Michael Bradley can't stop scoring goals in the Eredivisie. Seeing as how I'd recently finished my campaign to win the Fizzy Soda Pop League for Wednesday in the friendly confines of FIFA 08 (neutered Wii version), I decided to pop in on Mr. Bradley and his compatriots and give them a go. After a couple of ineffective matches sporting a 4-4-2 and then a classically Dutch 4-3-3, I shifted to a 4-5-1 with the wide players pushing high and the central of the three inner midfielders pressing up in support of the lone striker--sort of a hybrid between the classic Ajax approach and the dreaded Mourinho Formation. Bradley took the advanced midfield role and has bagged 4 in 3 games. Entertainment imitating life? . . . Spain, England, and Argentina? Now that would be addressing the previous fan complaints about pansy-ass scheduling by the USSF nabobs! Color me impressed . . . Clint Dempsey looked sharp in the Mexico friendly, quicker both physically and mentally, and with that same daring and swagger to boot. The ongoing relegation battle with Fulham USA seems to be honing him pretty well--here's hoping EJ gets the same treatment. In the meantime, enjoy this and tell me he's not the most exciting player to watch on the US roster . . .
Lorient may have had their asses handed to them this past weekend, but Monsieur Jacobson has done enough to make the bench already. Either that's one thin, thin Ligue 1 squad, or he's made a pretty good impression in training . . . Was anybody surprised by the eye-gougingly bad Chelsea-Liverpool draw? Nope? Well, there you have it then--go ahead and export your fantastic football to the rest of the world, Premier League. Let us milk upon the 39th fixture teat you deign to bare for us as we bask in the radiance of your reflected glory. We, the poor, the deprived, the filthy and unlettered Dickensian masses yearning to dump our hard-earned coin into the Premier League coffers for the privilege of watching Bolton v Wigan in Jakarta or the finest awe-inspiringly majestic turds that money can buy, be they in the blue of Chelsea or the red of Liverpool. Please, sir, I want some more! . . . Ben Olsen's Anklegate continues, and it looks like another surgery is on the cards for the Bearded Bombardier, though the MLS non-disclosure, media-hating Secrecy Police are out in force--as usual. Are you the glass half-full ("Someone is going to get a big opportunity to fill the gaping void in midfield--will it be Moose, a converted Walker, one of the rookies, who will step up?") or glass half-empty type ("DOOOOOMMMM! Doom and gloom! The still-beating heart of the squad has been ripped out! Alas, alack! Woe unto the Black and Red!") . . .