December 2010

Puck's Friday Sad Hour: Gooch Is Dead. A Requiem.

Ladies and gentlemen, welcome back to another Happy Hour, unfortunately this week has not been the happiest of times. My Flux compositor is on the fritz again; Cliff Lee signed with the Phillies; Carlos Tevez wants a one way ticket away from the Eastlands; and most importantly beloved USMNT central defender Gooch is Dead. Yes, you read that correctly, Gooch has moved on to that pristine pitch in the sky.

Luckily, Gooch is survived by Superfan #1 Jon “Lighting Cup” Levy, fellow Clemson Alum and future Global Star Stuart Holden, the absolutely awful 1990’s cornrow hairstyle, Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s black eye, and most importantly his soul-mate, the Captain, Carlos Bocanegra.

After months of failing to see any first team action with club side AC Milan, many USMNT fans began to wonder when, if ever, Gooch would play again. It appears that

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the legendary training staff of AC Milan had a similar opinion. Their mystic training regime was not enough to get Gooch back on the pitch. The consensus amongst the manager, training staff and management was that that could no longer watch this Barbaro like figure suffer any longer in good conscious . After a short goodbye to his teammates, he was taken behind the training facility and swiftly put down a la Eight Belles. Their only consolation was that Gooch had chosen not to be paid a salary over the last campaign.

Upon hearing the news, the USMNT quickly organized a funeral service back in the States. The service was attended by many familiar faces including Landon Donovan, MB90, the Captain, Jay Demerit, Coach Bob Bradley,

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Jozy, and a host of other USMNT players. Surprisingly, several members of the Spanish National team also attended including Fernando Torres, Xavi, and Andres Iniesta. When reached for comment after the service, the trio said they had attended out of respect for Gooch’s accomplishment of not allowing Spain to record the first ever International Treble, thanks to his expert defending during the 2009 Confederations Cup.

One notable player absent from the proceedings was Maurice Edu. The young Rangers star saw Gooch as his mentor with the USMNT

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from his first call up a few short years ago. Reports from Glasgow indicate Edu jumped the first flight to Milan after Gooch’s passing. It appears Edu is holding AC Milan forward Zlatan Ibrahimovic personally responsible for his mentor’s downfall. Jozy spoke with one media outlet saying, “Mo really wanted to be here, but this was personal. He felt like he had some work to do.” Papers in Milan suggest Ibrahimovic is walled up in his luxury apartment with a team of security guards to ensure his safety. This apparently did not restrain Edu, who had traveled to Milan with a well-known Glasgow Rangers hooligan of ill-repute. “Wait until Zlatan starts his car,” Edu said, off the record.

The Captain Fought Tears As He Recalled Better Days.

The emotional high point came toward the end of the service. The typically emotionless Bob Bradley wept. Guests stood in silence as one of Gooch’s personal heroes, Immortal Technique, performed a passionate cover of Warren Zevon’s “Keep Me In Your Heart for a While”, adding a few of his own lyrics focusing on Racism and death to the white man. At the conclusion of the service, a teary eyed Bocanegra was only able to choke out a few short words “Gooch hated Racism, hated it…”

Gooch’s passing has left many USMNT fans thinking about his career. The high point was undoubtedly helping to lead the first American team to the finals of a FIFA tournament. His tenacious defending against Spain resulted in arguably the greatest American victory in history. Unfortunately, the low point of his career came months before the 2010 World Cup in South Africa with devastating knee injury. Unable to return to full strength, Gooch’s absence during the knock-out stages left a gaping hole in the central defense, possibly causing the USMNT to miss out on a spot in the Semi-finals. While his professional and international career was full of ups and downs, his only regret was being too busy with soccer to procreate with the Captain, Carlos Bocanegra, and create an army of really really really really ridiculously good looking center backs.

For everything you have done Gooch, this PBR is for you.


Ladies, I know you like to spend time public restrooms fixing your makeup etc. However, men should never spend time in public restrooms putting gel in their hair. More importantly gentlemen, if you are doing your hair in, oh I don’t know, let’s say an airport bathroom, it is never ok to ask the other men how your hair or outfit looks. I am only here to take a piss, not give you fashion advice.

It’s time to start work on this handle of Mr. John Daniels. Until then, drive fast, take chances…and remember, Friday

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Nights are for Bad Decisions, and pouring one out for your homey Gooch.

Sorry for partying bitches.

Puck is the Pop Culture Guru For The Yanks Are Coming. He can be reached at and you can and should follow him on Twitter at @pucklovespbr. The above is, of course, a work of satire. Except the part about racism sucking. Racism really does suck.