ten words or less #89

DC United forward Chris Rolfe

friend of WSOTP, chris rolfe will find himself in new digs this weekend after being traded from chicago to DC.

It’s been ages since my last links round up piece — okay, so it’s just been over a month. But a month can seem like ages in a house with an infant. And in the spirit of full disclosure, I needed to get this latest Ten Words or Less published before some of the links below become no longer relevant. And with the collection of links below spanning nearly the entire spectrum of professional soccer — from World Cup stories to the Premier League, from the Major Indoor Soccer League to USLPRO to Major League soccer, and from footie gear to soccer broadcasting — this is a links round up not to miss.

To new beginnings. – mlssoccer.com

Ian Darke stars in probably the best ESPN commercial ever. – youtube.com/espn

I really wish Chelsea would stop making kits I like. - footballfashion.org

The MISL is dissolving and it’s getting really ugly. – thebluestatement.com

BeIN Sport have made a vuvezela that changes the channel. – therichest.com

I am 100% behind making this the next MLS rebrand. – thegoatparade.com

Please don’t tell me this is a permanent home. – daytondutchlionsfc.com

Some people prefer Spanish commentary… I’m not one of them. – npr.org

I’m a non believer, but these football Tarot Cards rock. – designfootball.com

Some day… Nike will send me these, too. Some day. – theoriginalwinger.com

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is the grass always greener?


USMNT Forward Julian Green

International football has become increasingly murky in recent years. In the good old days, it was simple: you played for the country you were born in, end of story.* But these days, citizenship and country of origin only tell half the story about why a guy plays for the national team he does.

Today we see Argentines playing for Italy (Pablo Osvaldo), Germans playing for Ghana (Kevin-Prince Boateng), a guy from the Central African Republic playing for France (Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa), and Brazilians playing for just about everyone. Thanks to international eligibility now being tied to your family history — as far back as both sets of grandparents — and residency, it allows someone like the talented Manchester United starlet Adnan Januzaj to choose from  up to seven national teams: Albania (paternal and maternal grandparents), Belgium (where he grew up), Croatia (paternal grandparents), England (where he lives now), Turkey (maternal grandparents), Serbia (parents)  and Kosovo (provided they ever get official FIFA sanctioning).

Predictably, this murkiness stirs a lot of emotions among supporters and the federations alike. Particularly in places like Europe, where race and ethnic origin is a prickly topic, fans seem to get up in arms anytime it’s even suggested that a foreign player be naturalized and brought in to the set up.

But it’s the trend these days, and everyone is doing it… even us here in the United States. Continue reading

WSOTP pod: episode 30

WSOTP Podcast - Season 1 Episode 30

when demba ba gets a chance to drop a brace on you, it’s fair to say things aren’t going well.

Though it may have been a truncated weekend schedule for the Premier League, it was a big one here on the podcast with it being the WSOTP Pod Derby — or Spurs versus Chelsea for those not in the know. And for those who know us well, is should come as no surprise that the results in said Derby had D.J. wallowing and Jeremy doing his best to take it easy on his fellow podcast co-host. You’ll also find the full review of the rest of BPL action, FA Cup chatter, reflections on the USMNT’s match against the Ukraine, a rundown of MLS First Kick highlights, a talk on the Crew’s controversial TV deal, and our thoughts on Nike and Adidas’ crazy new knit boots… so a little something for everyone.

Subscribe to the WSOTP Podcast on iTunes or Stitcher, or search for “Wrong Side of the Pond” in your favorite podcasting app to listen to us on your mobile device!

chill pill


In case you missed social media meltdown, the U.S. Men’s National Team lost to the Ukraine in a friendly yesterday.

The 2-0 loss — played out in Larnaca, Cyprus, thanks to the ongoing political upheaval in the Ukraine — featured mainly European-based players. And boy did the lot of them put in a very underwhelming performance lacking energy, fortitude and passion. A limp back line featuring veteran Oguchi Onyewu and youngster John Anthony Brooks were completely out of sorts. An experienced midfield featuring Jermaine Jones and Sacha Kljestan provided little possession and was poor in distribution. And captain Clint Dempsey, one of the few MLS guys taking part, looked about as interested in playing as he has been with involved with Seattle’s preseason.

Add all of that together, combined with the fact that we’re now under 100 days away from Brazil 2014, and you have the perfect conditions to induce panic.

The collective response of most of the supporter base would sound something like, “If we can’t beat a country that didn’t even qualify for Brazil and is in the middle of a war, then how in the hell are we going to be beat Ghana, Portugal or Germany?!?!?!”

At least at a really basic level, I can understand the panic. We looked dreadful. Even if the boys put in a performance twice as good as that one in Brazil, we’ll likely still get picked apart in the group. There was plenty enough talent in that side to compete with the Ukrainians.

But despite my disappointment with the side’s performance, I’m not actually panicking. Not based on that game alone, anyway. Continue reading

WSOTP pod: episode 27

Bayern Munich's Julian Green

bayern starlet julian green is the latest, and perhaps brightest, of klinsmann’s german convert targets for the USMNT.

