Welcome back Will Parchman. Your retro diaries are always …. Top Drawer.
I’m wearing black today. Pouring out drinks. Saving front row seats (or just one for my German Bro). Jurgen Klinsmann, our Herr, our Fuhrer (eh, too soon?) is watching the game like the rest of us. His exposition on his one-game suspension after UNTOWARDLY THROWING A SOCCER BALL SOMEWHERE was “it is what it is,” which makes me want to stab the eyes out of baby pandas. But so does this suspension, so there you have it.
CONCACAF. You suck. I mean it. Love, Will.
Honestly, it means little. If not nothing at all. Klinsmann wears heather-gray half button-downs with that Euro swag on the sideline during games and yells a lot. Jumps around a bit. Mutters German obscenities. Yells some Hasselhoff. Most of his work is done on the training ground before and after games. So that he’s left it up to Martin Vasquez and Andreas Herzog, two guys who share the same training ground and the same hilariously lofty ideals, is not a big deal.
But here comes Panama, a team the US splashed into the core depths of the Pacific Ocean in Seattle in a brilliant, vibrant attacking display. Lineup.
#USMNT lineup for Gold Cup Final: Rimando; Parkhurst, Goodson, Besler, Beasley ©; Beckerman, Holden; Bedoya, Donovan, Corona; E. Johnson
Eddie Johnson’s hair starts up top. Like it. Love it. Can we talk about how good Kyle Beckerman is at this level? He’s literally the perfect B-team midfielder, because he’s a B+ player most every game, and an A- player when he’s streaking. Which is like, now. In competitions like this, he’s a pissed off tank in a suburban Kia dealership.
Also, DaMarcus Beasley gets vampire blood infusions before every game. It’s the only way. Holden deep in a 4-2-3-1 is interesting. Basically ensures this will not be an actual 4-2-3-1. He won’t sit deep with Beckerman. More or less ensures an attacking ethos from the outset. Like it.
Gus Johnson and Wynalda for the broadcast. Players will be simultaneously hammered and mispronounced. CAN’T WAIT. Jokes. Seriously though, I like Gus. He was thrown in too deep initially with the Champions League stuff. This is his venue here. You know I support anyone who yells through a routine pass at midfield. Caps. Hyperbole. Beastsause.
Donovan crouch. Let’s go. #TankInAKiaDealership
‘1 – Parkhurst. I’m scared of you.
‘2 – FOX’s three keys to the game that just flashed up on the screen just now (this is not a joke): 1.) Stay true to yourself, 2.) Stick to the plan, 3.) Have some fun. THANKS FOX YOU ARE A CONTINUAL FONT OF KNOWLEDGE. In five minutes comes the ‘Live, laugh, love’ graphic.
‘5 – High pressure so far is great. I’ve been pleasantly surprised by Donovan in the middle. In the past he had a tendency to drift out wide right to sort of fulfill his natural role. He’s been excellent there so far, and leading the pressure.
‘8 – Blas Perez is basically the only guy we need to pay attention to now, yeah? Looks dangerous already.
’10 – Back line looking a little ripped open at times. Beckerman greases back his dreds, knocks off the clods from his boots, fires up the “Iron, Lion, Zion.” Ready.
’14 – Panama has turned the USMNT back a bit, which completely obscures the fact that Parkhurst is wearing an actual moo-moo blouse from a Jackson, Miss. WalMart.
’17 – US possession. I like. Finally. I like. And just then a ball ALLLLLMOST falls to Donovan in the box. See. Keep ball. Pass ball. Score ball. CAVEMANMATH.
’20 – Holden’s injured?? HOLDEN’S INJURED??? He walked off. Panama. I swear. We’ll split your country into six more pieces and make ALL OF THE CANALS. #PROTECTTHISHOLDEN
’22 – Holden’s coming out for Mix I think. They just showed Stu with his head in his hands on the sideline. I just got really sad you guys. I don’t know. I’m questioning everything. DEITIES WHERE ART THOU.
