8.29.2008

New MISL Not Even Attempting to Appeal To Soccer Fans

Xtreme

In case you where wondering what's going on with The League Formerly Known as MISL, there will be an announcement on September 16th that will reveal the details on indoor soccer's latest incarnation. But all you really need to know is that the revamped league will be called....wait for it....wait for it....the Xtreme Soccer league.

Seriously, I'm not making it up. And if that didn't make you say "Oh dear" in the gravest tone you posses, the league is coupled with the Xtreme Soccer Xperience. According to the press release this is "more than an indoor soccer league, the XSX is an energetic and innovative 12-month experience built around skilled soccer professionals, entertainment and fan participation — both live and online." I'll reserve judgement until Sept. 16th but it sure sounds like a bad video game doesn't it?

Somewhere, Monster Energy Drink and Mountain Dew are fighting it out to sponsor the 2008 Xtreme Soccer League All-Star Game.

Friday Night Lights: RSL v. Colorado Rapids



Good morning America. In lieu of an ESPN match last night, Real Salt Lake and the Colorado Rapids are offering a make-good match tonight for the soccer deprived. The soccer deprived with Direct Kick that is (membership has it's privledges). Or if you want to watch the games on your computer, the remainder of the season can be purchased on MLSlive for the sale price of $9.99US; it's the best $10 bucks you'll spend away from the bar all year.

8.28.2008

Oguchi "Big Sexy" Onyewu's Gettin' a Mess of Transfer Play

DesireGooch

Apparently everybody wants a piece of Gooch, not just the bangin' bird in the photo. Exactly who I can't say, but Soccer 365 has been in contact with his agent, Will Sherling, who says that since the big man's Champions League appearance 24 hours ago he's received bids & overtures from France, Spain and the BPL. Incredible. Ladies be warned, Big Sexy may be headed your way.

Another Cooper-Less WCQ Roster Announced

CooperMemories

No Cooper, no peace.

Video: 1906 Ultras N*E*R*Ded-out Mixtape




From Joe Cannon's humorus blog on the 'Quakes website:

"Beating the best team in MLS by four goals, along with a full moon created a weird night out at Buck Shaw. (We really should rename the new stadium when we play there...the house that Joe Cannon built sounds wonderful huh?? or the "HULK" stadium"??) I mean women were picking out their favorite Ultras and Casbah members, Ronnie O'Brien was named Player of the Week (the Irish must be so proud seeing that they don't have an Olympian this year). Darren Huckerby managed to get another shade darker on his tan, and Shea Salinas was able to grow a mustache for the first time in his life."

Now I don't have a favorite Ultras member but some of you ladies & homosexualists out there might feel free to pick one out from the video above. Just not the guy down front with the big, annoying horn; anyone over the age of 12 who blows one of those things is a hassle you don't need.

"Because, Frankly 11 Trophies is Not Enough"



Now, in this clip D.C. united are asking "Will you be there?" That's the public line on the U.S. Open Cup final. But this one has a little more zing to it.

"Because, Frankly 11 Trophies is Not Enough."

That's the line a D.C. United insider says the club from the capital is taking internally in it's bid to lift the U.S. Open Cup this year. As an avowed RBNY supporter I hate to say it but their trophy case has indeed reached levels of gauche-ness not seen since Slick Rick last walked out the front door of Jacob the Jeweler's. Still, history won't help them one bit on Saturday.

But I'm trying to talk Atlantic Cup trash here. What I'm trying to do is remind you that the U.S. Open Cup final is coming on Wednesday Sept. 3rd. United will be facing Charleston Battery in a battle for...whatever it is that the winner gets. Tickets for this one-night-only affair (no home & away legs in this tournament) are available here. If you don't live within crossing distance of RFK you can tune in to the 95th installment of the USOC final at 7.30pm EST on FSC.

Injuries May Lead to Jozy Altidore Villarreal Debut

PresidentJozy

Remember a few days back when we were talking about Mo Edu possibly making his Rangers debut this Saturday vs. Celtic? Dude, might not be the only European débutante this weekend as a couple of injury's to the attacking portion of Villarreal's side may leave the door open for The Boy King of New York & New Jersey™ to see the field vs. Osasuna on Sunday.

It's buried in this La Liga preview from the International Herald Tribune. I'll spare you the long-read and drop the meat right on your plate though because I know you're hungry, but haven't got time for a 6-course feast:

"Last season's runner-up, Villarreal, travels to Osasuna on Sunday without injured midfielder Robert Pires together with strikers Nihat Kahveci and Giuseppi Rossi.

The absence of the attacking duo, who scored 29 of the team's 63 goals last season, may mean a Spanish league debut for United States striker Jozy Altidore, who joined the club from New York."

Will it actually happen? I couldn't tell you. I hope it happens though; I just wish I got La Liga games on TV at home.

