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MLS Alphabet Weekly – Week 1

 
 

Player of the week "Professor" from Argentina RSL Javier Morales make Earthquakes look like 1st grade students. PHOTO GETTY IMAGE

Player of the week "Professor" from Argentina RSL Javier Morales make Earthquakes look like 1st grade students. PHOTO GETTY IMAGE

By CHRIS REIKO

 

My fellow soccer/football addicts, I decided to use my 15 years experience of covering Major League Soccer and almost 40 years of watching, playing,  loving and sometimes hating this game. Encouraged by some  soccer journalism gurus I am starting my MLS Weekly Alphabet and I hope you enjoy. Like every starting pilot piece, also this one is a little longer.

All comments and suggestions will be more than welcome, so please don’t be shy to comment below.

A – for Auvray, Stephane –  Bonjour in MLS 28-years old Wizards defensive middlefielder,  before landing in KC he played with success in French 2nd division. He showed already that with his skills and sexy French accent he can become one of the best Wizards signings. Plus Josh Wolff will have free French lessons.

B – for Buddle, Edson– if he can score like that when playing with a toothache, when he fixes his dental problems, Galaxy might not need this other guy from England.

 I am sure Galaxy fans appreciate his effort. Edson! Why don’t you ask your team member with the brightest smile for a good dentist in the LA area? Cobi Jones should be able to coach you how on to score more goals with that bright new smile and trust me he knows all the good dentists there.

C – for Cobos, or to be exact Carlos de los Cobos. Second Mexican coach in MLS history, opened his MLS stats losing to NYRB, but his Fire looked really promising. Somehow he can’t find a spot for Polish defender Krzysztof Król who BTW spent about 2 years of his career with Real Madrid, and practiced and worked daily with the first team players there.  Having Król handy Carlos de los Cobos apparently has different ideas and is trying to import some players from El Salvador where he was previously working. The question to all of you fans and soccer talents from El Salvador and Mexico, is that typical for los Cobos? Or I am missing something here? Perhaps Senior los Cobos doesn’t realize that about 3 million people from Poland reside in the Chicago area? Some of them big-time hard core soccer fans.

D – for Dallas,TX soccer fans!!! Where are you? 8,016 heads for the season opener in the new Pizza Hut Park, does not even sound like a joke. That’s over 2,000 less than in Kansas City and San Jose, where they don’t even have a new stadiums. ALL marketing guys from FCD should put their resumes together and IMMEDIATELY ask for a FREE internship in ….Seattle – that might help, but do you think they’d get hired?

E -for Evans, Brad for making us all feel good about the new season and scoring the first goal after just 12 minutes into new campaign. Some may say right place at the right time, but he always had been Sigi’s guy. Don’t forget that they won the 2008 MLS Cup together.  

F – hm F word is vacant this week, because F… word is lately heavily overused by soccer fans in Washington and the San Jose metropolitan areas.

G – for Garcia, Nick – Toronto defender by some TFC fans called offender. He had Jimmy Conrad next to him a few years ago and did really well in the Wizards defense. However after his transfer to San Jose, and now to TFC, some of his defensive faux pas makes me wonder if he is really playing sober?

H – for Hyndman, Schellas, FC Dallas head coach – PLEASE start using your karate skills. Hyndman has a black belt in karate, but apparently that is not enough to attract very demanding Texas soccer fans. Someone please have coach Hyndman in his extra time practice Karate with the marketing department at FC Dallas. Perhaps have an ambulance ready, just in case?

I – for Iro, Andy, Columbus defender. He might not look like one of The Beatles but he was born in Liverpool. Iro is a 6 foot 5 inches tall tower and sure used his height against TFC. Nice header by the 25 year old gave Crew their first goal of the season, which led to a decisive 2-0 victory. Keep jumping big Andy and more goals will come. Very promising start for Iro and all the Columbus gang. Robert Warzycha’s boys looked really mature out there on Saturday.

J – for Jakovic, Dejan, D.C. United central defender, was he really there?

K – for Kasper, Dave  D.C. United General Manager at least partialy responsible for their recent demolition…must be scratching his head for more than 90 minutes, after his team been devastated by the Wizards. United fans are already asking, was Tom Soehn really that bad? Dave please make sure your fax and email is working, because after Curt Onalfo’s United debut, you will be receiving more resumes from unemployed coaches, than positive notes from United fans.

L – for Lindpere, Joel– what a great PRIVET in MLS. Awesome winning goal for Red Bulls that gave them a very important 3 points and it was the first MLS goal scored in the new $200 million stadium. 28 year old Lindpere is the first Estonian ever to score in the MLS, and he did this in his first game. You may wonder where Estonia is? With a population of 1.37 million people, Estonia’s Independence from the Soviet Union, is only 5 years older than our Major League Soccer.

M – for Morales, Javier – already scored twice as many goals in his first game against San Jose, than during the whole 2009 season. Please bring whoever gave Morales his off season advice to San Jose or D.C. asap. Both world class goals make the San Jose Earthquakes look like 1st grade students with a professor from Argentina punishing them.

