31 December, 2010

A Little New Year's Humor

One of our favorite Soccer-centric comics. Enjoy.

Photo: Studs Up

It's On Like Donkey Kong

In a not so surprising move, the Asian federation supports the move of the 2022 WC to the winter.

Why not surprising? A Qatari national is at it's head. That said, several high powered clubs like Barcelona have said no.
"We have traditions. We have business in place. We have contracts in place," he [AC Milan Director Gandini] said. "It would be complicated. I'm not saying it's not possible but it would require a lot of negotiations, a lot of discussions and it would probably affect not only 2022 but 2021 as well."
And they have a valid point.

But, as we've seen in the past, what FIFA wants, FIFA gets. If clubs and countries wanted to pull out of FIFA, now would be the time. Think about it. Who supports the clubs? And who has more supporters? Clubs or FIFA?

Will it happen? Nope. And sad to say, this may end up costing FIFA, and by proxy Qatar, big. FIFA paid out for the empty seats and lack of complete stadiums for the 2010 WC in South Africa. It may have to do the same to sponsors if contracts are not fulfilled, and that could cost FIFA huge.

Photo: Wustlog.blogspot

29 December, 2010

EPL: Bolton v Chelsea Highlights

Malouda connects on a Drogba cross to score the lone goal as Chelsea moves back up the table. Holden is denied a call when Terry handles a shot like Michael Jordan. Chelsea over Bolton, 1-0.

Video: netgolo

EPL: Liverpool v Wigan Highlights

It's just not a good week for Hodgson. Benitez is fired from Inter and fans want him back, his team is mid table almost half way through the season, then he drops one 1-0 to Wolves...

Video: netgolo

EPL: Arsenal v Wigan Highlights

How bad was the game for Arsenal today? How bout despite being a man up, they scored an own goal and drew Wigan away, 2-2. It could have been worse, though. They could have been Liverpool...

Video: xxxgolasosupremxxx

28 December, 2010

EPL: Birmingham v Manchester United Highlights

Berbatov scores yet again and Rooney fails to even make himself known before a last minute goal by Bowyer saves Birmingham from dropping points at home. Final 1-1.

Video: stas8t

EPL: Newcastle v Tottenham Highlights

Sorry some of the posting of highlights have been sporatic. Too busy enjoying the nice Miami weather as opposed to cold as heck Wisconsin. Anyways, if you haven't been keeping up with your Mr.X Bale goal watch, then you missed another that brought his total to 10 for the EPL season. En fuego. That goal topped off a great game by Lennon who also put one past Newcastle for a 2-0 win for Spurs. All this in spite of Kaboul being stupid and putting Spurs down to 10 men in a win for the 2nd time in 2 games.

Video: stas8t

27 December, 2010

The Observer's Best of "Said and Done" 2010

David Hills at The Observer (c/o The Guardian) has been giving us the best quotes from the world of association football all year in his regular column, "Said and Done." This week he compiled the best of "Said and Done" from 2010. Enjoy! Happy New Year!

24 December, 2010

Goal of the Week (Christmas Edition)

I guess there's "S'no Love for the Keeper"... sorry, had to get that out of the system.

And here is your goal of the week, courtesy of Wesley Sonck (bonus points for usage of the orange snow ball) against Genk in the Jupiler League:

Video: belgacomtv11

23 December, 2010

Corruption By Default

So UEFA presidential elections are coming up. Looks like Plantini has won. Yeah, why even bother?

No competition, or simply no one wants to compete with having their throat slit and being found corrupt by FIFA. Just saying, because when you have a guy running unopposed for a 2nd time, just 1 month after saying that the World Cup ought to move to winter (your federation's biggest money making season for tourneys) and every one of your federations' leagues ought to go on a 2-3 month hiatus because of it, then you kind of have to wonder just how many of the UEFA member reps were caught in compromising positions.

Photo: telegraph

Nani Is More Intelligent than Arsene Wenger

Apparently. According to Nani. By proxy. Thanks to WhoAteAllThePies for the heads up. I did some digging and found some of the video for you.

Honestly, Arsene went way up in my book for the comment, "We live in a society where everybody knows everything, and it is a shame to say, I don't know. I personally don't know." Big, big cohones, and Nani, I think you just got pimp-slapped in front of the media. Better go home and recoup before you speak again.

Video: ITNsportsnews

Findley Update

It's now official. Findley just signed a 2 1/2 yr contract with Nottingham Forest.

For you Forest fans, here's a little something about what you'll be getting:

He's quick, his touch is okay, but definitely better than Eddie Johnson (Fulham FC). I think he'll do well with you guys, and hopefully doesn't get full of himself like EJ did and become absolute crap.

Video: corvalissoccer

Benitez Out

It was only a matter of time. See, in the real world, when you insult your boss, you are fired pretty quickly. Think Rafa just found this out.

After coming out and saying that he needed money and support to run Inter (less than 12mo after the Special One worked wonders with the same lineup), Inter came back and handed him the pink slip.
"Inter thank Rafael Benitez for his work in leading his team to success in the Italian Super Cup and the FIFA Club World Cup."
I ran this through the Google Italian to English translator and it came back as:
You lazy no good Spanish bum. We did more with the same squad last year. Here's your severance check. Don't let the door hit you on the way out.
Pretty harsh words.