Video: Juan Toja's Turkish Delight



I'm not as blind as the ref from yesterday's Champions League shocker between Steaua Bucharest and Galatasary. I can clearly see that Banel Nicolita is completely offside. I can also see that the little hairy fellow who assisted on the controversial, tournament-ending goal for Galatasaray was none other than for former FC Dallas rockstar Juan Toja. Go on son; you know what they say, "everything is legal until you get caught".

H/T to 101 Great Goals.

8.27.2008

Video: A Very Special Episode of The Kyle y Javi Show



Business up front, party in the back; Argies live by the mullet's raison d'etre.

Kickin' It With Al Hopkins: WTF Edition



Allen Hopkins points out two things in this clip that really do make you think "WTF?". The first is how is LA not scoring of Becks corners? Is it that he's serving up weak-sauce, his teammates not knowing what to do with ass this good or have the league's other teams actually found a way to stop Goldenballs?

The other thing is this: how positively loony is it that Jimmy Conrad is the leading scorer on a side that boasts Claudio Lopez at forward? That's not a slight to the big man but when a team has to put it's central defender up top in a last ditch effort to salvage points, something ain't right.

You Gotta Pay to Play: St. Louis Hesitant on Expansion Fee

JeffCooper

Would-be St. Louis MLS investor Jeff Cooper on the league's $50 million expansion fee:

"We're not going to pay so much...If they're unreasonable with the price, we can go elsewhere".

The 'elsewhere' being referred to is USL 1. If he's able to sell the county, city, state and his fellow investor's that they should shell out $573 million for the mixed-use stadium complex for a minor league team, someone in Obama's camp should get this cat on a flight to Denver immediately. If he can sell that, he can sell anything.

Beckham Book By Bueno & Canales in the Offing

Becksbook

Whilst thumbing through The Ball is Round: A Global History of Soccer in bed the other night, I wondered to myself "when is someone going to do the first book about Becks in America?". With Europe's bookshelves already rammed full of books about our David it was only a matter of time before someone got in the act over on this side of world.

Enter Luis Bueno and Andrea Canales, two of the chief rockers of west coast soccer reporting and the bloggers behind Sideline Views. Not that you'll remember, but their book "The Beckham Invasion: The Media, the Mayhem, and What it All Means" will arrive on May 31, 2009 from Potomac Books. Good to see that someone from the American soccer sphere will be the one's to benefit from the most recent angle on Beckham's oft-told story. Go on and get that paper y'all!

You can pre-order the book from Amazon.com now if you need more footie-lit with which to spend your time. Here's the nut-shell description from the publishers:

Bueno and Canales review the machinations that led to Beckham signing with MLS, how he acclimated to the new league and his teammates, how he was treated by the media and opposing fans, and what impact he—and other big names who followed—can have on MLS in the years to come. They investigate the culture of soccer present before Beckham; how attendance, sponsorship dollars, and ticket sales changed; and the reaction from the local and national media and fans.

Free Stuff: Game Breakers Give Away

Video

Game Breakers: The Stars of Major League Soccer was released yesterday for your viewing pleasure. It's available from Amazon.com, A&E.com, and a slew of other places, so go buy it. Or if you fancy your chances, I've got a copy to give away to the first person to email the correct answer to the random, obscure question following question to TheOffsideRules [at] gmail.com:

What is the name of Don Garber's prize bottle of wine he received from Stan Kroenke?

[Edit: Game over. The answer is 'Screaming Eagle' and the winner is Kraig Kraft out of UC-Davis.]

8.26.2008

NSR: The Verve's 'Forth' is Out Today



By the way, Toronto FC fans The Verve's first new album in 10 years was released today and I am going home to wallow in my 90's space-rock nostalgia tonight. If you --like me-- have a thing for moderately psychedelic Brit-rock with a penchant for grand overstatements and druggie guitar work, I highly recommend you get this album. Now if you'll excuse me, I have to go have a Mad Richard geek-out that's been a decade in the making...wish me luck.

Quebec Loves Champions League More Than Poutine

Saputo

Attention haters from Messageboardsville who've spent the day deriding the CONCACAF Champions League saying that no one cares about it. And to those expansion junkies who are opposed to a second Canadian city being in the running ahead of so many American cities, you too should take note of the following: the Montreal Impact have sold out the 13,034-seat Saputo Stadium in advance of tomorrow night's match with Real Esteli FC of Nicaragua. That's a USL side pulling in more people than Columbus, New York, and Chivas USA were able to this past weekend.

Not bad at all Montreal, not bad at all. With a packed house and these guys making noise in the stands, the FSC broadcast (Weds. 8.27 at 8pm EST) should be a treat for sure.

