The MLS all stars stunned Chelsea, the EPL Champs today at Toyota Park. I was at the game and will have much more on this subject later, but feel this is one of the most important moments for MLS in the league’s 11 year existence. A great game for Chris Albright and Brian Boswell in particular, and of course Dwayne DeRossario who scored the only goal of the afternoon. For Chelsea, Arjen Robben and Shaun Wright Phillips stood out, but both Michael Ballack and Frank Lampard appeared to allow their World Cup dissapointments to fester into a full fledged hangover with poor performances.
Nonetheless, the game really didn’t cut in MLS’ favor until Chelsea brought some subs in to start the second half. Despite the poor play of Lampard and Ballack, Didier Drogba and Michael Essien showed the quality that have made them the two most expensive African footballers in history.
The second half brought a worrying injury to Joe Cole but more good play from MLS youngsters, especially Nate Jaqua and Ricardo Clark both of whom came on as halftime subs. At the same time, Chelsea’s second unit looked lost and the MLS were not only keeping possession and developing opportunities to score. It was only a matter of time before MLS broke through, which DeRossario did in minute 71. Joe Cannon was outstanding in saving several point blank shots in the last ten minutes by a desperate Chelsea side.
I will have player ratings and more thoughts on the stadium and all star weekend Tuesday.