By Christopher Schachter, EPL Talk correspondent
Game Day in Chicago:
Fact: America is one tacky place, marketing sports and big events is none too subtle, they’ll blow up anything into massive balloons and have college kids shoving gatorade at you when you have a latte in one hand and a laptop in the other. I’m not sure why they’ve installed a skateboard park behind a goal. Toyota park is built on a gravel pit, cargo trains gently roll by one side, very big trucks rumble by the other and air traffic above never ceases from nearby Midway Airport. If you live in the city, about twenty miles to the northeast, and surely a core market is urban based and car-less, you ought to provide some public transport. There’s not. Land is cheap here and the facility is retro fitted with a concert stage in case this soccer thing perhaps doesn’t work out. So what’s a US-EPL supporter to do if he won’t buy into the USSF/MLS scheme? Spend money and glory in the EPL, here’s a breakdown: $650 for the London Times delivered to your door at 5am same day, Time Warner Cable + Broadband $1332, add a PPV package $350 (note: Setanta’s motherload of a new deal has apparently voided this expense, be it at home or in the pub and we all need to get it whatever the cost since it will save hundreds and put an end to the social burden of having to leave home on the weekend and go out with other boring couples). New sponsor=new kit $120 (adults should under no circumstances buy shorts), Sirius Satellite for live match commentary $143 + receiver, 500 750ml bottles of Fuller London Pride $2,500 (NYC price @ $5 per). Total $5152. $100 per weekend, less than dinner and a movie.
Game Day in Chicago: Chelsea are set up in a 4-4-2 with (Bridge/ Carvalho/Terry/Ferreira), (Cole/Lampard/Ballack/Geremi), (Sheva/ Drogba) – subject to change! MLS are in a 3-1-4-2 (in the side are Albright and Ching in Germany, no playing time).
Note from The Gaffer: Chris has sent us more images to look at from behind-the-scenes at the MLS v Chelsea match. Check them out now at http://www.flickr.com/photos/epltalk
7:06pm ET: Chelsea pre-match warm-up images just added.