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Saturday, May 22, 2010

The South Stand Report : Toronto v New England... or The Discovery of How Crap We Are Without DeRo and de Goo

Who's excited for Canada v. Argentina?! I know I am. But that's Monday. However this afternoon's match brings us to another question : where the f*** are the goals going to come from?! The potentially harmless duo of Barrett and White would normally underwhelm me, but Barrett is finally showing some comfort in front of goal. I'm starting to believe. I know, I'm a minority of one, but as Barrett's most ardent hater in 2008 (I finished 3rd in 2009), he IS improving so everyone else can suck it and I'm converting to believe in him.

Weather : supposed to be a sunny Glasgow afternoon (read : drizzlin' piss)
Prediction : 2-1 New England. In all fairness, I'm calling the "1" on The Chad, and the 2 against on Swiss cheese Garcia.

KICK OFF - If you ever need proof that the captain's armband is a truly useless designation, and not something of honour, the piece of cloth is around the arm of one Nick Garcia. Slap me in the face some more...

1' -TFC comes out flying from the opening kick off! The Chad gets into the box and attempts to chip Burpo.

8' - Nyassi for New England at close range but can't put it by Frei.

11' - Frei comes up with his second save in nearly as many minutes with shot that looked like it went off his head at first and we couldn't tell on the replays. So we'll say he stopped it with his head. Sounds more heroic.

15' - Vanilla Peterson, dubbed "Vanilla" because he looks and plays so ordinary and non-descript, crosses a low-and-very-un-"Vanilla"-type ball across the box and a sliding Barrett can't get his foot to it. Good attempt.

25' - Vanilla Peterson gets munkled in a three person pile-up and Shalrie Joseph gets a booking for his effort. Put that in your pipe and smoke it.*

*we speculate, of course

27' - Gargan picks up the ball and sends it to Vanilla on the right side, Vanilla should've crossed it to Ibrahim, but what can only be expected as "it wasn't Chad", opts to fire it weakly at goal.

30' - Garcia was turned inside out rather easily by someone on New England, but Frei made an easier save. Thankfully New England is as anemic as Garcia.

1 minute of extra time

HALF-TIME MOOD : Groggy, humid and utterly bored.

Quote of the match :
That half was difficult to make fun of.

45' - SUB - White is in, Ibrahim is out. Ibby didn't do much. No argument there.

49' - The Chad gets hauled down in the box but no call. I think it was the right one but looked awful.

53' - GOAL - Sam Cronin with the corner kick puts a low arcing ball into the shallow side of the box and onto the head of "The Chad" Chad Barrett and puts it into the back of the net. I so called it. In the face of my substitute neighbour who was hating on him earlier (which had some merit, but I write the reports so I'm right!). It looked confidently taken.

57' - YELLOW - Barrett for a rough tackle. Didn't see it as I was still writing the part above. If it wasn't correct, it's my guest's fault.

58' - SUB - LaBrocca in, Cronin out. A bit of a head scratcher, but Cronin was a bit absent for most of the game, though he came in where it counted.

61' - Sanyang throws himself at a free kick high ball in the box and nearly gets a severe head punch from Burpo. Sanyang is fearless.

64' - Bullsh*t offside call on The Chad.

Wait, does this mean that MLS officials actually fear his form?

Haha... no, I'm kidding.
For now...

69' - Vanilla holds the ball a little too long and ruins a quality opportunity 3 yrd outside of the box for White or The Chad. Pass pass baby, to go... to go...

72' - Mr. Pringles Chad Barrett goes for his second chip attempt on Burpo that sails over the net of the out of position goal keeper. Right strategy, wrong player. Sorry Chad, subtle touches at goal isn't your strong suit.

75' - YELLOW - Gargan is booked for something I didn't quite see, but it wasn't that big a deal as both players walked away respectfully from where I was standing... oh well. Some random for New England was booked too.

77' - This was pretty. The Chad on a counter attack runs the ball to half, through to Vanilla who holds the ball long enough to thread a pass to White who gets the ball caught within his legs. Wow. Goal of the year almost...

82' - Gala in, Vanilla Peterson out. I'm good with this. Vanilla was involved in much of the play for the game, but it seemed for every good thing he did, there were 3 minor screw ups. And giving my favourite apple a run out isn't a bad thing, is it?

85' - Sanyang goes up for a ball and comes down in a crash that reminds me of Japanese wrestling.

89' - CrampWatchTM : Chad is still playing despite optimal conditions for him to stop after 80 mins.

4 minutes of extra time

90+2' - O'Brien White is just slow. I mean, wow. Under little pressure he couldn't control the ball from going into touch. Just remarkable. He makes me believe that I can be a "classic #10".
90+3' - Gala's first meaningful touch is utterly baffling. Gala holds the ball for so long that forward momentum comes to a halt, causing Barrett to be offside when he does pass the ball through.

FULL TIME : Toronto 1, New England 0

Man of the Match : Stephen Frei
Goat of the Game : O'Brien White for the last 5 mins, but everything before that was pretty solid. I haven't used this 'award' for a while...
Ref Rating : 3 out of 5 as they screwed up calls equally for both sides.

New England showed exactly why there are the least feared team in MLS. They had ball possession, but positive motion in the last third of the pitch was abysmal at best.

As a final note, my heart bleeds for Zac Herold. He's the draft pick who was told by doctors that his professional footballing career will never get started due to a bad ticker. He'll never get called out in the starting lineup. He'll never get a round of applause for his hard work. That's just unfortunate. I truly wish him all the best from here on in and hope he realizes that the life he may lead now will be greater and more fulfilling than the one he could've lost pursuing the game he loves.

1 comment:

  1. This guest resents thats remark.