N – for Nowak, Peter – he dressed for the occasion, but Seattle fans want him to shut up after his Ljungberg comments. His team historic start could have been better, but was kind of hard for Peter to control from the bench his Finnish defender Toni Stahl. Many fans especially from Seattle were surprised by his comment about Freddie Ljungberg. Not to excuse Peter, but after playing for years with many world class soccer stars, he knows all the tricks used by famous older guys with European experience. Nowak clearly knows what is coming, BEFORE it happens. Thanks to Peter’s comments, higher attendance on Union future press conferences is anticipated. Was he right or wrong? Hard to say, but don’t you always love his colorful postgame comments? MLS needs that big time, let’s not forget that this game is meant to entertain.

O – for Onalfo, Curt– I guess his former players didn’t love him as much. What the hell was he thinking? Washington fans must have wanted to throw their TV’s through the window.!Isn’t it obvious that United President Kevin Payne is not going to quit smoking during Curt Onalfo’s cadency in D.C.

P – for Perkins, Troy – United goalie had a brutal come back to MLS. After 0-4 loss to the Wizards, he said, ‘it was an eye-opener for us’. Hmm, I am sorry Troy, but things might get worse if you and your teammates play the next game with your eyes closed.

Q – for Que paso Chivas USA?  Oposite to FC Dallas, Chivas USA marketing department should get some bonus – keep up good work with bringing fans. Was great to see a crowd of almost 19 000, but the Goats shocked us all and somehow lost their home opener and completely ruined Martin Vasquez debut. Martin no matter how you start, it’s  how you finish that counts.

R – for REAL Salt Lake – who would have thought they could start the season like that? Jason Kreis’s team made it look really easy. Utah soccer company, are you really that good or does the Earthquakes middle line just not exist at the moment?

S – for Sounders, fans and the organization thank you once again for a wonderful opening night. You guys really lead by example. Super S also for Sigi Schmid, great job for preparing Freds and other fellows for unpredictable Peter Nowak’s visiting team.

T – for Toronto FC fans, NO PANIC. Please stay calm and give Preki some time. He seems to know what he is doing and the team badly needs his discipline.  About half of MLS teams would love to have Preki as their coach, but TFC got him. Against Crew in Columbus even Mourinho and Capello will need some time to figure out Schelotto’s game.

U -for Union fans – will be remembered for their appearance in Seattle. They haven’t seen a single home game yet, but a decent sized group of their supporters went across America to rainy Seattle to support – let’s face it, their unknown team’s MLS debut. What can be more encouraging or very promising for the Philadelphia organization? Thank you for your effort and welcome in MLS Union fans, US soccer needs your passion and commitment. Just to see you guys out there on the pretty, but wet Qwest Field had at least half of the TV audience cheering for Union last Thursday. Way to go Union fans, we wait for more…GOALS to come.

V – for Vermes, Pete – KC Wizards coach. Big credit to 43 years old Peter Vermes, having a roster of players from 14 countries (including India) he put together such an explosive mix that smashed D.C. United and has already scared the whole MLS in first week.

W – for Wizards, the most global team in MLS after beating United 4-0, all of a sudden on the top of the Eastern Conference. Not for long. Let’s take nothing away from the Wizards, after their impressive victory, but KC fans be aware that this magic mixture might not work on more demanding  opponents.

X – is usually associated with sex, so I will give 2 XX  to Javier Morales from RSL for 2 VERY sexy goals which automatically makes him player of the week, the first of which could well be goal of the year!

Y – for Yallop Frank Earthquakes boss, don’t you feel sorry for the twice MLS CUP Championship coach? Losing home opener to RSL could easily happen to any team, but now it’s clear and we learnt. That even for great Frank Yallop, coaching Bobby Convey and getting consistency and results is almost impossible. Frank did not say anything about Convey, but just watching the postgame conference was enough to feel his pain. Many Earthquakes fans will not return after a game like that, but there is always good news. Supporters who will come to the Quakes home games again will get easier parking and beer, not to mention the shorter bathroom lines! Let’s hope for more positives Quakes fans and see you at Buck Shaw. When I am finishing my first MLS Weekly Alphabet, Earthquakes finishing paperwork with Jon Busch transfer. He might be good bargain at that price, but I am not sure how he improves Earthquakes scoring :):)

Z– for Zakuani, Steve, speedy 22-year old for his hard work and production on the first 2010 MLS season goal. First overall draft pick in 2009 played in tempo pass for assist on Brad Evans MLS first goal of the season. Dynamic Zakuani was born in London, England and sure his name is already inside a few European agents notebooks.

That is my first MLS Weekly Alphabet and from now on you will have to deal with this weekly. Please let me know if I missed any letters, or if you might have different suggestions? – I will appreciate and welcome ALL your comments below.

CHRIS REIKO

ChrisReiko@hotmail.com

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