- Posted by Drew Epperley
- On August 14, 2009
- 2 Comments
- Evening Links and Thoughts, Landon Donovan
A pretty light day for the world of soccer, loads of folks are gearing up for the weekend since it is the start of something across the pond from what I hear. I have a couple MLS items to go over, including an update from the trade from earlier today.
First up though is a thought about where the clubs stand as we are in the final third of the season. Usually I do a full post on something like this but I feel I’ve gotten my point across on most clubs by now on where I think they stand at this point. Pretty much at this point in the season you have three groups of clubs, the true contenders, the hopeful contenders, and the pretenders.
Not much has changed this year in terms of grouping clubs. However there are some newer groups forming in light how how good/bad some are playing. So in saying that I will try some new groups out instead of the old three.
Wishing 2010 Was Here: New York and San Jose
Before last week I wouldn’t have put San Jose in this group but seeing how easily Columbus handled them made me realize yet again just how far off the pace Frank Yallop’s club really is this season. New York as we all know is just sad, not other words can describe this bunch at this point. Its all about pride for each side for here on out.
Big Time Spoiler: FC Dallas
Sometimes we get two or three in this kind of a group but their season is really coming close to ending. I think based on recent play we could say they have a shot at making a run of things but at the same time their most recent winning streak is two straight home wins. This group is going to make it difficult for other clubs here on out but let’s face it they too should be looking more at 2010 than 2009.
Stuck in the Mud: Chivas USA, Kansas City, and New England
I nearly placed a forth side in this list (RSL) but decided against it. All three could end up like FC Dallas but at this point each still have more potential to reach the playoffs than the North Texas side. Chivas got out to a blazing hot start to the year only to see it fade away quicker than most would have imagined. New England and KC both were middle of the pack or lower to begin with so we shouldn’t be shocked to see either here. I kind of have a feeling none of these three will see post season action this year.
Wanting To Contend But Not Sure How: Real Salt Lake, Colorado, DC United and Toronto FC
All four of these clubs have the talent and even coaching to do well in the playoffs but each have big issues standing in the way. RSL can’t get anything done on the road. Colorado has some inconsistency and injury issues. Toronto has a defensive problem that can be mindboggling. And DC has a packed schedule that will prove the lack of depth that is hurting MLS.
Could Make Supporter’s Shield Runs: Chicago Fire, Seattle Sounders and LA Galaxy
I may be crazy to list both LA and Seattle for something like the Supporter’s Shield but looking at the two clubs above them here and what kind of schedule they both have I have to think all three of these clubs have the better chance at taking home the trophy this season. Chicago has the depth we all crave MLS clubs to have. LA and Seattle have two amazing coaches that know how to get results out of little bits of their clubs. Only thing that worries me for each is Chicago’s dealing without Brian McBride and how much longer Blanco can go…Seattle’s defensive issues…and then LA’s circus with David Beckham.
Supporter’s Shield Front-Runners: Columbus Crew and Houston Dynamo
If it all ended today it would be Houston winning the league’s regular season crown. Columbus is right there behind them though in this race. Each need to figure out how to get through the CCL group stages and remaining league matches though. Houston has a lighter schedule than Columbus but is also a little shaky in terms of play right now. My money is on the Dynamo though out of these two to get the Supporter’s Shield this season.
USSF Take Steps To Deal With Swine Flu
Boy this story with Landon Donovan and the swine flu keeps getting more interesting. We know he got it when he was with his club before he went to Mexico this week. Now the USSF is figuring out how to deal with their other players that were on that trip with him. From the reports everyone has to take Tamiflu. Fun times.
Houston-DC-San Jose Dealings
We know today DC traded for Julius James. Houston got a third round pick in the 2012 SuperDraft in return. Nothing like getting a bunch in return for James if you are Houston. Right after that the Dynamo went out and traded for former Dynamo defender Ryan Cochrane from San Jose in exchange for an international player slot.
San Jose is looking to use that player slot of a Brazilian.
DC on the other hand also announced the signing of David Habarugira who last played for Royale Union Saint-Gilloise in Belgium.
Map of EPL Players
Last but not least for the week, is a lovely map of all current EPL players. I won’t lie I wasted a good 30 minutes on this sucker.