It's November, which means it is time for SBI to crank out last month's Q&A installments.
While a few weeks have passed since questions were submitted, most questions are still just as relevent today as they were two to three weeks ago.
U.S. national team questions rule the day as usual, with more World Cup questions starting to filter in now that the Americans have qualified and the clock is ticking quickly toward South Africa.
Now, without any further delay, here are some more of Your October Questions Answered:
DAN– What would you do about the forward situation? Are we best suited to leave Holden at right wing and move Dempsey up with Altidore, or is the replacement for Davies going to come from somebody like Casey, Cooper, or Ching?
IVES– I think moving Dempsey up top will ultimately be the best option. None of the forwards have really impressed me as much as Holden has. In reality, the only player who can provide the sort of qualities Charlie Davies did is Landon Donovan, so the ideal scenario would be to have a left winger emerge who is worthy of starting so that Donovan could move up top. Unfortunately no such player has stepped up.
3VIL L33T– why is the website soccerbyives.net and not .com
IVES– Believe it or not, .com was taken and the holders were trying to score a king’s ransom. Ultimately, I think .net is more fitting because of the connection of net to soccer.
THIS GUY– I don't have a question. I just wanna say that SBI and TOW are the greatest 2 soccer sites ever.
IVES– Thanks a bunch "This Guy". The Original Winger is a pretty damn good site.
MATTHEW– What other friendly's would you like to see US Soccer schedule in World Cup preparation?
IVES– The World Cup prep friendlies should be dependent on what teams the USA draws in the World Cup. Without knowing that, it's tough to say which friendlies would be best. That said, I wouldn't mind seeing the USA play teams like Ivory Coast, Russia, Portugal and the Netherlands.
JOE K– what's your prediction on the average attendance at red bull arena next year? how many sellouts?
IVES– I’ll say 10 out of 15, though it wouldn't shock me if all 15 dates sold out. I honestly think Red Bull Arena will be a big hit with the great soccer fans in the area around where the stadium is located.
CHAD– Love the site. As you know the WC draw is Dec. 4th. As it stands now, what seeded team do you think we have the best chance of taking points off of? (assuming we don't get one…)
IVES– That's a pretty easy answer, South Africa. The USA, as well as most other nations, will be praying to wind up in South Africa's group. If Costa Rica makes the World Cup, there will be four CONCACAF teams with a chance to be drawn into South Africa's group. I think it would be safe to say that USA, Mexico and Honduras would all be good best to reach the second round if placed in South Africa's group.
JUSTIN– Give us your predictions on MLS Cup champs and MVP.
What is your take on Jeff Cunningham's ridiculous second half? Should Bob Bradley consider bringing him in for the Denmark friendly? Would that ever happen?
IVES– I'll say LA Galaxy win the Cup and Shalrie Joseph wins MVP (at least he should, but Landon Donovan may very well win the voting).
SMITS– Ching's recent contract with Houston was a bad deal to me considering his age, I'd prefer they develop their youth more, (whatever happened to Felix Garcia)? Your thoughts?
Name the 5 hottest (& famous) women on the planet today.
IVES– Since most MLS contracts aren't guaranteed I'm not sure how bad a deal Ching's new deal really is. He's a key player for the Dynamo and with the team set to lose Stuart Holden and Ricardo Clark, it only makes sense for the Dynamo to want to hold on to a key veteran.
As for five hottest famous women, that's a tough one. Here are some who would be on my list (though not necessarily THE Top Five): Adriana Lima, Christina Milian, Alessandra Ambrosio, Julianna Hough and the best twins in the world, Mariana and Camilla Davalos (They're not as famous as the others, but they should be).
AARON in STL– Ives – in keeping with the "What do we do w/o Charlie Davies theme" – is it possible with our dearth of talent that we go with one striker in front of 5 midfielders? I'm assuming one, likely Dempsey or Lando, play a Gerrard-like role and are allowed to roam freely.