Edu to Face Celtic

EduLions

Talk about baptism by fire. The word out of Murray Park --and the mouth of Walter Smith himself-- is that Maurice Edu is expected to make his Rangers debut in this weekend's Old Firm match vs. Celtic. Suddenly, that oft-discussed Toronto atmosphere seems like child's play.

NSR: Kanye's Tuesday Morning Cartoons



Damn, y'all. Kanye is just throwing out video's just for something to do. This week it's the all-anime clip for "Good Morning". Last week it was the puppet track-meet joint for "Champion". And the week before that it was the 8-bit wonder for his remix of N*E*R*D's "Everyone Nose". Next week it will be...actually by then I think he'll have run out of songs.

Steve Cangelosi Would Like To See Some ID from RBNY



36 hours later I am still in a bit of shock after RBNY's take down of the Houston Dynamo. This unexpected display of competence and competitiveness just caught me so off guard that I had to ask myself "How well do I really know my team?" And I know I'm not alone for thinking it because I just stumbled across this clip of Steve Cangelosi taking the words right out of my mouth, asking Shep Messing "Who is this team?".

Regardless of what questions surround their identity it's just nice to see attractive football being played in Giants Stadium that does not come courtesy of some foreign side's summer roadshow. This late in the season it definitely comes as a surprise but that's fine by me since I love surprises...so feel free to wheel out the cake with the dancing girl in it.

8.25.2008

Photo of the Day: Big Fish Eats The Little Fish

Ruiz

How great is this shot? At first I thought "maybe he's out on the boat with Scott Favre or something and that's why he's not in Toronto yet". Then I realized this photo is more than a week old. That and showing up late is the forth thing Carlos does best behind diving, scoring and conducting failed experiments with blond highlights.

Mike Magee for Goal of the Week

Magee

3 games, 3 goals, 9 points. If you are a New York soccer fan you've got to love the resurrection of Mike Magee. Five years ago he was a hot young prospect out of the Bradenton Academy, the future of the franchise. Yet only a year ago he was the injury-plagued ghost of Metro past. Not that my amateur analysis amounts to anything more than a barstool appraisal, but if the kid's hot streak retains it's momentum he may simultaneously fulfill the prophecy, exorcise a few demons and make himself a candidate for Comeback Player of the Year.

But in the here and now he's a candidate for the Sierra Mist Goal of the Week. If you didn't see him smoke Eddie Robinson then cook Pat Onstad's Canadian goose then you should watch it here. And if you're convinced that it is the most diabolical strike you've seen in the past seven days (Russia's attack on Georgia notwithstanding) vote for it here.

It was some cold, cold finishing for sure. It was also the second time Eddie Robinson got beat for a goal Sunday afternoon; one of the ball boys that was behind the goal swears he heard Eddie say "Ashton Kutcher come on out, this sh*t isn't funny anymore".

Eddie Johnson: in Cardiff and Incoherent



Please keep EJ away from the microphones. Poor guy is most-likely jet-lagged to hell and probably knows less about his transfer from Fulham than you do...so does he really need to be answering your questions right now?

It's a little tough to watch, what with Eddie having problems remembering the name of the league he played in in America (hint: rhymes with "him hell yes") and stating that he's "scored quite some goals" for his country, but give it a shot since it's Monday and you really don't want to do whatever it is you are supposed to be doing.

CONCACAF Champions League To Be Leading Cause of "Tournament Fatigue" in America By 2009



Good morning to ya. I'm sitting here reading my morning emails and an Outlook reminder has just popped up telling me to set the DVR to record the opening matches of CONCACAF Champions League, which begins tomorrow night. So when I get home tonight and grab the remote to set up the recording I will hear my missus say something to the effect of "another week, another tournament...when will it ever end?" The funny thing about that statement is that in 2008 that's not really a complaint, more of a slogan for the American soccer fan.

Think about the bounty of bracketed delights we have had on offer this year: CONCACAF Champions Cup, Superliga, U.S. Open Cup, Olympic Qualifiers, the Olympics and World Cup Qualifiers. And now the epic CONCACAF Champions League comes in as a late season addition that will take us all the way through April '09. It's an embarrassment of riches that is only rivaled by Hugh Hefner's harem of hot & horny hussies.

ESPN's Steve Davis will tell you what's what and help you truly understand the meaning of the term "fixture congestion" with his tournament preview. My wife on the other hand will tell you that it's cool, so long as it doesn’t conflict with Project Runway and Grey's Anatomy.

8.22.2008

5 Burning Questions: Accents & Mustache's Edition



I have nothing to say about this one other than I predict Carlos Ruiz & Amado Guevara together will be high, high drama the likes of which have not been seen north of the border since the original episode's of DeGrassi High aired. Their sex is definitely not on fire.

And I promise that's the last time I will refer to sex on fire today. Really. Unless someone is burning a stack skin flicks on the corner on my way home, which is entirely possible in New York (we have a lot of crazies here).

