Good afternoon folks. Apologies for the lack of posts but driving around LA to get to all the events doesn't always allow for the best flow of posting.
Let's get started with notes from today's training sessions:
Juan Pablo Angel sustained a left arm injury and rib injury in training after colliding with goalkeeper Danny Cepero. He isn't expected to keep him from playing.
"It was just a collision but hopefully everything should be fine for Sunday," Angel said.
Kevin Goldthwaite was held out of the second half of training with an undisclosed leg injury. He appeared to be walking fine.
On the Crew side, Guillermo Barros Schelotto looked healthy and didn't appear to show signs of an ankle injury that was bothering him on Thursday. He is expected to be ready for Sunday as well.
There aren't any real question marks about the Crew starting lineup except for perhaps central defense, where Sigi Schmid could go with veteran Danny O'Rourke or rookie Andy Iro. Look for O'Rourke to get the nod.
Most of the Crew players are sporting thick playoff beards, with Brian Carroll easily sporting the weakest of the beards on the Crew. Frankie Hejduk's has grown in nicely and has an Evan Almighty fullness to it.
Hejduk made an interesting point about Sunday's finally when he said that he doesn't believe the Red Bulls will play the defensive style they have been playing so far in the playoffs. Hejduk believes we could see a pretty wide-open final. I happen to agree with him.
That's all for now. I will post again in the next hour or two, and will offer up some highlights from Don Garber's state of the league address later today.
For now feel free to share your thoughts on these notes in the comments section below.
There was an interesting interview on FSE’s “Live with Jorge Ramos” last night. JCO was the guest and he was asked about the knock on his teams’ defensive style. He made two interesting points.
1. He likes the South American touch style, but in the last meters of the field only, and unfortunately there is no current player in the RB roster that possesses that type of skills.
2. While discussing defending players like Schelotto and Blanco, he made the point that the US will never produce a player with that kind of touch because of the way football is taught here. Players learn to play around cones and things like that, whereas in Latin countries, players learn in the streets and in small spaces where you can use the walls and learn the angles and bounces of the ball.
As an example, he mentioned that most US players do not pass with the outside of the foot, just the inside.
Have fun in LA. I will be enjoying it at Nevada Smiths.
Red Bulls not play 90% of the game on Defense? That’s a joke.Even if thy try to spread the field the Crew will take it to them for the entire match.
Playoff beards don’t help!! Willman Conde looked like a caveman, but where are the Fire now? lol. Good luck to Cinderella FC and FC Viking!
Angel was hurt. Guille was hurt the day before. They will both be ready n game day, They are too competitive to let anything effect them.
I think the secret will be how well Robbie Rogers and Frankie play their style of game as shown here:
Nice update Ives.
As a Crew fan, I must say, there is no way Iro starts over O’Rourke.
Sigi hasn’t really done it all year when Danny’s been available and fit.
No way he hands him Angel in the final. No chance.
D: Hejduk, O’Rourke, Marshall, Padula
M: Gaven, Carroll, Evans, Rogers
Bench: Ekpo, Noonan, Lenhart, Iro, Hendrickson, Miglioranzi, Gruenebaum.
If nothing else, Eddie Gaven has mastered the playoff beard. Can’t wait to see Heydude’s.
KENNY COOPER….i mean ROBBIE ROGERS *CLAP* *CLAP *CLAP* *CLAP* *CLAP*
All this news of injuries pre-MLS Cup sounds like a lot of posturing to me (a la Bora Milutinovic)!