I think it'd be a tough job for the striker and probably wouldn't suit Jozy's talents to the fullest, but I think he could still find a way to be productive.
IVES– You can call it five midfielders, or you can say Bob Bradley will play with a withdrawn striker, but chances are we'll see either Clint Dempsey or Landon Donovan up top with Jozy Altidore, unless a pure forward steps up in the next six-eight months.
SMILES– Will this Beckham loan be the last? It is the last World Cup I could feasibly see him playing in.
IVES– I'd say it has to be his last. He's too old to keep doing this beyond 2010.
KPUGS– Two questions, both brief and only one serious.
1. I had to eat some crow over the last two games due to Casey and Bornstein. My opinion is still that neither should go to South Africa (without getting too wordy, there are plenty of guys like Torres I'd much rather see playing). Having explained that, is it safe to say that both Bornstein and Casey would get smoked playing in a world cup match? For all of Casey's strength he is slow with average touch at best and a poor passer. Bornstein is all speed (though he is slowly getting better). Either way, I don't think either is good enough to face the world class teams in South Africa.
2. "Ohhhh US-AAAAAA. OH U-S-A OH U-S-A OH U-S-AAAA."
We ever going to get a new chant?
IVES– I don't think it should be assumed that Bornstein would get smoked in the World Cup. I still happen to think he did well against Mauro Camoranesi in the Confederations Cup and he's getting better with each match. He's not the finished product and isn't a star at left back, but he's getting better. As for Casey, I'm more inclined to agree that I can't see him being an impact player at the World Cup.
2. I do agree that it's time for a new chant. I thought the U-S-AYY chant with the long A was decent when I heard it in Columbus for USA-Mexico, but is that really a full chant? Someone needs to come up with some better songs ASAP.
ART IN TEXAS– Now that the depth in the backline positions looks to be a little questionable right now for the national team, can you see Bradley possibly trying out Omar Gonzalez or Sean Franklin anytime during the coming year? Both are still raw, but hopefully have more upside then downside.
IVES– I think Gonzalez is still too raw, and I don't think Franklin has the technical ability that several others at right back possess so I'm not sure where he would fit in. Both are more likely to be 2014 considerations.
ISAAC– Hey Ives, great site! Keep up the good work.
What is THE greatest national team goal for the USA you've seen?
Second, and you don't have to answer this one it's up to you, If the US national team is a football team, who plays where? Anybody who has been capped can be in this.
IVES– That's a tough one. In terms of combining importance and degree of difficulty, I'd say Clint Mathis' free kick against Honduras in 2001 has to top the list, but I also remember Landon Donovan's slalom run against Ecuador being pretty damn good. Then you also have Mathis' goal against South Korea in the 2002 WOrld CUp. I need to give this one more thought, but those three come to mind right now.
JEFFM– When Maurice Edu is healed, does he get integrated right back into the squad at Rangers, or does he end up on the bench? Same question for Jermaine Jones at Schalke.
IVES– I think Edu has a much better chance of making a smooth transition back into Rangers lineup. Jones was a key player for Schalke, but they have played well without him and he will have to beat out Brazilian Mineiro to win his job back. I can see both starting by the spring, barring any injury setbacks.
KPTX– Ives, what's the normal press contingent at a USMNT home game? 15, 20, 25? What about away games? How does that compare to prior World Cup cycles (don't know exactly how long you've covered the team).
Basically, I'm wondering about how the team's popularity has grown over the last few WC cycles and thought comparing the amount of press members at a game may be a good barometer. Also, do you have any insights on the ratings increases/decreases of the USMNT games over the last few cycles?
IVES– I couldn't begin to count up how many media attend games, but I do feel like there are fewer media traveling to the road qualifiers. I could be wrong, but I do think the decline of the newspaper business has put a crimp in how many journalists travel. That said, there is certainly more media attending home games. At least that's how it felt during this, my third qualifying cycle.
BP– The injuries to Davies and Gooch have forced me to ponder which players on the US Team can we least afford to lose to injury? (Assuming Donovan is number 1 on the list, who are the next four).
