World Cup Qualifiers: A tale of two countries

Being an analysis of World Cup Qualifiers in the CONCACAF region in two parts. The first part being a reconstruction of actual events during the US-Honduras match in Chicago, in which the US was victorious 2-1. The second part being my incredulous reaction at Mexico’s dependence on calcified Cuauhtémoc Blanco. The third part being my imagining of what happened in the boardroom at the Federación Mexicana de Fútbol when Mexico lost.

Part the first.

Bob Bradley had no choice but to blow up his starting line-up. The starting XI that took the field in Costa Rica will never, ever be on the same pitch again, unless Bradley decides he hates himself that much. The first thirty minutes were uninspired, to say the least. The back four look like that girl in high school who puts out if you even make eyes at her. Needless to say, they gave up another early goal. But this time Landycakes stepped up. He played rather well, much like Benny Feilhaber (who is my man of the match – the whole tenor of the game changed when he came on after half-time). Landycakes showed that, if he wanted to, he could actually succeed in Europe.

Part the second.

Three things I love about Spanish commentators:

1. They know the correct term is “Salvadoran”, not “Salvadorian” or “El Salvadorian” or any variation thereof

2. The repetition of important words, like “penal” or the more famous “goooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooool!”

3. Their absolute amazement at everything that happens on the field. They display a child-like wonderment at all kinds of things, from a defender playing the ball square to a successful long pass to Galindo’s stupid hip-check that gave the ball back.

They clearly would never say that Mexico played like crap. I will, though: Mexico played like crap. They’ve been playing like crap for all of 2009. They will continue to play like crap until they hire a good manager. Not a retread like Javier Aguirre or Sven-Gören Eriksson. Not someone who can’t manage for crap, like Hugo Sánchez. But someone truly new. Not only that, but the bigwigs at the FMF (who are only slightly more idiotic than the Canadian Soccer Association and Real Madrid voters) must show some patience. They must allow the manager to do his job. Otherwise, Mexico is going to slide right out of the 2010 World Cup. And I’m going laugh.

Part the third.

INT. – BOARDROOM, NIGHT

Executive 1 [distraught]: What do we do now?

Executive 2 [even more distraught]: Blame everyone else, of course.

Executive 3 moves to the window. He calmly opens it and jumps out, landing on the cracked pavement.

Executive 2 [excited]: We’ll blame him!

Executives 1 and 2 dance around, plotting how to hire the national team’s fifth coach in 2 years.

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Filed under CONCACAF, Mexico, World Cup

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