Live BlogNewsOpen Thread

New York Red Bulls v Manchester City – some notes

July 25, 2010 — by Suman4

Macoumba Kandji - clearly looking to step up

We just sat down after a full day in the city (pick up this morning in some serious heat on the Nike Fields in the LES, followed by dim sum at Ping’s (22 Mott, on the recommendation of the Singaporean who organizes the aforementioned pickup game–good call), followed by an early beer at Der Schwarze Kolner back here in the neighborhood for a friend’s birthday); just in time to see the New York Red Bulls kick off against Man City in the final game of the Barclays New York Challenge.

(Unfortunately we missed seeing Sporting Clube of Portugal play both Fri night v Man City and in the first half of today’s doubleheader in Harrison v Tottenham–of the Portuguese clubs, we’re partial to SCP, just by fact of having visited their stadium last Oct in Lisbon, and having bought a jersey at said store.)

This being only the 2nd Red Bulls game we’ve watched–after Thursday night’s game v Tottenham, we’re only starting to get familiar with their roster. We should also start getting familar with Man City’s roster, as they’ll no doubt be looking to break into the top tier of the Premier League in this upcoming season

See below for some notes on today’s game and on the rosters of the two teams.

Live BlogOpen Thread

Liveblog/Open Thread: Tottenham Hotspurs at New York Red Bulls

July 22, 2010 — by Suman11

"Are we really in Harrison NJ?"

They’ve just kicked off at Red Bulls Arena in Harrison, NJ.  Well, we’re not in beautiful industrial north Jersey–we haven’t left Brooklyn all day.  But we do have a CultFootball contributor on the scene–an Englishman, and a Spurs fan no less.  We’ll be getting a game report from him at some point in the near future..but in the meantime we’ll be throwing up some real-time commentary from the comfort of our couch(es).

We can’t remember a more anticipated game involving an MLS team–because tonight is Thierry Henry’s debut with the Red Bulls.  The game is being televised on both Fox Soccer Channel and Fox Sports Espanol..and is also being streamed on the oddly named (but rather slick-looking) video broadcaster

Below the jump (of after the bump, as some prefer to say)…starting lineups and some occasional liveblogging.

Live BlogOpen Thread

3rd/4th Place Game, Germany v Uruguay: Liveblog/Open Thread

July 10, 2010 — by Suman3

World Cup 1970 3rd/4th Place Game: Uruguay v Germany (Azteca Stadium, Mexico City)

We live up to our chosen moniker–the 3rd/4th place game is quintessential Cult Football.  We will be liveblogging, and we hope you will join us in the comments!

For a preview, we can do no better than the Guardian:

It’s the most pointless match in all football. An anti-climax like no other. A non-event played out by desperately disappointed, and possibly thunderingly depressed, men who know all too well their only chance of immortailty has gone, some kidding on they still care, others failing dismally to hide their displeasure. All the same, it’s still the World Cup, this, isn’t it. And with 62 matches down, there’s only two to go, after which we’ll be done for another four years. Sniff! Panic! So let’s enjoy it while it lasts, eh?

Live Blog

1st Semifinal, Netherlands v Uruguay: Liveblog/Open Thread

July 6, 2010 — by Suman23

"Those Dutch fans just don't make the effort." Photograph: Tony Marshall/Empics Sport

After two more long empty days, the semifinals are upon us!  A mere five minutes until the Netherlands kickoff against Uruguay.

Both teams advanced in dramatic quarterfinal matches on Friday.  The Dutch came back after conceding an early goal to the heavily favored Brazilians to win 2-1, while Uruguay also came back from a goal down to Ghana, eventually winning on penalty kicks (after their star forward preserved a 1-1 tie in the 120th minute with a controversial handball clearance off the Uruguayan goal line).

We’ll be doing a bit of liveblogging during the match, but most of the action will be happening in the comments thread.  Join us for the action!