All this after winning the prestigious Club World Cup in UAE earlier this month. What? It's not prestigious? Well, surely only the top clubs in the world attend. What? One club from each federation? You mean there wasn't much competition outside Europe on this? Oh well.

Rafa has returned to England after just 6 months in charge of Inter. At this rate, he may be back at Liverpool before the the winter break ends. At least that's what a lot of Reds fans are hoping.

Photo: textually

21 December, 2010

Findley to Forest

Wah? Sky Sports is reporting that despite a trial with Wolves, Robbie Findley is being stolen away by Championship side Nottingham Forest and is on the verge of signing a deal. Findley just recently let his MLS contract expire with RSL.

Permits shouldn't be a big issue as he was on the WC 2010 roster and played several games for the US.

The 25yo striker is in demand by a Nottingham to bolster a weak strike force that includes Blackstock (5 goals in 15 matches) and Robert Earnshaw (1 goal in 10) where their leading scorer is midfielder Lewis McGugan (9 goals in 15 matches). It's hoped that Findley's pace pick up the scoring for Forest.

Nottingham sit 8 pts adrift of the promotion spot in 8th place with only 3pts separating them from 17th place, so any boost to their squad will be seen as a good move.

Photo: iconarchive

Italian Coach Enzo Bearzot Dies

The 83 year old former Italian National Coach passed away yesterday. Now we aren't the greatest supporters of Italian football, but in his limited time coaching, this guy did wonders.

Bearzot was in charge, and made the controversial decision, to have a media blackout following 3 so so performances in the 1982 World Cup first round. Following that move, Italy went on to defeat Argentina and Maradona 2-1 in the 2nd rd. In the subsequent next round, Italy stifled Zico and Socrates behind a 3-2 hat-trick by Paolo Rossi to move on to the semis.

The Semis saw Rossi score another 2 as Italy moved past a strong Polish side. We'll leave you with the highlights of the final, as the game was yet another brilliant masterpiece:

In the words of Paolo Rossi, upon Bearzot's passing, "Enzo Bearzot was one of the greatest figures in 20th century Italy," a tearful Rossi told Ansa news agency. "He was like a a father to me. I owe everything to him."

Video: norwonk

19 December, 2010

Movin Time

Caught this one over at the other day, and am only now putting this up. It's like a weird reverse Blanco of some sort. Might be worth a pickup game try.

Video: voetbalblognet

Special 1 TV (S.2 Ep. 8)

Santa edition.

Weren't you Santa before Rafa? Who me? No. Sure, you. Fat man, always gone by New Years...

Another Classic.

Video: BBCComedy

Charlie Davies Ya'll

Been wanting to see some Charlie Davies action and just don't have the time to fly to France and catch a reserve match?

Well, we won't guarantee that he'll see much playing time, but we will guarantee that you can watch his Sochaux team play Bordeaux today at 11am EST.

How, you may ask?

Go to and click "explore" on the lower left side. It'll pull up a lot of different vid screens on the page, but the hint is search for "sochaux" in the search box. Enjoy your early Christmas.

Photo: Sochaux

18 December, 2010

Ha Ha, Fooled You

On the back of UEFA's Plantini commenting that the option to move the 2022 World Cup to the winter was certainly an option (although, no one remembers that in the bid, nor do they remember anything about a joint bid which somehow is now being floated as games throughout the Middle East), comes Sepp Blatter now supporting the idea:
“I definitely support the idea to play in winter here. It is important to play when the climate is appropriate and I’m thinking about the footballers, not only the fans but the actors.”
Funny he should say actors (I'm looking at you Ronaldo). That aside, why is anyone even bothering to bid? Why don't they just tell us where and when they would like a World Cup, and which country is going to host it? Oh, that's right, money in the ol' pocket.

This has gone from farcicle to ludicrous. They refused to address the issue of heat, location and safety during the bidding, yet afterwards, are free to make changes. You know, while we're at it, I hear the Qatar Foundation bought ad rights for Barcelona. We should have one of the games there while we're at it.

Honestly, I don't know how much else FIFA can fiddle with the bidding unless we are somehow seeing a precursor to the Carribean, as a whole, bidding for 2030 (cause we all know now that China has 2026, and they haven't even bid yet). Can you imagine one game on Barbados, then flying out to Antigua for the 2nd round? I'm just throwing it out there, because I hear that Jack Warner is still younger than Sepp and neither votes for the US anymore.

Need an outside opinion on it? Okay, then. Here's our favorite highlight provider Ian Halloway's take:

Video: SkySports

The Beautiful Game (pt. 21)

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Photo: National Geographic

Champion's League Knockout Round

So it's official, Wenger is possessed by the ghost of Paul the Octopus. How else would you explain the fact that he predicted that Arsenal would face Barcelona in the knockouts?

That said, we have some tantalizing matchups. Too bad we won't get to see a UEFA League or a CL in 2022... but that's another story.

So which are our picks? AC Milan v Spurs, Bayern v Inter and Arsenal v Barca. Sure there are other good games, but these have some must see stuff.

AC Milan v Spurs. Bale has been the subject of all manner of buying rumors. Sure, Spurs could use the money to beef up their constantly limping back line, and AC has been rumored to want him bad. There is also the manner of this being the first time Spurs have made the knockouts, while AC Milan boasts a lineup that for the life of me, I don't think hasn't seen one (how's that for a double negative?).

