Photo: Paul Rudderow
Danny Mwanga is back and healthy for the playoffs. Nice timing, Danny!
The Shin Guardian gives the Union 7 to 1 odds at winning the MLS Cup. That puts the Union as the 4th most likely team to win, behind Seattle, LA and Real Salt Lake.
This article from Marc Narducci is notable because it features Faryd Mondragon saying, “PPL Park will explode with joy!” There is also a very confusing explanation of the playoffs in there if you want it.
JP Dellacamera thinks the Union’s playoff games against Houston will be hard-nosed battles. Dellacamera says goalkeeping, defense, Brian Carroll, and Sebastien Le Toux are the four keys to the team’s postseason success.
Judah Levine believes the only number going against Seba Le Toux’s MVP argument is the amount of time it took for him to score from the run of play. Yup, that’s probably true.
Trinidad and Tobago striker Keno Proctor said he will be on trial with the Philadelphia Union in January 2012. Proctor made the comment after scoring four goals for St. Clair’s Coaching School to win the Tobago Football Association FA Cup (I know, I know. The “FA” seems mighty redundant…) Did anyone else know that scoring four goals in a game is called a “beaver trick”? I, for one, did not.
The Houston Press lists Four Things We Learned from the Dynamo’s season ending win. Usually these lists are abstract things like, “The Dynamo can succeed under pressure.” But this list is hilariously factual.
The Shin Guardian shares its MLS Awards ballot. Union get votes for Defender of the Year and Coach of the Year.
After a decade in charge, Steve Nicol has left the New England Revolution. This guy will do good things somewhere else in MLS very soon.
Dawes Dunham at The Equalizer writes about learning to love MLS. I think that’s something we’ve all had to do over the past two years. And I for one am lovin’ it pretty good right now. Except for Mark Geiger. I don’t love him so much.
Richie Williams is the new USMNT U-18 coach. The former MetroStar was recently fired by the Red Bulls.
ZonalMarking breaks down the Manchester derby, or as I like to call it: The 56th Time Everyone Wrote That Mario Balotelli Came Of Age Right Before He Did Something Incredibly Weird/Immature/Stupid. Speaking of which, Balotelli said yesterday that children should not play with fireworks because they are dangerous. Something he learned the hard way.
Jonathan Wilson asks: Has the EPL become less competitive? In the immortal words of Moonlighting’s David Addison: Does a bee be? Do bears bear? Do a select group of teams with global fanbases and unholy amounts of Champions League money vastly outspend the competition during a recession?