Heather Mitts' Sex Remains on Fire

HotHeather

Just the semi-annual TOR reminder that Heather Mitts' sex is on fire. Still. If you need reminding, steal your old lady's copy of September's InStyle Magazine where Heather is alleged to appear in the bikini pictured above. And if you can't wait until next week, check out her new and improved website which is packed with photographic evidence that she is an inferno of wholesome hotness. No make that dirty, wholesome hotness.

DirtyHeather

Sunday, Sunday, Sunday!: New York v. Houston

DailyNewsAd_JPA

For the past 2 weeks the Red Bull New York has been sex on fire. From the four-goal, come from behind win over the hated D.C. United to the second-half, down a man gut-check vs. Toronto it's been the Pyromania tour all over again at Giants Stadium. But Sunday they face the Dynamo, and that could be the real test of whether or not they're going take it to Hysteria levels of greatness.

True, RBNY did put the smack down on United but Houston is so sick that they put four past Chivas USA --albeit a skeleton crew of Chivas USA-- on Wednesday without Ching, DeRo and Onstad. With New York's back line wounded by injuries and suspensions, will Agent 009 be enough to offset Houston's crazygonuts offense?

It's going to be a "sizzling" match for sure. The other thing that will be sizzling will be the grill at the tailgate; I'm making my special lemon hooch with Georgia Moon corn whiskey, which Liqoursnob.com says is perfect for "for late nights when your still is broken, romantic evenings with your shotgun bride and those not-so-rare evenings when you feel like drinking out of a wide-mouthed jar." Come through lot 16A, holler at me and have a drink.

Image courtesy of RBNY and New York Daily News.

8.21.2008

Photo of the Day: Philadelphia's Stadium Design Unveiled

Philly

On one hand I am just excited that they are coming into the league with thier own stadium. On the other hand I look at what Red Bull Arena is going to be and I just want to go "Wanh Wah". What do you think?

Exclusive FIFA 09 Trailer from GameTrailers.com



FIFA-philes rejoice, PES-people grumble. The trailer for FIFA 09 has arrived and it's as pretty as ever. And you get to see Ronaldinho scoring in an AC Milan kit, which will definitely take some getting used to. As a word of advice, you should probably trade in your copies of FIFA 08 now if you want to get the best value on the trade in; once the new comes out you'll get squat.

And to get the full effect of that trailer you should click the play in HD option for sure.

Freddy Adu Joins the Mouse-Click Mafia

HiSpeedAdu

Everyone has a blog now. Everyone from The Don to disreputable folks like me has there own platform with which they can be heard and I'm pretty down with it. Whether that is due to the fact that we just watched "Pump Up The Volume" in the office and I'm jacked up on pirate radio DJ-envy & the closing scene's egalitarian overtones, I can't say.

Early 90's teen-angst film references aside, AS Monaco weren't bullsh*ting when they were talking about putting Freddy Adu out front and making him accessible. The Biggest Midget in the Game™ now a has blog, 100% Freddy, on the club's official site which will be updated three times weekly. It's the only thing on the entire site that is written in English so if you didn't pay attention in French class it's probably going to be one of the best ways to keep up with our kid's escapades in The Principality. And just for the hell of it, here's footage of Freddy arrival.



Props to Charles S. for the heads up.

Video: Free Ballin' in Edinburgh




Thieving Scots gits. That is all.

Video: Kickin' It With Allen Hopkins



I think I would really love the chance to "kick it" with Allen Hopkins. He seems like an amiable & educated fellow like myself. I'd like to imagine that he and I could sit around a table over high-ball drinks and discuss the intricacies of MLS transfer guidelines, how Robin "Sweet Dick Willy" Harris died before his time, why Jeff Cunningham should have never left Ohio and our favorite social movements of the 60's & 70's. Then he'd drive me over to Drew Carey's place so we could reenact the old Coke commercial with the Grambling State marching band in an attempt to get him to hire them as the Seattle Sounders marching band.

Damn I need a friend...anybody got his number?

The Thursday Night Hype: B Team Edition

blancoebeckham

I've been sitting on this photo since the last week of last season. That was that pivotal "winner makes the playoffs" match between LA & Chicago that was one of the high points of 2007. Just like a the final episode of Six Feet Under it had drama & closure and it left you wanting more. But due to the curse of FIFA dates, stadium availabilities etc. we'll have to late a little longer to get the full effect.

Unfortunately tonight's match up between the two sides will be short on marquee participants. Becks (playing the role of 'soccer pope' in Beijing), Blanco (in Mexico for WCQ), Donovan (in Guatemala for WCQ), Carlos Ruiz (traded to Toronto a few days ago), Eddie Lewis (newly acquired by LA, got his grape busted open in Guatemala last night), Gonzalo Segares ( played for Costa Rica last night) and Marco Poppa (in Guatemala as well) are all expected to be absent tonight. But hey, McBride and Buddle are both capable of making it interesting so let's see what happens.

