Saturday, July 19, 2008

Rapids at FC Dallas

The Colorado Rapids are in Frisco, Texas today to play FC Dallas. Dallas has 2 wins and 3 ties in their last 10 games. While they're struggled for points during this stretch they've only been shut out once, a 1-0 loss at New York. Can the Rapids shut them out this time around?

The only injuries with the Rapids worth noting at this time, sorry Justin, are Mike Petke, Tom McManus and all-star Christian Gomez. As you may know Petke is working to regain fitness after a long layoff after a foot injury that occurred in the 2007 season. Christian Gomez has been carrying a couple of knocks the last few weeks. And Tom "Tam" McManus was subbed out against San Jose after looking ineffective. It turned out that his picked up knee injury early in the game.

As for the game, Jason at View From The Couch the Couch predicts this line-up : GK : Bouna Condoul Def : Ihemelu - Pablo - Erpen Midfield : LaBrocca sitting back, C.Gomez - Ballouchy, and Cooke and Clark on the wings Forwards : Cummings - Casey

As for myself, I don't see anything too different. I wouldn't be surprised to see Christian Gomez start the game on the bench. If Gomez does start, he very well could be coming out long before the 60th. Gomez has wonderful skills but wasn't blessed with great stamina. Clavijo has commented in the past that the heat and humidity in the summer in Texas means not only is a slower game played but that the coach must be ready to sub players he wouldn't normally need to. Starting a banged up Gomez who normally doesn't have great stamina when they're looking at air temps in Frisco in the mid to upper 90s means Clavijo would already be commiting one substitution to Gomez. Sounds crazy? Keep in mind with the Texas humidity that means mid-90s feel well over 100F. For example 88F there right now has an AccuWeather Real Feel of 97F) at Frisco tonight. Add to that in the past Terry Cooke has also seemed to struggle with that heat and humidity. Given all of that I expect to see John DiRaimondo starting in the midfield alongside Nick Labrocca. Ballouchy will be given more freedom to go forward. That would give some flexibility to the squad. If Cooke gets gased he could be replaced by Peterson or even Christian Gomez with Ballouchy, Nick, or John pushed out to the right.

In other news Nick over at We Want Rapidman has a nice look at the upcoming Rapids friendly against England's Everton FC. Add me to the list of people disappointed that Tim Cahill won't be out on the pitch. At least US fans should have a chance to see US National Team goalkeeper Tim Howard play.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Full House At Fulham for Eddie Johnson

There have been a lot of rumors regarding Everton's Andrew Johnson being sold this summer. It seems David Moyes is interested in finding strikers that can find the back of the net with skill and not just grit. One of the clubs linked with making the move is Roy Hodgson's Fulham. Fulham buying another striker? Apparently having just bought Bobby Zamora and having Erik Nevland, Collins John, David Healy and American Eddie Johnson isn't enough with Roy Hodgson's fulham being linked with a move for Andrew Johnson. It seems unlikely with Wigan having been said to already have put in a £9 million for the scrappy striker. Even without a move for Andrew Johnson, how likely is Rddie Johnson to see playing time this year? Will it be with Fulham or would he be better served with a loan move to another club?

Just in case you though Fulham is only stocking up on strikers, if you're on this side of the pond you might think they're also collecting veteran goalkeepers upon hearing they've signed Mark Schwarzer on free transfer. At this point though it looks as though Kasey Keller did not re-up with Fulham and is available on a free. Will Keller actually pop up in the MLS now? Or will he make a return to Germany for one more paycheck?

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Southampton Pre-Season

In the lead up to the 08-09 season, Southampton traveled 20 miles up the road where they defeated Salisbury City 3-0. There were even a couple dozen fans of both teams that managed to create trouble and end up in jail (more here). Jason Euell, Bradley Wright-Phillips and David McGoldrick scored for Saints.

Rudi Skacel's sale has yet to become official. It looks as though Southampton and Ipswitch have agreed to a free for the Czech midfielder. Skacel and Ipswitch have yet to agree to terms. In fact, Rudi's agents comments leaves one wondering if they're hoping for another club to swoop at the last minute :

Ipswich look like the most likely option, but still nothing is signed yet. There are still some clubs in the game but they are not as specific as Ipswich are.

Claus Lundekvam''s testimonial is tomorrow, July 18th at St. Mary's versus Celtic FC. With only 6 subs, it looks like Southampton's friendly at Eastleigh the next day, Saturday, will feature most of the first team.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

What's Going On In Salt Lake?

Maybe we really don't want to know.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Rapids - San Jose

The easiest way to sum up the Rapids trip to San Jose last Saturday is as follows :
a) The Colorado Rapids were pathetic
b) The San Jose Earthquakes were pathetic.
c) The league should subtract a point from each team

This was a game the Rapids were easily capable of winning. They not only did not win it but failed to at least show that they wanted to win it. They travel to FC Dallas next weekend. The Super Skirts have only managed to win twice in their last 12 league games. Again, another game the Rapids can win. Will they even try this time?

Sergio Ramos' Lineage

Now you know.