Bayern v Inter. Rematch of the 2010 Final. Inter won it 2-0 then. Bayern has been stumbling, but they always show for the big Cups. Inter actually qualified 2nd in the group after barely beating Spurs 4-3 at home then getting trounced away.

Arsenal v Barca. If not for the prediction that Wegner made (clairvoyant or just knows UEFA is corrupt?), then watch it for the rematch of last year's quarterfinal that saw them draw 2-2 at Arsenal then lose 4-1 at Camp Nou and the fact that Barca beat Arsenal for all the marbles in 2006's CL Final.

The first leg is Feb 15/16 and Feb 22/23 while the second leg is March 8/9 and 15/16.

So what are you going to be watching?

Photo: FIFA/Champions League

17 December, 2010

World Cup Flashbacks

France. World Cup 1998. England decided to mess with the media some and try to see how many song titles they could get in during interviews. Lucky for them they at least made it out of the first round, or we'd all be laughing at them.

Video: Magnificentgoal

What? No One Loves Me?

Oh, the travesty! The humanity! Plus I was looking for a reason to bust out this picture for nearly five months...

Going on record, Iker Casillas' girlfriend, Sara Carbonero called Ronaldo selfish, stating that only 2-3 players even like him.

Ronaldo, for his part, cried to Iker for an apology.

Must be a bad week for the guy who refs claim they know will dive whenever given the chance. Danish CL ref Claus Bo Larsen stated, “He’s always out to get a cheap free-kick, especially at home,” Larsen told Ekstra Bladet. “We tended to talk before games about how he’d go down easily."

Ouch. Well, at least we know that Merc7 will always be able to find a job in France after his playing days are done. As a cheesemonger. Or, he could always hold out for that dream job at the Bunny Ranch.

Photo: LiveSoccer

What a Supports Club

Can't say I'll ever see this stateside... well, maybe in Texas or VA at a youth football game (yeah, those parents can get pretty intense sans flares). This, though, is pretty insane. For a U-12 5 a side. Guess that's Lech Poznan's Polish footie lovers for you. Thanks to the Spoiler for finding this one.

Video: LukaszPTKWO

16 December, 2010

Be Afraid Blackburn, Very Afraid

Blackburn Chairperson Anuradha Desai went on record with Sky Sports a few days ago that they would "very much like a British manager to take over, although a foreign one with very high credentials would suit them just nicely."

That "manager" with "high credentials" is apparently Maradona. Granted, it's the Mirror that is reporting it, but they've been good with some nuggets of truth lately, and according to Desai, there was talks of Maradona taking over when they bought Blackburn, but supposedly the talks never progressed.

Hmm, so guess all that bluffing from Maradona about wanting to coach in the EPL lately is for naught...

Photo: TopNews

15 December, 2010

Something to Tide You Over

Here's a little something while I'm recovering from this brutal flu bug. Enjoy.

Video: MartinezFM

13 December, 2010

Special 1 TV (S.2 Ep. 7)

Yeah, I just got the new FIFA game for my laptop but it won't work. It keeps telling me it's corrupt. Classic.

Video: BBCComedy/Doitchampions

12 December, 2010

EPL: Birmingham v Wolves Highlights

A goal by Stephen Hunt in the waning seconds of the first half was the lone goal of the game. Wolves go on to get their first clean sheet in 8 months.

Video: ambujakshan

EPL: Chelsea v Tottenham Highlights

An early strike by Pavlychenko didn't offset another woeful offensive struggle and neither did the equalizer by Drogba, who surprisingly took over penalty duties and had his chance to steal all 3pts denied by Gomes. Final 1-1.

Video: Footballking

EPL: Blackburn v Bolton Highlights

Damn son. Want to know how to score a breath stealing goal from kickoff? Ask Holden. Bolton, already down to 10 men, scores a goal not 15secs after Blackburn pulls level in the waning minutes. And it was a pretty one at that.

Video: liverpool1992

11 December, 2010

EPL: Man City v West Ham Highlights

Man City is just quietly sneaking up on the whole shebang this season. Arsenal does have a game in hand and Man U has two, but regardless, this is a wide open race at this point. Goals from Toure and Johnson as well as a relapse to scoring on oneself by Robert Green sees Man City walk away winners, 3-1.


Simão | Myspace Video

Video: Simão

EPL: Blackpool v Stoke Highlights

Guess all that training on the beach because their local outdoor pitch was frozen is good for Blackpool. They walk away winners in this 1-0 match, securing only their 4th away win this season. Campbell with the goal just after halftime.

Video: ambujakshan

EPL: Liverpool v Newcastle Highlights

A Dirk Kuyt equalizer just after half and a first in charge for new Newcastle skipper Pardew wasn't enough for Liverpool to overcome their own horrible play as they lose again. This time, though, it was 3-1 with goals from Barton, Carroll, and Kevin Nolan that did them in.

Video: Todayfoot

The Beautiful Game (pt 21)

Nairobi, Kenya

Photo: CBC

10 December, 2010

Qatar Owns You

While I really don't have much against them (honestly, nothing) this does seem a bit strange in light of recent events such as the Argentina buyoff (that never happened *wink wink*) and the winning of the 2022 bid.