But I've got patience (I've waited since last year for the rematch haven't I?) and they'll play the Chicago leg soon enough (September 25th) so I'm not too upset about it. That And I have sympathy for the scheduler, probably one of the hardest jobs in American soccer.

8.20.2008

Video: More US - Guatemala Hype



Timbo Howard and Deuce Dempsey on the CONCACAF haters. But you know what they say, "if no one hates you then no one cares"...so it's nothing but nice to hear tales of vitriol and spite aimed at our boys. I guess when you are on top so it has to happen just to keep the world turning.

You know, someone should really cut a video of US soccer footage to that song by "Haters Everywhere We Go" by B.O.B.. Anyone got a man on the inside at NIKE?

Reminder: Team Canada Post Game Get-Down

back

Toronto, don't sleep! Ain't no party like a DeRo party 'cos a DeRo party don't stop!

Video: The Final Pre-Guatemala Training was a Dark Affair



Ever the diplomat, US winger Eddie Lewis describes thier final training session prior to tonight's match as being "short on light". From the looks of it, it's not "short on light". To me it looks like someone cut the power on them but I'm a paranoid conspiracy theorist. I still think that "they" killed Kennedy.

8.19.2008

Broadway Becks Y'all

BecksFable

David Beckham: The Musical! I know, you're as stoked as I am. If I were casting it I'd have Federline in the lead role for the American audience; I think he could really carry it off.



Not sure about who would play Victoria, Sir Alex or some of the other larger roles but I'm sure we could get Pete Vegenas to play himself. It would add so much to the authenticity and it would keep him working, which he hasn't been doing much this season.

Lockdown: US Soccer Rolls Deep in Guatemala

Strapped

Stevie Goff is down in Guatemala somewhere --sweating like a bastard I presume-- and posted an update on the security detail surrounding the stadium and the team hotel for the U.S. men's national team, who are in-country for tomorrow night's World Cup Qualifying match. Check this sh*t out:
  • 1,200 police officers
  • 1,000 soldiers
  • 100 special forces agents
  • 250 transit police
  • 180 private security guards
  • 1 anti-riot squad
Impressive. It's like they are playing a game at Gitmo or something.

Red Bull Park Is Dead, Long Live Red Bull Arena

RedBullArena_RGBp

In conjunction with the erection of the first bits of steel going in the ground in Harrison, Red Bull Park is being officially re-named Red Bull Arena. This is not for the purpose of confusing the average American just for sport, but "to be more in line with other Red Bull properties worldwide” says RBNY GM and honcho Erik Stover.

The whole scoop is over at Red Bulls Reader, but the highlight for me is that structural steel erection will begin for the main seating bowl and roof in around a month's time; the steel that went in today is for the building that will contain locker rooms, the stadium clubs, and team offices.

And lest we forget, this is place is so pretty that it's going to make you want to buy her drink when you see it. Just check out her twin sister down below if you don't believe me. Philadelphia, the gaunlet has been thrown.

austria

Video: Un Santo Para Telmo



In conjunction with Brazil getting done by Argentina today, here's a movie (23 minutes) of a Brazilian getting done wrong by some Argentines. Be advised there is some harsh, offensive language and hooligan-like behavior in Un Santo Para Telmo that I certainly am not endorsing. It's also worth noting that the protagonist in this story doesn't deserve the rough treatment as where the Brazilian team, with their lack of real bite in their performance this morning, where just asking for it.

The Official Seth Stammler Love-In

Seth

A few week's ago at an RBNY match I had a convo in the stands with the guy next to me about some hypothetical trades related to some of the current transfer rumors. The question was raised as to who would be a bigger loss for the team if they were to move on: Jeff Parke or Seth Stammler.

Without going into details of the seemingly endless beer-fueled debate, it was decided that while Jeff Parke is the heart of the clubs flawed defense and an all-around bad-ass it's Stammler and his versatility that would hurt the most.

Jack Bell at the New York Times has just done a praising piece focusing on exactly this. Here's a guy who played every position on the field except goalie in 2006; you have to love that kind of jack-of-all-trades player who just gets it done with zero drama. And if you didn't for know, he also only needs one shoe.

Cardiff Want An American Striker Something Bad

EJCardiff

Damn y'all. It only took one week of EJ not dressing for Fulham for the transfer rumors to take flight. I have no idea how legit the talk may be, but they say that Cardiff --having lost out on an earlier attempt to sign an American striker familiar with Pizza Hit Park-- wants to take possession of the Grown Ass Man.

And for how much? Only £1million. Is this rumor or reality? We'll see what a happens but if that's really the kind of money that's being offered for him, that $6 million transfer fee that MLS got from Fulham looks positively amazing only nine months on doesn't it?

