Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Column Two, The Sequel; And Now a Word from one of Our Crack Guest Columnists...

photo by cdrummbks via PhotoRee

Apropos the forementioned Ed (i.e., the "muse" of this blog), although I don't always agree with him, it is easy to acknowledge that he knows a bit about the footie game.  In fact, Ed actually plays soccer, in contrast to some other persons associated with the production of this blog, albeit not at a very high level, and in a league that includes many players of an "advanced" age.  

Shown below are Ed's thoughts about this weekend's Spurs' victory over Wolves, as well as a number of other semi-relevant topics.  Yes, I know the "faux Spurs" under-12 team lost to "faux Arsenal" 4-1 last night in the League Cup, but we are not yet able to provide "real time" commentary due to our actually having to maintain gainful employment during the daytime hours, so get used to it.  Or get out.  Either way, your choice. 

Interspersed throughout Ed's commentary I will attempt to make witty repartee and refute Ed's faulty thinking and assumptions.

[farlieonfootie:  Ed, you're a big Spurs fan.  What did you think of their recent victory over Wolves?]

Ed:  Spurs looked fine, not great, but they played with more emotion and were able to pull out a win, which they needed.  Van der Vaart is a very good player.  Loss of Defoe hurts, though, and they are weak in the back.

[farlieonfootie: Agreed.  My sense, though, is that Spurs are going to be stretched thin by playing in 4 competitions this year, and that their resulting form will be up and down all year.  That being said, I have a weakness for Uncle 'arry (how could you not?), as well as Luka Modric.  In fact, some may even allege that I have a "man crush" on Luka Modric.  I don't, or at least I don't think I do.  I do get very excited when he plays, though.]

Ed:  Speaking of weak in the back, the second best team in Manchester comes to mind.  O’Shea and Evans are frauds and would both be a better fit on Blackburn or Blackpool or Black anything but MU.  Berbatov is playing for his career, and not unlike US baseball players in a contract year, therefore playing out of his mind.  I also think it helps him mentally that Rooney is now a non-factor.  Yep, I said that, Rooney is now a non-factor.  I saw him give Fernando a high five on the way out in the second half and thought:  “Here’s two guys that have a lot in common right now; namely, they both kind of suck.”

[farlieonfootie: Wut?  Second best team in Manchester?!  You're delirious, Ed.  Last I checked City was behind United in the current EPL standings. Oh, and I don't think City has won an actual trophy for 35 years or thereabouts....  You know trophies?  Those are the shiny things that winners get. 

I'm pleased, though, that you acknowledge Berba's greatness.  I'll hand that to you.  As for Rooney, any true United fan knows that he has always been streaky.  And while I admit that his play this year has been somewhat "dissheveled" as the Brits would say,  I am confident he'll bounce back.  Eventually.  At least I think so.  Or maybe hope so.  Anyway, you're correct: Torres does suck right now.]

Ed: And while Torres problems are unbelievable considering what a force he used to be, they are not entirely his.  The announcers of that game were correct – Liverpool has no width.  No threat on the edge at all.  Gerard’s “searching” cross field passes are pretty, but also meaningless when the guy over there can do little more than pass it back.  I mean, even you (farlieonfootie) can turn and pass it back, and you're like Giggs and Scholes ages combined!  In short, Liverpool could really use a guy like Landon Donovan, still one of the most underrated players on the world scene.  Just ask Everton.

[Agreed.  Liverpool does suck.  As do both Torres and Gerrard.  No threat at all for the match on Sunday until the ref handed them a way back in.  Too bad for Roy Hodgson, though, because I actually like him.  But Torres is still off his "A" game (in fact, he may be playing a game best described as "C" right now), and Liverpool fans have got to hope he finds it soon.  And despite the laughable pre-season boast of Stevie G that Joe Cole was better than Messi ("Anything Messi can do, Joe can do better;" his words, not mine), I actually think he might lead them to a championship this year.  Er, uh, that is, The Championship, as in the League below the Premier League.]

Ed: Yes, that Everton, who with Donovan looked like world beaters towards the end of the season.  Without my favorite diminutive and heartsick Californian they have looked pretty much like Blackburn or Blackpool or Black-anything.  We always forget that Donovan is the reigning MVP of the MLS.  Laughing?  Well I saw a bit of those MLS vs. EPL matchups this summer, and while the EPL know how to play “football” better, some of those MLS dudes are simply bigger and faster and better athletes than say, 40something British guys named Giggs, if I may throw out a name.  And not just kind of better athletes, but way better athletes.  Donovan plays the American style “I have no footwork to beat you one v one” game, but he can run and cross like no-one’s business.  With him on one side and Pienaar on the other (sorry, I always laugh when I say “Pienaar”), Everton have width, giving guys like the Afro and the Arteta room to dance.  Which leads me to this pond crossing / time traveling quiz question:  Q. What is something that Uncle Harry has always known but took Tom Osborne 25 years to figure out?  A. You got it, pace matters. 

[Look, I like Landon Donovan, but to assert that he would make Liverpool better is an iffy proposition at best.  Of course, he could make Everton better, but so could you right now.  Everton has been pathetic this year, excepting of course the 3 minutes of inspired stoppage time play where they ran roughshod over a certain best team in Manchester.

By the way, I laugh every time you say "Pienaar," too. And that's farlieonfootie for today, September 22.]  

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