Barcelona has signed a £125m deal to sport the Qatar Foundation (a not for profit foundation aimed at education initiatives) logo through 2016 with £25m paid out annually. Granted, Barca is in pretty substantial debt at ~£400m but after having paid UNICEF to sport their logo (you read that right, they were paying UNICEF to have the UNICEF logo on their jerseys), and after having exhausted a lot of new avenues for income for the club, Barca has bowed to the corporation and taken on a sponsor.

If you are like me, you have to wonder, what's next, the 2018 FIFA World Cup brought to you by Qatar in Russia? Perhaps the Champions League held exclusively in Qatar?

But but wait it gets worse (to quote Onyx)! Plantini has come out and said that moving the 2022 WC to winter is certainly a possibility. Wait, what? Let me check that again, so we give the bid to a country supposedly on the basis that they can handle the summer heat and now they want to consider moving some games out of the country and even possibly move the tournament itself to winter, which interferes with pretty much every league but MLS and interrupts two hugely profitable tournaments in the CL and UEFA Leagues... And all this stated by the head of UEFA himself... Bidding countries, you didn't even get the benefit of a reach around on this one.

Video: Blazing Saddles

Hypocrisy Hurts

Not long ago, FIFA stated that this [the WC 2018/2022] bid would be the last one to accept joint bids. To clarify, those of you who remember 2002 Japan/Korea co-hosting a World Cup, it proved some challenge for transportation to and from as many joint bids that could come from outside Europe might.

Then this came to light.

09 December, 2010

What's Up Damarcus?

It's been a while. Your twitters go down a little better than Freddy's, but at this point, you are only getting marginally more minutes.

In case you haven't been keeping up with the Bundesliga lately, other than Jermaine Jones being sent down to the B team, and Bradley lighting it up for a relegation bound Mongladbach, Damarcus is quietly biding his time with 4th place Hannover 96. Currently, they sit 12 points out of first, and 4 points above 5th place. Not bad.

But with all that good play by players ahead of him, he hasn't been seeing much 1st team action. Case in point, since October, he's seen a grand total of 55mins in three appearances, all from the bench and all in blowouts (usually blowout losses).

So when are we going to see you get some more playing time and what do you have to do to get some around there Run DMB?

Photo: TSI

07 December, 2010

Martin Jol, Pariah

I want to introduce you to someone. He came in and revamped Tottenham a few years back and despite having off and on success, couldn't get anything done, and was summarily dismissed.

Fast forward a season, and he resurfaces at Ajax. A football factory of sorts that, while they will never be the powerhouse at the forefront of international title runs any more, produces many talented players.

Then, Fulham FC came calling in 2009. Amongst the strong candidates, including Bob Bradley, Jol had a standoff with Ajax management and managed to finagle a contract extension and promises to spend money to bring in a few more players.

A Sad Day

So what has been happening with Freddy Adu you ask? Well, we know you didn't ask, because not many of you even care about the kid who managed to fall so far off the map he needs GPS to find his way back...

Wait for it...
Don't get lost driving all over town this holiday season. Make sure to update your in-car navigation maps! #ad
Well, what do you know, he's shilling GPS on his Twitter now. Great. I almost forgot to buy myself some car navigation, thanks Freddy.

Freddy, if you haven't read one of the 1mil plus comments made web-wide because you are in complete and utter denial, give up on Europe for now, and bring your butt back stateside, suck it up and re-establish yourself. Right now you are about 2 seconds away from becoming one of those guys juggling soccer balls in the square for tips.

Photo: vetcabaret

06 December, 2010

US U17: Turkey v US Highlights

Not a pretty day. If anything good can be taken from this, it's the fact that we beat Korea 2-1, and then drew Brazil 0-0. I think it's safe to say that we were on cruise control for this match.

Video: Ussoccer

Hughton Out

In a somewhat surprising move, Newcastle have tossed Skipper Hughton and GK coach Paul Barron. At least they didn't pull a Chelsea and fire them at Christmas time like Chelsea though.
"Newcastle United Football Club have today parted company with manager Chris Hughton. Goalkeeping coach Paul Barron also leaves the club today," read a statement on the club's website. "The board would like to place on record their thanks to Chris for his considerable efforts during the club's transition from Championship to Premier League football. Chris has shown exceptional character and commitment since being appointed manager in October 2009. The club wishes him well for the future.

"Regrettably, the board now feels that an individual with more managerial experience is needed to take the club forward. The task of appointing a new manager now begins. An announcement will be made shortly regarding transitional arrangements pending the appointment of a successor."

Reportedly, a coach is in short order for Newcastle. Much like certain other people's fantasy teams that are named in honor of Newcastle, their play was erratic at best, with such wins as 5-1 over Sunderland and 6-0 over Aston Villa tempered by losses like yesterday's 3-1 loss to WBA.

We wish you well Hughton, and think that the Toons didn't give you nearly enough time to cement yourself. Now if only they could fire Mike Ashley for his poor performance as an owner (and while the similarities are striking, no that is not Ashley in the pic).

Photo: The Mirror

Monterrey wins Mexico Torneo Apertura 5-3 aggregate

Tonight, the second leg of the home-and-home Gran Final of Mexico's Torneo Apertura saw Santos Laguna of Torreon take a one goal aggregate lead into Monterrey. The matchup was billed as "duelo del norte" because Monterrey and Torreon are the two northernmost cities represented in the Mexican Primera Division.

