The Daily Sweeper (July 17)
Today, MLS Commissioner Don Garber gets nasty, grassroots football is thriving in Liverpool, and we find out just how many people actually attend MLS games in Columbus.
- The big news in world football today is that Abby Wambach — one of the two or three best players in the world — broke her leg. This is a disaster for the United States Women’s National team, and everyone looking forward to good soccer at the Olympics. That leaves Wambach on 99 goals in 127 appearances. The U.S. still beat an understrength Brazil 1-0, thanks to a goal by Natasha Kai.
- American clubs got their revenge today, as New England and Chivas USA both beat their Mexican opponents in Superliga
- Ever wondered just how much MLS teams pad their attendance figures with unpaid tickets and announced attendances that are clearly unrelated to the number of people in the actual stadium? The Columbus Dispatch does some damn fine digging, and has the dirt on the actual numbers at Crew Stadium. The Crew’s announced average attendance this season is 12,881; yet 2,901 of that is in “unpaid” tickets, and the turnstiles have only actually let in an average of 9,638 people. Doubtless the story is similar league-wide.
- MLS Commish Don Garber hits back hard at the Players’ Union over the dispute about Superliga prize money, claiming the league is perfectly entitled to only award 15% of it to the players. Of note is that this is just the warm-up fight for next year’s renegotiation of the Collective Bargaining Agreement between the Union and the League. That’s going to get very ugly, as the soccer Fanhouse points out.
- And the Commish continues on this bullish role, threatening to step in and sort out Toronto and Chicago’s dispute over Brian McBride, who was today named to the US Olympic roster.
- Who is the most dangerous winger in the Premier League? According to Chelsea’s new right-back, Jose Boswinga, it is. . .Morten Gamst Pederson?
- When we broke the news about the emergence of non-league AFC Liverpool several months ago, we noted they did not want to be seen as antagonistic to the club in the manner of FC United’s relationship to Manchester United. The brains behind it, Alun Parry, has navigated the waters smoothly, and they have now garnered the official support of Liverpool FC, with Benitez backing the club and a link on the official website. Gregg Houghley wonders, though, whether such a grassroots effort doesn’t need “a shot of antagonism” to succeed, and Eleven Devils asks if we’ll see an AFC Chelsea, AFC Arsenal, etc.
- Man City fans hire a trawler to get to the Faroe Islands for a game. Somehow, that won’t end well.
- Lower-league Bournemouth are taken over by “Sport-6”, a marketing company. That sounds like it’ll end badly too.
- EPL Talk is offering a free e-book guide for Americans travelling to England for footy. Good on them.
- Steven Goff looks at World Soccer’s choices for the top 50 derbies worldwide
- Good news, as the brother of Everton’s Joseph Yobo was released two weeks after being kidnapped
- Peter Reid has been appointed Thailand coach. Good luck, Thailand.
- Eriksson impersonator fools Mexico
- Brazil first back-up option for World Cup 2010
- Urawa Reds reclaimed top spot in the J-League
I’m not sure when this photo was taken or where these people are, except it was a long time ago in Italy, but the expressions are charming. Perhaps one of our Italian speaking friends can click to the original and help?