Living the American Dream!

So I’m off for the weekend in a little bit, but I had some things I wanted to set to keyboard before I left, so here’s a rather scattershot look around the soccer world.

* Beckham. I’m stilling reading Grant Wahl’s “Beckham Experiment” book and I am enjoying it. It’s a good read, cleverly written, and Wahl very effectively capitalized on the access he had.

So then, there’s the whole Beckham showdown with a Galaxy fan, as if they were two wrestlers having a fake feud on a Saturday night in the National Wrestling Alliance on TBS in the old days. Beckham shouting that he is the real American Dream, and the fan yelling about how it’s his turn to get a bout for the title, perhaps no-DQ in a steel cage.

Damn you Beckham, I’m the American Dream!

For his part, Beckham is “unapologetic,” stating to the AP after Thursday’s practice that, “”It’s not a setback for myself. It’s other people that have to change.”

Yes, Mr. Posh, we need to change. We’re the ones who’ve been here, supporting our teams for in some cases up to 14 years (and supporting soccer in our respective cities perhaps for much longer than that). I thought you and your management team were going to come here and change the culture? You were going to make soccer important? You were going to be our William Wallace?

Follow Beckham! Follow him to freedom!

We have a better chance following Charley Steiner.

While I’m going to finish the book, because as I said, it’s a great read, I’m as done now with the whole Beckham thing as Aaron is with the USMNT. I don’t care if he plays here, if he plays in Milan, or if he plays in Tripoli. I don’t have an interest in some Poshy-come-lately strolling across our shores and into our televisions telling us what we can and cannot do.

* Speaking of which, DC United President Kevin Payne was quick to respond to the Seattle Sounders after the latter expressed shock and awe that their city hasn’t yet been deemed King of All American Soccer.

But, but, but .. we’re Seattle!?!

United will host the Open Cup final between the clubs in September, after a bidding process by US Soccer determined that DC would be the better host. Working against Seattle allegedly were a poor starting time (1 p.m. local) and playing surface. Working for them were a higher attendance (you’d think, but given the time, you never know), and the fact that we, and I’m guilty of this, too, have annointed Seattle’s fans the greatest thing to hit MLS since the shootout was executed.

I know United bid very aggressively for this game. They would have had no interest in adding more western travel to their schedule – and who can blame them, the club is 1-11-6 since Tom Soehn took over away to Western teams in the league. Plus, the team surely would much rather celebrate a triumph at home in front of 12,000 of its fans instead of on the left coast, in front of however few traveling supporters are able to make it. Having hosted this game last year, you’d think they also had experience in how to put together a proper bid.

It doesn’t surprise me that Seattle would express disappointment over not getting the game. But the tone of it is nauseating. Starting with the Hanauer comments, and this little diddy from one of the Sounders writers, which I, of course, responded to. It is as if United not only stole Seattle’s puppy, but their Lite-Brite, Etch-a-Sketch, Matchbox cars, Rock-n-Jock Kicker Dude, an original Storm Trooper action figure, and their Electric Football collection.

If Seattle fans deserve some answers, then Hanauer ought to start by detailing the complete bid submitted by his club to host the final. If he’s that confident that his team should have won the bid, then what’s the harm? Then, United can do the same, and people can judge for themselves. That’s the only way people will have enough information to stand up and beat the drum for US Soccer to change the process.

If Hanauer is not willing to do that, and we never see the other side, either, then there’s always going to be a cloud over it – when in reality, the selection could well be perfectly legit.

In the end, it will be a lot of bluster about very little. The teams will play, and the best team will win (probably). Who hosted it is going to be nothing more than a footnote in history years from now.

But if it drums up more interest for the final, then hey, that’s great.


2 thoughts on “Living the American Dream!

  1. The reason they didn’t get the bid was because of the time slot available! They could only host it at 1 PM, due to something involving the Mariners that I’m not 100% clear on. Also, with regard to Hanauer’s comments:

    1. DC United, as reigning champions, had to play 2 MLS teams just to get IN to the tournament.
    2. It is not our fault, nor is it the USSF’s fault, that so many MLS teams were upset by USL teams, which gave us an “easier” path to the final.
    3. The Sounders played 4 out of 5 possible home games en route to the final. The lone away game? In Portland, where thousands (yes, plural!) of Sounders fans traveled to. Biggg disadvantage. Stop bitching about United having home games; you’re just as guilty!
    4. Kevin Payne is the man.

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