Tickle: The other United bend Newcastle over the barrel--again (11-1 on aggregate, ouch!)--, while Les Canonniers have a brain-fart and drop two points at Birmingham to tighten up that mouthwatering race for the Prem title. If Gallas is any indication, the pressure is starting to get to Arsenal, but then Gallas has always been a bit of a drama queen . . .
Tackle: And an ugly one at that by Martin Taylor. Best wishes, prayers, karma, positive juju, et al go out to Arsenal's Eduardo, who suffered a potentially career ending injury. No links as I'm not so cruelly inclined, but Google and YouTube (GooTube?) should satisfy those with curiosity and an iron stomach to boot . . .
Tickle: From the looks of these Pan-Universe Ultimate Galactic Challenge Cage Match highlights, Becks looks like he's reverted to the right side of midfield for the Galaxy. A coach who won't be bullied by reputation, or Golden Balls accepting his natural role? Whatever the case, he created both goals for Lalas' Abomination, so that has to be encouraging, right? Riiiiight.
Tackle: In other news, the supporting cast trying to finish off those chances looked less than impressive. Not that that's a surprise, but it'll be interesting to see what kind of team the Galaxy are able to run out this season. Will the star-power carry them, or will they experience the fate of Galacticos past? If the "break out the orange slices" U-12 travel team defending is any indication, "Sexy Football" is predicated on being "easy" . . . to score on. Get your minds out of that gutter!
Tickle: Anybody else watch Aston Villa's Scott Carson fumble seemingly every ball kicked his direction in anger this weekend and wonder just how long it would have taken Brad Guzan to ease past him into the Villa net?
Tackle: That said, Villa still managed to dispose of Reading and their two Americans. It's somewhat worrying that the relegation spots are so littered with Yanks--two apiece at Reading and Derby and the American Foreign Legion currently encamped at Craven Cottage. Perhaps they'll feel more at home in the Coca Cola Championship than in the Barclays Premier League?
Tickle: The MLS silly season is heating up, with trades-a-flyin' and various and sundry foreign gents being wined and dined by clubs around the league. Just what mysterious and exotic talent will wind up on your club's roster this week? Stay tuned!
Tackle: Of course, all those foreign callers come at the expense of young and journeyman American players, who are increasingly leaving our sunny shores in search of a decent payday or giving up on soccer as a career altogether--for much the same reason. If it isn't a full-blown crisis yet, it's going to be. The league needs to have a steady and reliable supply of quality young Americans at its disposal, and the current developmental system is failing miserably. Factor in the current exodus with the addition of franchises in San Jose, Seattle, and Philadelphia, and the already thin talent pool goes to the molecular level. As a wise little fella once said, "I feel thin, like butter spread over too much bread." Too much bread indeed. You listening, Misters Garber and Gazidis? Up there in your obsidian tower, crouched on the skulls of the American talent pool, masturbating to your life-sized Beckham posters?
So what do we think of the new TvT format, kids? I'm starting to work the kinks out and put in the two-a-days--this being MLS blogger pre-season and all. Thumbs up? Thumbs down? Back to the proverbial drawing board?