Tab Ramos and the Soccer Speed Trap
Posted by Paul Gardner on Jan. 27, 5:19 p.m.
Comparing his very ordinary current under-20 team with the highly promising version he had two years ago, Coach Tab Ramos says that the new team is "more dynamic, and we have speed on this team."
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'A flag on the play' -- something soccer could learn from football
Posted by Paul Gardner on Jan. 25, 8:33 p.m.
From Saturday's FA Cup game in England: Leicester's Andrej Kramaric gets clean through the Tottenham defense, ball at his feet, only goalkeeper Michel Vorm to beat. As Kramaric tries to dribble around him, Vorm makes a slide tackle. Something goalkeepers are not very good at (if you doubt that, take a look at the video of Manuel Neuer's recent attempt ...
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A Look Back at 2014 and a Resolution for 2015
Posted by Paul Gardner on Jan. 2, 3:06 p.m.
I see we're being told that 2014 was a great year for soccer etc, etc, etc. Familiar news, no? Maybe there's always a tendency to look back and paint a rosy-tinted view of the past ... and why not? It seems a pretty spontaneous, natural, human thing to do, a weakness perhaps, but an understandable and an enjoyable one.
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The EPL begins to embrace Latino talent
Posted by Paul Gardner on Dec. 27, 6:37 p.m.
All 20 English Premier League teams were in action on Boxing Day (Dec. 27). Between them, they scored 27 goals, meaning 2.7 goals per game, which is about average for the modern game.
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Burley rants against diving -- and gets it badly wrong
Posted by Paul Gardner on Dec. 24, 12:27 p.m.
Craig Burley, I must say, comes over rather well on TV. Down to earth, with an attractive (and understandable) Scots accent, and a lively personality to deliver his various views.
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MLS: a Soccer League without a Soccer Voice
Posted by Paul Gardner on Dec. 20, 12:48 a.m.
A few names to consider: Dick Walsh, Ken Macker, Bob Cousy, David Prouty, Howard Samuels, Doug Logan. All of them, within the past 50 years, have been Commissioners of American pro-soccer leagues. And not one of them had more than the flimsiest knowledge of the sport. Fittingly, none of them lasted very long in their soccer jobs.
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College Cup serves up more bland brew
Posted by Paul Gardner on Dec. 15, 12:55 a.m.
After several years of boringly vapid finals it can be safely said that the College Cup is now firmly established as the sport's most over-rated annual event.
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Yet again English refs land themselves in trouble with silly simulation calls
Posted by Paul Gardner on Dec. 14, 2:11 a.m.
This past Saturday gave us a sharply well-defined view of just how big a mess the English EPL referees have got themselves into. Simulation is the problem -- or rather, their problem. That is to say, the English referees have created this problem.
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Donovan departs in triumph. Pity about the soccer.
Posted by Paul Gardner on Dec. 8, 10:24 p.m.
The winner of MLS Cup 2014, the only winner, really, was Landon Donovan. He ended his wonderful career in triumph. He dominated the post-game activities, as he deserved to.
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Klinsmann and Walton cast shadow over MLS Cup
Posted by Paul Gardner on Dec. 5, 7:07 p.m.
As MLS bows gracefully (well, that's my hope) off the soccer scene for a short while, and the English Premier League prepares to dominate the TV screens over the holidays, it's the moment to sort out some loose ends, or at least raise them as talking points.
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MLS Cup: Contrasting midfields and the importance of strict refereeing
Posted by Paul Gardner on Dec. 1, 6:04 p.m.
I'm thinking that a Galaxy-Revs MLS final is the best matchup we could have expected from the four semifinalists. In truth, there was little to choose between three of them -- Red Bulls, Seattle and Revs. All three are hectic teams, somewhat short of brain-power, but with plenty of over-charged midfielders. A combination that can make for exciting games -- ...
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TV ignores vital referee influence in playoff soccer
Posted by Paul Gardner on Nov. 25, 10:24 p.m.
There ought to be an acceptable explanation of this ... though I cannot, at the moment, think of one. Why on earth should there be a failure to see that, when soccer comes down to the really big games -- I mean the knockout games, the stage which MLS has reached -- the referee takes on a new and considerably ...
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Why is it OK for coaches to advocate cheating?
Posted by Paul Gardner on Nov. 18, 12:28 p.m.
When this sort of thing happens -- and it keeps happening in soccer -- you're left to ponder whether there is ever anything really new for the sport to explore.
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A sad, sad end for Steve Zakuani
Posted by Paul Gardner on Nov. 11, 6:09 p.m.
There is one pretty obvious risk involved in playing soccer: That of a serious, career-ending injury. Pro players know that, they accept it. Fortunately, those serious injuries don't happen too often.
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Latino Inclusion: U.S. Soccer Takes a Step Backward
Posted by Paul Gardner on Nov. 8, 6:03 p.m.
Hugo Perez is known as someone with strong connections in the California Latino communities. He also has an exceptionally keen eye when it comes to recognizing young players of promise. Those two attributes ought, one might reasonably suppose, to be of considerable use to U.S. Soccer and its national team coach Jurgen Klinsmann.
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