05 October 2005


Metros 1 : 4 DC United

Twin forces of employment and culture forced me away from my TiVo for a bit, but I eventually managed to catch the Metros host DCU. So let's make this a big update on a lot of things. Much has already been made of this game, and for about 24 hours it seemed like the video and images of Christian Gomez banging away with the Barra/Eagles contingent in the Meadowlands stands would be the most enduring legacy of the entire match (HTs: DuNord, WCiS). Which is fine and good in the romantic myth of a cup run for a team. It adds the sort of imagery that allows one to elevate sports into an honored collective memory.

Escape from New York
Then, Bradley gets fired. In my mind, this is exactly the right move for Alexi to have made. While I am as much of a DCU homer as anyone, the fact is that DCU did not dominate the Metros so much as the Metros failed to play with any sustained intensity. I have rarely seen a team give up on a game as fast as the Metros did with the score still tied. DCU was, to be honest, playing a horrible sloppy first 45 minutes followed by competent but not brilliant soccer in the second 45. It is not the sort of win that one can look to for playoff success. Alexi tries to be nice to Bradley in the goodbye potion of the pink slip press conference: "this team has failed to live up to the loyalty and faith that he [Bradley] has consistently shown them. " Maybe that's true, but Bradley for whatever reason couldn't get them to show up for more than one game straight. And that's Bradley's fault. One of the things I like about Peter Nowak is that when DCU plays an awful opening half, he's gonna make them play better the second half around. Shape up, pay attention, get into the system. The Metros have entertained mediocrity for a season, rarely transcending into a cohesive force. There are those who might argue he should have stayed around for the playoffs. I disagree. The manager is responsible for getting his players, if nothing else, to play like a decent team out there. Bradley failed, and never was that failure so apparent as last Saturday. Maybe the fault is the New Jersey front office, but if so, the best thing is that Bradley go somewhere else.

Tonight... In this Very Ring!
Enough about them. DCU with a win tonight against RSL will move to within 2 points of the Eastern Conference title. So what? So a loss by the Revs in any of their 2 remaining games would allow DCU to control its own destiny, provided it gets three tonight. The Eastern Conference top seed is very much in play. I want it.

As a side note, the BASA's will be voted on soon, and I think I get a ballot. Looking at the categories, I see we get to name a Starting XI. Which I started doing in my head, then I noticed I had no DCU players from the back-line on the team. Despite DCU having the best road defense and second best overall defense in MLS. But who could you name? Boswell's on the Bench, Namoff only played half the season, Prideaux has been the weakest link, Erpen is too new, Wilson is a second half sub... yet somehow this group and Nicky Rimando let in only 1.1 goals per game, second only to San Jose's impressive 0.93 gpg. I think my solution is to take a CDM from United, maybe this guy. Or the other one.