’24 – Mix is just all flaily hair and limbs and scattered soccer thoughts. “I’mma pass it over here YO WAS THAT A SQUIRREL BRO I’MMA PASS IT THERE.”
’28 – Disjointed game is disjointed. All the good stuff is through the right it seems, but Bedoya isn’t necessarily the Zusi You Were Looking For on those crosses.
’30 – Beckerman just nut-shotted Torres. Straight. In. The. Walnuts. That was for Holden.
’33 – Fox tells us US possession is at 77 percent. Following graphic says, “Key to the game: do more.”
’37 – Klinsmann on the sideline is good for AT LEAST six goals by now. #thingsnobodysays
’40 – Just had another look at Holden’s knee injury. Non-contact all the way. If that sort of thing is taking him down these days, I don’t know that there’s much hope for his future in the game. Which is sadder than sad.
’44 – BEDOYA CHANCE! He’s been relatively dangerous on the right, but he can’t cross for his life. Best-looking opportunity of the game. Begging.
HALFTIME: Killer B’s (Bedoya and Beckerman) about the only ones looking worthwhile in the first half. Klinsmann’s yelling in the glass booth is adorable though. Need more shots of that. I’m not gonna watch Fox’s halftime analysis because it’s probably graphics of YouTube cat videos.
’46 – We’re going. Only sub at half was Wondo at all 11 positions. Also, Brek Shea is coaching now.
’49 – Wynalda: “If you’re playing against a side that’s going to do that…” Gus: “Do what?” This is life.
’52 – MISSED THAT HANDBALL JERKS. Donovan frog jumps and then Klinsmann yells in HIS GLASS CAGE OF EMOTION.
’55 – Wynalda is so happy at Nick Rimando’s distribution that he’s pissed off at Nick Rimando’s distribution. He’s the only guy who can open a set of praise by first shouting, “ARE YOU KIDDING ME?!?!?”
’56 – DONOVAN FLUBBO HEADER MON DIEUUUUUUU
’59 – Fox’s ‘Keys to the final 30 minutes’ graphic: A.) Don’t be a stupid idiot, 2.) Score goals with fun
’64 – This game. Needs more Dr. Joe. HOW DOES DONOVAN’S BEARD FEEL???
’67 – The horseman cometh. Brekkenize. Two most dangerous chances have come off Donovan free kicks.
’69 – THE HORSEMAN COMETH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Donovan flub. Brekkanize goal. 1-0. Cup. Give me your cup. I mean, guys, he tapped in a ball that was already going in. Let’s not get too crazy. But hell yeah. This is supposed to happen. I want a live cam of Mexico City right now.
’73 – Brek Shea is mentally posing with so many guns right now.
’76 – I’ve finally got it. Mix is the Karate Kid. Emphasis on kid. Meanwhile Jurgen’s glass cage of emotion is slowly filling up with champagne.
’79 – Nothing. There’s nothing happening. Unless you want to talk about Brek’s mental imagery right now, which probably consists of a swimming pool of guns and then Brek inside the swimming pool.
’81 – Fox ‘Key to the last 10 minutes’ graphic: !.) Win the game
’83 – Brek Shea is set up perfectly by Donovan on the break and blows it. I don’t care about the goal (which was already going in), Shea’s been whatever today. Very good for seconds, very mediocre for minutes and hours. Not worth it for me yet.
’85 – EDDIE JOHNSON FLUB. GROWN ASS MISS. Where’s my Wondo.
’88 – I can taste ‘ye, Cup ‘O Big Ears.
’91 – Eddie Johnson in his once-a-game forehead-to-forehead nonsense session. Excellent. WE’RE SO CLOSE YOU LANISTERS.
’92 – Clearance festival time. This just went from a David Matthews Band show to a Faygo-soaked Insane Clown Posse music festival.
FINAL – TROPHY. GIVE ME ALL YOUR TROPHIES.
Eleven wins in a row. First Gold Cup championship since 2007. Taking it. Would have much preferred to stick it to Mexico, but there you go, we’ll take the cup. The horseman commeth. Cammeth. Whatever. Boom goes the dynamite.