More from the Colorado Rapids 2-1 victory over FC Dallas in Toronto Sunday night and around the league news today:
• It’s not the coaches Paul Gardner; it’s the officiating
Noted curmudgeon Paul Gardner had a notorious moment on last week’s MLS media conference call with Don Garber’s State of the League address.
Gardner ranted about the quality of the league and suggested that MLS front office did little to aid coaches in his estimation–like Jason Kreis–who were putting a sublime product field.
Gardner’s opine would be way off-base in describing last night’s affair. The causal relationship last night stemmed exclusively from the loose regulation by the referees.
It is somewhat incredulous that, in a nationally televised game on a major cable station, the league didn’t see fit to ensure that it’s referees called a game that would produce a more flowing match.
As the game wore on it became increasingly clear that imposing your body on the opponent was a necessity to either maintaining possession or maintaining a tackle.
Cause and effect of that? Boot City up the field as both teams looked to bypass the attritional endeavor in the middle of the field.
• Have the Rapids done enough to uplevel?
Two pieces of commentary last week and last night in the wake of the Rapids victory.
One, an interview I heard with Rapids’ assistant coach Paul Bravo where he mentioned that it was a “big thing” for Colorado to take a private charter to Toronto. Shouldn’t be.
And…had the occasion to speak with Matt Crawford who played for the Rapids from 2003-2007 last night at the bar. Crawford is an “uber-Rudy” if you will, chosen 38th in the MLS SuperDraft in 2003 and given little chance to make the team, Crawford made the cut as a defender, but went to play four strong years in the midfield on guile alone.
Crawford hung up due to injuries–a nasty hip one (see Kyle Martino); he didn’t get jettisoned due to skill.
Asked Crawford if the Rapids operation was as below average as many suggested.
His positive reply, “Oh yeah, atrocious. We really didn’t get any amenities at all.” Two of the better owners in the league, “Phil Anshutz and Dave Checketts.”
Nice to have a Rapids vet to commiserate with last evening.
• Okay, maybe we can sneak this guy through
Okay, we’ve been head down in MLS Finals and frankly diapers. Anyone care to fill us in with who to expect to be protected and cut loose for today’s MLS club expansion lists?
Who are the Whitecaps and Timbers looking at?
» Seattle Sounders wingman Steve Zakuani goes to Goodison (home of the Everton Toffees) for training.
» From last week: Freddy Adu (we don’t cover him much at TSG for good reason) possibly headed to Danish club Randers. Playing time Freddy. Doesn’t matter where you go. Just, you know, do it.
» One from the EPL: The Dirty Tackle skewers Dimitar Berbatov who after acting interested earlier in the season has now went missing.
Even the great Jonathan Wilson occasionally gets one wrong.