Archive for July, 2011

Freaking Fantastic: The Megan Rapinoe…Song

I laughed. I cried.

I’ve played it like 350 times already.

SF Local: The Jay DeMerit Story Shines This Saturday


As Chali 2na would say, “Bay…….AAAAAREA!”

If you’re by the most golden of gates this Saturday, stop into Danny Coyles on Haight Street to catch a showing of “Rise & Shine: The Jay DeMerit Story.”

The good crew behind the production is looking to make it into a full-fledged movie release and is oh-so-close to doing it. They’re just 5% away from their goal of $215,000 needed, sitting on $207,908 at the time this promo went to press.

They’ve got 1,681 backers already. Just throw a few dollars their way after reading this or come out on Saturday and enjoy the festivities with San Francisco’s chapter of the American Outlaws supporter group and see the belief that all the “investors” currently have.

Remember, this Saturday, July 16th at Danny Coyles on Haight St. in San Francisco. You can attend the event on Facebook here.

And if you can’t? Please, please donate here. (Fantastic poster above done by Live Breathe Futbol….and they’ve got shirts.)

———–

….oh you want more?

Some of the most interesting parts of the film are these moments when these people open up about how unique and inspiring a tale Jay has woven.

Lewis said the whole project took about a year and landed the crew on three continents.

“There’s a story within a story about how this film was made,” Lewis said.

He continued, “In a lot of ways it was just like Jay’s story.

The Shin Guardian was the first publication to review the documentary and speak with the filmmakers. You can read all about it here.

———-

TSG: So the relationship you have with Jay, is it more like Mork & Mindy, Laurel & Hardy, Robbie Rogers & Sacha Kljestan or Bob Bradley & Sunil Gulati?

Chopper: I like to think we get along well. Though we are different, we have a respect for each other and our mutual goal. Kind of like a Starsky and Hutch. And we even have the car…

The Shin Guardian also interviewed Jay DeMerit’s……BEARD! Yeah, that’s right. His name is Chopper….and it was fascinating. You can check that out here.

Report: Jozy Altidore Heads To The Eredivisie

Talking Turkey...

US national and Villarreal club goer Jozy Altidore is expected to don the red and black of AZ Alkmaar in the Netherland’s highest division the Eredivisie. Shut out of a role up top for the Yellow Submarine, Altidore will head northward to compete under the watchful of former US national Ernie Stewart who assumed the Technical Director role at the club just last June.

It was originally reported by Greg Seltzer at MLS Soccer that Alkmaar–4th in the table in the last campaign–was looking at Altidore, but needed to make some personnel moves of their own. Fox Soccer confirmed the move Thursday evening.

This represents the fourth club that Altidore will play for in a little over a year. Altidore concluded the 2009-2010 season at Hull City, then in the Premiership in England. He headed back to Villarreal and found playing time tough to come by for the early part of the 2010 season and ended up on lone to Bursaspor in Turkey’s top league to close out the 2010-2011 campaign.

It’s unknown whether this is a permanent transfer for seasonal loan at the time.

USWNT: Amy LePeilbet Infographic, plus Lloyd-Cheney Review…

Got a little curmudgeony this morning–apologies.

Lloyd always does the dirty work in the US midfield...

The disposition was due in part to the suggestion that Carli Lloyd hasn’t upheld her part of the bargain in central midfield for the US given Lauren Cheney’s move their in yesterday’s game against France. Some quick observations:

» Lloyd played nearly double the amount of time that Cheney did against Brazil. Lloyd of course plays the more, say, tedious and responsibility-driven role of CM for the USWNT.

» The USWNT soon introduced the soup-du-jour Megan Rapinoe after Cheney’s move inward. Rapinoe’s energy, runs, possession and overall gnat-like impact on the other team can not be understated against France

» France–as Maura Gladys aptly pointed out in the review–gambled with 3-deep and adding an extra attacker against the States. The States in turn: a) pushed up and b) controlled the run-of-play up the field as the move backfired for France manager Bruno Bini.

Cheney's been lending Amy a hand, leg, foot, what have you as the WC has progressed...

Anywho…all this got me thinking that the crickets around Amy LePeilbet’s play at left back have sought pasture with the ones exterminated by Abby Wambach coming on like gangbusters.

Found this interesting infographic below floating around the World Wide Web that compares criticism level around LePeilbet to the amount of cover that’s been provided over top of her against various opponents. Interesting, huh? Big difference for LePeilbet has been Cheney taking a little less venture-forward-and-hopefully-get-back-role at left mid as the tournament has progressed as well later match cover (against Brazil & France) by both Megan Rapinoe–predominantly–and Heather O’Reilly (early against France). Early on Cheney did a lot of in-cutting and left LePeilbet basically to fend for herself–not the same on the Krieger-O’Reilly flank.

(Okay, I didn’t find the graphic it happened upon my Google spreedsheets this morning.)

Interesting....

