Today Only: Dempsey vs. Donovan (& Howard)

Fulham departs the Cottage and heads northwest to Goodison to face David Moyes bunch of not so merry men.

The so-called #LDvsCD battle. Donovan vs. Dempsey.

TSG is not buying the hype, but nice to watch one game in England instead of two to see the US’s top field players….and leading striker Tim Howard.

Discuss.

US trifecta...

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43 responses to this post.

  1. I’m calling my shot: Tim Howard with a goal to win it.

    Reply

  2. Posted by EFG on 2012/01/27 at 11:00 AM

    With all the hype there is no way this doesn’t finish 0-0, which I’m sure Timmy will take.

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  3. Posted by matthewsf on 2012/01/27 at 11:01 AM

    But who’s better? Just kidding. Just kidding.

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    • Posted by EFG on 2012/01/27 at 11:10 AM

      Is it really that controversial to claim that, at the moment, one is playing much better than the other?

      Reply

      • Posted by GeorgeCross on 2012/01/27 at 11:15 AM

        At this moment in time is pretty hard to argue that Dempsey is not in the form of his life. Understand that he’s midseason, where Donovan isn’t, been playing with these players for a while etc, but credit where credit is due.

        I reckon if Dempsey was 22 or 23, some biggers clubs would have had their heads turned. Hope he can keep it up.

        Reply

        • Posted by EFG on 2012/01/27 at 11:40 AM

          I wonder if there is anything to read Fulham’s interest in Catania’s (now Milan’s) striker Maxi Lopez. Was he to be a replacement for someone or just to serve as an upgrade over Johnson, Dembele, or Zamora?

          Reply

  4. Posted by GeorgeCross on 2012/01/27 at 11:11 AM

    Last time I checked my AtoZ, Liverpool was north of London, no? Unless, Everton has done a MK Dons…

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    • Liverpool St. or Liverpool? Why would your AtoZ have Liverpool in it?

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      • Posted by GeorgeCross on 2012/01/27 at 2:54 PM

        The AtoZ is the brand of the map. You can have a London AtoZ (which probably is / was the most common), but you can have an AtoZ Great Britain too.

        Lived in London for 5 minutes and think you know it all…

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  5. Tough call on which shirt to wear today…the Donovan White or the Dempsey Red???

    Reply

  6. Deuce vs. DonDon: Fight!

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  7. I said it earlier and it finally is coming to fruition, but it really shocked me that Everton were not closer to relegation (earlier in the season). They have been really poor at times this season.

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  8. Posted by kaya on 2012/01/27 at 2:23 PM

    Does Johnson have a problem with Dempsey? And the rest of his team?

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  9. Posted by Alex on 2012/01/27 at 3:18 PM

    Donovan with both assists for Everton today as they defeat Fulham 2-1. Sounds like Dempsey had a quiet game

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    • While he did, it was a pretty meh game in general. Tons of misplaced passes, turnovers, no intensity from the crowd or players for the first 25 minutes.

      Reply

  10. Posted by Union on 2012/01/27 at 3:58 PM

    Off topic, but awesome. Jen Chang just posted on Twitter. Obviously, its nothing but speculation. But still: http://www.mlssoccer.com/blog/smorgasborg/2012/01/27/no-world-cup-theres-always-copa-america

    Reply

    • Posted by Jared on 2012/01/27 at 4:39 PM

      US Soccer and Mexico need to band together to give Concacaf the finger, bail on the Gold Cup and request permanent entry into the Copa America.

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    • Posted by dth on 2012/01/27 at 8:06 PM

      It makes too much $en$e for it not to happen on a permanent basis. CONCACAF bringing US, Mexico and Canada to the table is too attractive a business opportunity for it not to happen. In addition, the burgeoning strength of the CONMEBOL middling powers and US/Mexico means that the tournament would become the best continental tourney in the world (now that Europe has decided to debase theirs).

      Reply

      • Posted by dth on 2012/01/27 at 8:08 PM

        Though it would help if the Canadian federation could get its act together, with stories like this hardly inspiring: http://www.mlssoccer.com/news/article/2012/01/27/commentary-canadian-u-23-team-remains-mystery

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        • Posted by Ufficio on 2012/01/28 at 7:20 PM

          I don’t see any way that an automatic berth for Canada in a 16-team Copa America can be justified.

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          • Posted by dth on 2012/01/28 at 9:03 PM

            Oh, no, it’d be completely unjustifiable. I’m just saying….certain authority figures might think the participation of the one of the richest countries in the world a highly desirable thing from a rights aspect.