Finding Darren Huckerby: A Short by Graham Yallop



In which we discover that a Norwich City fan/missionary on a fact-finding mission discovers that Darren Huckerby is well on his way to be equally loved in the Bay Area. Good stuff...this is what the Youtubes of the world are meant for.

8.18.2008

DJ Danny Dichio to Make North American Debut

Typo

See, this is what I'm talking about. Put the fire brigade on notice because Canuckistan will be on fire August 20th. Toronto's Park Lane club is hosting the official after-party for Wednesday's World Cup qualifying game between Canada and Jamaica and it's going to be bananas. Why? Because it's hosted by Dwayne de Rosario, Julian deGuzman and Fulham's Paul Staltari. Oh and some guy called Danny Dichio is DJing. Who knew the "Legend" had it like that?

According to the press release, Danny boy has played with Paul Oakenfold, and Tiesto but don't hold that against him. Wednesday's gig will be his first in North America so you have to go throw some shapes on the dance floor just so you can be just like that guy who keeps reminding you that he saw Daft Punk live before they put on the robot suits.

Good stuff, to bad I'm in lame old NYC and can't make it. And people wonder why Toronto FC has been able lure in loads of 20-something fans.

Photo of the Day: Freddy Adu Unveiled at Monaco

ArriveFreddy

Kid looks good in red right? Loads of sponsors on that jersey though; I know they are found of their auto racing in Monaco so perhaps the completely-out-of-control-sponsorship mentality has made the jump to the soccer world over there. I'm all for making that paper, but five logo's on the front of the kit is just a bit cluttered.

The Club That Made Chinaglia Famous is Sniffing at Gooch

GoochLazio

I really like Gooch and I really dislike Lazio. I'd like to see him get out of Belgium --it did wonders for Marvin Gaye's career-- and Italy might not be a bad spot for him to run though. But I'd hate to see him end up at Lazio, a club with such a bad reputation for match-fixing and allowing fascist, right-wing fans that it will be a real challenge for me to root for that club. Hopefully this will get filed next to the "Gooch to Chelsea" talk from a few years ago.

NSR: TOR's Pick for the Album of Autumn



If you have the opportunity, on the next sunny day I recommend that you:

a) get a convertible or car with a sunroof
b) drive it accompanied by a woman that you find attractive
c) wear sunglasses
d) rock this album for all it's worth

Video: Matt Taylor Introduces Himself With a Bang



You may have seen that recent post over at The Original Winger about former Chivas USA and K.C. Wizards forward Matt Taylor signing with German second division side TuS Koblenz recently. Even more recently, Taylor himself wrote a lengthy & insightful post over there about how he came to end up amongst the Germans and what it took to get him there.

Signed 3 days before the season commenced, dude didn't waste anytime in letting the locals know what he's about and scored a cracker from outside the 18 yard box. Good on him for making an impression early. If you are one of TOR's approximately 13 readers in the Rhineland and you see him on the straße, buy his ass a sausage and a beer for me please.

Video: US - Guatemala Pre-Game Hype



Looking to the week ahead, Wednesday has all the makings of a great "personal day"; England-Czech Republic on FSC at 3pm EST, D.C. United-New England Revolution at 7.30pm EST on Direct Kick, and Chivas USA-Houston at 9.00pm EST on Direct Kick all setting the table for the US-Guatelmala World Cup Qualifier on ESPN2 at 10.00pm EST.

To help you get an early start on your soccer-chub, here's a little video-viagra courtest of US Soccer. Note the interesting contrast of too much hair (Hejduk) and receding hair (Donovan).

So Here's a Question...

Flyguy

Footie-Porn: 2 New MLS DVD's to Drop Soon

Video

Happy Monday everybody. Let me start the day with an update on two hotly anticipated (by me at least) DVD's from MLS Films. If you've been dropping into TOR with any regularity you've already heard about the upcoming MLS Gambreakers DVD that's been on the bench for a while. Well the word I'm getting is that it will finally making it's way on the field August 26th and is available for pre-order from A&E.com.

Also coming into the game is The History of MLS Cup DVD that TOR hipped you too back in January. You can see the original trailer here, and you can check out the brand new, AC/DC-laden hotness below. It'll be on the streets Sept. 23rd and you can also pre-order this one from A&E.com as well.

8.16.2008

And the Red Bull's Mystery Striker is....

Wiltord

A few days ago Metrofanatic mentioned that in addition to a Panamanian prospect and USL bad ass Macoumba Kandji, Juan Carlos Osorio was also looking at a mystery striker. Could the former Arsenal man with some of the worst taste in eyewear and 92 caps for France be headed to The Swamp? Perhaps.

