Coming to you from the gin-soaked, smoky underground lair that is FBF HQ . . . it's the MLS Cup Final Q&A session! Without further ado:
FB: Hey everybody. Great to be here--let's get started.
Q: Overall impressions?
FB: Well, better and worse than I expected. It was really hard to watch an MLS contest in RFK without a healthy dose of black, though the DC supporters were bringing the noise. I think the only coherent chants that came through on TV were United ones. Class! As for the match itself--it was more open than I thought it would be, but every bit as brutal. The two most dangerous men on the pitch, Twellers and DeRo, got their noggins on a couple of nice crosses, but Houston's supporting cast came up trumps with Ngwenya scrambling home his one big chance, while Noonan spurned a couple of golden opportunities for the Revs. In a fine reflection of the regular season, Onstad made the save that had to be made to preserve the win, while Reis couldn't quite make the play to stop the equalizer.
Q: So, did the better team win?
FB: Yes and no. There's no doubting that Houston are the better team, but I though that the Revs controlled enough of the match and created enough chances to come out ahead on this particular day. Unfortunately, it just seems that they're snake-bit when it comes to MLS Cup finals.
Q: Why is that? Why can't they seem to win the big one?
FB: Well--they did win the Open Cup this year (ed - Fullback waits patiently for the general laughter in the room to subside before continuing)! No, I'm not sure. Maybe God just hates the Revolution? Or perhaps the Almighty just can't get enough of the Buffalo Bills references?
Q: Yeah, that was pretty annoying how the Disney crew kept going to that particular well. Any other thoughts on the broadcast crew? Can it get any worse than Wynalda and O'Brien?
FB: I suppose you could have had that crazy leprechaun, Tommy Smyth, show up in a wig and spout off some dubious "European colour". Or maye you could add the inane stylings of Julie Foudy to the mix . . . oh yeah . . . right. She was pretty terrible wasn't she? I almost gave her a pass for the "Holy Shhhhh--" during the replay of Khano Smith's attempted amateur dental work on Craig Waibel, but she couldn't quite close the deal. Not that the Disney Censorship Patrol Legions with their heavy paws on the "silencer" button that killed any potentially interesting on-field "conversation" would have let her get away with it.
Q: Speaking of the Smith incident--how does that dude get away with yellow after headbutting an opponent just a couple of feet away and directly in front of the ref?
Um . . . maybe God hates Craig Waibel more than he hates the Revs? One thing is for certain, if MLS HQ holds to current form, such spectacular judgement by match official Alex Prus pretty much guarantees that he'll be the MLS Referee of the Year next year. And getting back to the announcers for a moment, how ridiculous does Wynalda look for congratulating Prus on not "ruining the match" by sending Smith off? Hello Eric? Smith broke the rules, engaged in violent behavior that could have resulted in serious injury to an opponent (had he connected a little better), and brought the game into disrepute through such unsportsmanlike action. It wouldn't be Prus that would have "ruined" the contest--that particular grand piano would have fallen directly on Khano Smith's Burmudian ass.
Q: So Wynalda is a tool--not exactly breaking new ground there, Mr. Fullback. Hey, what's that stain on the couch over there?
FB: Oh yeah. About that. Hey, you Disney folks, listen up. It's pretty common practice across large swaths of the "Soccer Nation" to consume quantities of alcohol as an Enjoyment Enhancer during the match. So, please, please, PLEASE--stop with that vomit-inducing skycam nonsense! If you must use your fancy toys, just do it during replays instead of cutting to the toy helicopter's-eye view of proceedings without warning during the run of play.
Q: Okay, Let's wrap things up. Any closing thoughts?
FB: There are worse ways to end a year. The final was a pretty entertaining affair, with three goals and a handful of other opportunities that could have lead to goals. The big players made big plays, none of the goals were "gifts", and neither side completely bunkered and destroyed the game. Houston showed the heart and grit that have made them so tough to beat in the past couple of years and the Revs just can't seem to get a break (or create one of their own). The final minutes were nail-biters for supporters of both teams, I'm sure. The fact that Heaps got beaten by DeRo for the winner makes it two years in a row that he gets to blame himself for the Revs defeat and that's a warm and fuzzy feeling for the thug-haters of the world to comfort themselves with during the long, cold winter. Thanks for stopping by. Anybody want a drink?