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      • Posted by GeorgeCross on 2012/01/28 at 6:14 AM

        The key word here is ‘opportunity’ – I do think it is only a matter of time before the moneymen at FIFA make this happen.

        Yes, Euro16 will be diluted as they increase the participants to 24 teams [which I do not like], which means there will be some ‘nothing games’ in the *group stage*. But the reality is that 15 of the top 20 countries are in UEFA. The QFs and SFs won’t be too far behind the WC if at all. Not sure how you can say that “the burgeoning strength of the CONMEBOL middling powers and US/Mexico means that the tournament would become the best continental tourney in the world”. The [footballing] *facts* do not support your statement.

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        • Posted by Jared on 2012/01/28 at 6:54 AM

          Where are you getting the list of top 20 countries? Are you using the FIFA rankings? I’ll respond more once I get that answer as I don’t want to start the discussion without having that piece of information so that we’re not using different ideas on ranking.

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          • Posted by GeorgeCross on 2012/01/28 at 8:09 AM

            FIFA and ELO.

            The other thing is that USSF won’t switch unless X World Cup qualifying spots also move – at present, the US and Mexico are going through the motions to qualify, basically it’s a waste of your time.

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        • Posted by dth on 2012/01/28 at 10:21 AM

          I suspect CONCACAF and CONMEBOL would merge only for the purpose of continental tournaments–there’s too much money in World Cup qualifying for the Caribbean minnows for CONCACAF and CONMEBOL member countries would revolt if their favored 10-team, balanced-schedule World Cup Qualifying schedule were disturbed. But a Copa Americas just makes too much sense not to happen on a permanent basis, particularly with the increasing resistance of clubs to release players for non-scheduled tournaments.

          As to the top teams arguments: I’m all about hard games every round. The lack of dilution in a 16-team Copa Americas makes it a more entertaining tournament than a 24-team Euros. Furthermore, Europe’s near its ceiling. Due to development (U.S., Mexico) and economic development (Mexico, Brazil, Chile), the Western Hemisphere will only get better, while Europe–losing population and wealth–will only get worse.

          Reply

          • Posted by Martin on 2012/01/28 at 3:47 PM

            “As to the top teams arguments: I’m all about hard games every round. The lack of dilution in a 16-team Copa Americas makes it a more entertaining tournament than a 24-team Euros. ”

            I think organizers like to avoid scenarios where all the top teams get knocked out early. For example, if some version of this Copa America happens how popular would it be if Brazil, Argentina, the US and Mexico got knocked out in the earlier rounds?

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            • Posted by GeorgeCross on 2012/01/29 at 8:58 AM

              That is why there is a seeding system, no? So the top teams are kept apart until the latter stages [if they perform as they are expected to]. The QFs should in *theory* go to the 1-8 seeds.

              Can you believe that in Euro92 only 8 teams participated? From a footballing [and not economic] perspective, just imagine how tasty the Euros would be if that was still the case?

            • Posted by Martin on 2012/01/29 at 8:49 PM

              George,

              Correct.

              dth does not appear to like seeding, which , by definition matches the strongest teams (on paper) with the theoretically weakest teams possible for as long as possible.

              A Copa America as posited by Chang would, I would think , want to keep the four teams I mentioned apart, keeping alive the possibility of a semifinal with all four in it and thereby insuring maximum fan interest from the largest fan bases.

              Like dth, I would prefer more of a free for all but I doubt the organizers, whoever they might be, would agree with me.

              The thing to remember abut the 1992 European Championships ( besides that great Denmark team) was that the Soviet Union broke up and particpated as CIS ( love to have those jerseys) but after that there was a whole new bunch of countries. Yugoslavia also split up and contributed even more countries.

              And that of course is one reason why the tourney eventually was expanded.

            • Posted by GeorgeCross on 2012/01/30 at 7:41 AM

              Yugoslavia got kicked out due to civil war, and Denmark took their place. And then they won the whole competition.

  11. Posted by BernieBernier on 2012/01/28 at 10:08 AM

    Fabian Johnson started as CF for Hoffenheim in a 4-3-3. I know people on these boards dismiss the ideal (and probably for good reason) but I continue to build conviction behind the anyone but Jozy bandwagon if the US is going to stick with a 4-3-3. I know Fabian or Duece aren’t traditional target forwards but I want to keep the best 11 on the field (Shea and Fabian are better than Jozy at this point).

    Shea – Fabian – Landon
    Dempsey

    Shea – Duece – Fabian
    Donovan

    Reply

    • Posted by mbw on 2012/01/28 at 12:19 PM

      It’s definitely a fair point. I guess I’d respond that Jozy’s done well as a center forward at AZ, and to a lesser degree in recent USMNT friendlies, when he’s had creative movement around him. With Johnson, Dempsey, and Donovan, you’ve got three attacking players who really know how to move and to use space effectively. I’m looking forward to seeing an interchanging front four with Bradley or Jones trailing from the #8 spot.