Final score: Holland 3-2 Uruguay (Van Bronckhorst 18′, Sneijder 70′, Robben 73′ ; Forlan 41′, Pereira 90′)

Live Blog

Spain v Paraguay: Open Thread

July 3, 2010 — by Sean41

Here comes the last game of the quarterfinals, and having seen the results be somewhat unpredictable so far, I’m going to go with what my wife tells me. She’s picked Holland and Germany already, so let’s see what she says…”I don’t know.” Well I guess we’re S.O.L. for this one.

Spain are, well, Spain. Amazing talent. Free flowing football. Danger on the field and off the bench. Paraguay are more of a mystery, mostly because they haven’t been so drooled over by the press. They have a solid center back pairing in Antonio Alcaraz and Paulo da Silva, and of course there’s Santa Cruz up front who’ll be looking to finally put a ball in the net. Not convinced? Check out this little statistical nugget :

Spain has been widely backed to win the World Cup since it won the European Championships in 2008. But that is exactly why it will fail to do so. Winning that continental competition is the kiss of death for World Cup aspirations. Only one European champion has gone on to lift the biggest prize of all – big tournament specialists Germany in 1974, and only then with home advantage.

For those of you hanging around we’ve set up the customary open thread. See you after the bump!

Live Blog

Argentina v Germany: Open Thread

July 3, 2010 — by Sean72

A matchup of true heavyweights in this morning’s quarterfinal. There’s history between the sides—the 1986 final in Mexico where Maradona’s side put down the West Germans in a 3-2 display of beautiful attacking football comes immediately to mind. Never one to avoid the spotlight, the tournament’s most valuable quotable is stirring the pot before the match:

Maradona stared into a Fox Sports camera on Thursday and with a mock German accent asked, “What’s the matter Schweinsteiger? Are you nerrrvoushhh?”

This in reply to the Bayern Munich playmaker’s suggestion that the Argentine’s have been harassing officials.

We all know about Argentina’s attack, but what’s of question is their defense. That suggests the key matchup will be Demichelis versus Klose, the German finding his form again, and while neither one are speedsters, it’s Klose’s ability in the air that might see Demichelis holding his head in shame.

Open thread today only, after the bump!

Live Blog

Ghana v Uruguay: Liveblog/Open Thread

July 2, 2010 — by Sean52

We’re all over the place today what with the holiday weekend upon us, so let’s just get straight to the point:

Uruguay: Muslera, Maxi Pereira, Lugano, Victorino, Fucile, Alvaro Fernandez, Perez, Arevalo Rios, Cavani, Suarez, Forlan
Ghana: Kingson, Pantsil, Vorsah, John Mensah, Sarpei, Annan, Inkoom, Asamoah, Kevin-Prince Boateng, Muntari, Gyan

Danger up front for Uruguay, who can turn to a brutal, hacking style of defense if Ghana start to turn the screw. The Black Stars have power and speed in abundance, but will they hold their shape?

The comment thread is open after the bump!

Live Blog

Brazil vs Netherlands: Liveblog/Open Thread

July 2, 2010 — by Suman51

1998 World Cup Semi-Final: Holland's captain Frank De Boer after his team were knocked out by Brazil in a penalty shoot-out

[Note: We’re setting this up as a liveblog, but we’ll probably be too focused on the game to actually do so.  So we’ll treat this one as an open thread.  We’ll be throwing up some in-game comments–please do the same!]

Doesn’t it feel like a whole new, more compressed and more intense tournament starts today? Eight teams remaining, seven games to go (well, eight if you count the 3rd place game–but who really does?), beginning with four quarterfinal matchups–two today (Brazil vs Netherlands followed by Uruguay vs Ghana) and two tomorrow (Argentina vs Germany followed by Spain vs Paraguay).

The first of these may just be the most highly anticipated: Brazil vs Netherlands. What to say about this match? Obviously, this might just be a true classic.