05 December, 2010

EPL: Blackburn v Wolves Highlights

Maybe it wasn't Hahnemann's fault. Hennessey is between the pipes for Wolves in this 3-0 debacle. Wolves even manager to hit two posts on one shot and still not score. Blackburn gets goals from Dunn, Emerton and Nelson in the win. Blackburn 3 Wolves 0

Video: brutalmessi

EPL: Arsenal v Fulham Highlights

Wow, good match. Nasri and company do a number and both sides put together some nifty footwork in all three goals. Arsenal walks away winners, 2-1.

Video: Brutalmessi

EPL: Birmingham v Tottenham Highlights

Despite another dominating performance from Spurs, Gardner levels the points for Birmingham and walks away with a 1-1 draw.

Video: brutalmessi

EPL: Newcastle v West Brom Highlights

Newcastle gets a last second goal from Loevenkrands to save some face in this embarrassment. West Brom scores behind Tchoyi and 2 from Odemwingie. Final WBA 3 Newcastle 1

Video: todayfoot

EPL: Chelsea v Everton Highlights

Chelsea is booed off in this snore fest while Drogba and Beckford score. Final 1-1.

Video: brutalmessi


Wow... It's been a tough last few days on me. Sure, I called both bids correctly, but this is one time I don't like being right.

And then comes an article by the Independent. And another subsequent one in the WSJ, and yet another with the Guardian. FIFA members colluded, and so the stuff starts to hit the fan.

Granted, England got only two votes and got eliminated in the first round, so you expect a few of their papers to be all sour grapes, but the Independent isn't that biased, and the WSJ? This isn't good.

Since then, Fat Santa, I mean, Chuck Blazer has come out to deny the allegations against him. MP Jack Warner, as per usual, refuses to take calls from a "clearly biased white media".

So what happened that we didn't know about?

04 December, 2010

Special 1 TV (S. 2 Ep. 6)

Special 1's take on the Real Madrid v Barca whooping and the England loss of the WC 2018 bid.

Video: BBCComedy

The Beautiful Game (Pt. 20)

Part of the Dreamfields Project to give youths new cleats during a tournament in Vanderbijlpark, South Africa.

Photo: CSMonitor

02 December, 2010

We Told You So...

I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but we were right. Very right. The US isn't getting the WC 2022, and neither is England.

In a move that surprised nobody here at TSI, Russia has won the bid for the 2018 World Cup while Qatar has won 2022.

Do you think Putin knew he had it in the bag when he bothered not to even show up for the bidding? Or do you like the fact that Al-jazera news reported Qatar as the winner of the 2022 bid, 10 minutes before the official announcement?

Smell that? It smells like Blatter.

I, for one, am not surprised that Blatter went with the money, but the question is, how will a country that by their own law doesn't allow alcohol, and is rated an extreme safety risk by FIFA to most of Europe/the US fans, successfully host a WC? Couple the fact that daytime temps will be reaching nearly 118F outside the stadium and you have some strict crowd control and some serious tensions between fans and Qatari nationals that could happen.

Congratulations to them, but I'm as usual disappointed in FIFA and their shenanigans. Did you notice that Korea pulled 5 votes on the voting, and that the US only barely edged them out for the finals to host the 2022 WC? Or that England got only 2 votes and were the first eliminated from 2018 bidding? Funny, since right up to the BBC report, they were in a close 2nd to Russia. Consider this your slap on the wrist England, and never cross FIFA and it's power again.

Photo: ronblackradio

01 December, 2010

BBC Panorama Report That Caused All The Fuss

Got a spare 30mins? This is what got FIFA and the FA's knickers in a bunch. Either way, Paddy Power betting service still has Russia as the 2018 bid winner, both before and after the broadcast, so I think the overreaction on the FA's part is all semantics. Good stuff by the BBC and glad that someone wants to make FIFA more transparent even if FIFA bows to no one.

Part 1

Part 2

Video: BBC/megaspliffster

Mourinho Gets Meaningless Ban and Fine

After an inquiry by FIFA that for once wasn't "found to be groundless" (we're looking at pretty much any investigation of their ExCo), FIFA has found Mourinho guilty of advising Xabi Alonso and Sergio Ramos to get a yellow so as to sit out their final group stage match in CL play as that would wipe the slate clean of their yellows for the elimination rounds.

30 November, 2010

Carling Cup: Man U v West Ham Highlights

How to you get the monkey off your back? Some take up a new hobby, others drown their sorrows in drink, West Ham's Spector (who really hasn't produced for club or country much in recent months) has come out swinging.

Spector puts in two in the first half against a still pretty strong Man U side while Cole finishes them off in the 2nd half with another two. Amongst the snowflakes, West Ham took Man U out back of the shed and took them to town.

Guess the Red Devils really didn't want the "meaningless" trophy and wanted to put all their eggs in the CL/League title. Good luck with that.

Video: zebrapublicacoes

Question of the Day

So if an older late addition to the US squad got dropped to his team's B team, should we still call him up?

