Divided Loyalties – Man U vs KC Wizards

Wow.  Where do I begin?  How about a quick comment about what a good time I had before I get to the game.

We arrived as soon as the parking lot was opened.  It was a good thing since:

pkglot_manu

We enjoyed ourselves with some tailgating with some friends.  Afterward, we avoided sitting in traffic by simply breaking out the food & chairs again and having a dinner of leftovers until everything cleared.

tg_manu

As for the game…

I am ardent supporter of Manchester United in the EPL.  I also support the Kansas City Wizards in the MLS.  For today’s game, I was throwing my support behind Man U, although no matter who won, I was good.

I was going to do a game review, but that has been done ad nauseum already.  Instead I will just state my impressions (and one of my wife’s).

The Winners

The Wizards came out ready to play.  They were on the pitch, they are paid professionals, and they were hungry.  That’s the way it should be.  I tell my students not to put their instruments to their lips unless they are going to try to do it right.  The Wizards were using that philosophy.  The Telegraph in the UK called the Wizards “over-zealous”.  I call them committed and dedicated.  What’s the goal of a soccer match?  At that level it is to win.  At my son’s level, it is to have fun trying to win and learn the game.  These guys aren’t U-12 soccer players.  I enjoyed watching the Wizards last night.

So why does the Wizard’s playing well irritate me?  Because they haven’t brought this level of play to their regular season play.  This was a friendly.  The others are for keeps.  C’mon guys.  You are seven points out of a play-off position.

I haven’t been enjoying watching you play over the last couple of months.  I have still been watching and will continue to do so.  I don’t want a medal.  You’re my team.  The only reward I want is some good effort and good play.  I can handle losses if you are playing well.

Let’s take this win and keep it rolling.  My anniversary is on Thursday (15 years), but we can’t go out that night.  I am trying to convince my wife to go celebrate by going to your game against Toronto FC on Saturday.  Don’t disappoint me.

As an aside, if you like Chipotle, video games, and soccer (in any combination or order) follow Wizards forward Kei Kamara on Twitter.  I enjoy it.

The NOT Winners

What can I say?  Sub-par defending, a confused-looking midfield, and Berbatov looking like my son should be playing instead.  I love Man U, but you guys made it hard last night.  Welbeck, Cleverly, and Oberton are obviously hungry to move up in the club.  You should use their fire.  Get them some time against Wigan & their ilk this season.  Rooney is going to need help and some breaks this season.  Berba doesn’t seem up to it.  I like him, but…

Giggs wasn’t his accurate self.  Scholes was working pretty hard.  I was happy to Nani back.  He is obviously not back to full fitness, but there was some definite effort there.  Macheda, Diouf, and Amos are going to get there eventually, I think.  Don’t play De  Laet against the MLS All-Star.  Landon & Buddle will eat him alive.  Rafael can handle them, but tell him to pull his head out (especially on the off-side trap).

Oh, and:  CHICHARITO!!!!!  Use him.

Good luck on the rest of the tour.  Make us proud.  Kick some Chelsea butt.  I am really tired of listening to some of my friends (Chelsea supporters) about last season.

My wife thinks you threw the game.  She can’t believe you played that bad except on purpose.

In Closing

These are just my views from sitting in section 104 yesterday.  I had a great time.  This was great for soccer in Kansas City and for my kids.  While it annoys me when she cries, my daughter was very upset when she missed the first goal of the game because she wasn’t quick enough to stand to see over everyone.  That made me a little proud.

Thanks for making this happen.  Especially the open training (my blog post about it).

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