It’s Brian McBride Week here at The Yanks Are Coming, but we’re still checking in on some Yank mainstays plodding along abroad.
Rangers v. Valencia 10/20/10
Mo Edu handled American international relations by scoring all the goals in the Champion’s League match…unfortunately that was one for each side in the 1-1 draw. Edu used his noggin for both of the goals, but the Ibrox faithful may suggest that he wasn’t using his head at all when it came to scoring the equalizer for Valencia. Although Edu looked bad on the own goal, the effort (and vertical leap) he put forth on the first goal should not be overlooked especially from an American standpoint. The importance of scoring big goals in big games is something that we would certainly like to see more frequently.
Villarreal v. POAK Salonika 10/21/10
Jozy Altidore made an appearance in the 82nd minute in the 1-0 Europa League victory. Altidore failed to appear in Villarreal’s 2-0 victory against Atlético Madrid on Sunday. Jozy, like so many other American internationals, needs to be getting more minutes. Although it is exciting seeing Yanks on some larger clubs, the bottom line is that we need our boys on the pitch not just looking good on the sideline.
Anderlecht v. AEK Athens 10/21/10
Sacha Kljestan went all 90 in the 3-0 Europa League victory. It has taken Sacha a little bit of time to adjust to the Belgian game, but he is pleased with how his form is coming along. Anderlecht is also coming along well this year and should be challenging for the Belgian Jupiler League crown. Anderlecht is, of course, the most successful Belgian club of all time with 30 Jupiler League titles. Juplier is the most popular beer in Belgium, ahead of the pub favorite, Stella Artois. Most popular beer, most successful club, playing 90 minutes a game…sounds like things are going well for Mr. Kljestan.
Aston Villa @ Sunderland 10/23/10
Brad Friedel only needed to save one shot on goal from Sunderland, but his “teammate” Richard Dunne scored an own goal in the 25th minute resulting in the 1-0 loss. That makes two too many own goals befalling our American heroes this week. Perhaps Dunne has joined #teamguzan, yes that is a twitter joke. #LOL
Bolton @ Wigan 10/23/10
Stu Holden started and played all 90 minutes in the 1-1 draw. Before the match, Stu predicted that Fab Muamba would be called up…Stu was right on the money, but James McCarthy wishes that Holden wasn’t such a proficient prognosticator. Holden for his part took a shot and committed a foul.
Everton @ Tottenham 10/23/10
Timmy Howard made three saves for the Toffees in the 1-1 draw. In keeping with this week’s tough luck theme, Howard mistimed a leaping save attempt, allowing van der Vaart an easy open net goal. However, Howard manned up and helped his squad hold onto a point on the road. When momentum is not on your side, it seems things like this just happen to you…trust me, I’m a Cincinnati Bengals fan.
Fulham @ West Bromwich Albion 10/23/10
Dempsey started and went the full match, and Eddie Johnson failed to appear in the disheartening 2-1 loss for the Cottagers. Deuce started in an attacking mid role, but was unable to put a shot on goal. This marked the first match that Eddie J didn’t see any action since the Cottagers August 25th match, by my calculations. Fulham may be in the running for Man City’s unsettled striker, Roque Santa Cruz.
Although that may be a good move for the club, it would probably mean less time up front for Dempsey and a decrease in minutes for E.J.. Such a move would leave another American like so many cell phone users of the late 90s….in need of more minutes.
Borussia M’gladbach v. Werder Bremen 10/23/10
MB90 did what he does, but once again it was not enough in the 4-1 loss. M’gladbach have slid all the way to 17th place in the Bundesliga table and are in great danger of relegation. MB90 and crew have not managed to notch a victory since August. MB 90 one-upped himself today, however, delivering the clinching penalty kick in Gladbach’s hard-fought penalty shootout victory in the German Cup over Leverkusen. One can only hope this was the win the Foals needed to get back to their winning ways of earlier in the campaign. Say what you will about Michael, but the kid is clutch.
Schalke @ Eintracht Frankfurt 10/23/10
Jermaine Jones picked up a yellow in 90 minutes for the away side in the 0-0 draw. Ricardo Clark was not in the 18 for Frankfurt. Jones committed 6 fouls and was on the receiving end of 3 while starting in a defensive mid role.
Hannover 96 v. FC Cologne 10/23/10
Steve Cherundolo put in a full night’s work in the 2-1 victory. DaMarcus Beasley again found himself on the bench for the entire match. Hannover now find themselves in the #3 spot in the Bundesliga after knocking off the cellar dwelling Cologne. Beasley has only seen 13 minutes of action since joining the German club in September.
Anderlecht v. KVC Westerlo 10/23/10
Sacha Kljestan again played all 90 and Anderlecht picked up a 2-0 win. Kljestan’s squad is currently sitting in second place, 5 points behind Racing Genk. My internet sources inform me that Anderlecht has 76 fan clubs, which begs the question…why don’t American sporting teams have various fan clubs…or do we? It seems to me that we are just fans of the team, not a member of a club that is a fan of the team. Let’s move on…
Rangers @ Celtic 10/24/10
Edu is beginning to forget what a bench feels like, as he displayed his form in the 3-1 victory. Edu and the ‘Gers are now the clear favorite to retain their SPL title (4/6 according to the linked site) after the drubbing they laid on the Bhoys at Celtic Park in front of 58,874. From Champion’s League to the SPL, Edu is getting it done better than any American abroad at this point. The only real question is if he is still dating this hot piece (of plastic).
Boca could be out up to three weeks after injuring his neck in the match against Nice.
In celebration of Brian McBride week, I leave you with the Yanks Abroad version of the tribute to the great one. One look at this video, and it is easy to see why this post is extensive each week, and why it could be longer. Thanks for opening so many doors with can-do, elbow-grease, grit and want Brian. We’ll miss you, even if you won’t be far. And, as Neil W. Blackmon tweeted earlier today, we’re hoping your fighting spirit did in fact move into the soul of Jozy Altidore, who scored today for Villareal, in his first match since you hung ’em up. We hope that’s not a coincidence.
Dru Boyer is a staff writer for The Yanks Are Coming. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or you can find him on Twitter at @SwampJankins.