PS. Does Friedel's form alter Howard's place on this list?
IVES– If we can assume that Friedel would accept the invite if something happened to Howard, then yes, that does impact Howard's place on this list, but it really is a two-horse race between Landon Donovan and Tim Howard. Donovan is even more important a player because of the loss of Davies. I also wouldn't necessarily assume that going from Howard to Friedel wouldn't be a loss for the U.S. team. As good as Friedel still is, he hasn't played with this U.S. team and wouldn't have the understanding and working relationship with his defenders that Howard has. I also wonder if Bob Bradley would really just turn to Friedel and not give the nod to Brad Guzan, who has looked very sharp whenever he's been given a chance for club or country.
MAX RECLINE– 1. Why does US Soccer seemingly refuse to call in players that aren't developed within the US youth system? Our current defender problem begs the question: what do Frank Simek and Zach Whitebread have to do to get a call up?
2. Also, why wont they call up our other latino players? Torres is of such obvious quality, I'm shocked that anyone thinks we have a better midfielder. Let's not forget these guys were all born here!
IVES– I would imagine that Bob Bradley hasn't called in Frank Simek and Zak Whitbread because they've been injured for some time now. Also, Simek was getting call-ups before injuries sidelined him, so I'm not sure those two are the best examples for your suggested trend.
As for the "where are the latinos" question, I'm not sure there is this big number of Latinos being overlooked. You can probably point to Michael Orozco and Marco Vidal as two American-born players currently playing in Mexico who might merit a look, but I'm not sure that their lack of call-ups can be seen as some great crime, particularly when you consider that Jose Francisco Torres has gotten regular call-ups and Edgar Castillo is about to be called up.
AMIT– Are there any U.S. players that you know of that openly dismiss MLS as an option even as their career winds down?
IVES– I can't say that I've ever met an American player who would dismiss MLS as a final destination. You'll be hard-pressed to find many American players who don't want to settle their families back in the United States toward the ends of their careers.
JALEEL– A team has never won the World Cup with a foreign coach. Interesting fact, is it not?
IVES– Absolutely an interesting fact, but there will be challengers to that fact in 2010. Fabio Capello with England, Vahid Halihodzic with Ivory Coast and potentially Carlos Quieroz with Portugal (unless you count him as Portuguese despite not being born in Portugal, but rather the Portuguese Overseas Province of Mozambique) and Guus Hiddink with Russia.
2010 will not see a foreign-coached team win, none of those teams have a shot. I guess England is close, but I just don’t see it.
Excellent additions to the best US goal lost. All deserve a place in the top 10. I don’t remember a better US free kick goal than Wynaldas.
I can buy the arguement against calling up Orozco so far.. But a January call up would seem to be the time. And the more I see Torres for Pachuca or the US the more I think he has to get on the field. On these points just because Bradley isn’t choosing these guys doesn’t mean I trust his scouting and assessment. Demerit, Spector and Davies were not scouted and assessed onto the field.
I wouldn’t give best ever to McB’s header, but that cup was special. Team played their asses off and were justly rewarded…until getting cheated against Ger.
I’d actually forgotten about Mathis’ goal against SK. That was a great bit of skill, as was the magic ball from the one and only JO’B.
Yes. Look it up. That is the correct meaning, but it has been twisted here in the US. There is a Latin Europe and Latin American.
Best USMNT goal was McBride’s diving header in the USA v Portugal game in the 2002 WC. The build up to the play from Tony Sanneh, a perfect cross and Brian’s finishing made a great goal. Plus, I was fortunate enough to be at the game in Korea.
It was rather sloppy – but the opening goal in the ’02 World Cup by John O’Brien (not joking, and I am not a JOB fanboy) was incredbile for shock value alone.
Scoring one so fast (with in the first five minutes I believe) against a strong contender in Portugal with their “Golden Generation” was amazing. I just remember waking up so early and being amazed at the lead we jumped out on.
