By Tony Edwards – San Jose, CA (Feb 23, 2012) US Soccer Players — In Thursday's Five Questions, Tony looks at a delayed start in India, Brad Davis's recovery, and Franz Beckenbauer's Fair Play ideas.
So how's it working out with the fledgling Premier Soccer League?
Not so well. As expected with any startup league, the problems began to mount. Player clearances were the first hurdle, both domestic and international. Now, it's the stadiums. The promoters are pushing for an April start, good news for Santino Quaranta, who signed as a player, and Marco Etcheverry, who is coaching one of the teams.
Which is the “third most popular team in San Diego”?
Club Tijuana Xoloitzcuintles (the Xolos)? Maybe, but we're talking about a market without the National Basketball Association, the National Hockey League, or a major college or two like are found in other California markets like LA and the Bay Area. Hey, credit Tijuana for trying to fill a gap in the marketplace. Chivas USA and Tijuana played an exhibition game last night, drawing 4,238 at the University of San Diego's stadium. As has been discussed before on this website, for the most part, clubs in Mexico not named C.D. Guadalajara do a poor job marketing themselves in the United States. Tijuana has said before that their reach includes San Diego, but it's going to take some work to prove that. Tijuana is only two points behind first place UANL in the Clausara, yet they're fighting off relegation in Mexico's two season promotion/relegation percentage system.
After missing MLS Cup last year, how is Houston's Brad Davis' recovery going?
In a significant boost for Houston, Davis was cleared this week to return to practice. Coach Dominic Kinnear might be optimistic that “[t]here's a good possibility he'll be ready for the opening of the season,” but there's no doubting Davis' work ethic.
How is U-17 World Cup captain Marc Pelosi doing since he signed with Liverpool FC?
Until last weekend, pretty well. A knee injury will keep him out of the U-18 and Reserves for two months, according to the article. Pelosi was not released by Liverpool when U-20 Coach Tab Ramos invited him to camp in January, but the player hopes to be in camp this summer as the team prepares for qualifying for the U-20 World Cup in Turkey.
What is the latest public statement about the need for more Fair Play in soccer?
Handshakes after the game. Are the teams going to get into a circle first and chant '1,2,3 good game [opponent’s name here]!” also?
There are a lot of serious enough problems in soccer, and fair play is certainly one of them. And while there's something to be said for looking your opponent in the eye after a game, Franz Beckenbauer's latest idea veers towards unnecessary issue territory. With all due respect, if world soccer wants to make the game better, empower the referees to enforce red cards for tackles from behind, make the offside rule clearer, give attacking players the benefit of the doubt on offside calls, and put some teeth into the anti-racism statutes.