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Wednesday, April 12, 2006

"We have one David Beckham playing abroad, and that would be two."

TDH read with some trepidation the news that a certain male-model-cum-England-captain may be planning to end his career in Major League Soccer. If there's one thing MLS doesn't need, it's to become another retirement home for washed up footballing deities a la the old NASL. Sure, there are plenty of folks back home who had the chance to see Pele in person because of the NASL's star-f**cking, but let's remember that the league collapsed under its own weight.

MLS is succeeding because of grass roots fan support, committed owners and ever-improving crops of young Yanks and Latin Americans playing the best football of their lives. Hopefully, by the time Becks deigns to take his skills Stateside, it'll be hard for him to get a game. In the meantime, TDH will be looking forward to that MLS All-Stars v Chelsea match tentatively scheduled for this summer....

By the way, TDH won't be drawn on the name change for the New York Red Bulls. Come on, "New York-New Jersey MetroStars" was about the worst name in history for a sports franchise. Anything would have been an improvement, commercial or not - even the "East Rutherford Snapples," for example.

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Is football a victim of its own success?

Or, in other words, why did a mob consisting of scores of Inter fans attack their own players - after a win, no less? Obviously, the fans' reaction to losing out on the Champions League was beyond any reasonable standards of human behavior. But why is it that they care so much? Is football's marketing too powerful, or would these folks' violent furies be channeled into some other obsession, like watercolors, if they didn't have football?

TDH supposes that these questions will never be answered, since we can't test these folks in a football-less world (though it might be fun to turn the San Siro into an adult art school). Still, food for thought.

3 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ah, those Inter fans...A simple explanation for their behaviour is that they are scum, scum, scum. Also an inherent inferiority complex at having been the second best team in Milan for generations. That couldn't do much for their disposition. The mackems of Milan indeed.

Also with Mancini being linked to the Toon job, I have to ask Maradona if he could be a success at Newcastle. I sort of remember him being pretty ineffective at Sampdoria. I'm expecting your stereotypical hot-headed Italian to come in and fall out with most of the players. Just what we need.

11:32 AM  
Blogger the Maradona of Malawi said...

Well, anonymous, I have to say that if you're worried about a repeat of Souness you need not worry. Mancini is a rather calmer and more urbane character (though recently he was caught screaming to the ref: "Nedved dives! He's been doing it for years! Why do you fools always fall for it?!!!"

On the other hand, his teams are never consistent. At times this season, Inter have looked class, but they keep stumbling when they should be picking up steam.

That said, he does have an admirable devotion to fluid, attacking football.

1:03 PM  
Blogger The American Geordie said...

You can't blame Mancini for all of Inter's inconsistency. I saw the Udinese game; the tactics were perfect, but the players simply couldn't execute. I've never seen so many instances where an attacker got forward into a great position, had an easy option that would lead to a goal chance, and then promptly passed it to an opposing player.

This mostly happened in the second half, though, so it could be a fitness problem (and thus partly Mancini's fault). In my own football, I've always found that accuracy - as well as speed - drops with fatigue. But fatigue doesn't seem to have been the only villain here, since, after all, these guys managed to get forward very quickly.

2:45 PM  

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