Top Stories

Blanco replaces DeRosario on the MLS All-Star First XI

Cuauhtemoc Blanco ( 

                                         Photo by

Chicago Fire star Cuauhtemoc Blanco has been selected to replace Toronto FC standout Dwayne DeRosario on the MLS All-Star Game First XI, MLS announced on Tuesday. DeRosario was voted to the First XI, but he will be unable to play in the All-Star game because Toronto FC has a CONCACAF Champions League game on July 29th, the same day The MLS All-Stars face Everton at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, Utah.

Blanco was selected based on being the next highest vote-getter among midfielders, edging out Houston's Ricardo Clark on the strength of a disproportionate media vote in favor of Blanco (let's just say MLS wasn't exactly stingy with giving out media votes). Blanco drew more fan votes than Clark (which is to be expected), but Clark had twice the votes Blanco did from players and coaches/general managers. It was the media vote where Blanco crushed Clark, as well as Seattle's Osvaldo Alonso.

While Blanco isn't exactly deserving based on this year's performance (Fire teammate Marco Pappa is more deserving, as are a half-dozen other midfielders in MLS), one thing Blanco can do is put on a show, as he did in winning All-Star Game MVP honors in MLS' win against West Ham United in the 2008 MLS All-Star Game.

The rest of the MLS All-Star Team will be selected by Houston Dynamo head coach Dom Kinnear, who will select five players, and MLS commissioner Don Garber, who will select two players to fill out the 18-player roster.

What do you think of Blanco getting the nod? Who are you hoping Kinnear picks? Have any doubt that Don Garber will select David Beckham with one of his two picks?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. Hey, do I see American soccer fans sticking up for Blanco!?!?!?

    What’s next, the defense of Guieseppi Rossi?

    Or wait, I know, the colors of El Tri waved proudly at a Sam’s Army tailgate?

  2. I’m a Fire season ticket holder.

    Blanco doesn’t really deserve this, but I understand from a media standpoint, so good idea by the league.

    Yes, it’s true he hasn’t played midfield all year for us.

    Yes, he doesn’t have a single goal from the run of play all year.

    Yes, he goes down easy, and is often looking to get the defender to knock him over, but I have never seen him out and out dive.

    And, because he is known for goign down easy and making a lot of the contact, it opens him up to players who just out and out kick him, knowing the ref will question if blanco is faking. There are many times when he is on the ground holding his leg and we are laughing at how he is acting it up. Then we get home and see the up close replay and see how he took some studs in the ankle or shinbone.

  3. Yeah, but Blanco doesn’t dive after being tackled cleanly in the box. He’s not the Gerrard sort of diver.
    He really does receive the contact and then goes down easy. Sometimes he even looks for it, but the contact and thus foul is legit. Even sometimes on TV it looks like he goes down for no reason, but being in the stands. You can see what the TV and Ref miss. Slight tugs and pulls that good defenders make. Does he go down easy? Yeah, sure and sometimes he should reconsider and stay on his feet. But he’s not falling over for no reason, like people claim.

  4. @pat and his ilk

    Diving is cheating. It is deliberately trying to deceive the referee to gain an unfair advantage. This is why Americans and other sensible people around the world despise it. Have you ever defended a player in the box cleanly only to have him dive and earn a penalty? It stinks to high heaven and is a complete bush league tactic. It needs to be cracked down upon because it is ruining “the beautiful game.”

  5. The thing is, now that we are starting to see how the CONCACAF schedule is going to work — it’s year two, so everyone has got to get used to it — MLS has got to figure out that the All-Star Game can’t happen in late July or past that date, as teams will have CCL commitments. It has to be move up to at least the beginning of July. Of course, many of the EPL teams aren’t in training at that time, so there goes the opponent…

    But, MLS can’t be dictating CONCACAF’s schedule. That would be arrogant, especially coming from a league that was outdone in the tourney by the USL last season. Win a couple of CLs, actually play your best XI in the international games, then you can start calling some shots.

  6. Even further validation of the fact that the AS Game is an absolute farce and waste of time. Please, keep my DC United players away from the All-Star Game forever.