Despite tough weather conditions last week in Great Britain, it was busy last week with an almost full slate of midweek Premier League action plus an almost full round of FA Cup fixtures — the “almosts” thanks to some postponed matches due to said weather. We cover all of that on this week’s podcast, but that’s not all. Jeremy and D.J. also delve into the hypothetical world of where FIFA would go if they actually yanked the 2022 World Cup from Qatar, a preview of this and next week’s Champions League knockout matches, a talk about all of the World Cup tune-ups to be played here in the states this summer, plus an in-depth look at the Julian Green situation with the US Men’s National Team. And we made time, too, for a quick shout out to the local side for their latest achievement.

Subscribe to the WSOTP Podcast on iTunes or Stitcher, or search for “Wrong Side of the Pond” in your favorite podcasting app to listen to us on your mobile device!

WSOTP pod: episode 26

WSOTP Podcast - Season 1 Episode 26

did swansea interim manager gary monk have his kit on under that tracksuit? i hope we find out at some point this season.

For the first time in weeks it seems like, there was only a single helping of Premier League action for Jeremy and D.J. to cover on the podcast. And that means that there was ample time after the BPL round up — which includes discussions on Liverpool’s blowout victory over the Gunners and Gary Monk being the league’s second player manager since the turn of the millennium, among others – to dive into some other topics for a change. So what’s on tap? The guys share their thoughts on the quasi-announcement hosted by David “Beckman” and MLS in Miami, and a lengthy and in-depth response to a listener question about the best mobile apps to use to follow soccer while on the go.

Subscribe to the WSOTP Podcast on iTunes or Stitcher, or search for “Wrong Side of the Pond” in your favorite podcasting app to listen to us on your mobile device!

WSOTP pod: episode 25

WSOTP Podcast - Season 1 Episode 25

a sight that no newcastle fan wanted to see may have been one of the biggest moves of the transfer window.

Much has transpired since the last episode of the WSOTP Pod was published, so the boys had lots to talk about yet again. Two whole rounds of Premier League action went down, which we’ll spend ample time talking about. The US men’s national team had a friendly match squeezed in there too, despite it not being an international break. Also, MLS preseason has kicked off all around the country — well, at least the warmer parts — along with rumors of an impending Miami expansion announcement. And let’s not forget the January Transfer Window slamming shut… though there’s less there to talk about than you would think. And if you’re a fan of late 90′s British pop music, you might just find some extra joy in Episode 25!

Subscribe to the WSOTP Podcast on iTunes or Stitcher, or search for “Wrong Side of the Pond” in your favorite podcasting app to listen to us on your mobile device!

pic of the week 1/27-2/2


Jurgen Klinsmann and a helicopter

Ignoring the actual context for just a moment, this might be the coolest American soccer picture of all time: our stylish, world-famous national team manager exiting his helicopter and signalling to the masses just how awesome he is with a confident thumbs up. The only thing that could possibly make it any better would be if there were some explosions in the background and/or if Klinsmann was smoking a pipe.

So what’s the story behind this most recent Pic of the Week? It’s a still capture from one of US Soccer’s most recent video uploads that details USMNT manager Jurgen Klinsmann’s hobby of learning to fly a helicopter. And now that I think about it, adding the context of the picture above back in really doesn’t make the picture any worse. After all, I would think the pool of managers out there that actually have their helicopter pilot’s license is pretty shallow. Though I stand steadfastly in my belief that background explosions would  still make it just a bit more gnarly.

WSOTP pod: episode 24

WSOTP Podcast - Season 1 Episode 24

phil jones’ face post-atrocious penalty is the perfect visual representation of united’s trash fire of a season.

Break out the champagne WSOTP Pod listeners — for the first time in several weeks, we were actually been able to get the podcast up for its regularly scheduled Tuesday publishing! And in this week’s on time edition, we take a look at the results from last week’s English Cup action and the transfer window — from Manchester United’s continued issues domestically to Juan Mata’s transfer from both the Chelsea and United perspective. We also share our thoughts on American soccer semantic snobbery, and preview this week’s hectic Premier League schedule. We even find time to talk about Ron Artest… but I’ll leave it to you to either listen or guess how we fit him into the discussion.

Subscribe to the WSOTP Podcast on iTunes or Stitcher, or search for “Wrong Side of the Pond” in your favorite podcasting app to listen to us on your mobile device!

WSOTP pod: episode 23

eto’o finding his scoring boots is just one of the many topics discussed on this week’s podcast.

The latest episode of the Wrong Side of the Pond Podcast – slightly delayed as D.J. continues to man the editing while Jeremy’s computer is out of commission — is finally available for our listening enjoyment. It worked out well, as it allowed the guys ample time to reflect upon an interesting weekend full of Eto’o goals, missed calls and continued Manchester United misery. In addition to the normal Premier League action run down, the guys also dip their toes into the MLS SuperDraft, the latest national soccer broadcasting news and ugly kits and crests.

Subscribe to the WSOTPpod on iTunes or Stitcher.