August 12, 2009

Death. Taxes. Azteca.

That's how ESPN's Bob Ley put it after Mexico's 2-1 win over the United States in a World Cup qualifier Wednesday at Azteca Stadium.

Here's are some of my thoughts:
  • Charlie Davies is now the best forward on the USMNT. He was everywhere and scored a great opener. Brian Ching/Jozy Altidore/Clint Dempsey were invisible up front.
  • Horrible attempt at any sort of possession. Bad passes from the defense, poor effort by the midfield, the forwards added nothing.
  • Sure the referee wasn't perfect, but few calls had an impact on the game and none of the goals could be disputed. Can't ask for much more.
  • It still sucks to see Mexican fans throwing trash all over the place and the players up to their same antics.
  • I liked what I saw from Stuart Holden, Benny Feilhaber and Gooch. But especially Steve Cherundolo, who is by far the best outside back on the USMNT.
More tomorrow.


Matt (Athens, OH) said...

Any thoughts on the three Mexican players pulling a downed Davies? I hoped for a red card for one of them, but expected the ref to do nothing. Expectation met.

Mexico NT squads dive and delay constantly yet have enough "sportsmanship" to help an (injured) opponent to his feet. As a U.S. fan, some of these matches are painful to watch due to the officiating alone.

Jonathan said...

I don't know if I can agree on your opinion of the referee. I'm tired of seeing Mexican players get off without penalty for incidents that would get them sent off (or at least carded) in any other situation, in any other stadium in the world. Allowing their players to try to pull up Davies, to maul Gooch, to walk slowly halfway up the pitch while carrying the ball etc. just encourages such behavior. That's why we see it every freaking time the USA plays Mexico.

The goals were all quality and the U.S. didn't deserve to win based on how they played, but it's frustrating to keep seeing this happen.

I wonder if the solution is to go outside CONCACAF for referees for these big matches, though that would be impossible on these big international match days.

Matt (Athens, OH) said...

I agree with you, actually. That's what I was getting at about the ref. It's every damn time we play Mexico. I've never seen a player(s) pull a fallen player based on the assumption he is faking. Davies clearly wasn't. Yet they pull theatrics without contact with great frequency.

A good officiating parallel is with NCAA football. During the regular season, the refs are in-conference. However, during the bowl games the refs are from outside conferences.

While the qualifiers obviously aren't the actual World Cup, the implications are similar. I feel that for qualifiers officiating should be out of conference.

Btw, really enjoy the site.

The Beautiful Game said...

you're absolutely right, the treatment of davies was unacceptable and hypocritical from the mexican players

for what its worth, i think nery castillo is an absolute disgrace and an embarrassment and should've been sent off for that

also, i agree the mexicans should've been booked more, but if that's my biggest concern after the game, i can't fault the refs too much