  7. If the All Star game was booked first, fine. But doesn’t MLS have enough say in CONCACAF to schedule the playoff at a different time? They are one of the two biggest leagues participating…wouldn’t see this type of thing in other ‘professional’ leagues.

    That said, thanks for the point to those that made it.

  8. @ Tony T

    i dont know about you but if the USA won their first world cup by diving and scoring a penalty kick in the 90th minute as a result, we would be a disgrace not only around the world, but here at home as well. You think soccer will ever be embraced then?

  9. Blanco has not been a midfielder most of this year so why should he be chosen when his total score was actually less than Brian McBride’s? Blanco has been paired up front with McBride much of this season.

  10. Yeas- simply because he will step up his game acordingly with the size of the audience.

    They guy is pure publicity hound which is what you want when your on national TV in this league. Plus it’s good for ratings and what’s good for ratings is good for us abused soccer fans.

  11. I rather my team gets beat than my team dives to a championship cough Italy cough Grosso. I hope all americans have this mentality diving is for bitches.

  12. Diving? Its awesome when your team gets the call especially when it gives you an opportunity to have a great set play, but when its against you and you didn’t even touch the guy then its ridiculous. But its always been a part of the game, you do everything possible to keep possession, if you loose the ball, fall and hope you get the call, and if you don’t get the call throw a tantrum and hopefully you’ll convince the ref to call the next one in your favor. Every sport has their dirty side, boxing is rabbit punching behind the head, or hitting below the belt when the ref cant see. Football is when going for a fumble and you have a pile full of players on top of one another,God only knows what goes on in there to try and recover the ball for your team, but I’ve heard some unbelievable stories about it. Pick your sport and I’m sure there is always some sort of deceiving going on. Its all about having the upper hand on your opponent, its doing “WHATEVER” it takes to win, There is no such thing as a fair fight or war, its not about because “Im an American I’m not going to dive”, having that type of mentality is not going to win you a world championship. Diving for the most part is a mind game, is about getting into your opponents head and making him think twice before he challenges you again, and once you conquer his fears, next thing you know you have a clear shot on GOAL!

  13. @ pat

    im glad most americans look down at divers (dont get me wrong, there are american divers cough cough Gaven cough cough). To me, diving is cheating and dishonest. It taints a sport where skill and effort can be overcome by a dive in the box. Sadly, the NBA is starting to dive (flop) more as well. I hope one day MLS takes the route the NHL did when diving starting occuring in hockey:

    -punish the diver during the game and after the game. When Twellman did that ridiculous dive a couple of weeks back that won his team the game, he would not get away with it in hockey. Even if the ref didnt pick it up, league officials would sit down with Twellman and show him the replay of the incident and ask him to justify why he went down.

    Please Garber, adopt this policy! Our beautiful game is being tarnished by the dirty few.

  14. Rossi – While i mostly agree with you, it is highly ironic that you link a vid titled joga bonito, that features some of the greatest divers and cheats… and hails them
    . Brazil

  15. So Shalrie Joseph is in a midfield with Barros Schelotto and Blanco? That is a lot of ground for one D-mid to cover given how little D the other two are gonna play.

    Even if Donovan drops to a wide mid and Blanco or GBS play uptop w/ Casey and Holden plays centrally, it’s stil a lot to ask of Shalrie.

  16. pat – “…US fans need to embrace players who no how to get fouled and draw fouls not look down on them. I would rather win on an underserved penalty from from a dive then lose and claim I have more pride or “balls” than my opponent”

    Diving and faking injuries is called being a bitch. We American fans aren’t into doing that. If that’s what you want to do then good for you, but don’t tell us to embrace that crap. We don’t like it when liars and cheaters make a mockery of the game.

    Joga Bonito my friends.

  17. I do think Clark got the short end, but I’d imagine that Dom will pick him up for the roster (and deservedly so). I’d like to see Onstad and Davis as well, which hopefully Dom can do without looking biased. I’d imagine we’ll also see Montero, and I’d take Segares, Pappa, and probably Guevara (but I guess Toronto won’t have any players on the roster?).

