-time team broadcaster and could have hired him at any time over the years 2006 - 2008 when he made his choice that Kasper was better qualified for the GM position.

It took a true sports visionary like Dave Checketts sitting a lot farther away from Garth than KP did to realize that intelligence has a role in a position like this. (Duke vs Maryland, GU Law vs. R. J Bentley's - those are the match-ups)

KP was becoming ill, ultimately needing heart surgery in early 2008, as the summer of 2007 worn on when Garth was hired by RSL. KP was more impressed with the quality of the spongebaths that Kasper was giving him than he was in his brain power.

The bad personnel decisions that drove DCU into the ditch are not confined to the playing field.

As Kasper likes to say, "It's a result business."

Posted by: lgm6986 | September 10, 2010 3:55 PM | Report abuse

Um, didn't the Matildas pose nude as a group for a calendar shoot 10 years ago? I think someone in a position of authority in Australia is being a little silly.

Posted by: christopher_a_metzler | September 11, 2010 11:47 AM | Report abuse

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