I would say that the American soccer community - that part of it that follows MLS, I mean -- has got the playoff contenders that it deserves.
Highs and lows of MLS's decisive weekend
Posted by Paul Gardner on Oct. 25, 11:54 p.m.
Based on my recent watching of quite a few games, I worked out a clever theory that all the important ones were decided by goals right at the end, quite frequently in stoppage time, even -- as happened in the ManU-ManCity derby -- a minute or so after stoppage time was supposed to have finished.
American soccer must build its own character
Posted by Paul Gardner on Oct. 21, 11:36 p.m.
One thing that never made any sense to me was all the criticism that MLS used to take about its playoff system. When the league had only 10 teams, and the playoffs needed eight teams, the air was repeatedly filled with whinings and moanings and bitchings about how stupid it all was to play a whole season just to eliminate ...
Chris Rolfe owed an apology
Posted by Paul Gardner on Oct. 18, 11:46 p.m.
I am not one of those who feel that the refereeing in MLS is inferior. We hear from time to time -- quite often, from Brit imports -- that MLS referees are incompetent and not in the same class as the English Premier League refs. What those critics forget -- or, more probably, haven't the wit to realize -- is ...
Should Don Julio stick with Maradona?
Posted by Paul Gardner on Oct. 15, 1:01 a.m.
Possibly Diego Maradona's achievement in leading Argentina to a berth at the 2010 World Cup makes him a good coach. There have been plenty of doubts voiced on that topic ever since he was appointed national team coach nearly a year ago.
Saint Palermo makes Maradona look good in deja vu game
Posted by Paul Gardner on Oct. 12, 1:37 a.m.
While the USA and Mexico celebrate their qualification for next year's World Cup, Argentina can afford nothing more emphatic than a huge sigh of relief that it is still -- just -- alive in the fight for a berth in South Africa.
FIFA seeds discontent, raises qualifying questions
Posted by Paul Gardner on Oct. 8, 1:38 a.m.
So FIFA is killing soccer. That is the opinion of the Italian who now coaches the Republic of Ireland, Giovanni Trapattoni.
U.S. future brighter than U-20 showing suggests
Posted by Paul Gardner on Oct. 6, 1:16 a.m.
How to explain the performance of the American under-20s in Egypt? Not qualifying for the second round -- we've come to think of that as a given after past successes -- is just part of it. An equally baffling aspect is that remarkable 4-1 win over Cameroon sandwiched between the two woeful 0-3 defeats to Germany and South Korea.
FIFA doctor's views deserve more attention
Posted by Paul Gardner on Oct. 1, 12:32 a.m.
I feel pretty sure that I have never met a rights protection expert, and that I would not recognize one anyway. But I could be wrong. FIFA seems very eager to tell me, and everyone involved in soccer, just how important these guys (and presumably gals) are.