So This Weekend…. (and Cuba Jokes)By: Ben | March 23rd, 2012
There really hasn’t been much “news” news in MLS over the past few weeks: clubs haven’t been rumored to be in talks with international stars, managers have kept things with the status quo, and not a single player was found to me making anything of a ruckus. The season opened smoothly, and attendance looked stronger than ever. So, yeah not too much to talk about. Of course, in the wake of this boredom, my friends and I, being soccer fans and thus at the highest end of sports fandom’s intellectual food chain, couldn’t help but make a few puns after watching the US’s U-23’s smash Cuba 6-0 in Olympic qualifying. Highlights include:
“If this finishes with a clean slate you could say we’ve embargoed Cuba’s goals” *puts pinky to mouth*
“I bet the whole team flies coach on the way back. Gotta make sure everyone has equal treatment”
“Cuba’s team plays at a 1950’s USA level. Much like their cars”
“Hey, at least we know the whole team tries hard. For fear of being punished for not contributing to the collective effort”
“So much for the Teller Amendment. We sure are owning Cuba tonight”
“Cuba may be over that missile thing, but no amount of international intervention can solve their defensive crisis”
Thank you, thank you, you’ve been a great audience. Now for a weekend preview:
Seattle v. Houston (Friday at 10 Eastern, NBCSN): Seattle comes in undefeated, but the equally perfect Houston is a formidable opponent. I’m putting this one in the “too close to call” column, though we all know how powerful the Sounders are at home.
Toronto v. San Jose (Saturday at 1 Eastern): San Jose is coming off a 3-1 opening loss, and doesn’t have much to indicate that this game should be any better. Anything, that is, except that Toronto isn’t quite Seattle. I’ll give this one to the home team, but still point to the weaknesses I outlined in the season preview.
Columbus v. Montreal (Saturday at 4 Eastern): I don’t meant to pick on the expansion side, but if Montreal can’t get a win in front of almost 60K fans, don’t expect much here. I expect that the Crew will open up their home stadium for the season with a victory, if not a fairly lopsided one.
New England v. Portland (Saturday at 4 Eastern): More than what’s on the field, I’m worried about attendance at this one. The Revolution began their season with two road losses, the most recent a 3-0 smacking in Kansas City, leaving Bostonians with little reason to come out to Gillette Stadium. Portland could very well win or tie this one.
Chivas v. Union (Saturday at 8:30 Eastern): Chicago will take this one. With a 1-1 tie at Montreal last week, and with an opponent who’s now 0-2 including its home opener, there’s no reason why the Fire shouldn’t come out ahead.
RSL v. Chivas (Saturday at 9 Eastern): RSL has won its first two games. Chivas hasn’t scored a goal. Guess where I’m going on this one. Better luck next time, Chivas, assuming that next time Angel isn’t listed as “questionable”.
Vancouver vs. DC (Saturday at 10 Eastern): Vancouver’s definitely made huge strides from last year, but DC’s definitely been given some tough competition in the first week (you know, that LA team). This could be a time for De Ro and Le Toux to each shine for their respective teams. Still, Najar’s absence is enough for me to be inclined to award this one to the Whitecaps.
New York v. Colorado (Sunday at 4 Eastern on ESPN): And the Red Bulls have….. flopped. Two games in, the only bright spot on their roster is Kenny Cooper, who isn’t even starting. However, I still predict that, even after beating the Union last week on the road, Colorado will drop this one. That isn’t to say that I think the Red Bulls (or any force on this earth, for that matter) can turn their season around, so much as that they’ll probably squeak out a win here.
KC v. Dallas (Sunday at 7 Eastern on Galavision): Sporting will take this one, and thus claim dominance over the East. Simple as that.
… And there’s your weekend. Best of luck.