Fighting Talker Podcast Show 13, featuring MLS author and historian Dave Lifton

On this episode, Ed and Aaron preview DC United’s 2009 chances with long-time MLS journalist, author, and historian Dave Lifton. You can check out Dave’s work at Booked for Dissent and Wings for Wheels.

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One thought on “Fighting Talker Podcast Show 13, featuring MLS author and historian Dave Lifton

  1. I think I generally agree with most of the Podcast, however there is one thing I feel like better about this season than 2008.

    First, pre-season is crap. I don’t care how you cut it, pre-season results mean nothing. If anything, it’s about learning about weaknesses and issues. I highly doubt that Seattle starts 2009 well, despite the fact that they’ve looked good in pre-season. We have not had much of a pre-season over the last several years so we haven’t had this opportunity to really test our weaknesses.

    Second, going into last season I had way too high of expectations. I wasn’t thrilled with the Gallardo signing because he was Veron, but then again I wasn’t convinced of Veron either. I had high expectations of Emilio and Fred, I thought Olsen was going to be healthy.

    This year, expectations are in check. We’ll be fighting for the last playoff spot. But that’s easier to swallow when I’m not dreaming about winning three trophies.

    As for the stadium… I think anyone who thought (or thinks) that DC United will be able to walk their stadium through Maryland’s Assembly without a hitch is fooling themselves. These are big decisions and they need to have the debate. In terms of creating jobs that Dave mentioned, yes that’s happening, but right now, I think the biggest concern is making sure the public gets the correct information.

    I certainly understand the concerns related to the appearance of building a stadium when PG County is laying off several hundred police employees, but what needs to be clarified is that Maryland cannot take a loan/issue bonds to keep County employees employed. Aside from the 25% that DC United will cover, the stadium financing includes expectations that DC United will generate enough revenue annually through stadium taxes to pay the remainder of the debt. And while DC United has maintained that the Maryland Stadium Authority used conservative numbers to estimate this, I’d still be interested to see those figures compared to historical figures. This debate has to happen, but will they build the stadium? I suspect so.

    And for the excitement about the season… I’m with Ed on this, I’m just excited for the season to start. Plus, I like that the league is expanding. As annoying as the Toronto fans were, I’m excited that we’re adding some new color to the league with Seattle. The influx of new teams keeps things fresh. Plus, we’ve got a Salt Lake team out West that’s got a new stadium and are playing some pretty nice soccer. That’s good.

    As for LA… yes, I think they’ll be terrible too. Arena is trying to plug holes right now. Once that is done, he’ll start back filling positions. How good of a manager he is will be tested. The Galaxy will probably struggle this year. But at least the Beckham issue is behind them. Hopefully Beckham returns healthy in July, so they at least have the opportunity to make a playoff run. As much as I hate the Galaxy, they’re hardly the same team I despised from beginning. Honestly, the best scenerio for the Galaxy is to have David Beckham come in a lead the team to an MLS Cup, allowing everyone involved in that clusterf*ck to save face. But I certainly don’t see that happening. If AEG starts to get too involved in player management, I think you can see Arena saying goodbye to the organization.

    Would he come back to DC United and would I want to see him coaching here again? I don’t know. I’m beginning to think that at this point in his career, the best thing he can do for American soccer is return to UVA or to a Development Acadamy and start producing the next round of Claudio Reynas and Jeff Agoos to grace the league and national team. What I don’t want to see is for Arena to come to DC United and bring back a whole bunch of older veterans that he was fortunate enough to coach on the National Team.

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