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Sunday, July 29, 2012

THE SOUTH STAND REPORT : Toronto v Houston... or Houston... we have a cliché!

So where we last left our heroes local football team, Toronto FC are on a 3-match win streak, putting down the likes of Vancouver, New England and Colorado.  With a somewhat shocking draw versus Liverpool C from Toronto B, there was a sense of hope with the academy kids and trialists.  After a break from the all-star break where Toronto graciously let everyone else in the league have a rest, we're back in full swing.

In off-pitch drama, no one seems to have AN explanation (never mind a poor explanation) as to why Olaf Mellberg was not allowed to sign for Toronto FC.  The silence from Toronto's front office and the league body that struck it down leads me to believe that the legal team is still attempting to justify the blocking and then let us all know by Tuesday why Toronto can't shore up a quality centreback.

Houston is unbeaten in six, with three wins in a row by a total score of 9-1.  But it was a home stand, so let's see how they handle the cold* of Toronto.

* = it's not really cold, we have this system called Celcius that the majority of the planet uses in comparison to the antiquated Fahrenheit so 27 degrees is quite warm

Predictions were almost unanimously 2-1 pro-Robins from myself, @kzknowles and others. Some had 1-1 and a 2-2 draw.

On to the match...

-7' - Before the teams came out and anthems played... when announcing Amarikwa in the starting XI, the name on the screen belonged to that of former right winger and cat enthusiast, Nick Soolsma.  That was brilliant.

11' - Amarikwa goes for legend status right away nearly missing on a beautiful bicycle kick attempt from 16 yards out.

Quote of the Match :
Jamiroquai's pretty good.
~ @RohanKoomar commenting on Amarikwa's debut

45' - GOAL - Corner kick gets headed on to Carr who leaves his marker planted and pops it past Kocic.  His marker was Dunfield.
Robins 0, Tangerines 1

Half Time Mood : sleepy.

47' - YELLOW - Henry for a tackle outside of the box.

53' - YELLOW - Eckersley gets books for kicking the ball away after clearly tackling his man.  Seems fair. #NoItIsn't

55' - Amarikwa gets hauled down in the box after beating a defender, no call.  TFC fights hard enough to earn a free kick just outside the box for an unrelated incident. #idiotRef

62' - SUB - Amarikwa off for Wiedeman.  Good first showing for the kid.

83' - SUB - Hall comes in for Henry and Maund enters the game for Emory.  Sooooooooo we're not playing for the point?

86' - GOAL - Houston build-up has a neat pass finding Brian Ching dead centre of goal and no chance - again - for Kocic.
Robins 0, Tangerines 2

4 minutes of extra suffering and melancholy

FULL TIME : Toronto 0, Houston 2

Man of the Match : Ecks was a beast.

Goat of the Game : Though he didn't have a bad game, Terry Dunfield was responsible for his marker in the first goal, just left in the dust.

Ref Rating : 2 out of 5.  Terrible.  Inconsistent.  MLS-grade officiating.  What else is new.

Kit Spotting : we saw Hajduk Split away, Southampton away, Dortmund home and the winner had to go to the Forest home kit. Looked classy.

Half the side looked very capable, ambitious and hungry.  The other half of the side looked confused and out of sorts.  I'm going to out Johnson, Silva, Emory as some of the bigger offenders... Good lord it was hot.  The club needs to consider a roof for the south end.  Sure, the revenues don't add up to helping us out, but we're awesome... A special shout out to Danny K and I hope he's resting, recouping and enjoying playing Settlers of Catan... We should do our part for the club we so dearly "love" and scour any Craigslist listings for a centreback for hire.  Can't possibly do much worse... Hassli wasn't on the bench as he's not 100% ready to come back.  I hope they do not rush him in any way as we already have too many players not playing at 100% capacity and they're f*cking healthy!!!... We're getting there with Bohemian Rhapsody.  Apparently we could be heard on GolTV... I can't wait to find out who the league will tell us we can't have without saying why.  Hope it might have been someone good. *fingers crossed*

And now, an open letter to Mr. Garber:

Dear Donnie,

Which way do you want it?  Do you want the passionate fans that you showcase and sell to other fairweather fans in a vain attempt to bring those people into something they're lacking in their spectating lives, or an environment where children can come and learn about the game with their overly sensitive families?

Better question, when was the last time you were passionate about something and you didn't start swearing about it, especially when there wasn't money involved, but something you just loved and cared about?

Even better question, are you willing to chip away at the foundation of your fan base at the expense of the middle-class nuclear family? (I know the answer to that already, and it's "yes")

As a season's ticket victim since day one, I am aware of how my image and the images of those around me are used to "sell" the game, yet our reward is a string of options to further take money out of my wallet.  I go to the game because I love soccer.  I don't love MLS, and it's a long time coming before I love TFC, but my love is footie.  You can lie to advertisers all you want, but make no mistake, supporters do not show up because they believe the "M" stands for Major, because it doesn't.  We love the game, and the TIFOs, the signs, the organic supporters groups, the singing, the blogging, and even the swearing are all a byproduct of that love.

As long as you remember all of that, I ask again, so which way do you want it?

Until the NASL can provide me a model and a club to back, you've got me.

And keep up the mystery over the non-signed player thing.  I'd hate to have the face of the league conveniently not know anything when asked by anyone, supporters or media, about it.  Shows anything but integrity.

Your customers for now,

The Yorkies

Team Ratings : Kocic 6.5, Henry 6 [Hall N/A], Eckersley 7, Emory 6 [Maund N/A], Morgan 6, Lambe 6.5, Dunfield 6, Frings 7, Silva 6, Amarikwa 6.5 [Weideman 6], Johnson 6

@ignirtoq is usually more chipper than this.  He follows sports business and usually doesn't go off the handle when he sees inequalities and bullshit.  Also, he's more open to adding new songs to the repetoire of the south stands, and secretly hopes that Slade's "Run Run Away" becomes a terrace classic one day.


  1. so garber doesn't like the whole you suck asshole thing on goal kicks?
    What supporters should do is the following.

    As soon as the ball goes out for a goal kick, they start up the "and now you do what they told ya, duh-duh-duh, and now you do what they told ya...." part of rage against the machine's killing in the name of. as seen here if you don't know it.

    Keep that up for as long as necessary, then as soon as the goalie kicks the ball, they bust into the "fuck you, I won't do what you tell me, fuck you I won't do what you tell me..." part of it.

  2. or, if you want something a littl more cheeky rather than ragey, adapt the tim howard song.

    chim chimernee, chim chimernee, chim chim cherooo, we are supporters and we say fuck you!

  3. your system forced me to log in to my blog thing if I wanted to comment a second time. weird.

  4. Both are top suggestions. See Duncan, you are lost over there in the shade. You need to join us, suffer in the sun and help conduct our unruly mob. We will swear at you if not.

    1. but the prawn sandwiches are so delicious.

    2. There are indeed unruly. Your help is needed! Besides we could use your dulcet tones for Bohemian Rhapsody.

  5. Didn't think Frings was a 7 today. A non factor and not consistent enough with his dead ball service