That's the question you have to ask yourself as Jermaine Jones got dropped to the 4th Div, Schalke B team today for "poor attitude during matches," on the heels of a 5-0 loss to Kaiserslautern. While his play and aggressiveness has been among the best in the Bundesliga over the last few years (injuries aside), his tumultuous relationship with his coach is well documented. Of note is his recent strife with the coach over his prolonged injury concerns when he couldn't manage to get healthy.

Now, it's not like we are short of quality players in our midfield, especially, younger ones such as Edu, Bradley Jr., and others, so it's not like we are desperate for a guy who most likely will be too old for a call up during the next WC.

What's your take?

Photo: theoffside

28 November, 2010

EPL: Chelsea v Newcastle Highlights

Chelsea blow it late in stoppage to lose the 3pts yet again. The 1-1 draw drops them to 2nd in the standings after breaking out of the gate early in the season.

Video: todayfoot21

EPL: Liverpool v Tottenham Highlights

Skrtel scores twice while Defoe misses another pk and Lennon seals the deal in this 2-1 Tottenham win. What? You didn't know Skrtel was on the Spurs books? Better check again, cause he's all about scoring for Tottenham.

Skrtel's goals


Video: todayfoot21, brutalmessi

27 November, 2010

World Cup 2007 Best of Goals

I know we can all hate on women's soccer some times, but you have to love when someone scores some beautiful goals, no matter who they are. And bonus props to Eriko Arakawa for pulling off the Japana-afro with style in the first clip with Aya scoring the freekick.

Video: MCforfoot

Game On: Italy v USA Women's WCQ

Yeah, I'm not a guy who will go out just to see some women's soccer most times. Coached it, will watch it sometimes when I know a player on the team, but in this case, it's about some national pride!

This afternoon, at 2pm EST (only on ESPN3 because no sponsors would pay for a bigger showing), in Chicago, the USWNT, current #1 in the world, has a must win (or at worst draw in a low scoring game) just to qualify for the World Cup next year in Germany.

Wha?! I know some out there who dislike soccer will try to point out how this is why no one follows the sport. "How can the #1 team not be among the 16 teams playing for the Cup?" they'll say.

Well, it's pretty simple. CONCACAF gets two automatic qualifiers (for making the WCQ finals for CONCACAF. Unfortunately, the US suffered a 1-0 semi-final loss to Mexico in the one and out playoff format. It was probably the biggest upset Mexico has ever accomplished. If you need an equivalent, imagine the USMNT knocking out Spain 2-0 out of the Confeds Cup last year. Oh wait, that did happen. Well, it's pretty much the same thing here.

EPL: Sunderland v Wolves Highlights

Ebanks-Blake scores the late one and compounds Sunderland's woes in this 2nd half stunner. If you missed the first half, you didn't miss a thing.

Video: Ambujakshan

EPL: Man City v Stoke Highlights

Stoke pulls out the late goal to just keep Man City's frustration going. Good on them.

Video: ambujakshan

EPL: Blackburn v Manchester United Highlights

Maybe I should just rename this "Berbatov Highlights" because when a guy outshoots and clearly outscores his opponent, you have to give him props. Even if he's a sulky SOB, and bonus points for Rooney being a token field player in this one, yet again. I take that back. He got 2 assists, but when the guy is getting paid that much, he better be scoring at will, from the other side of the pitch. Final 7-1 (or for those at home, Berbatov 5 - Blackburn 1). Only Andy Cole, Jermaine Defoe and Shearer have ever accomplished this goal scoring feat.

EPL: Blackpool v Bolton Highlights

Bolton comes back late to draw the point in a game that saw Holden scratched from the lineup with an injury picked up in warming up. Final, 2-2.

Video: gongto

EPL: Birmingham v Fulham Highlights

Dempsey drops one on Birmingham in this 1-1 draw.

Video: gongto

The Beautiful Game (pt. 19)

Palestinian boy in Hebron, Israel.

Photo: Holylandblogspot

26 November, 2010

Special 1 TV (S.2 Ep. 5)

Who could hate the Special 1 when he's passing messages and quoting movies? "So what about 'When Harry Met Sally'?, 'Stop Goading Me!' 'More like When Harry Met Wenger. What a thriller that one, 3-2 wasn't it?' Pure classic...

Video: BBCComedy

25 November, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving

Debated between showing a "Best Of" highlight of Turkish soccer. They have a lot to choose from. Instead, I went a little lowbrow, but the entertainment value on that crazy Six Flags bald guy meter is still up there.


Video: franbagur

CL: Barcelona v Panathanikos Highlights

Apparently, beating a team 5-1 isn't enough. You have to go to their stadium and then beat them again 3-0 to officially knock them out of CL play and put you through. Ruthless. Pedro with 2 and Messi with another.

Video: futbolchampions1

CL: Bursaspor v Valencia Highlights

Could anything be worse than a 4-0 whooping in CL play? Yes, yes there can be. How about a 6-1 schellacking? Two from Soldado, and one each for Joaquin, Aduriz, Mata and Dominguez...

Video: Premierleague2012

CL: Lyon v Schalke Highlights

Debt ridden Schalke gets all abusive stepfather on Lyon and moves on to the lucrative elimination round behind a 3-0 beating of Lyon. Two goals from Huntelaar.

