MLS Fangirl

Comments from a fangirl's eye-view on Major League Soccer, the American slice of the world's greatest sport.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Change of address

To anyone who might still be reading:
I know it's been awhile, but it's been a crazy year.
I know, I MISSED OUT on Becks. But then, it seems like a lot of people did, too.
And the Earthquakes are coming back!
Houston is Numero Uno again ...
Lots of stuff, I know. I've been watching from the wings, too busy to comment or blog. Not only that, but the Blogspot blog just isn't workin' for me anymore.
So here's the dealy-o: I'm moving over to WordPress: It's easier to deal with, and I might be able to gush enthusiastically about fútbol again on a semi-regular basis.
Chase me down. And thanks for reading.
Happy Holidays, Merry-Xmas, and I'll see you in the New Year!

Thursday, April 12, 2007

From the wires

I go away for a few days and news of international players start hitting the wires. Chivas signs France's Laurent Merlin (man, I do love that name!), the Wizards signed Argentina's Carlos Marinelli, RBNY is trying to get Brazilian striker Edmundo. Just like leagues worldwide and the United States itself, MLS is getting to be a very worldly place to be. How lovely. Does it seem like this is a season where a lot of this is going on? I should really do some research before I post questions like that, huh? But it feels very much to me that MLS is getting to be the international place to be. Like Disneyland, except with slightly better parking. It may not be true, but it feels true, hence, it's jam-packed with truthiness.

Oh wow, I know I'm late on this, but I just listened to the MLS anthem, and I gotta say, whatever they're on, I want some of that. Does fútbol need a theme song? Why not call the people who did the song for Enterprise and have them do something for MLS while they're at it? Yeek.

So I'm goin' out drinking with friends tonight at a bar that you know won't have MLS on for its premiere Thursday night game, but since it's an California game, I may be back in time to watch it from the comfort of my own cozy gamer's chair. I have grand notions to liveblog a game, but I don't think this one is going to be it. My immediate call was for Dallas to win, but then a little gremlin grabbed my ear and whispered that it's LA's day. So the Galaxy by 1.

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Monday, April 09, 2007

Getting my goats

Now who would have guessed that the team to make my day this weekend would be Chivas USA? The LA Goats ended up being my only bright spot this weekend, at a cost to my favorite guy and his team. Chivas whooped up on Alecko Eskandarian and FC Tornoto 2-0, and a goal and an assist by Sacha Kljestan gave me the most points of the day for my fantasy team.

Saturday was an amazingly full day for me, much fuller than a usual Saturday. Most Saturdays involve breakfast at IHOP, followed by five hours of study before 10 hours of work. Now, this past Saturday did begin with breakfast at IHOP (cheers to Amit, our waiter, who was the best and friendliest waiter-guy we've had at the IHOP since Melvin left the pancake world to sell shoes at the mall), but this week it was followed by a couple of hours at the homeless shelter helping make sure that everyone got at least one good meal and some creature comforts this week, followed by 10 hours of work that was punctuated by at least that many hours of futbol. Thankfully, is back, and for a small investment of $19.95, which beats the $50 or so for Direct Kick access (which I still can't get because I don't have digital cable) you can catch some games via computer.

I did get to watch my darling DC crash out against the Colorado Arsenal ... I mean Rapids (love the new red kits, guys!) ... on ABC, although it was at work with the sound off. (a note -- Dick's Sporting Goods Arena is still the most unfortunately named sports complext ever. The Dick? C'moooooooooon!) It looked cold, the players looked cold, the game looked cold. And Troy, Troy, Troy? Wha'happened? I didn't see any spark or dazzle out of DC, but I'm clinging to the belief that it was One Bad Game for them and I'll let it go at that. Erpen didn't do anything amazingly silly, but by that note he also didn't do anything amazingly good, either. I'm not sure about DC's new aquisition, Fred, who came on pitch when I actually had to start doing my job, although I did manage to look up to catch the "Famous Freds" montage that included Fred Flintstone. Ugh. Thanks ABC. Good goal from newguy Luciano Emilio with help from Yinka Casal, and I was waiting and waiting for another one of those that could get the draw, but it wasn't to be.

