Friday, November 18, 2011

Two Scoops Too Much

Photo by Joelogon on Flickr
Columnist Ed likes his Raisin Bran served with a nice big glass of prune juice:

Raisin Bran has got to be the most ill-conceived breakfast cereal known to man.  I mean, who wants hard and chewy dried up raisins sprinkled in their cereal?  I don’t want anything like that in my cereal.  Bananas – good.  Strawberries – terrific.  Dried up brown surprises?  No thanks.  I think Raisin Bran is the best proof there is that advertising works, because without that jingly commercial they used to have I don’t think anyone’s really buying the stuff.

So why am I writing about Raisin Bran and why am I so angry about it?  I’ll tell you why.  It’s because we’re in the midst of yet another painful two week international break.  With apologies to our sister site, what the frack?!!  Watching these friendlies is like taking a break from the playoffs to watch a couple of pre-season games.  But because I have to, because I’m (theoretically) paid to, I will now comment on a few of the games.

England vs. Spain was a pretty painful viewing experience.  Despite the fact that England won the match, they were only a hit post and a blown push in away from losing at least 2-1.  Scott Parker and Frank Lampard seemed the only two guys on the pitch who could have even made Spain’s JV team.  Old Frank, who FOF likes to pillor at every opportunity, might not be able to run but he can sure handle the ball and put it in the back of the net.
Spain, of course, does have the advantage of being pretty much the same team as Barcelona.  This obviously doesn’t hurt.  But Spain also gives a glimpse of what Barca would look like without Messi:  tons of possession and no goals to show for it.  If there is a weakness in the Barca style, it’s probably that you need some special players up top to get through defenses that pack it in like England did.  Then again, they still won the World Cup last time.
One England player that I find curious is Darren Bent.  He never seems to do very much, and he never seems to exhibit very much skill.  But then, all of sudden, he puts a nice header off the post and someone scores.  Same thing for Villa.  I still have a hard time deciding whether he’s good.
I also had the opportunity to watch England against Sweden.  It was all I could do to keep my head from snapping back violently as I collapsed into deep sleep.  Gareth Barry scored England’s 2000th goal on what looked like a terrific header.  Then it was called an own goal.  Sorry Gareth, back to square passes for you.
Fortunately, the Premier League kicks in again this Saturday (get it, “kicks”?).  I’m most looking forward to watching City play Newcastle.  City is the best team in the EPL right now.  But Newcastle is no joke.  They’ve built their team around speed and techno-training, and it’s working.  This will be a great test and hopefully a great game.  Don’t be shocked if the Magpies pull through . . . .
United finds itself playing Norwich.  I don’t expect a tough game.  But when is United finally going to get a midfielder?  I don’t see any reason to think that they win the league or get far in the Champions League without one.  But hey, I’m just a guy that hates Raisin Bran.
This is farlieonfootie for November 18.  

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