Monday, February 8, 2010

Who We're Buying a Beer For...

Now leading off this column and "Who We're Buying a Beer For" future columns... funny beer pictures.

So many sad souls this week and so few beers to comfort their sorrows. First, it was the tabloid saga of John Terry, captain of the England National Team and Chelsea FC, having an affair with the girlfriend of former teammate and current Manchester City defender Wayne Bridge. The way the British newspapers reported the story you thought that this single event might force the Three Lions out of the World Cup or become such a distraction that you might as well give three points to each of their group opponents this summer.

Shortly there after everything was right in the English world as the National Team manager Fabio Capello stripped Terry of the captain's armband and handed it to the injured Rio Ferdinand. Wayne Bridge, who you'll remember was the guy who lost the most in this situation (his girlfriend and possible a spot on the National Team... he was always a fringe player and now why would the coach select him now?), missed the sympathy boat.

John Terry, however is floating high on the the worries of the entire nation. How will the beleaguered defender cope in South Africa? Will he feature against Arsenal this weekend? Will this ruin England's chances FIVE MONTHS FROM NOW? An ESPN Soccernet article even went as far to report that Capello was protecting Terry from being "destroyed":

Terry was described as "a little fish in the sea hunted by a shark", and there was a real fear for the England boss that if he failed to relieve the pressure in some way, that the nation's best centre-half would arrive in South Africa a broken man.
As we wrote on our Twitter feed... wait a minute... who banged who's girlfriend?

All of this is a long-winded rant to get to the real beer-buying individuals... the poor souls involved in America's version of the international soccer/sex scandal: Harkes-gate.

* So our first round of beers goes to all the characters involved in this saga: Eric Wynalda, John Harkes, and former USMNT coach Steve Sampson.

Let us be the first to say that we don't condone Mr. Harkes' actions, but since we do subscribe to the "David Beckham School of American Soccer News"... any news that breaks the national media soccer embargo, even bad news, is good for the sport in the United States.

A quick re-cap... right before the 1998 disaster at the World Cup in France (three and out, one goal), DC United star John Harkes was dropped from the squad. He had been recently named "Captain for Life" by Sampson so the news was quite a shock to the American soccer world (you thought it was small now...).

Fast forward to 2010 and in light of the John Terry is a cheating-son-of-a-bitch-news from England Wynalda acknowledges on Fox Soccer Channel's "Fox Football Fone-In" that the reason Harkes was dropped from the '98 team was because Mr. "Hey, Remember My Goal From Wembley?" was tagging Waldo's wife (Walda?). Sampson then comes out of hiding and confirms the story. Apparently this is one of the worst kept secrets in American soccer (one that I had, NEVER, EVER heard before... so that just tells you where we stand in the soccer world!), but now all of the dirty laundry is hanging out there for the nation to see.

Now there's a chapter is Harkes' book that I wish he would have penned. I feel like I might be owed some money for him excluding this juicy tale. Sampson is sitting back hoping that this little tale exonerates him for such a shitty performance in France, but everyone knows that it wasn't Harkes-gate that did him in, but a 3-6-1 formation and not using superstar-in-his-prime Brian McBride until the last, and futile, game... a sorry 2-1 loss to Iran (Iran!). Even Grant Wahl says so and he knows everything!

So in the end... Waldo divorces his wife, like three years later, and is now an assistant coach for the U-2o Nats, Harksie is arguing with JP Dellacamera on "Soccer Night in America" on ESPN2, and Sampson sunk the Los Angeles Galaxy and is probably trying to breathe life into the 3-6-1 with some U-8 team in suburban Ohio.

All of these sad sacks get one big USMNT sponsored Budweiser.

* Think Eric Wynalda has issues? How about DaMarcus Beasley, who had his car FIREBOMBED this week, apparently over a woman who has ties to underground figures in Glasgow, Scotland. The Rangers midfielder saw his $80,000 BMW go up in flames. File this under the category: "It Sucks to Be You, DMB" (surprisingly... we've got a few entries in this file).

The Daily Record writes:

The report cites an anonymous source who claims that Beasley was involved with a lady who had ties to an underground figure in the city, and that it was a professional job done by local gangsters.
Just when you think things are getting better, you know, getting some PT with Rangers, scoring some goals and then, WHAM! your car's on fire! We're serving up a beer for Beasley because he might need it to put out the next fire that these "underground figures" will set.

The FBM guesses that it might just be prudent for Coach Sweatpants to double check everyone's lady-friends before the start of the World Cup in June because between lessons from 1998 and Run DMB's fling Charlie Davies' fitness might not be item "numero uno" anymore.

* Just to end on some good news we're going to hand out the third of beer honors this week to USMNT and Hull City striker Jozy Altidore who bagged his first English Premier League goal against the Billionaire Boys of Manchester City. His 30th minute goal, which was declared a "JOLAZO!" by Mark T of The Shin Guardian (Great stuff... they even made a T-shirt with proceeds going to Haiti relief), was instrumental in the Tigers holding off a late Man Citeh charge.

I declared on Twitter to "That's on Point" writer Mike Cardillo (second best soccer blogger behind the TSG bhoys) that if JZA's goal wasn't in ESPN's Top Ten on SportCenter (they gotta start giving the US players some love on there!) I would never watch the network again. No confirmation whether or not it did feature (I don't have cable... I steal all of my soccer. Shhh!), but I might have to walk back that statement because the Worldwide Leader in Sports is the home for this summer's World Cup.

UPDATE: I found last night's "Top Ten" which omitted number 9 , but did include some guy dancing a halftime, three hockey goals none by an American, a hole-in-one, and three NBA dunks (two by the same guy... that couldn't have been a combo highlight).

SECOND UPDATE: I was told in the comments section that the omitted ninth highlight was Jozy's goal. There was probably a rights-issue for replaying the highlight on YouTube (silly EPL and their lawyers). If you we're here earlier there was this huge anti-ESPN rant about them fucking over soccer, but in light of this news I'll let them off the hook. Although, YOU'VE BEEN WARNED ESPN!


  1. Dan,

    Unless my memory is failing I believe the Jolazo was #9 on the Sportscenter Top 10 on Saturday night. (It was the 10pm Pacific SC.)

    Also, thought you might like to be aware of this:

  2. Well there you have it. I guess there must have been a TV rights issue b/c there was no number 9 on the ESPN yountube clip. Damn.... All that wasted anger!


"Anyone who tells me soccer is boring, I'm going to punch them in the face."
- Former Dallas Burn (aka FC Dallas) coach Dave Dir

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