April 3, 2006
I was lucky enough to see most of 4 of the 6 MLS matches this past weekend. And while the level of play in MLS has been debated, I thought that, for at least one weekend, MLS provided a lot of entertaining soccer.
Here are some of my random thoughts from this past weekend of MLS action:
- Apparently the two week vacation that Clint Dempsey got for smacking around Revs captain Joey Franchino didn't hurt him too much. Clint scored the lone goal off a set piece where he was completely unmarked in the Galaxy's 6 yard box. Plus, he was dangerous and entertaining taking on LA defenders 1 v 1.
- You know it's a pretty good weekend when the least entertaining match you see is between LA and New England.
- What's up with Cobi Jones putting his first name on the back of his jersey? I thought that was a latin thing?
- Who knows if there was really 25,462 people at the home debut for the Houston Dynamo, but that was a great looking crowd. Granted, they had a ton to cheer about with the Dynamo running the Colorado Rapids right out of Richardson Stadium thanks in large part to Brian Ching's 4 goal performance.
- Can anyone tell me why Dwayne DeRosario was shining Ching's boot after his 4th goal of the match? Unless I was seeing things, that was Ching's 3rd goal of the night off his head.
- It's a shame that either Youri Djorkaeff or Alejandro Moreno won't win Goal of the Week. Djorkaeff had a world class free kick goal for the New York Red Bulls and Moreno had a pretty bicycle kick goal in the last few seconds of stoppage time to complete the Houston destruction of Colorado. Both goals would make legit contenders for Goal of the Year in my book.
- The only complaint I had about the HDNet broadcast of MLS matches continues to be that their clock and scoreboard graphic is so small that it is hard to read. Although, I like the thought behind having it be small and out of the way. It's nice that they want the action to take centerstage. But, I would like to be able to easily tell how much time is left in the half.
- Adrian Serioux looked strong in central defense for Houston. I'm amazed that he was stuck in Toronto playing for the Lynx as long as he was.
- What are the odds that Kenny Cooper isn't starting for FC Dallas next time out?
- It was nice to see Alecko Eskandarian return from post-concussion syndrome with a sweet volley that started DC United's comeback versus the Red Bulls.
- You have got to like what Red Bull is doing at least through the first two weeks of the season. For week 1, Red Bull offered up to any fans of the team a free bus ride to DC, a pre-game party, and free tickets to the United-Red Bulls match. They got about 15 bus loads of fans to take them up on the offer. And for next week's opener at Giants Stadium they are already planning on covering the FieldTurf at Giants Stadium, bringing in NY soccer legends, including a bunch of Cosmos players, and they have booked Shakira and Wyclef Jean to perform at halftime. Add in that they have bought billboards in NYC for the first time ever, and Red Bull is at least spending money to try and make money.
- After Troy Perkins' gaffe that led to Edson Buddle's goal, Peter Nowak has to be hoping that Nick Rimando is healthy enough to play next week.
- There was not a crowd of 19,377 at Pizza Hut Park for that FC Dallas-Chicago Fire match. Unless there were a ton of people dressed as empty red seats..........
- I know that the fans of Chivas USA have to be happy this morning after their 3-0 home win over Real Salt Lake. But, I'm going to wait and see if Chivas USA can put together a performance like that against a real team before I'm starting to believe that Bob Bradley's squad is on the right track. Real Salt Lake has a long way to go before they live up to their name. And I'm thinking the English version and not even the Spanish one.
- I really liked the orange and white Houston Dynamo kits [ http://www.wireimage.com/GalleryListing.asp?navtyp=gls=2=117=364=178310&nbc1=2 ], but the New York Red Bulls kits [ http://www.wireimage.com/GalleryListing.asp?navtyp=gls=2=117=364=178307&nbc1=2 ] looked better in the little commercial that FSNNY was running than they did during the match.
- Watching these games made me want June 3rd to get here even quicker!!!!!!!!!!!
The views and opinions expressed in this column are those of the author's, and not necessarily those of the Rochester Rhinos or SoccerSam.com. Feel free to send any comments or complaints to firstname.lastname@example.org. James promises to read (but not to respond) to all of them.