      Disclaimer: Jozy’s form / lack of PT is becoming a concern again.

      Reply

  12. Posted by 4now on 2012/01/28 at 1:23 PM

    Dempsey is the greatest American field player to have fulfilled his potential in Europe. For that fact, he “wins”.

    Donovan has never fulfilled his full potential. And he never will. He seems happy to be comfortable and to show flashes on loan an in World Cups. For that fact, he has “lost”.

    One is from the Texas border. The other from Southern California. Fitting.

    It’s really a shame about Donovan – at the end of the day, an underachiever. It should be no contest, really.

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    • Posted by CJ on 2012/01/28 at 8:19 PM

      “Donovan has never fulfilled his full potential. And he never will. He seems happy to be comfortable and to show flashes on loan an in World Cups. For that fact, he has “lost”. ”

      Funny how that statement could almost be word for word applied the opposite way a year or two ago to Deuce yet, since Deuce has all of a sudden found consistency it’s forgotten? Donovan doesn’t need to destroy all competitions in Europe to satisfy his critics in regards to his accomplishments. He had failed attempts in Europe at a young age but is the LEADER of our country’s NATIONAL team. That’s a pretty big deal and should not be forgotten when addressing this topic of who is “better”. Different players, different paths, different expectations, it’s not as easy as he did it right and he did it wrong or he won and he lost.

      I love Deuce, always loved his swagger on the field and ability to just “turn it on” when he got motivated. At the same time he played himself out of a lot of games when he was younger that I’ve watched and it infuriated me as a fan to the point of me not wanting to support him due to that inconsistency.

      His potential has definitely been realized, I with no doubt give you that, but Donovan’s ability to send two bending balls into the box for a come from behind win in the premier league and completely inflate the sails of a club that was dragging ass for awhile is a testament to his character and full potential, no?

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      • Posted by GeorgeCross on 2012/01/29 at 10:16 AM

        If you are talking about yesterday, it was the F.A Cup, not the PL.

        Bending balls? Did I watch the same game as you? They were two good crosses, but pretty bread and butter TBH, which Fulham should have dealt with. Not like some of the crosses which I have seen him make – curling the ball behind the back line but in front of the keeper, with pace. That is very difficult to do, and even harder to defend against.

        I think what people mean above about the Dempsey vs. Donovan, is that Donovan has more ‘natural ability’, where Dempsey makes up for this with grit and determination. I am not trivialising Dempsey, before people complain. But if you could clone a player to have Donovan’s ‘natural ability’ and Dempsey’s ‘steel’, then you would have some player…

        Reply

        • Posted by CJ on 2012/01/29 at 7:20 PM

          True that on the crosses I realized soon after posting that I had exaggerated a hair, haha. On the other hand remember that shot -as the announcers called it- Donovan took, low, hard, curled left? I’d bet money that was a hard pass he wanted anyone to just toe touch.

          Reply

    • Posted by Martin on 2012/01/29 at 9:47 AM

      Mr. now,

      Here’s a popular cliche you might want to think about in this instance, “Form is temporary, class is permanent”.

      The statements you are making about both of the D & D combo should wait until after they are finished and from what I can tell, both have a ways to go yet.

      Reply

  13. Posted by GeorgeCross on 2012/01/29 at 10:19 AM

    Is anybody watching the Arsenal vs. Aston Villa F.A. Cup match? Talk about McCleish’s HT team-talk gone out of the window. What a calamity at the back!

    Reply

    • Posted by Antonio H. on 2012/01/29 at 3:40 PM

      We(they) have been horrible at the back all season long. Not really a surprise for me. I wasn’t expecting a shutout, especially not with Andre the Giant and Sasquatch at the back.

      Reply

  14. Posted by GeorgeCross on 2012/01/29 at 10:28 AM

    Seeing Villa fans giving it some at HT when they were 0-2 up, and now almost crying, 3-2 down, 15 minutes into the 2nd half is brilliant.

    The so-called ‘sleeping giant’ tag they’ve had for 30 years is somewhat amusing…

    Reply

  15. Posted by GeorgeCross on 2012/01/29 at 10:30 AM

    That’s better Walcott – be more direct. Attacking and beating Warnock all day long.

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  16. Posted by Alex on 2012/01/29 at 9:08 PM

    Gooch with a double and a yellow (Ives Red) card in just the first half of Sporting CP action today. Very disappointed that he didn’t get the hattrick!

    Reply

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