Via I was able to catch most of the Fire's victory over the Revs, and as far as I could tell it was a good game, although I tuned in too late to catch Logan Pause's goal. And I MatchTracked the rest of the games -- draws betweem RSL and Dallas and the Crew and RBNY, although it sounds like I missed good games. I have to say, I'm a little worried about RSL (did I say that? I guess I really have accepted Salt Lake into my futbol passions!) and Nick Rimando, and a little pleased with the Crew. And I missed out on the Cup rematch of LA vs. Houston, but oh well.

So. How's it look for the season? Uncertain, from my untrained-but-fangirl-adoring eye. I didn't pick out a sure thing that I'm willing to stake my playoff claim onto yet. But ahhhhhh, it's good to have futbol back, isn't it?

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Saturday, April 07, 2007

DC vs. Rapids afterthoughts


More later ...

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Wednesday, April 04, 2007

What's your fantasy, baby?

Yay! It's the Return of MLS Fantasy Fútbol! Oh, how I adore fantasy fútbol, if for no other reason than it gives me a chance to boss the players around on the computer screen. You know that scene in SpaceBalls where Dark Helmet is playing with his Princess Vespa action figure? Yes, if only I had my own MLS players' action figures, so I could put on little fantasy plays and saying things like, "And now Princess Landon, I have you in my clutches, to have my wicked way with you, the way I want to. [In high voice] No, no, go away, I hate you! And yet... I find you strangely attractive." Yeah, MLS Fantasy Fútbol is like that except not so silly.

Last year I had a fairly satisfying fantasy season. I was consistenly third in my little grouping, and I had the great luck at the start of the season of acquiring Troy Perkins cheaply, Troy Perkins who at the beginning of last season was merely the back-up guy for DC United and ended up being MLS Goalkeeper of the Year. Talk about your fantasy dollar coups. I gave Troy a pass this season, as he's now the top-priced guy. So here's the lineup of The Bouncing Soles (named for The Bouncing Souls, whose song "Olé!!" is the BEST SOCCER SONG EVER!! WHOOOOOOO! Go find it on iTunes):

Goalkeeper: RSL's Nick Rimando. He's always been a favorite keeper of mine, and last season I was torn when he sat out most of the season due to a foot injury, which let Troy rock the house. So even though I'm sad that DC sent him west, I think he's bona fide for RSL and will give them a huge hand to get them out of the rankings gutter. Dare I suspect that this will be a good year for Salt Lake? Yes, yes, I think I dare. I'm officially calling off my dislike for Salt Lake. After all, there are other teams for me to sneer at, and who will remain being sneered at no matter how many former USMNT guys they recruit. Hmph.

Defenders: Frankie Hejduk, Facundo Erpen, Alex Yi and Orlando Pérez. I know, no suprise there with Frankie, who I just adore. I bought him at the beginning of last season and had to, sadly, sell him because of his torn ACL that took him out for the whole season, no to mention the World Cup. So he's back, he's signed on with the Crew for more years, and he's going to be The Guy for Columbus ... if he doesn't get hurt again. And yes, I got Erpen again, even though by the end of last season he was really pissing me off. But like Frankie, he's a defender who scores goals, and I can't argue with that. Yi and Pérez were wild cards for me. I know Yi played only a few times for Dallas last season, but Pérez played quite a bit for Chivas, so I'm hoping some good things will come from them this year. I've decided, also, as you can tell, to call off the fatwa on Dallas. As far as regional teams go, the Wizards are my guys, but Dallas ain't so bad. I'm letting 'em on my team.

Midfielders: Christian Gómez, Sacha Kljestan, Adrian Serioux and Jack Jewsbury. I splashed out on Gómez, just because I think he rocks. In fact, I'm pretty happy with this entire Mid lineup. They're all good players, I'm under the impression that they're getting some time on the pitch this year.

Strikers: Davy Arnaud and Alecko Eskandarian. Again, no suprise that I'd buy Alecko, right? Although I'm a little leery of where he's at. FC Toronto -- untested, unknown, so my favorite guy might end up killing my whole team. Hmmm, I think I'll rethink making him captain just yet. Davy Arnaud is a stalwart player, good to have on a team.

I know, I know, no real superstars on the team yet. I was playing with the idea of trading a few, but contest be darned, most of these guys are the dolls that I want to play with. So this is how we start.

