Seattle's love affair with the Open Cup turns sour
Posted by Paul Gardner on Jun. 20, 9:12 p.m.
The controversy surrounding Clint Dempsey and his trashing of referee Daniel Radford's notebook is quite ridiculous. Ridiculous because there should be no controversy. We know, we saw (and now we've seen it repeatedly) what Dempsey did. We know what U.S. Federation regulations say about that sort of thing -- it is clearly considered, as it should be, an assault on ...
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Flying bat at Fenway Park should send warning to MLS
Posted by Paul Gardner on Jun. 11, 1:04 p.m.
The recent horrendous "accident" at baseball's Fenway Park, where a fan suffered what was, at the time, called a "life-threatening injury" when she was struck by part of a splintered bat, should ring some alarm bells at MLS.
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Mourinho defends counterattacking soccer, calls other coaches stupid
Posted by Paul Gardner on Jun. 9, 7:32 p.m.
Jose Mourinho has raised, yet again, the old argument about the pluses and minuses of playing possession-based soccer -- a style that is often scornfully dismissed as "pretty" soccer.
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Clampdown on tactical fouls way overdue
Posted by Paul Gardner on Jun. 5, 8:12 p.m.
My notes on the recent Seattle-Red Bulls game inform me that referee Jose Carlos Rivero called the Bulls for 17 fouls. Which is a lot for one team in one game. Actually, I had under-recorded the Bulls' fouling activities. The official MLS website records that they committed 19 fouls.
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Lincoln Phillips provides perspective on black soccer in 1970s USA
Posted by Paul Gardner on Jun. 1, 3:44 p.m.
As a goalkeeper, Lincoln Phillips should not feature among my most cherished soccer memories. I have little time for goalkeeping escapades. But there he is, the begetter of a wonderful moment that is as clear -- and every bit as delightful -- as it was when it happened 40 years ago.
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The remarkable Clive Toye -- who brought showmanship, excitement and color to American soccer
Posted by Paul Gardner on May. 21, 8:09 p.m.
The debt owed by American soccer to Clive Toye is a vast one. It is not too much of an exaggeration to say, flatly, that without Toye's blind faith in the sport in the 1970s, pro soccer in the USA would have withered and died.
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The small guys -- from Jimmy Greaves to Lionel Messi -- are the ones who matter most
Posted by Paul Gardner on May. 9, 1:18 a.m.
This week has brought home, in as dramatic a way as I ever recall, the joy and the sadness, the ecstasy and the agony, I suppose the smiles and the tears, that sports bring with them.
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Concussion dangers still not fully accepted
Posted by Paul Gardner on Apr. 28, 3:39 p.m.
If ever proof were needed that the English style of refereeing is a bad model for American referees, it was provided in abundance this past weekend. Of course, I am of the opinion that no such added proof was needed anyway, so skewed is the English view of officiating.
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The Greatest. Remembering Richie Benaud, 1930-2015
Posted by Paul Gardner on Apr. 13, 9:36 p.m.
I'll need to switch sports for a moment here. But it's important. The greatest of television sports commentators died last week. Richie Benaud, the Australian cricket commentator.
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Stars? Bah, says Mourinho. The team -- meaning the coach, that is ME, is the one who matters
Posted by Paul Gardner on Apr. 13, 11:46 a.m.
Coaches, of course, can be relied on to say something. Without doubt they are the most frequently quoted contingent in the sport of soccer. They can also be relied on to make themselves highly visible during games by frequently throwing histrionic fits -- it wouldn't amaze me to learn that we actually see more of the coaches during a telecast ...
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Hallelujah! A terrible diving call gets rescinded!
Posted by Paul Gardner on Apr. 10, 11:56 p.m.
Regularly, at least once per season, I announce, with indignant protestations of disgust, that I have just witnessed the worst-ever diving call.
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Lalas & Balboa agree -- breaking the rules is fine
Posted by Paul Gardner on Apr. 6, 6:02 p.m.
We all remember Alexi Lalas and Marcelo Balboa, don't we. The stalwart double act at the heart of the U.S. defense in the 1994 World Cup. A rather rustic pair. That's right -- those two. That was over 20 years ago, and they've moved on, of course.
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Brazil 1 Chile 0 -- a game shaped by refereeing
Posted by Paul Gardner on Mar. 30, 1:17 a.m.
So who needs travel? My 9:30 am Sunday breakfast in New York was spent mostly watching a telecast from London ... featuring two of South America's top teams, Brazil and Chile.
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Why are England's clubs so barely English?
Posted by Paul Gardner on Mar. 21, 2:12 a.m.
With the inglorious exit of Everton -- bounced out of the Europa League by a 5-2 mauling from Dynamo Kiev -- the participation of English clubs in this season's European competition has come to an abrupt and really rather shocking halt.
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Why are goalkeepers allowed to get away with this?
Posted by Paul Gardner on Mar. 15, 12:03 p.m.
The picture below is from Saturday's Dallas-Kansas City game. It shows Dallas goalkeeper Chris Seitz in the process of punching the ball away.
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