As if having a newborn at home keeping you up at all hours isn’t bad enough, but someone (US Soccer, SUM, ESPN…one or all of them) decided to delay the broadcast of last nights Panama vs. USA game until 11PM (Mountain). Yeah, you folks on the East Coast have more to complain about…but I’m going to complain anyway. After all, maybe it’s just me but that basebore game sure didn’t look to exciting. Did it really pull more viewers? I guess I should just be thankful it didn’t go extra innings or something.
Anyway, there was a match. I hafta admit that when I wasn’t falling asleep, I actually enjoyed it. The first half was probably the best played 45 minutes I’ve seen from the USofA in a while. But most importantly, there were three quality goals which took the boisterous crowd out of the game by half time. The team moved the ball around well—the passing which led to the second goal was pure class—and didn’t let the antics of the Panamanian players get to them. Maybe it’s just me, but when that one guy went rolling around after a slight nudge in the first couple minutes…and the ref called the foul, I had a feeling things wouldn’t be good. Honestly, the ref did a poor job of calling the game for the most part. In my sleep depraved state, I really felt he made a lot of calls that were more dive than contact. But the US players got away from a potentially dangerous CONCACAF road match with 3 points and only 3 cards. I’ll take the points.
Was anyone else watching the match bothered by the way the Argentina vs Brazil game was scrolled? The game was in the Argie Capitol, not in Rio. Guess it’s just me but it looked strange seeing what looked like a road win for Argies. Maybe it was just more lack of sleep on my part.
Anyway, congratulations to Argentina, Japan, Iran, South Korea and Saudi Arabia who can now book their flights to Frankfort for next summers World Cup. We now know 6 of the 32 teams that will be involved.