Raise your hand if you had three 6-0 results this weekend. I had expected, foolishly, that week two would feature some closer match-ups. It was (dis)interesting to see that the 4 letter network featured a pair of games that found the winning sides scoring 9 goals, while their opponents couldn’t find the net. Please don’t put Blackpool on again, sorry Tangerines…just being real.
Bolton @ West Ham 8/21/10
Stu Holden played the full 90 for the Wanderers, put a shot on goal and took 3 fouls in Bolton’s 3-1 win at Upton Park. West Ham didn’t bring their “A” game, as Carlton Cole gently nudged a PK to the keeper in the 33rd minute and they scored an own goal in the 48th. That being the case, I would imagine that Stu and the boys had to be pretty pleased to pick up 3 points on the road. However, I have been unable to confirm this hunch. Jonathan Spector didn’t play for the second week in a row.
Everton v. Wolves 8/21/10
Timmy Howard was holding it down and making it look easy through 74 minutes, in what appeared to be a certain 1-0 win for Everton. Then Sylvan Ebanks-Blake scored an equalizer to steal a point at Goodison Park in front of 37,676. I find it hard to believe that Ebanks-Blake only tips the scale at 185, dude looked thick on Saturday. Marcus Hahnemann duplicated the effort of his fellow American, allowing a goal and saving a shot. In a recent interview, Howard indicated that he would like to return to the MLS before his playing days are done.
Borussia M’gladbach v. Nurnberg 8/21/10
MB-90 put in a full day’s work and earned a 1-1 draw. In the most surprising news of a very surprising weekend (see introductory paragraph), Bradley did not commit a single foul in the match. Although this might not have been a match to remember for MB-90, at least he wasn’t the Michael Bradley found dead in his Dubai hotel room. That was not the google search result I had been expecting when I googled his name and the date of the game.
St Etienne @ Stade Rennes 8/21/10
Carlos Bocanegra got the start, played the full match for the away side, and picked up a point in the 0-0 draw. Random fact of the week…Stade Rennes is owned by François Pinault, who was ranked as the most powerful person in modern art in 2006. Monsieur Pinault also calls the shots for PPR, a retail company that took full control of Gucci in 2004. Not a bad résumé. What does Gucci have to do with anything? Could we see Bocanegra in Gucci ads?
Fulham v. Man U. 8/22/10
Mark Hughes was able to wedge his head from his ass and put Clint Dempsey in the starting 11 at the Cottage. Duece played a mostly uninspired sixty minutes. His team did not. Fulham fought the good fight and managed a draw with the planet’s most famous squad. This match featured quite an interesting turn of events inside the final 10 minutes, as Brede Hangeland, of Fulham, scored an own goal in the 84th minute, headed in a late equalizer in the 89th minute, after Nani missed a penalty in the 87th minute. It was an extremely eventful five minutes, and if you didn’t catch it live you should kill yourself. Just kidding.
Aston Villa @ Newcastle United 8/22/10
Brad Friedel started and made five saves, unfortunately he was unable to stop the other 6 shots on goal. Maybe if Villa had started sideback Eric Lichaj, they wouldn’t have conceded six goals to the Oakland Raiders of the EPL. Newcastle picked up 3 points in the 6-0 thriller, and Joey Barton dropped a moustache. I can’t help but wonder what Friedel’s ball-boy Brad Guzan must be thinking on the sidelines, perhaps he is just happy that he is not being pelted with whatever your average Austrian had in his pocket. Again.
Eintracht Frankfurt @ Hannover 96 8/21/2010
Last year, Hannover fought tooth and nail to avoid relegation, surviving the fight late with six wins in their final ten matches to reach the requisite number of 32 points. Steve Cherundolo spent a great deal of that season on and off the trainers table, returning late to help assure his side stayed up and building on that success with a fine World Cup campaign. Now the captain, Cherundolo played the full tilt and guided his side to a 2-1 victory over Ricardo Clark’s Eintracht Frankfurt Saturday at the AWD Arena in Hannover. Clark, whose presence on the bench proved that he in fact is not in still in hiding after the Ghana debacle, did not feature for Frankfurt– no word yet on whether his manager would also have started Maurice Edu in his stead.
Anderlecht @ Lokeren, 8/21/2010
Sacha Kljestan fired Anderlecht in front in the 32 minute Saturday evening as the Purple and White got the good feelings together ahead of this week’s final Champions league playoff leg with a 3-nil victory on the road Saturday evening. Kljestan did not feature in the previous two Anderlecht matches, so it is certainly a positive that he received a road start and went the full ninety. The dynamic midfielder and his mates now turn their full attention to tomorrow’s home Champions League leg against Partizan Belgrade.
Until next week amigo(s).
Dru Boyer is a staff writer for The Yanks Are Coming. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or, better yet, you can find him on Twitter @SwampJankins.