Friday, June 4, 2010

Black Friday: Injuries claim Drogba, Rio from World Cup

One week out from the start of the 2010 World Cup, and we lose Didier Drogba and Rio Ferdinand in the same day. Black Friday has arrived.

Maybe the bigger question is: Why the f*&k are these guys playing in friendlies leading up to the real thing a week away? You telling me they're not in game condition after 50-plus domestic, cup and Champions League games? You telling me they're going to get some much-needed continuity playing Japan's scrubs in South Africa 4,000 miles away from anyone who gives a crap in either direction?

The U.S. plays Australia today and if Cliff Dempsey, Landon Donovan, Gooch or anyone else within a sniff of the U.S. Starting Eleven gets anywhere near the pitch, Bob Bradley should be fired on the spot. He's already got a balky Jozy Altidore and no Charlie Davies, we don't need no more anxiety. There's definitely some bad mojo in the air south of the equator-for sure.

As for the impact of today's dropping flies, Ferdinand and Drogba, well England got the better of that one. The English are in a much easier group and can get past the U.S., Algeria and Slovakia sans Rio. Beyond that, come see me in three weeks and we'll talk.

Drogba's injury, meanwhile, is a crusher. Ivory Coast needs a legit finisher in that group with Brazil and Portugal; boy you gotta figure there was a collective Yippee in the Queiroz house when it was learned Drogba had an owie in the elbow. Brazil and Portugal may have just gotten a free pass to the second round; now can Portugal win the group and avoid Spain in the second round? We'll see. Big difference between Spain and Switzerland, well at least that's what I hear.

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James Stone said...

I think it would be a terrible mistake to NOT play the probable starting eleven against Australia, outside of Jozy if he is unable to go. The US team needs one more game as a full unit to improve cohesion. One of the biggest flaws of the US team often appears to be a lack of understanding of where passes are going, what runs players are going to make, and an overall lack of group cohesion at times. This could only be addressed by deploying the full squad for one more warm up game, or else they will have zero chance against England. Thoughts?

Starting11 said...

James, I totally agree that the U.S. and a lack of cohesion have been fast friends in the past. But I guess I'm a very risk-averse person and given the rash of injuries (yes, I know none of the injuries are related) I just wouldn't play them in a meaningless game.
Thanks much for your comments, please come back often during the tournament.