In other Franco-Red Bull news, Youri Djorkaeff's still isn't as ill as MC Solaar.

Photo of the Day: US Soccer's "Freak 'em Down Night"

GetIt

I'm told that the lady at the center of this scrum is a former Houston Rockets cheerleader. Or was it a dancer? I can't remember but I do know that she looks positively tits-over-tail about her place in life at the moment.

Meanwhile, Stuart Holden looks pleasingly pickled, Jozy Altidore looks troubled and recent Rangers acquisition Maurice Edu is licking his lips as if she were slathered in hot wing sauce. Ladies of Glasgow watch out...you have been warned.

8.15.2008

FIFA09 Will Get a Really Great Review in Pitchfork

Hipster

Somebody over at EA Sports reads BrooklynVegan something fierce and I ain't mad at that. The tracklisting for FIFA09 was released today and I could have sworn I was looking at a list of bookings for the Mojave stage at Coachella festival. It's almost as if the target demo for this game is people who have ever uttered the phrase "what time does Daft Punk go on?".



So who's on it? Aussie dance-rockers (and TOR favorites) Cut Copy, CSS, Foals, Chromeo and groove-heavy, electronic hippies MGMT. There's also remix's from Hot Chip, Soulwax and Boyznoise. You can see the entire list at EA.com if you need further confirmation that this game will be huge in Williamsburg, Fishtown, Silverlake and Wicker Park.

People Not Named Bruce Arena Who Were at the HDC Last Night

RichFolks

Celebrity chef Gordon Ramsey, NBA star Tony Parker and Scientologist Tom Cruise were spotted in a luxury box reportedly discussing a joint venture for a basketball-themed french restaurant. On Xenu. It'll be the biggest thing since Planet Hollywood.

8.14.2008

Sunday, Sunday, Sunday!: New York v. Toronto

NYTO

Another big eastern conference game at the newly-sanitized Meadowlands this weekend. RBNY v. TFC with both sides part of the four-team tie for fourth place; NY, Toronto, DC and KC are all level on 25 points so hopefully one of these two can break away from the daisy chain because the basement is getting crowded.

Goal.com thinks that Osorio is some kind of genius or something, while Toronto's are probably the only fans in the league that are glad the Yanks are done with the Olympics. As for me, I think he with the worst defense loses. I'll leave it to the official MLSnet pre-game report to tell the rest of the story though...I've got to go create some more terrace anthem ammunition by brushing up on my Canadian history. Surely they've done something embarrassing that can be set to a tune.

*Image courtesy of RBNY & The Daily News

Bradley Announces Cooper-Less WCQ Roster

Kenny

Obviously, US men's national team coach Bob Bradley is not a frequent reader of this publication. If said 'gaffer' was, what he would well know is that not calling in Kenny Cooper to his squad for the upcoming World Cup Qualifiers was of paramount importance and that his persistent insistence on leaving the streaking striker out of the selection was tantamount to treason. Or something else that's sounds highfalutin'.

But he doesn't (and probably shouldn't) read TOR and Big Kenny's been left wanting while Eddie "I haven't scored in ages" Johnson and Brian Ching get the call once again. It's like he's spent the calendar year so far listening to the title track from Wilco's 2002 documentary "I Am Trying to Break Your Heart" on blast and on repeat while thinking solely of my desire to see the Cooper's shirtless caveman goal celebration once more.

And I hate to say this after being (regrettably) less than nice about him in the past, but how does Edson Buddle not get a look either? Damn. I haven’t been this bummed since James went missing on What's Happening. Here's the complete list of who was called up for the August 20th match v. Guatemala in all it's FrankenCooper-less glory.

GOALKEEPERS:
Tim Howard, Brad Guzan

DEFENDERS:
Steve Cherundolo, Gooch, Carlos Bocanegra, Heath Pearce, Frankie Hejduk, Jay DeMerit

MIDFIELDERS:
Michael Bradley, Maurice Edu, Sacha Kljestan, Pablo Mastroeni, Eddie Lewis

FORWARDS: Landon Donovan, Eddie Johnson, Brian Ching, Clint Dempsey

Photos of the Day: The Ladies of Muzik's MLS All Star Party

ASRed

I've been sitting on these for a rainy day and even though there's yet to be single drop from the New York City sky today, it's a slow news day so I may as well not hold back any longer. Ladies, homosexualist and those who are too young to appreciate the female form may wish to turn away now.

I was not at the MLS All Star Party in Toronto but I know roughly 8 people who where. Only one was female and when asked how it was she replied "It was great. I had a good time". Of the 7 male attendees, the first thing all of them to a man said was some version of the phrase "Oh my God dude, you should have seen the women in that place." One guy even suggested that they must have trucked in a few ringers.