In other news:
AP has actually gone to the trouble of writing some stories here and here about the start of the 2007 MLS season. Highlights: (other than Beckham) all games will be televised this year (yay!) and seven of the 13 teams have soccer-specific stadiums. I guess that means no MLStv this year, which was great for me since I still don't have the digital channels needed on my network to get Fox Sports or EPSN in Español. But oh well, I'll have my Thursday nights on EPSN2.

Friday, March 30, 2007

Does MLS need Beckham to up its hotness factor?

Can Beckham fill fashion void in U.S. sports? asks a Reuters story, which comes with this pic of Beckham in all his natty glory with a Scary ... oops, I mean Posh ... piece of arm candy at his side. Although I'm not an avid sports follower on anything outside of futbol, but stories about US athletes and their off-court/field attire do come up in the general media from time to time. But I have noticed that MLS players, in general tend to look pretty pretty when off field as on field. I've seen the guys in the business-casual attire, or the styled jeans look, what have you. They look good to me. I mean, check out the upper right and look at the fine guys in their Maxim spread from last year. Yes, I know it was a magazine shoot, but still. Sexy.

But then again, what do I know, I'm an American, and no matter how much we try, we're just not very fashion platable as the Continent. I think Reuters is asking the wrong question here. It's not that the Beckhams can teach us a thing or two about fashion (and Victoria, please, Baby Spice called and she wants her dress back); it's that the US can teach the Beckhams how to get down and be US comfortable. Embrace the business dress, enjoy the jeans. Relaja, dude.
And I see that Clint Mathis is going back to New York. Which is OK by me, as I've never been much of a Mathis fan, and as I'm still not an RBNY fan, this move isn't crossing my eyes a whit.
And I see I'm going to have to learn all about Fred. More Brazilians for DC is what Martha calls a good thing. Even though my favorite of favorites Alecko Eskandarian was traded away to Canada (begin rousing chorus of "Blame Canada" from the South Park movie), I'm having some grand hopes for my Black-and-Red team which I love so very very much.
And a bigO shoutout of thanks to Climbing the Ladder for the awesome probably starting lineup post. Which is going to make it easy for me when Fantasy play finally begins again.

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Thursday, March 29, 2007

The things I'll do ...

... to avoid writing a paper.

First off -- blog roll!! Let's say hello to Fútbol USA and Soccer Fan News , and sadly I bid farewell to a couple of folks whose blogs have disappeared. I'm super happy to link to MLS blogs, most of which are exceedingly fine. I plan to do more blog trolling as time permits, so watch this space for more updates, and if you'd like to list me and for me to list you, manádame un mensaje!

So I DID get get watch the USMNT/Guatamala game last night, and while I'm pleased that the game at least ended in a draw, and despite some very ugly moments there were some nice moments of guy love abounding on the field -- well, ugh, messy messy messy game, with a lack of scoring opportunities despite some efforts on both sides. About 10 into the second half, I started employing my scoring superstitions -- If I get a glass of water/go to the bathroom/brush my teeth/start reading my book/play with the dog/pick my toenails/fall asleep, they'll get a gol. But apparently my efforts were no match for the game imps.

Anyway, things I did like -- Michael Bradley was a standout for me, and I wish he were an MLSer so I could see more of him. More in Gold Cup and Copa América, maybe? And Landon Donovan!! Somehow, over the past year, he got cuter (OK, so that's not so important. Oh wait, yes it is. And curses to the man in my house who made me change the channel to The Daily Show while the trading-of-the-jerseys was going on) and matured in a way that made him shift in my mind from irritating arrogant showoff to team leader. I loved his effort there in the end.

This I don't know, and if someone could enlighten a poor ignorant fangirl, I'd be grateful -- Bob Bradley is the interim coach why? He's won the first three games, drew one, seems to be doing a bang-up job. So why still interim? Does he have a chance for the job? Does he want the job? I haven't been keeping up, but I'd really like to know where that's going to crumble, cookiewise.

Anyway, the game was pretty much a yawner. The most exciting moment was when the cat caught her claws stuck in the back of the desk chair. She's the kind of cat that comes when you call her, so when we started calling her over, hoping that would help her get her claws unstuck, don't you know it just made it worse and she was dancing around the seat of the chair with one paw up on the back. Tragically funny.