Your Saturday Commentary Here

A full docket…nay, a blast of games today…as the international break is over…


"Hi mom...look...I'm about to prove Arsenal doesn't have a keeper again."

• Arsenal forget to roll out the carpet for Bolton

And Arsenal wishes that break never happened. Theo Walcott. Out. Thomas Vermaelen. Out. Add that to Rip Van Persie and it’s up to Cesc to save the day…with Arshavin’s help of course.

Highbury (please check out this video if you’ve never seen it) is the site as an invigorated Bolton squad, bubbling out of mediocrity and led by Owen Coyle seek to shake off their home draw to Birmingham last week. Of course, American Stu Holden forms the top of the diamond, while Fabrice Muamba cleans up behind him. A more modern version of Beckham and Keane…okay…that’s a little aggressive.

Arsenal is wounded, but that’s usually when they play their best. If Bolton can muster for a draw or more, stamp them as bigger than a bit player this year.

Oh and some side notes:

Stu’s mommy is in town

…and Bolton will trot out Shaggy today at keeper in place of Scooby-Doo b*tchslapper extraordinaire Jussi Albert Jääskeläinen.

• Everton Welcome Back Lovechild Wayne Rooney and United.

Just a short while ago, Wayne Rooney was the pride of Merseyside’s other team. And then, poof! Gone to better things and now more tabloid fare.

This is the game…if you remember the Lando game last campaign…that Everton get up for because of the Rooney inclusion.

And they’ll do it again this year.

The Toffees will play sweet soccer though Jack Rodwell misses out with a knock. Oh, and knock-knock, Steven Pienaar it’s time to wake up…the season has started. I feel a breakout.


» Will Wigan take solace at home and make it a rude debut for Asamoah Gyan and Sunderland?

» Can Blackpool shackle bad boy toddler Andy Carroll and Newcastle or will they just try to outscore him 4-3?

» West Ham are home to Chelsea…and I’m still scared of the Blues hanging a 5-spot. It’s always the same in the Premiership. Chelsea start out home while Manchester United need to clear the carburetor.

» Has ‘Arry Rednapp lost his mind?! The prickly Tottenham manager is considering giving William Gallas the armband against West Brom today…say what?!

Who doesn't love to get screamed at by Roy Keane. Congrats, Mr. Cropper...

» The Championship: Does Conor Doyle make another start for Derby County against Sheffied United? And speaking of Roy Keane, Ipswich Town plays Portsmouth. Only interesting to me because Minnesota’s own (and USMNT keeper prospect) Cody Cropper just signed on there. Congrats Cody.

The Gooch Watch…

» Kakha Kaladze sold to Genoa. Check. Recently promoted weakling Cesena as the opponent. Robinho and Zlatan looking to make a mark early. Maybe. Perhaps a three goal. Maybe.

Make the 18 Onyewu, I can practically hear the grass on the pitch beckoning to you…


Rambo vs. Junior

Bo’Munchen, Mike Bradley’s club, takes on Eintract Frankfurt, Ricardo Clark’s club.

Whereas a year ago I might have considered this the Yellow Card Bowl, now I’ll simply call it “The Bob Bradley Bowl”…winner gets to be called son by Coach Sweats.

(I mean seriously have you ever seen Bradley embrace his son like he did the last time he yanked Clark from the pitch…ever?)

Newton vs. Bala Town

The Welsh League is back in session…just seeing if you’re still reading after that terrible Bob Bradley Bowl joke thing…



• New York vs. Colorado.

The Red Bulls head out to Steer Country to take on the Rapids.

Someone do TSG a favor and line up Dane Richards and Omar Cummings for a sprint, best of 3.

Has any player benefited more from the introduction of the D.P. than Richards? Seriously if you’re a defender and your man is Thierry Henry and Richards–more speed than skill–just turned the outside fullback are you really saying to yourself, “Man I have to leave my Henry and help out on Dane Richards?”

Remember the Buck, so sayeth the Earthquakes

Is it me–and maybe it’s a hometown bias–but are the Earthquakes looking real frisky at the right time of year?

Geovanni is going to stop the “Oh no you didn’t Cornell Glens” from happening and ginormous Khari Stephenson is laying waste in the middle of the field with Sam Cronin providing cover when he’s not around.

That said, Dallas is rolling, rolling, rolling right now. (Oh no you…yes I did just pull out a Limp Bizkit video.)

Should be a good one at the Buck.

» Toront0 hosts the D.C United M.A.S.H unit: With Bill Hamid’s pending surgery, the only thing I want to know about this game–with apologies Toronto fans–is…when the heck is Rodney Wallace coming back because he’s the guy from United that: a) has a legitimate chance of playing for the States, and b) can play left fullback.