Video: Herrtutorialdiehure

CL: Tottenham v Werder Bremen Highlights

A seriously depleted Werder Bremen was no match for a Spurs sans VDV. Kaboul nets another in as many games as Bale misses a pk, Modric cranks one in and Crouchy puts the nail in the coffin with the 3rd and final goal of the game. Spurs move on 3-0.

Video: Christasy

CL: Inter Milan v FC Twente Highlights

Cambiasso scores the lone goal for Inter as they pull into the elimination round with only the remaining match against Weder Bremen being the deciding factor as to who goes first between they and Spurs into the next round.

Video: futbolfullhd

24 November, 2010

CL: Chelsea v MSK Zilina Highlights

Chelsea maintains their 100% record in this CL behind 33 shots after getting a little surprise in the first half, going down 1-0. The Blues returned to form in the 2nd and guaranteed their elimination spot with goals from Stouridge and Malouda.

Video: xxxgolasosupremxxx

CL: Ajax v Real Madrid Highlights

Kids, turn away. Beautiful football just got kicked in the nuts. Real just stomps a hapless Ajax to pieces in this 4-0 CL game. Ozil knocks one in, as does Benzema while Ronaldo puts 2 away. It wasn't even as close as the scoreline portrays.

Video: freekicker17

CL: Arsenal v Braga Highlights

Live from Portugal, the "Arsenal collapses in the final 10 minutes and now must win their next game" show. Two goals by Matheus see Arsenal drop from 1st in their group to a tie for 2nd with Braga (but they are ahead significantly on GD) so they must win their next and final group match against winless Partizan to move on.

Video: freekicker17

CL: AS Roma v Bayern Munich Highlights

Bayern jumps out to a quick 2-0 lead behind Gomez by the end of the 1st half. And then it all fell apart. Perhaps because they thought they were safe. Either way, Roma comes out and puts the hammer down in the 2nd half with goals from De Rossi, Totti and Boriello. Roma wins 3-2.

Video: Meczetv

23 November, 2010

The Soccer Inside... Vitalis Digital Takawira

By no means gone from soccer, Vitalis, or “Digital” (I always believed that was his real first name when I watched him play as I grew up), is still at home with the soccer ball.

In the years following his time with MLS outfit Kansas City Wiz (yeah, and they had rainbow colored uniforms too, want to make something of it?), Vitalis signed with A League team, the Milwaukee Rampage and went on to play for them until they folded in 2002. He then signed with the Milwaukee Wave before finally retiring from his playing career in 2004. Currently, he plies his trade developing youth soccer talent for Lake Country United Soccer in Hartland, Wisconsin.

We caught up with Vitalis “Digital” Takawira following one of his youth club’s solid outings over the Halloween weekend in Madison, Wisconsin and asked him about his career, goal celebrations, and supporter scarves in this TSI exclusive:

22 November, 2010

Old School Highlights (pt 1)

Digging around and you know what? You kids haven't seen yourself some Roger Milla. Sure, the old folks like myself can regale you with stories how Milla and Cameroon destroyed Argentina at the 1990 WC, but there is nothing like some good old fashion highlights to show you what this old man was capable of in his prime (~35yo). I don't think I'm going to moving like this at his age, but it's nice to know what I could do if I had his skill and ambition.

Video: Sir82000

Just Because It's Funny to Say

So I'm reading a post on Freddy Adu. I know, this guy is getting more attention here than Charlize Theron in a bathrobe at the moment, but this is just too funny.

Straight off the wires where he is now in Denmark to trial, oops, I mean, "stay in shape", now comes a list of how much it costs for someone to twitter about you on their page.

Sure, occasionally, you check out Twitter and see what you favorite athlete is up to, but word is that all those times you see them hype a website, they are actually charging someone to talk about it in front of a captive audience.

21 November, 2010

MLS Final

The MLS final between the Colorado Rapids and FC Dallas has just ended, and what a thriller! No matter who won, we were guaranteed to see an original MLS team raise the trophy for the first time. If you have not watched the match and don't want to know the result, read no further.

OK, ready for some spoilers?

EPL: Fulham v Manchester City Highlights

Maradona gets a little live entertainment in while Tevez and Zabaleta knock in 3 between them as Man City runs rabid over Fulham at Craven Cottage. Man City 4 Fulham 1.

Video: vasmark

20 November, 2010

EPL: Liverpool v West Ham Highlights

Johnson, Kuyt and Maxi Rodriguez put in 3 quick ones then switch to cruise before riding out 3-0 winners at Anfield.

Going to apologize now for the video quality.

Video: xpressgoal

EPL: Man U v Wigan Highlights

Evra and Chicharito both score to put Wigan down. No big surprises, no big Rooney... Seeing a pattern here?

Video: alabalcho

EPL: Bolton v Newcastle Highlights

This was just a stunner of a weekend. Spurs win at Arsenal, Chelsea loses to Birmingham and Bolton breaks off Newcastle. Well, at least Andy Carroll scored again, with Kevin Davies converted pks to begin and end all the scoring and Holden denied by an amazing save... Yup, good game. Don't look now, but Bolton is sitting 5th in the EPL tables...

Video: alabalcho
Chelski fans, look away. You are about to see your team lose it's 2nd game in as many matches, the first in years. And to Birmingham? Dude...

