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DC United Makes Nationally Televised Statement


In front of over 35,000 fans at RFK Stadium an ABC national broadcast audience, Luciano Emilio and DC United crushed the LA Galaxy 4-1. The scoreline was if anything flattering to the Galaxy who benefited from the individual brilliance of the sometimes maligned Steve Cronin to keep United from pilling in goals. Emilio who scored twice actually had eight attempts at goal in the match. The match also marked the surprising return of Ben Olsen whose injury plagued career appeared to be over just a month or two ago.

Despite the scorching summer heat, United controlled the tempo and played at a rapid pace and quite frankly gave us more entertainment if not technical skill and drama than the Euro 2008 final afterwards.

Some other thoughts:

  • I am thrilled that Andy Gray won’t be seen on these shores until World Cup 2010 at the earliest. For all the accolades given him by a generally Premier League affected oriented soccer blogger community, I feel he was exceedingly biased, poorly prepared for matches that did not involve many players in the Premier League and condescending to boot. ESPN has plenty of good soccer commentators in its midst to not have to pull Gray from Sky Sports. Perhaps Shaka Hislop or Robbie Mustoe would have been better suited to cover the event if it was British accents the powers that be at ESPN were looking for as the New York Times Jack Bell feels in this piece. In fact Mustoe and Hislop both meet my litmus test for foreign commentators: they understand the American game and the American soccer audience. Hislop went to college in the US, and Mustoe now coaches college and runs coaching clinics in the U.S. Moreover, neither player has the obvious biases that Gray demonstrates.
  • Rece Davis was outstanding in the studio today on ABC as he always is on ESPN for Soccer and College Sports. I’d love to see him on more MLS telecasts, but that seems to be the exclusive domain of Rob Stone.
  • David Beckham looked totally gassed after 60 minutes today. I’m sure despite the heat, Ruud Gullit is going to have a few things to say to Becks about his conditioning.
  • Landon Donovan should have been sent off for shouting expletives at the official.
  • Marcello Gallardo showed his class today. He’s matched up with Beckham a few times in internationals, and twice in the Champions League. To my knowledge the only time Gallardo had previously beaten Beckham was in the 1998 World Cup. In that match Beckham was sent off, and Gallardo converted a pk in the shootout.
  • MLS Rumors is reporting that Jorge “Zurdo” Rojas has signed with the Red Bulls. This is the kind of signing MLS needs, and if RBNY has indeed signed Rojas without using a DP spot, that’s even better. For those that don’t know Rojas he is arguably the best Venezuelan footballer of the last fifteen years. At 31, he still has a few years left and can essentially do for the Red Bulls what Claudio Reyna seems incapable or unwilling to do for the club.
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  1. kartik

    July 1, 2008 at 11:22 am


    Wish we had a prize for you. That’s the comment of the week if not the month here. It makes perfect logical sense and that explains the whole thing!


  2. Berlin

    July 1, 2008 at 10:49 am

    Everyone loves Andy Gray because he does the commentary for the same reason they like Madden. He has a contract with EA to make football games. He’s the voice of FIFA soccer for the 18-34 American fan much like Madden is for American football and Lee Corso is for college football. Can’t fault them for liking a familiar voice, even if it is manufactured by ESPN and EA. If Americans wanted coherent, intelligent commentary, John Madden would be washing dishes at Outback instead of riding their bus around and making millions.

  3. JAL

    July 1, 2008 at 8:55 am

    Damn, Kartik. You are out on an island for a worthy cause.

    All I around the net was praise for Gray.

    Your point is valid, very valid. I personally felt any commentators not named Andy Gray and on loan from a network in another country would have been quickly shown the door after his disgraceful anti-Italian sentiment for 120 plus minutes last week.

    Is he doing World Cup 2010 for ESPN?

  4. Nicole

    July 1, 2008 at 7:39 am

    The player who should have been sent off is Marcello Gallardo for deliberately throwing an elbow into Donovan’s face, not once but twice until he connected.

  5. Soccer Guru

    June 30, 2008 at 10:01 pm

    Agreed 200% on Gray,

    make that 110%.

    He’s a typical Brit who knows nothing of the rest of the football world and does nothing but put down the rivals of England.

    Gallardo should have been sent off, by the way. So should have Donovan.

    Soccer Guru

  6. elopingcamel

    June 30, 2008 at 6:26 pm

    Haha. I can’t believe the stupidity of that last comment. Were England or Scotland involved in the Euro ’08 Final in any way?

    Calm down Mr. Roe, or you’ll give yourself a hernia.


    June 30, 2008 at 6:08 pm






  8. Walter

    June 30, 2008 at 6:01 pm

    I cannot stand Gray or Smith. They both are out of their depth when calling non British matches. It’s fine when Man U or Chelsea plays for these guys to be in the booth, but otherwise, a complete waste.

  9. DRT

    June 30, 2008 at 2:29 pm

    Your comments about Gray are controversial.

    I like his style and tactical analysis.

    But he is very impassioned and I suppose that means he is biased against certain players, clubs and nations.

    But he was a delight to listen to at times. Annoying other times.

    Tommy Smyth is always terrible. Robbie Mustoe? You cannot possibly be serious. Shaka Hislop? Well maybe, that’s an idea for next go round.

  10. Joseph

    June 30, 2008 at 11:07 am

    Andy Gray is absolutely awful. The Eurosnobs all like him but I agree totally with you. 100% of this fans here want a commentator who understands the american audience. Healey does that. Smith also. Rae? Not really. Gray? He hates everyone except Scotland and England, don’t you know that?

  11. Phillip

    June 30, 2008 at 8:54 am

    23, how is DC more accustomed to playing a game at noon in the blazing heat?

  12. Football Detective

    June 30, 2008 at 1:30 am

    DC put on a great display.

    LA was completely overmatched. Donovan put in a good effort after not traveling to Barbados. The rest of the Gals were gassed which is surprising because they train (?) in the same “conditions”.

  13. 23

    June 30, 2008 at 12:55 am

    Becks wasn’t awful.

    The conditions were brutal and DC simply is more accustomed to it.

    You take any opportunity you can to rip the Galaxy.

    Your comments on Andy Gray are on the money. He’s a totally biased know little commentator. He’d fit in well calling NFL football which is filled with blowhards like him.

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