Featured, October 2011, USMNT

Chris Rolfe Player of the Week. Not A Typo- Howard’s Value to Everton, And Other Yanks Abroad

Chris Rolfe is our Player of the Week- because when does that ever happen?

By Dru Boyer

The Yanks Abroad’s squads performed much better this week and won a majority of their matches.  In addition, the Yanks scored a pair of braces, the likes of which hadn’t been seen since…well (and nobody took a rock to the head.)  Player of the Week honors to Chris Rolfe…because when does that happen.

Tim Howard played 90 minutes and made 3 saves in a 3-1 win against Clint Dempsey and Fulham.  Deuce was unable to net the lone goal, however he did record the assist.  In all fairness, that was a pretty nasty shot from Bryan Ruiz.  Will the mediocre form of their respective clubs place Dempsey and Howard front and center for the Yanks abroad when the January transfer window opens?  Certainly would not be the first time Dempsey rumors abounded. Howard also played the role of Peyton Manning Wednesday– watching from the sideline and seeing just how valuable he is to his side- as backup Jan Mucha committed an egregious howler that gave Chelsea an early lead in their Carling Cup Round of 16 duel at Goodison Park. The howler was tragic– it meant Everton’s equalizer was just an equalizer– and not a game winner– and Everton fell to a Daniel Sturridge goal late in extra time.

Brad Friedel started for Tottenham in their 2-1 victory vs Blackburn.  Friedel made 4 saves in 90 minutes.  The wily vet knows that Ewood Park is not an easy place to get 3 points.

Mo Edu and Carlos Bocanegra both went 90 minutes as Rangers defeated Heart of Midlothian 2-0.  Bedoya got all dressed up and didn’t see any action, like your prom night. Think about it.

Meanwhile, Boca had a ridiculous assist on the second goal of the match, lifting a ball from near midfield to a very crafty finish.  Mo Edu’s recent form has his teammate worried that he may never see the field again.  However, Lee McCulloch (the aforementioned teammate) and Edu started in Sunday’s win.  Boca is all geared up for the AmeriGers next road test at Aberdeen.

MB90 lived up to his name on Sunday when Chievo squared off with Inter Milan.  Inter scored about ten minutes prior to the half time whistle, the first half goal proved to be enough in a 1-0 Chievo defeat.

Jermaine Jones went all 90 and drew a yellow in Shalke’s 1-0 win.  The winning goal came one minute after Jones narrowly escaped drawing a second yellow…his presence alone helped to create the game winner.

Steve Cherundolo started and went 63 minutes before drawing a second yellow and getting the boot from Hannover’s 2-1 win over Bayern Munich.  Fortunately for Capt. Steve, Hannover was able to maintain their lead without his services. It was only Cherundolo’s fourth ejection in several years of service for his club– an impressive testament to his discipline and skill.

Timmy Chandler  played 90 minutes in 2-2 for Nurnberg.  The draw marked Nurnberg’s fifth consecutive match without a win, after twice allowing the visiting Stuttgart squad to even the score.  Last time the two teams met, Young Frankenstein scored a goal and dished out an assist.

A recent fifteen minute comeback coinciding with Altidore's return to the pitch suggests his emergence this year is no fluke..

Jozy Altidore started, went all but the final minute, and was shown a yellow card in Alkmaar’s 1-0 win.  I guess that benching didn’t last long…can deny Jozy. It would appear the two goals Alkmaar managed in fifteen minutes in Europa play with Altidore on the pitch, goals which helped them salvage a crucial point, were enough to get Jozy back in the starting 11. The whole incident reminded me of when Thad Matta benched his super frosh in 07 after they were clobbered by Florida in Gainesville- only to realize that it was just a better world with them in… maybe it doesn’t remind you of that– but a hoops guy can dream…


Sacha Kljestan played 62 minutes in Anderlecht’s 2-1 victory on Sunday.  Anderlecht continues to lead the Jupiler league in early season play. Kljestan was, according to his manager, a bit sluggish after logging 180 in four days prior to this weekend.

Chris Rolfe started, played 90 minutes, and netted a brace in Aalborg BK’s 2-1 victory.  The first goal came on a PK…after he drew the foul in the box, and the second was a very nice left footed finish from inside the box.  That is the kind of poise that you want to see from an American forward in the box.  Not a bad match for a guy who hasn’t had a call up since 2008. And this isn’t a deep team at forward– so– maybe it’s time..

Mix Diskerud went 90 minutes in Stabaek’s 1-1 draw.

Herculez Gomez does not play in Europe, but he did score 2 goals…and that’s not bad.

Edson Buddle came off the bench in the second half off of FC Ingolstadt’s 3-1 loss.  Buddle scored on a nice finish with his head, in front of a slightly less than sellout crowd.

Stu Holden and Zak Whitbread are still recovering from injury.

What are the odds of Rolfe seeing any time with the USMNT? What’s up with Jozy’s brief stay in the dog house? Have a fantastic Halloween…one of my favorite times of year.  Check me on the interwebs, @SwampJankins.

Dru Boyer