Archive for the ‘ Soccer ’ Category

Onion Bag: Liverpool Has a Cold

Liverpool has a cold. Well, that’s being polite. It’s more of a wheezing and hacking tuberculosis, exacerbated by the dust accumulating on the club’s last English league trophy. Portsmouth are bankrupt and bottom of the table, yet they comfortably dismantled Liverpool’s full-strength team during a 2-0 Saturday win. Karmically, Javier Mascherano tackled savagely, received a red card and injured himself. Shankly was certainly rolling.  Continued at The Big Lead

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The Big Lead Articles 14 December 2009

Onion Bag: Liverpool are Lamer Than Jim Rome’s Shtick

“You aren’t fit to wear the shirt.” The normally restrained Frenchman, Arsene Wenger, resorted to a rousing English cliche, and, despite just one Englishman in the squad, it worked.  Arsenal capitalized on fortune andAndiry Arshavin’s right foot, recovering form an insipid first half for a 2-1 win at Anfield.

ESPN 30 for 30: It’s All About “The U”

Whether it was the story or the soundtrack, The U generated excitement.  Shown a 9:00 PM on a Saturday night, it was not appointment viewing, as many of us have significant others and social lives, but it was certainly appointment DVRing.

The strength and, in some cases, the weakness of the 30 for 30 documentaries is the personal fingerprint.  Here it was helpful.  Billy Corben, the director of Cocaine Cowboys and an avowed Miami fan, presents the Hurricanes’ ascendance their way.  In their own words, the “thugs,” “hoodlums” and “convicts,” as well as those who coached and covered them, describe the experience.  This film was captivating and it was successful.

Onion Bag: Real Salt Lake Win MLS Cup

Penalties, where men are bewildered and broken. Real Salt Lake won the MLS Cup Final, edging the Galaxy 5-4 in penalties after a 1-1 draw. David Beckham took his first penalty kick since his epic Euro 2004 miss, slotting it calmly into the net. Normally solid Landon Donovan missed the net completely, for the first time in his MLS career. Beckham’s MLS vindication and, perhaps, Landon Donovan’s farewell were spoiled.

Real Salt Lake were impressive. They controlled midfield, particularly as the seemingly less fit Galaxy faded. Kyle Beckerman was tireless and everywhere. Robbie Findley was a constant threat with his speed. Both should be candidates for inclusion in the U.S. National Team.

Continued at The Big Lead

Onion Bag: Katy Perry is a West Ham Fan

kperry1Singer Katy Perry wore this for her boyfriend, British comedian Russell Brand. The West Ham supporter confirmed he would bring her to West Ham’s match against Everton, but denied speculation he would be taking her up the Arsenal.

Ronaldo Out: Cristiano Ronaldo will miss Portugal’s World Cup playoff against Bosnia on Nov. 14 and Nov. 18. Real Madrid doctors discovered a bony deposit in his injured ankle, the same injury that forced him to have surgery after Euro 2008. He aggravated the injury when called back prematurely for Portugal’s qualifier against Hungary. In a pure coincidence, doctors believe he could return to face Barcelona on Nov. 29.

Continued at The Big Lead

Maurice Edu Racially Abused By Own Fans at Rangers

Maurice Edu revealed yesterday he was the target of racist abuse from his own fans at Glasgow Rangers. Fans confronted him as he entered his car after Rangers’ mind-boggling 4-1 Champions League loss at home to Romanian champions Unirea Urziceni. Edu did not play in the match. It was not the first time it has happened.

Continued at The Big Lead

The U.S. Qualified For The World Cup. What Now?

Landon-DonovanThe United States qualified for its sixth straight World Cup, winning 3-2 away against Honduras. It was an awesome sight. It would have been significantly more awesome had I not had to watch on a grainy Internet feed half-obscured by a Honduran chat room.

Continued at The Big Lead

* This was written before knowledge of Charlie Davies’ accident.

Onion Bag: A Real Upset and The Joy of Cesc

Fabregas_Cesc_1233757671Real Upset: Led by perpetually homesick Jesus Navas, Sevilla upset Ronaldo-less Real Madrid 2-1. Los Rojiblancos dominated Madrid’s shambolic defense, with a persistent barrage that stretched Ray Hudson’s metaphorical mind. If Iker Casillas was not such a manimal minding the net, Sevilla would have scored four or five. Why is Raul still in the squad against good teams? Barcelona beat Almeria 1-0 thanks to a Pedro cracker. They now are three points clear at the top.

Continued at The Big Lead