    And I’d think it’s a foregone conclusion that Garber takes Beckham, but ya never know. But we do know, so he will.

  18. Blanco: [after swiftly dispatching another gladiator team] Are you not entertained? Are you not entertained? Is this not why you are here?
    Crowd: Blanco!, Blanco!, Blanco!…

  19. This is supposed to be a game strictly for entertainment purposes, this is not a tryout to get noticed in Europe, this is strictly for the fans entertainment and nothing else, so as a fan of the MLS yes I will be watching, and I’m glad they chose Cuauhtemoc Blanco,”love him or hate him”, he is an entertainer and that’s what this game is about. He was the most talked about in the previous All Star Game so I’m looking forward in him entertaining us again.

  20. $$$$$$ Blanco sells tickets. Blanco sells jerseys. Blanco generates interest, especially from one of the key fan demographics for the MLS. Blanco is one of the top 2 or 3 names in MLS, arguably not one of the top talents at this point, but names, without question. $$$$$$

    Plus, he’s entertaining to watch. He’ll get a rise out of just about anyone, maybe not a cheer, but some sort of reaction.

    Somebody once told me, “Cash rules everything around me, CREAM, get the money, dollar dollar bill, ya’ll…”

  21. effing ridiculous.

    I won’t be watching the game now.

    What a joke.

    If George Best signed with San Jose Earthquakes tomorrow, he would be captain of the MLS all-star team.

  22. good for Blanco. He makes it a good show. and game.

    surprised that Donovan didn’t garner more percentage of several key voting blocks. Is that a reflection of how players and coaches perceive him, or did they save their votes to off set what they thought might be needed to counterbalance other players who had to rise above the Sounder voting block?

  23. @The Doubleness

    I think (not 100% sure) the All-Star date was set in stone long before the Champions League match. The opponent (Everton) wasn’t, though. IIRC, the Champions League matches were set earlier in the summer. If I’m wrong please correct me.

  24. I hope Angel gets the nod…best striker in the league although he is a bit hurt, also Blanco is class i dont like that people hate on him for being a “diver”, he draws a lot of fouls and contact during games and Americans just dont like the fact that Mexican players (and Spanish ones as well) play a different style of game where most contact results in a foul. America seems to frown on diving or simulation when in fact the result is what matters not the fact that one played a more “manly” game than an opponent, drawing fouls is a tactically important game, and going down at the right time can win a game for your team or relieve pressure US fans need to embrace players who no how to get fouled and draw fouls not look down on them. I would rather win on an underserved penalty from from a dive then lose and claim I have more “pride” or “balls” than my opponent, but thats just me

  25. im kinda excited to see Peterlin play vs the mls. would be kinda funny of he knocked back a few goals vs a league that didn’t recognize him.

  26. He’ll spend most of the time rolling around on the ground and complaining to the ref, then somehow score in the 65′, then get substituted and praised for his good work. Whatever. We reap what we sow.

  27. great move MLS, lets not give it to deserving player born in and playing for the US when we can give it to a a member of the Mexican diving team. Its not like Clark is looking to showcase his skills to Europe or anything.

  28. haha allstar games..its a joke. but i’l watch it and im not not going to enjoy seeing blanco, beckham, donovan, timmy, ljunberg, casey, joseph, keller and the rest play in a full mls stadium.

    just like the baseball game tonight..its a joke but its entertaining for a while, so why not.

    this one has a bit more to it because Everton or other teams might notice a player like Landon or Conde do something special.

  29. Can MLS do anymore in a season to show how absolutely terrible they are at running a league? Garber should be removed from office. How does a league showcase an allstar event (rationale for one is an entirely diff topic) at the same time one of its team’s are playing champs league playoff??? a team tied for 1st place in the EAST, no less.

    Really enjoy MLS, but so, so, so clueless and a major factor on its brand reputation.

  30. I’m a bit new to the MLS but really, does anyone really care? It’s an all-star team against a pre-season foe. Does it matter?

    How important can it be when the league HOLDING the game can’t schedule around a tournament AND gives priority to the tournament over the All-Star game?

    I say make Blanco run all 90 minutes and get him in shape.


Leave a Comment