Wynalda’s free kick against the Swiss in ’94 was important for me. It proved the US could compete at the highest level. We really hadn’t til then. It was a beautful dipping ball.
So Italians and French are latino to by this definition. I disagree.
Also, I wonder if Orozco’s Olympic Red Card isn’t a bit of slight on him.
Great… more high bouncing balls then.
For all Seattle has done right this season that is one thing that really, really sucks.
That’s fine until we play the World Cup in the US again 🙂
I found that out while filling out some school apps.
Actually a Latino is a person that speaks a language derived from latin; this includes Portuguese.
What ever happened to “The Special One” youtube clips? Did they die along with Setanta sports?
South Korea was at home though so I think that balances it out some.
Blokhin said in reply to Andrew…
Send the word, send the word to beware
We’ll be over, we’re coming over
And we won’t come back till we escape with an ugly 1-0 victory, over there
Ahahahahaha, exactly. Still, I think that is our song. No need to write something new. Reappropriation is where it’s at. Plus, our team’s ability will eventually grow into it, so to speak.
I think Ives is capable of drumming up popular support for whatever new, better song us supporters take on. Let’s get this worked out before the WC.
How come nobody here is mentioning Cunningham as a possibility at striker? He’s looked at least as good as Casey in MLS.
I didn’t realize Brazilian wasn’t considered Latino… hmmmm. No biggee 🙂
Is it time for Findley to get a USMNT look?
Nope. Qwest Field staff have been advised it wouldn’t hold up if they tried putting in a temp grass field in November in Seattle.
I always thought “Lean on me” by Withers could be a proper chant, a la “never walk alone”. Also, why hasn’t “born in the usa” been used more often, it was great during Germany ’06.
can’t wait for Edu and Jones to get back on the field. makes the whole 5 midfielders argument actually worth considering, regardless we need our best athletes healthy
From Brazilan and Austrian roots.. not latino
This is really a demographics question. People tend to forget that before NAFTA Mexican and Central American immigration to the US wasn’t what it is today. NAFTA, for better or worse for Central American countries, drove tons of people north. That spike in immigration didn’t start until the 90s and, as I understand it, didn’t reach its peak until these last few years. It’s going to take time for those demographic changes to filter through the system, but if you look at the roster of the current U-17 team you can see that things are changing already. Give things another ten years and I bet you’ll find that the face of the US MNT player pool will be quite different from what it is today.
There may be serious issues at other levels of US Soccer, but not for MNT. Bradley wants and needs to win. He’s called in a ton of guys this cycle. He’s not going to leave anyone out based on race. No one whose opinion I trust thinks this.
The Bradley-is-leaving-out-Latinos argument probably boils down mostly to a combination of The-Grass-Is-Greener-On-The-Other-Side (players we haven’t seen much of must be better; foreign coaches must be better) and some good ol’ conspiracy theory (the reason Bob refuses to call Orozco is bc of race).
All that said, more Torres please.
I’m honestly more curious about whether Edu could play left back. I’m not a Borenstein hater, he’s pretty decent. But I feel that if Jones and Edu are both healthy in the spring, it would be a shame not to have them both on the field.
given our center back issues, any chance a healthy Edu moves to back to partner with Boca? Leaving Jones/Bradley in the midfield?
Max Recline asks an excellent question here:
“Also, why wont they call up our other latino players? Torres is of such obvious quality, I’m shocked that anyone thinks we have a better midfielder. Let’s not forget these guys were all born here!”
Your answer sounds like something direct from US Soccer. The Gold Cup would have been a perfect opportunity to give Orozco or Vidal the same looks as “Jay Heaps?” The Gold Cup roster looked like the “pay to play” suburban soccer you see in any town around the country. Boy…did they in the final or what?
I am not suggesting that all Latino players need to be given a shot. Max Recline makes a good observation about player selection. How can we ignore the talent playing south of the border, particularly when playing against regional competition like the Gold Cup?