Video: Fargu

EPL: Arsenal v Tottenham Highlights

A tale of two halves... Not sure what was said at halftime in each's locker room, but I guarantee that Harry put something in the water because THAT was a 2nd half! Down 2-0 at the halftime whistle, with Arsenal firmly in control, Spurs came back out and unstuck the boot in their rear to post a comeback of comebacks. Spurs win 3-2 at Arsenal for the first time since 1993 in league play. Yeah. 1993. Bale scores yet again, as does VDV. It's like Clockwork Spurs...

Video: Todayfoot

Special 1 TV (S.2 Ep. 4)

Video: BBCComedy

The Beautiful Game (pt. 18)

Aviva Stadium, Dublin Ireland

Photo: TVM

19 November, 2010

Freddy Should Bid Adu

It's been a long while since we mentioned the Little One. I guess no news, in this case, is bad news, so we did some cursory digging.

No one wants the kid.

After his failed trial with Sion in Europe, Freddy returned, tail between his legs to his two year loan with Aris. He's technically still owned by Benfica, but they refused to cut his loan deal short with Greek club Aris when they announced they didn't have plans for him.

So where does that leave him?


FIFA Reprimands Two in Collusion Probe

Looks like all that blustery talk about "being sure of being cleared" was just a lot of talk, or FIFA needed a scapegoat and these two new Ex-Co members were the perfect ones. Either way, FIFA suspends Nigeria's Adamu for 3 years and Oceana's Temarii for 1 year, fines both, and prevents either from voting in the WC selection next month on the 2nd.

While this isn't a big surprise, it does strike a sour not for the AFC going into the stretch for bidding. They have Qatar, Australia, Japan and Korea all bidding and the loss of a "home-town" selector doesn't help matters.

What should be noted is that FIFA is trying to keep the veneer of house cleaning, when everyone knows some of the biggest bribe takers, Jack Warner and Sepp Blatter himself, are still in power. Regardless, the bookmakers are still favoring Russia for 2018, so consider the fix in.

Photo: shortsaledailynews

18 November, 2010

The Wiz

Aside from being the name of a horrible MJ musical, it was the team name of the Kansas City MLS team for years. Bearers of a rainbow uniform, it was just so fun and easy to make a joke of them. That said, they were also home of one of the greatest goal celebrations of all time, what with Digital Takawira's "Digital Crawl".

So it is with heavy heart that we say good by to yet another soccer team. Wait, you haven't noticed all the WPS teams dropping like flies? Yeah, well, this one is a storied MLS franchise.

Say goodbye to the Wizards... We'll truly miss you.

17 November, 2010

USA v South Africa Analysis

Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, please join me in applauding our new national heroes, Eric Lichaj and Juan Agudelo.

(wait for applause)

The Professor awarded Eric Lichaj the Man of the Match award in his first start and second appearance for the USMNT as Juan Agudelo scored in his first appearance for the United States senior national team, becoming the youngest player in history to score for the USMNT, leading the United States Junior Varsity to a shocking 1-0 win over South Africa's nearly full World Cup squad at Green Point Stadium in Cape Town.

Friendly: England v France Highlights

Wow, we knew the 3rd string run out by both teams was going to be uninspiring, but this? Crouch gets the lone England goal after coming on late for Gerrard (oops, someone got injured). France runs out winners, 2-1.

Video: xxxgolasosupremxxx

World Cup Bid Evaluation Reports Are Out

And your choices didn't do so hot. So here's the breakdown:

The only dual WC bids are by two co-host countries, Spain/Portugal and Holland/Belgium. Every other country has an either 2018 WC or 2022 WC approach.

December 2nd 2010 is the declaration date of the winners of the bribe contest, I mean, of the WC bidding process.

The total reports can be read here, thanks to MatchfitUSA for the work put in formatting all of this.

Wednesday Fun Day

A whole mess of International Friendlies to take a look at today (especially if you have an internet feed of the match). Some of the more interesting ones:

Denmark vs Czech Rep. 14:15EST

Switzerland vs Ukraine 14:15EST

Austria vs Greece 14:30EST

Russia vs Belgium 11:00EST

Netherlands vs Turkey 14:30EST

South Africa vs USA 14:30EST ESPN2 and ESPN3

Chile vs Uruguay 16:45EST
(this'll give you an idea of what to expect Jan 22. when they play the US)

So which one are you looking forward to? While we'll be watching a rather meaningless match on ESPN2 (we hopefully will see some future USMNT prospects play more than 10mins), I'm going to be looking for that Netherlands/Turkey feed online and stick around to watch the Chile vs Uruguay matchup.

16 November, 2010

EPL: Blackburn v Tottenham Highlights

Bale grabs 2 goals and an assist (I'm telling you now, pick the kid up for your fantasy team if you didn't listen to me at the beginning of the season) to bring his total to 4 in the EPL this season. Tottenham sits back and then manages to give up to late goals to keep Blackburn's honor intact in this 4-2 drubbing.

Video: brutalmessi

EPL: Arsenal v Everton Highlights

Cahill manages to keep the score line respectable despite Arsenal easily keeping this match under control behind goals from Sagna and Cesc.

Video: cselszky

EPL: Stoke v Liverpool Highlights

Fuller and Jones the goal scorers as Liverpool finds yet another way to lose.

Video: todayfoot21

TSI Blog Archive