Monday, June 25, 2007

Kings of CONCACAF

It wasn't the usual 2-0 scoreline we've come to expect of a match up between Mexico and the United States, but the result was the same. The United States and Mexico met in the finals of the Gold Cup on Sunday, and the United States handed Mexico another defeat, improving our record against them to 9-2-1 since 2000, and showing once again that FIFA doesn't know shit about ranking teams.

It was the final match we had been hoping for, the 2 best teams and biggest rivals meeting up in the finals, despite Mexico's stumbles along the way.

Mexican keeper Oswaldo Sanchez was coming up huge, stopping everything that came his way. Coming into the match, Mexico had gone 8 games without scoring on the United States, but they would score first, and Lex despaired when Mexico went up 1-0 late in the first half, declaring that we had lost and wondering how many viewers FSC had lost when Mexico scored. Sue had just said "that curly haired guy is open again" when Guardado came in totally unmarked to easily score off the cross. Our right back Jonathan Spector was nowhere to be seen, and Kasey Keller was left with no chance.

But former Fire coach Bob Bradley made the right moves at half time, and it paid off quickly. Ricardo Clark came in for Mastroeni, opening the game up as we came out looking for the equalizer. Just about 15 minutes into the second half, the Flyin' Hawaiian Brian Ching was taken down in the box. Sanchez had obviously been watching game tapes and knew what to expect, but Landon Donovan changed things up and coolly put the shot past Sanchez to convert the penalty and tie the game. With his 34th goal in international play, he tied Eric Wynalda's record as the all-time scoring leader for the United States.

About ten minutes later, newcomer Benny Feilhaber scored in the scramble after a US corner kick. As the ball deflected out of the Mexican box, Feilhaber stepped up and one-touched it, sending a rocket past Sanchez to put the US ahead 2-1.

Both sides continued to attack until the end, and it could easily have ended 4-1. Ching beat the last defender and the keeper, only to see his shot deflect off the goal post. Former Fire winger DaMarcus Beasley was bitten by the curse of the open goal, sending a beautiful pass from Donovan off the crossbar and harmlessly into the stands.

After a late game scramble to preserve the lead, the final whistle blew, and the US retained the Gold Cup, going a perfect 6-0 in the tournament. In a sign that we are finally earning some grudging respect from Mexico, for the first time after one of these matches, a few of the players exchanged jerseys after the game. Either that or some of their players didn't get the memo... you know, one or the other.

5 comments:

Flannery Alden said...

Can you talk about clothes some more?

deadspot said...

Did you see the size of the lapels on Paris's apr├Ęs-prison outfit? What was she thinking? And that white trim? So very nineteen seventies leisure suit. It wasn't a good look then. It's not a good look now.

You would think there would have been at least one member of the fashion police on hand to slap her bony ass back in jail.

Flannery Alden said...

Thank you...

deadspot said...

Anything for you, Flan.

Writeprocrastinator said...

Yeah, white-piping so gauche'!

Team Mexico asked me to get revenge for them, by tagging you