(SBI-So does this really boil down to “USSF isn’t giving Latinos a fair shake because Jay Heaps got called up and Marco Vidal didn’t”? That’s extremely weak. There is nothing concrete to suggest that Michael Orozco is a better option than any of the centerbacks who were actually used in the Gold Cup and who is to say Bradley and US coaches haven’t scouted Vidal and made the decision that he wasn’t worthy of a call-up at that point (I get the “let’s have a look” theory, but it was clear that Heaps would have to play games so maybe Bradley preferred an MLS veteran to some young kid who had never been in a US camp before). Do I think there should be some more Latinos in the pipeline? Of course, but I also don’t agree that there are this overwhelming trend of exclusions of Latinos (or the “ignoring of talent south of the border”) like some including yourself want to suggest based on one or two players who haven’t gotten looks yet.)
The no-foreign-coach stat is neat, but not too shocking. Soccer has changed a lot over the years. I’m wondering how many countries were turning to foreign coaches in the ’50s, ’60s, ’70s, ’80s, or even the ’90s.
This is a very interesting Act. I guess Ives would just need to register soccerbyives as a trademark following whatever process is needed.
Best US Soccer goal that combines importance and degree of difficulty: Benny Feilhaber, Gold Cup Final 2007 vs. Mexico.
silly like how the Americans had a damn good chance in 2002 if that handball on the line would have been called against Germany
Send the word, send the word to beware
We’ll be over, we’re coming over
And we won’t come back till we escape with an ugly 1-0 victory, over there
This site is the place to promote the new song. Maybe have a competition, people submit recordings whatever, and have people vote? Most people who attend games probably read the site.
ives, Russia has no chance of winning the worldcup… In fact that’s the silliest thing i’ve ever heard… Almost as silly as us thinking the americans have a chance of getting out of the quarters
(SBI-Okay, realistically, probably not, but I’m not ever going to write off Guus Hiddink. The man is a genius, and he got a team with far less talent in South Korea to the semifinals, so why can’t he be in the discussion?)
I was singing that chant leading up to the el salvador game in utah all week and my wife actually knew the who song (she gre up in the military) she tells me it’s a real song they learned when little living overseas on bases. Too bad she can’t remember the name.
What happened to Felix Garcia?
Our new song needs to be that “Over There” thing from that commercial (I can’t remember who it is for…US Soccer or Nike). The USA song/chant we use now is so lame.
Although we should probably win big matches more consistently before we unveil it.
Is Benny Fielhaber considered a Latino?
Re. foreign born coaches. I don’t think it is that interesting since most countries that could be considered World Cup contenders have always had native sons as coaches.
Ives – I’m guessing that at this point you don’t need to bother, but in my (non-lawyer at this point) opinion you have a pretty easy case against those guys that registered soccerbyives.com under the Anticybersquatting Consumer Protection Act.
I also find it interesting that those in search of Latinos on the team often forget that there have been a number historically and that guys like Carlos Bocanegra and Jonathan Bornstein (yes, him too) represent this group (if you can say anyone represents a vaguely defined ethnic group like this).
Thanks for this great feature.
If a foreign coach has never one a World Cup then the US is still in the running!! DON’T fire Bob!
It’s more or less a matter of semantics. He’s from Mozambique which was indeed a Portuguese colony, but it’s not anymore. I’m sure he has citizenship as well, bottom line though is that Mozambique is not Portugal.
Ives what happened to Castillo’s Q&A?
(SBI-Coming this week. I’m set to interview him today. You should probably check out SBI’s Twitter feed for constant updates on things such as that.)
Is Queiroz still not considered Portugese? I know he was born in Mozambique – but as it was a Portugese colony still I would imagine he probably has Portugese citizenship.
Always gotta love the Q&A.
(SBI-As I understand it, no coach born outside of the country they coach has ever won the World Cup, which is why I excluded Queiroz. It is certainly an interesting question.)
Is Carlos Quieroz not Porturgese?
MLS Cup in Seattle. Real grass laid down for the match?