A long week full of friendlies culminates this weekend, and for the most part, there have been some scintillating performances not normally found in matches of such insignificance. But with the Euros and World Cup qualification tournaments just around the corner, perhaps it shouldn’t be so surprising to see so many players giving their all to ensure their inclusion in bigger matches to come.
But an even more surprising set of circumstances than competitive friendlies really caught my eye over the last week, and that was the eight shocking upset losses by MLS sides to lower-division talent in the US Open Cup. And while many of my contemporaries in the blogosphere have toiled away on their keyboards trying to draw comparisons between the upsets and The Magic™ of the FA Cup across the pond, I’m not so sure we can go that far quite yet. Sure, wins for sides like Cal FC, the Charlotte Eagles and my own backyard Dayton Dutch Lions FC are certainly significant achievements, and they provided the tournament with some much needed publicity. But I think it has a lot more to do with MLS clubs not rating the tournament as important enough to put out their first XI… or even their second XI for that matter.
Things will be a little slow on the blog over the next week, as I’ll be traveling for my real world job for the third week running. I’m sure you’re all le sad about such news, so to help keep you entertained for the time being, enjoy some of the links below.
As American soccer’s evolved, so has its fanbase and culture.
Well written piece on the irony of Chelsea’s CL victory. – grantland.com
Anelka’s newest strike partner makes more money than he does. – dailymail.co.uk
A Son of Ben’s heartfelt goodbye to Danny Califf. – brotherlygame.com
I’m not on this top 50 football tweeters list… yet. – teamtalk.com
Chandler passes on a US call up for second time. – foxsoccer.com
Petr Cech’s OCD pays off. – guardian.co.uk
Football’s “Butterfly Effect”… a brilliant compilation video. – footylounge.com
Still bitching about Spurs’ knocking out of the Champions League. – dearmrlevy.com
Ever wondered how Nike recycles water bottles into new kits? – thebeautifulgear.com