January 2010

Dempsey Says, “Attention World” With “Declaration Of Independence” Goal

The post for most readers is at best fashionably late, but as we await the thaw of the permafrost in England, and as such await the re-arranged Carling Cup Semifinals, featuring American goalkeeper Brad Guzan against Blackburn Rovers, a side so clearly focused on Thursday’s re-schedule that they were iced (4-1) by more than Jack Frost Monday at a Blankcheckster City side that had around seventy million pounds of talent…start the fixture on their bench (Robinho, Santa Cruz and Sean Wright-Phillips); I thought it a fine time to point out that Clint Dempsey apparently was not fazed by the cold.

Dempsey’s 85th minute strike against Stoke City at Britannia Stadium was not enough for the Cottagers to avoid a disappointing 3-2 defeat (Dempsey also had an assist but the Cottagers could not recover from a 3-nil first half hole), but his goal certainly was a shot noticed in all corners of the world, save ESPN, of course, who our friends at Free Beer Movement rightly point out failed (EPIC FAIL, I MIGHT ADD) to include the strike in the Top 10 plays of the day. I suppose there were at least five better players from the absolutely meaningless FedEx Orange Bowl that were superior, right, four letter?

Nonetheless, the goal in other portions of the World may be viewed as a warning, or a good omen of what is to come for the Yanks in 2010. Dempsey has a legitimate shot at EPL Goal of the Year honors and in the British press—never one for hyperbole!!—it was smugly compared to the first shots fired at Lexington and Concord. Forgetting with a blush the revisionist history in that comparison—the strike was at least a “Declaration,” of sorts—from Dempsey, that he and his mates are fully focused on keeping good form in the lead up to our Second War of Independence (or third—depending on your geographic lineage) in Rustenburg, South Africa this June. Worth reading before the video is Barry Glendenning’s running blog of the fixture on the Guardian webpage (linked above), which gives you comedy at least and at best provides at least one view of a person who witnessed the goal in the flesh. I particularly enjoy sensing the two-eyebrows raised, one eye peaking towards the summer fear in the “seeing as he’s American” portion of the remarks:

84 min: “In the event of a post-apocalyptic nightmare, what fool buys bread and milk?” harrumphs Dirk Tergat. “They’ve a shelf life of only a couple of days. Tins, however … tins last for years. The day you go into a supermarket and there’s no tins left, then its time to panic (if you haven’t already panicked and bought tins).”

GOAL! Stoke 3-2 Fulham (Dempsey 85) That’s a brilliant … no, sensational goal out of nothing from Clint Dempsey … particularly seeing as he’s American. A long ball from the back is knocked his way, he’s a study in concentration as he lets it bounce once in front of him and then unleashes an unstoppable volley from 40 yards that screams past Steve Simonsen and into the Stoke goal. That’s Goal of the Month right there, if not goal of the season.

See for yourself, given my introduction doesn’t do this justice. It’s just ridiculous.

Neil W. Blackmon