» Oh and apparently this guy David Beckham is going to be on the pitch when the Galaxy face the Crew.

23 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by GeorgeCross on 2010/09/11 at 5:28 AM

    You mean a modern version of Scholes and Keane. Beckham never played at the top of the diamond, always on the right of midfield…


    • Posted by matthewsf on 2010/09/11 at 6:43 AM

      I mean Beckham…only because Holden plays very much like him…Scholes would be the appropriate analogy though…


    • Posted by matthewsf on 2010/09/11 at 7:20 AM

      And you are right…Holden is playing the role of Scholes today in a flat CM for Bolton. He’s the outlet from the back.


      • Posted by GeorgeCross on 2010/09/11 at 7:32 AM

        The thing is, it is understandable that Sir Alex and Scholes have adapted his play and position at 35 to more of a deep lying play-maker. Not sure I agree with Holden playing so deep, especially with his engine and the options he has at Bolton.


        • Posted by matthewsf on 2010/09/11 at 7:36 AM

          Agreed but I really like what Coyle is doing…almost using the central midfield like you would central defense.

          Holden plays slightly forward of Muamba…because he has the chops if he creates a turnover to create an opportunity.

          Not a flat middle…I really like Owen Coyle’s teams.


        • Posted by GeorgeCross on 2010/09/11 at 7:45 AM

          I agree. A significant improvement in a short space of time from Megson’s and Allardyce’s teams.

          Fabregas is pure class. The way he makes space for himself and his vision / range of passes is amazing. Not fair that he’s Spanish!


  2. Posted by dikranovich on 2010/09/11 at 6:07 AM

    and arsenal playing their best when they are wounded, please, thats when they can make their best excuses for losing.


  3. Posted by GeorgeCross on 2010/09/11 at 6:43 AM

    Unbelieveable game at Goodison Park. I still don’t understand why when Everton pulled it back to 2-3 (in injury time), United didn’t just play the possession game, stay compact and see out time. People talk about the the EPL being exciting and end-to-end etc., but there is something to be said about the way the Italians suck the life out of a game to ensure a victory.


    • Posted by jwrandolph on 2010/09/11 at 6:55 AM

      And I think that “something” is…

      Dimitar Berbatov is no Italian. :)

      What a match though! Some great saves from Howard in the first half, Pienaar playing much better (I thought). I really do think that one day Nani and Berbatov are going to convert all their chances and Man United is going to score 11 goals.


  4. Posted by matthewsf on 2010/09/11 at 7:42 AM

    Bobby Zamora just broke his leg.


  5. Shockingly bad call in the Bolton match takes them down to ten men. Been some questionable officiating in this one.


    • Posted by GeorgeCross on 2010/09/11 at 11:27 AM

      It was a harsh sending off. I thought a yellow card was a fair call. But you also have to wonder why Cahill slid in like that and not stay on his feet, especially considering the area of the pitch it happened in. Glad Cahill is learning that with Bolton and not England.


  6. Posted by zlionsfan on 2010/09/11 at 9:09 AM

    sigh … Sunderland a man down for nearly 70 minutes and Wigan find themselves down a goal most of the second half. The only Premiership side with three of their first four at home and they are lucky to come away with a single point.


  7. I’m not sure if Rodney Wallace can play for USA yet. I don’t think he’s a citizen at this time. I also don’t think he is good enough to play for USA, and I’m a DC fan.


    • Posted by Joe on 2010/09/11 at 9:38 AM



    • Posted by GeorgeCross on 2010/09/11 at 11:29 AM

      I had to Google this because I was thinking of another Rodney Wallace (brother of Danny) and my initial reaction was “surely he’s still not playing”…


  8. Posted by kaya on 2010/09/11 at 11:40 AM

    Matt, you need to hire your bro back as a glitter soccerball gif consultant.


  9. Posted by kaya on 2010/09/11 at 1:27 PM

    Man, Ozil made C Ron look like the hired help today.


    • Posted by dth on 2010/09/11 at 4:31 PM


      I thought they linked up well, but Ozil looked the better. Embarrassment of riches if Canales turns out like people think he can.


  10. Posted by dude on 2010/09/11 at 3:35 PM

    I don’t know, Pontius is one consistent season/position decision away from getting a look at camp. He’s got too many tools to be ignored. Hamid is also talented as hell.

    As for Najar, he’s making all of us Rossi themed hypocrites.


    • Posted by dth on 2010/09/11 at 4:32 PM

      Not all of us! I always thought it was understandable (though disappointing) that Rossi chose Italy. I’ll understand Najar’s decision either way, but it’s kind of crazy that there’s a decision at all: he’s not even a citizen yet!


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