USA 3, France 1: Once More Into The Breach For The USWNT Results In Triumph

EXTERMINATED! (Psst...you hear those Wambach critic crickets? We don't...now.)

It’s gone beyond tactics. It’s turned into a force of will thing now. This collective journey that we’re all taking. It’s out of our hands now.

Today the U.S. proved that you don’t have to play the best soccer for the most minutes to win. You can completely lose the midfield battle, get out-shot, look both confused and exhausted at times, and not only win, but win by two goals.

That’s why you can’t help but think that it’s beyond discussion. This story will be written no matter the tactics or strategy.

Bit of a different game today. Just like Sunday, the U.S. struck first, then gave up a goal to tie it up, and eventually prevailed, just with not as much controversy or drama. But it’s been a little hard to put a label on this game (in an effort to try and avoid chalking it up to the Team of Destiny stuff). So, instead of trying to put together one long narrative, here are three tiny ones, that, hopefully, will add up to a pretty clear picture of the game. All the stuff I missed, hit me up in the comments.

Abby Wambach: American Folk Hero

Twenty years from now, we’ll remember her as a giant, with a forehead that doubled as a missile launcher, a frame that opponents bounced off of and a will that raised the play of her entire team.

In today’s world, it’s really not that far off.

Abby Wambach has become an American folk hero.

But, with the way she scores those goals, it’s hard not to paint her that way. Case in point, today’s goal. France had been dominating for the entire second half, and seemed poised to net a game-winner before the end of regulation. But with one flick of her head, Wambach quashed all of the momentum that France had cultivated for the past 35 minutes. And it wasn’t just a simple nod. Wambach took two giant steps, elevated above everyone around her, right to the exact spot where only she could reach with her head, and sent a statement into the back of the net. Her momentum caused her to smack into the post, but the Wambach wasn’t fazed.

There’s a difference between playing well and being successful, and doing what Wambach does. Lauren Cheney has been playing well. Abby Wambach has been seizing games by the throat.

It’s not just the goals (although there’s something inherently beautiful about those headers). She had two near-misses today (one of which she full-out ran over a defender and the French goalkeeper, leaving them sprawled in her wake) that demonstrated both how skilled she is, and how her talents allow her teammates to play in a way that no other team can. Even when she was slumping during the group stage, she still had the ability to pull defenders away from other teammates, and set them up to score.  Throw whatever superlative you want at her: winner, game-changer, folk hero. It all sticks.

The French Perspective

Turns out Bini's gamble pointed the wrong way....home.

At 77:38 Bruno Bini took a gamble. Despite trailing the United States for most of the first half, France had equalized at 55’ and dominated for most of the second half. But Bini wasn’t content to try his hand against the Americans in overtime or penalty kicks. If France was going to win, it needed to score during regulation. So, he subbed out veteran defender Sandrine Soubeyrand in favor of lightning-fast forward Elodie Thomis. Yes, it would leave France a little more vulnerable in the back, but it was worth it to have the speedy Thomis charging at goal, especially with the confusion that France’s offense was already causing for the American defense. Approximately one minute later, Bini’s risk burned him.  As soon as Abby Wambach’s scorching header hit the back of the net, France’s mission changed from trying to put the game away to needing a goal just to force overtime. But almost immediately after that, Alex Morgan ensured that Bini and France’s luck had run out for good.

It almost wasn’t like that though. Louisa Necib had mystified the U.S. defense all day, opening it up, stretching it, bending it to her will. France was throwing waves and waves of assaults on the U.S. goal for most of the game, and the defense was beginning to crack. Bossing the central midfield wasn’t a problem, thanks to a fifth midfielder, and the less-than-stellar play of U.S. central midfielders Shannon Boxx and Carli Lloyd. They almost equalized in the 32nd minute when Sonia Bompastor sent a rifle off the cross bar from long-range. The long-range shot approach worked well enough, so they kept launching them, mostly into keeper Hope Solo’s arms. The strategy did pay off in the 55th minute though, when Bompastor sent another floater in to Solo. But the keeper had to hold her line in case a streaking Gaetane Thiney attempted to redirect it. That indecision left just enough room for Bompastor’s shot to bounce into the opposite side of the net for the equalizer.

Continue reading

USA vs. France: Live Commentary…The USWNT Looking For Finals Access.

After 120 mins, Hopo had a huge Solo on Sunday...

One knockout down–in dramatic fashion–two to go.

Today the USA takes on France for the right to face the winner of Sweden vs. Japan for the Women’s World Stein.

Becky Sauerbrunn comes in for the red-card carrying Rachel Buehler.

The United States with one less day of rest than Bruno Bini’s ladies for France.

Kickoff at 9am P.T. Coverage on ESPN at the same time; stream available at ESPN360.com. (We’ll try to find others.)

Starting line-ups shortly as the United States faces a much more zonal-responsible team than Brazil.

Your comments below.

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