Thursday, May 28, 2009

Fire vs. Chivas, Thornton

Tonight, the Chicago Fire get a chance to remain undefeated in this MLS season as they take on Chivas USA, (7-1-3)and goalkeeper, Zach Thornton. Thornton, who was withering away on the New York bench under Osorio last season before making his escape to the West Coast,has become the top keeper in the league, with help from a pretty good defense.

The Fire, (4-0-6), will attempt to beat their former teammate at the Home Depot Center tonight, and are coming off a nice win over the Red Bulls last Sunday. Defensively, the Fire left a little to be desired, as Jon Busch was peppered with shots, and needed to register 10 saves to secure his second straight shutout.

Blanco plays tonight, and then heads to the Mexican National squad trying to help them qualify for next season's World Cup. As a result, he will miss Sunday's home game against FC Dallas at Toyota Park...a game the Fire should be able to win without their Mexican star.

It's a late start on the coast, but one that should be well worth staying up for.

Where was the Manchester United team that won the Premier League yesterday when they lost to Barcelona in Rome for the Champions League title? They never seemed to show up after a few attacks early. Once Barca scored, the Red Devils never really challenged. It was disappointing.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

You Don't Know What You Are Missing

What better way to spend a Tuesday afternoon than in The Globe Pub, tipping several Beamish, while watching Manchester United advance to the Champions League Final with a 3-1 win over Arsenal?

The Pub was packed at kickoff, but fortunately, my guy Matt Peebles had gotten there early, looking for an Arsenal victory, and saved me a spot at the bar.

Soccer fans from the area had gathered to catch one of the biggest matches in the world, but here in Chicago, and across the country, it was just a small blip on the sports schedule. Why is it that the majority of the sports fans in the USA have decided to ignore the beautiful game? Are they afraid they might like it? Are they afraid they won't understand it? Or could it be they just don't have any room left in their sports life for a game that is number one across the globe?

Whatever it is, they are missing some of the greatest athletes in the world. Some of the best action seen in any sport played anywhere. Watching Cristiano Ronaldo blast a free kick in from 30 yards out, before the goal keeper can get in front of it was awesome...and Ronaldo's other goal was even prettier.

Chelsea and Barcelona meet tomorrow with the winner facing Manchester for the Champions League title in a couple of weeks. You don't have to give the games a chance, but if you want an enjoyable afternoon with crazed soccer fans, you may want to visit the Globe Pub and see what you are missing.

Finally, what is it with the Chicago Fire? Four straight ties! They are leaving valuable points out there that they will need as the season goes by. I am expecting a 3-1 victory this Saturday at Toyota Park against the New England Revolution. If you can't make it out there, catch our broadcast at 7:30 on Channel 50.