So for those of us not lucky enough to have been in the room with all that lady-flesh at Muzik that night, here is but a taste of the talent on offer. I wonder if "all the girls standing the line for the bathroom" were there? Probably not but you never know. Above & below are a few shots of Toronto's finest; if you want to compete next year, you've got your work cut out for your Salt Lake City.

ASAnd

ASShiny

ASDevil

ASTwofer

ASThree

ASDark

ASHigh

The Thursday Night Hype: SuperClasico Edition

Battle

What it is y'all? I know you don't need reminding buuuuuuuuuuuut.......The Battle of Los Angeles is tonight and Rage Against The Machine won't be found anywhere near the HDC. Chivas USA and LA Galaxy are going to the mat for a desperately needed three points with emotion hanging in the SoCal air like smog on the 405. LA's somewhat rudderless and definitely Ruud-less while Chivas USA will most likely be without Bornstein, Ravov, Saurez, Eskandarian AND Kljestan.

Basically the least doomed/most lucky team is going to take this one. That is unless they are both so horrid that the whole affair culminates in a scoreless draw. Not a very good selling point but that's real talk y'all. But what do I know that Johnny Harkes doesn't? Check out what he and Stoner have to say about it.

8.13.2008

SF Goes Legit (For the Day at Least)

Redcard

Hey y'all. I was the guest blogger for The Red Card, the Chicago Tribune's soccer blog. It seems that Luis is on holiday and in between interesting people like Leslie Osborne and Ben Olsen, he decided to let me sully the good name of the venerable Windy City publication. Nice!

If you want to see what I have to say about blogging go here. Or not.

Blanco Back in the Fold for Mexico

Blanco

A little MLS-colored birdy has just informed me that The Hunchback of Bridgeview™ has been named to Sven Goran-Eriksson's Mexico squad that will face fellow MLS bad-ass Amado Guevara's Honduras squad on August 20th. This is great for Blanco since following his 2006 World Cup absence his place with El Tri has been a little less that certain.

It bodes poorly for me though. Just when I have come around to the fact that I actually enjoy watching Blanco and even root for him a bit when he's not playing against New York, I am now faced with the prospect of the U.S. having to deal with him in the Azteca again during World Cup Qualifiers. Not cool for me, but not bad for the league that he and Becks are still able to turn out for their countries while playing over here.

Mexico's selection versus Honduras:

Keepers
Oswaldo Sánchez (Santos)
Guillermo Ochoa (América)
José de Jesús Corona (UAG)

Defenders
Ricardo Osorio (Stuttgart)
Rafael Márquez (Barcelona)
Aarón Galindo (Eintracht Frankfurt)
Fausto Pinto (Pachuca)
Jonny Magallón (Guadalajara)
Carlos Salcido (PSV)
Francisco Javier Rodríguez (PSV)
Edgar Castillo (Santos)

Midfielders
Giovani Dos Santos (Tottenham Hotspur)
Pavel Pardo (Stuttgart)
Gerardo Torrado (Cruz Azul)
Andrés Guardado (La Coruña)
Fernando Arce (Santos)
Leandro Augusto (UNAM)
Francisco Torres (Santos)
Luis Pérez (Monterrey)

Forwards
Guillermo Franco (Villareal)
Omar Bravo (La Coruña)
Carlos Vela (Arsenal)
Cuauhtémoc Blanco (Chicago Fire)
Matías Vuoso (Santos)
Carlos Ochoa (Monterrey)

Video: SuperClasico Press Conference



Cobi Jones grabs the mic for his 1st run through the press ringer as LA's temporary gaffer. Personally I am not a fan of cornrows but there is something brilliantly South Bay about it when you realize that Carson is not only home to the Galaxy, but Boo-Yaa T.R.I.B.E. as well.

Bang on Cobi, bang on.

Video: DC v. New England Goals



From Behind the Badge comes video of DC United's 3-1 defeat of the Revolution last night at RFK. Since there was no TV broadcast --as is Open Cup custom-- this is pretty much the definitive document of the evening, which was something of a shock defeat for New England.

On the other side of the Open Cup table, Seattle lost to Charleston on PK's so the final will be an all Southeast affair (if you consider DC southeastern) at RFK. I might make the trip down, only because I expect plenty on pre-game pulled pork at the tailgate.

8.12.2008

US v. Nigeria: Let's Get Ready to Rumble

YanksOlympics

Coach Peter Novak says that tomorrow's massive match with Nigeria is "going to be a fight". Although not at full strength due to yellow cards and Jozy's lingering ankle injury, our boys are rested and ready for what lies ahead. This is what it is all about y'all.

But are you ready for this? Are you ready to be up at 5 a.m. (on USA Network) screaming at your television? Are you ready to deal with the butterflies you'll inevitably feel if Novak does not start Altidore? And are you ready to deal with the onslaught of gloating emails from Nigerian princes (who would like to share their riches with you) if we lose?