Like the current weather here in the PA highlands, this weekend was generally nasty with sporadic appearances from the sun. Let's hit the highlights . . .
Time for the Panic Button?
So, two weeks until we kick off the season, and the new-look DC United defense got its first taste of MLS opposition. How'd that work out then?
Great, so we brought in two centerbacks to solidify the back line--Peters and Jakovic. Both saw red. Of course, Jakovic has only been with the team for a few days, and Peters' dismissal came in the waning minutes, but 3-0 ought to be a wake-up call. I'm still not sold that we have the width and variety to just overpower MLS defenses, and the new center of our own defense will need time to bed in. It might be a long couple of months before things get settled, but do Tommy, et al have a couple of months to sort things out?
Also, in case you missed it, we lost Crayton and half of our potential starting midfield to injury in this match. I'm sure you're just as shocked as I am. Good thing we focused so much on getting the fitness right this time around, huh? Ugh (already!?!).
Show Me The Money!
The MLS salary list is out. I haven't had much of a chance to peruse it, but it looks like the developmental base salary may have climbed over 20k (barely over, but still . . .). On a United side note: who is Simms' agent? If Jacobson has a half-decent year, I'd advise him to look that dude up.
A final (we can only hope) note from the Beckswatch. Why is he even coming back? Fine, so the Gals get some roster wiggle room while he's away, but what are they supposed to do, sign some guys until July, and then let them go when Beckham strolls back into town? And a "friendly" with Milan? Oh, Jeebus, but what I wouldn't pay to hear the whispered conversations going on between Arena and Dema before this one kicks off! That's an awful lot of expensive Rosonerri ankles for the Demanator to have a lunge at.
A Couple of Cup Yanks
Anybody else worried by Howard's performance against Boro in the FA Cup? He didn't exactly look sure of himself between the poor positioning, butterfingers, and going walkabout in the penalty area to boot. Hmmm--well, at least he got away with it as Everton advanced. Deuce wasn't so lucky. Despite a decent performance that saw him squander a couple of half chances and engage in an impromptu wrestling match with Wayne Rooney, Fulham crashed out hard against Man United. Hardly surprising, though Fulham are usually a tougher prospect at home than this match would indicate.
Now That's Sexy Football!
Forget Gullit, apparently it's Carlos Bocanegra that's putting the sexy into football. Not content to merely be eye candy, he also helped Rennes pitch another shutout, even heading home their opener to boot. Not bad for L'Adonis Californique. It's just a shame that France isn't being so kind to all of our boys.
Anything else catch your eye this weekend? How about those three lovely goals that Arsenal put past Burnley? (Go find Eduardo's volley, you won't regret it.) Wondering if Real just handed Barca the title after so nearly getting back in the race? Are you disappointed or perversely happy that Donovan didn't finish that late volley in his last appearance for Bayern? Ready to break out the sandwich board and predict the end for DC United?
Let's hear it.