Thursday, April 02, 2009

See, the sky didn't fall. USA 3-0 over TnT who had NOTHING. Stern who? Was he even out there?

Three Stars of the Game:
3. Pablo Mastroeni - took all the shaky guess work out of the midfield.
2. Landon Donovan - people complain all the time about his contributions, so all he did was set up all 3 goals.
1. Jozy Altidore - and all Jozy did was score all 3 goals. Sure he missed his easiest chance of the night in the first half, but he felt that pain stronger than he felt the joy of scoring the others. That is the sign of a hungry player who is never satisfied. Glorious.

At least Jozy's on-loan team Xerez acknowledged his presence with the USA last night. They gave him an article on their website crediting his "hat-trick". You think maybe they might let him put on a team shirt and sit on the bench NOW? Honestly, I wouldn't count on it.

27,959 in Nashville - not bad at all. Good job Tennessee!

My dream of DaMarcus Beasley as the USA left back got another shot last night. He did OK. But his speed is definitely not what it used to be. Carlos Eduardo burned him badly one time, but Bocanegra was there to clean up the mess (unlike on Saturday when no one was there to help out). Let's see what happens next game. I trust Beas more than Pearce, but even though I love the idea, I am not convinced it's the right move yet.

Brian Ching had another very good game up top. He took one hell of a beating, but held that ball for his teammates over and over again. And that flick on backwards header to spring Donovan to cross the ball for Altidore's first goal was a thing of genius. Wow!

Jose Francisco Torres made another nice substitute appearance, but we found the one weakness in his game - he does not have long distance speed. While out on the left wing he went after a ball in the corner but got lapped by the TnT fullback.

Oguchi Onyewu completely neutralized Kenwyne Jones.

No USA player had a bad game, but Tim Howard almost pulled off a colossal screw up early when his clearing kick never got any lift and it shanked off Stern John. Luckily though it went well wide of the goal. Could have a been a disaster.

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As of 8:30am Central time today none of the 3 Trinidad & Tobago daily papers had any mention of last nights game. I would guess that if they had won or even tied it would have been banner headlines.

I Yi Yi - Adios Mexico! Tres A Cero!

Another Mexican defender had a meltdown and Ricardo Osorio chopped down a Hondu player and got his walking papers.

Where did that version of Carlos Pavon come from? We last saw him being old slow and stupid for the Galaxy 2 years ago.

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CONCACAF World Cup Qualifying Hexagon Standings After 3 Matches Played:
7 USA
6 Costa Rica
4 Honduras
3 Mexico
2 El Salvador (-1)
2 Trinidad & Tobago (-3)

Matchday 3
-Wed Apr 1
USA 3-0 Trinidad & Tobago - USA goals all by Jozy Altidore(3).
Honduras 3-1 Mexico - Hon goals by Carlos Costly(2) & Carlos Pavon. Mex goal by Nery Castillo(PK).
Costa Rica 1-0 El Salvador - CR goal by Walter Centeno.

Matchday 4
-Wed Jun 3
Costa Rica v USA
-Sat Jun 6
Trinidad & Tobago v Costa Rica
El Salvador v Mexico

Matchday 5
-Sat Jun 6
USA v Honduras
-Wed Jun 10
Mexico v Trinidad & Tobago
Honduras v El Salvador

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I thought that Bolivia's 6-1 win over Argentina yesterday was an April Fools gag. I did. The stunning rout drops Arg to 4th place after 12 of 18 games. That spot would give them the regions last automatic bid to the World Cup.

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Former striker Alan Shearer is the new manager at Newcastle United in England.

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Salt Lake v Columbus tonight on ESPN2 at 8pm Central.

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Gold Cup details coming in.

The USA have there 3 Group B stage opponents and venues:
-Sat Jul 4
USA v Grenada at Qwest Field in Seattle WA - 8pm central
-Wed Jul 8
USA v Honduras at RFK in Washington DC - 8pm central
-Sat Jul 11
USA v Haiti at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough MA - 6pm central

And here are all the details for the entire tournament, from CONCACAF. Big shout out to our main man Jack Warner!

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People in the United States filed the most requests for World Cup tickets for this first FIFA lottery. Can you believe that?

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