June 30, 2003

Arena sets serious Gold Cup squad: Keller presumably is going to start in goal, otherwise why recall him from Europe. (Though why is Friedel not among the Euro-based players named?) McBride was missed in France, Kirovski was not an acceptable replacement and is left off. Claudio Reyna in his injury return. Donovan needs to show he gets up for the national team after Arena made some remarks last week. Brazil is coming to play as a special guest. Can the US repeat last year's victory?

posted by billsaysthis to soccer at 06:37 PM - 10 comments

Not if Brazil comes with a serious squad. Actually, Brazil would probably only need to bring Ronaldinho, based on the Confederations Cup performance of Brazil and the US. Heh. btw, France and Cameroon were a joy to watch, with their open, fluid and powerful play, switching quickly from disciplined passing (flank to flank!) to quick short passes and killer through balls for the shot at goal. I'm miffed that Cisse can't go to Liverpool. That boy is good!

posted by worldcup2002 at 11:48 PM on June 30, 2003

I watched that game too but came away with a very different regard for Cisse. Though one game can't be enough to judge on. Even though in the end France had the result, I think Cameroon played better, stronger, overall and if not for Barthez...

posted by billsaysthis at 12:04 AM on July 01, 2003

Brazil are bringing an u23 squad. USA or Mexico should be able to beat that. USA need a good result after flopping in the Confederations Cup, so I'll take them to win.

posted by salmacis at 02:28 AM on July 01, 2003

These games were on TV!?

posted by StarFucker at 11:16 AM on July 01, 2003

Confederation (and the Gold Cup) were on Spanish language TV only. Trying to get some information on Gold Cup on TV, I actually called the company in Miami that sells the rights in the US for CONCACAAF and FIFA and spoke to the president (it's a small company). He said that FoxSportsWorld doesn't have the budget and EPSN wasn't interested, though they will be showing the Women's World Cup, but that for Spanish nets its no problem because the same commentary/broadcast can be used across Latin America.

posted by billsaysthis at 11:20 AM on July 01, 2003

Viva Univision, Galavision y Telemundo!

posted by worldcup2002 at 12:30 PM on July 01, 2003

btw, bill, I watched Cisse in both the games vs Cameroun and vs Turkey (or was it Brazil?). Anyway, I watched Cisse in the final and one game before that. And his positioning was really good in that (1) he was in the right place to meet the ball and (2) he always had time to make something of the opportunity, even though closely marked. When he got the ball in space, there was always trouble for the defenders, and he did a good job shuttling between midfield and strikers. Kinda what Liverpool needs. Of course, he didn't score. That, of course, was done reliably as always by Monsieur Henry. Now he, he is pure class. Did you see that one move he put on in the final? When he was on the left side of Cameroun's penalty area, back to goal, with the ball bouncing at thigh level, and a defender marking behind him? Henry flicked the ball over his and the defender's head (and toward the goal-line), lost the defender with a burst of speed, sprinted to the line to half-volley the ball with the outside of his right foot. The waist-high curling pass was placed away from the keeper and weighted beautifully for the lowered head of the onrushing Cisse, who, altho he angled his header just wide, must take credit for stooping down for a header on the run, while his marker had his studs up in his face.

posted by worldcup2002 at 01:10 PM on July 01, 2003

WC, you might very well be right about Cisse. The Spanish commentary made it difficult for me to follow specific players so closely. My main complaint, as best I could see, was that Cisse didn't seem to trouble the Cameroon keeper very much nor did he create scoring opps for Henry.

posted by billsaysthis at 03:03 PM on July 01, 2003

Further, if Houllier does pry Cisse away from Roux, I will be glad to cheer him on and wait to see his play before judging. So if Cisse, or Kewell, comes to Anfield, which of Heskey, Diouf, and Baros will find himself (regularly) starting in midfield and which of them will be at the top of the transfer list.

posted by billsaysthis at 03:05 PM on July 01, 2003

I can say that Heskey will find himself regularly on the bench.

posted by worldcup2002 at 03:09 PM on July 01, 2003

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