Saturday, July 31, 2010

VIDEO - 2010 Major League Soccer All-Star Game (Match Day 360)

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Another great video from the guys at MLS Match Day 360 wrapping up the 2010 Major League Soccer All-Star Game in Houston versus Manchester United.

Much better seats than the FBM was afforded!

Check it:

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Friday, July 30, 2010

Goal Celebrations: Which One Is the Best Ever?

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This past week saw a hilariously inventive goal celebration burst across the Inter-Net-Blogo-Sphere. Stjarnan faced Fylkir in Iceland's top league. Halldor Orri's tallies the penalty kick and goes fishing:



This led us to fondly remember a lot of great goal celebrations that we've seen over the years.  We're partial to Robbie Fowler's "coke snort" celebration and Clint Dempsey's "home run" celebration when he impersonated Babe Ruth from the grassed-over home plate spot at RFK Stadium (where the Washington Nationals used to play), but there's tons of great ones out there.

Our all-time favorite?

DC United's Alecko Eskandarian scores twice against the newly re-minted Red Bulls New York back in 2006. As he runs towards the sideline to celebrate, one of his teammates tosses him a can of the energy drink which he pops open, takes a swig of, and prompty spits it all over the place in disgust. A awesome slap in the face to the New York side. Major League Soccer didn't take to kindly to Eskandarian's hijinks and fined him.

Here's a few more (choppy video, but you can make out some quality ones):



That leads us to asking you, dear readers/followers, what are you favorite goal celebrations?

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Going Suds Up: The Best Soccer, The Best Beers

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By Kirsten Schlewitz / Senior West Coast Beer and Aston Villa Correspondent

This weekend is a rarity in Major League Soccer: all sixteen teams will play on Saturday and Sunday, with seven matches to choose from on Saturday alone. Of course, most of these matches will be available only on Direct Kick or MLS MatchDay, unless you live in the area, but on Sunday you’re in luck: Fox Soccer Channel will be showing Los Angeles Galaxy versus Chicago Fire at 6:30pm CT. In other words, you have no excuse to not watch MLS.

In honor of being spoiled for choices, this week I present you with beers arranged by time zone—pick your India Pale Ale based on either your own zone or the zone of the club you’re watching. Or even choose a team to watch based on the beer you’d like to try! (apologies to Alaska and Hawaii, but you don’t have MLS teams, either):

Eastern Time


Philadelphia v New England, 2:30PM CT

Dogfish Head 120 Minute IPA: If you’re drinking this, make absolutely certain you’re staying in one place for the evening, even if you’re just having one bottle. Dogfish 120 packs as dirty of a punch as the Union players, and if you have two you might end up sitting out the next match. At 18%ABV, this is the type of beer you’re drinking for novelty rather than subtly. It has a thick, syrupy palate, but isn’t too bitter. If you’re looking for more balance, move down a step and try the 90 Minute, which has more dark fruits in the taste.



Central Time


Houston v New York, 7:30PM CT And/Or Kansas City v Toronto 7:30PM CT

NOLA Hopitoulas: Alright, this one may be more about nostalgia for New Orleans than anything else, but it’s a more than decent brew. Lots of piney hops in the nose and plenty of bitter in the taste—but this beer still manages to balance, bringing in caramely sweetness to balance all the bitterness of the grapefruit hop.

Rocky Mountain Time

Colorado v Dallas, 3PM CT And/Or Real Salt Lake v DC United, 8PM CT

Avery The Maharaja: Part of Avery’s “Dictator” series, this one is perfect for the royalty that is Salt Lake. It kicks in at 10.5% ABV, but the alcohol is completely hidden. The aromas are subtle, mostly toasted malt with a bit of citrus peeking through. Perfectly bitter, with nutty caramel cutting the citrus and pine hops.





Pacific Time

San Jose v Seattle, 9PM CT And/Or Chivas v Columbus, 9:30PM CT


Bear Republic Racer 5: The west coast is the home of the hop, sending out IPAs stuffed with layer upon layer of grapefruity bitterness. Racer 5, however, manages to spice it up a bit, with earthy, peppery hops in the taste. It still ends with a bitter grapefruit finish, but its smell of floral and grassy hops shows that this one is trying to be more than just a typical hop bomb.

About Kirsten:

Ever since Brazil caught my eye during the 1994 World Cup I’ve considered myself a soccer fan, but it wasn’t until the summer 2008 that I decided to find a club. I focused on the Premier League and eventually chose Aston Villa. Initially drawn in by the pretty clarets and blues, I found I liked their organization, their owner and their manager. I fell hard and now it’s too late—I can’t give them up. As for MLS, that was easy, as I live in Seattle. I also support Exeter FC, SSC Napoli, FC Koln, Estudiantes Tecos and Tooting & Mitcham FC, all for a variety of reasons including cider, tattoos, scarves, owls, and a soccer player texting while on the pitch. I’m the Managing Editor of SB Nation’s Aston Villa site, 7500 to Holte. I also will be contributing to Two Footed Tackle after the World Cup.

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Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Free Beer Match Day Seven: The Movement Makes the All-Star Game

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The Free Beer Movement is headed down Hwy 290 to Houston, Texas today for the Major League Soccer All-Star Game!  The best at the brightest of MLS will face off against English Premier League giants, Manchester United at 7:30pm CT on ESPN2.

We're hanging out with the crazy folks of the Houston Dynamo supporters group, the Texian Army for a bit of tailgate, beer swilling action.

We'll be armed (not in the Texas way you think!) with FBM stickers for anyone that can track me down.  I'll be in my maroon Free Beer Movement shirt from Objectivo probably sporting my white US Soccer hat.

The site will be quite for a couple of days then, but we'll post our standard photo essay when we get back so you can live vicariously through the Movement's day.


If you're looking for something to do in the meantime help us out by heading over to this post and give some advice to newly minted soccer fans from the World Cup.

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Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Advice for Soccer Newbies

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Welcome to the Club!
The Shin Guardian ran an excellent article today giving their tips to the newly converted soccer fan. A great read for sure.  The third part of their advice comes straight from the Free Beer Movement's vault; make it a vacation. Mrs. FBM and I are all about making each soccer trip we go on a little something more. The game's just a night so tack on some culture or recreation activities and really have some fun.

We'd thought we'd go one step further and have our readers give their advice to soccer newbies as well.


Question: As an entrenched soccer fan in American what advice would you give as to the next steps for a soccer newbie that's just come on after the World Cup?


Let's some them so Free Beer Movement hospitality. Leave all your good tips in the comments section!


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Monday, July 26, 2010

Free Beer Movement I-Team: Stu Holden and Joe Hart - Separated At Birth?

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We'll get to the bottom of this for sure!



Photo Credit: Houston Dynamo/MLS, Getty Images


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Who We're Buying a Beer For...

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It's been quite a while since we've run our "Who We're Buying A Beer For" column that honors individuals and groups that help grow the game in the United States. With a busy World Cup season behind us, the middle of the Major League Soccer season upon us, and the beginning of the European leagues on the horizon it's time to get back in the beer buying swing of things.

We're not in the business of debating the merits of mid-season exhibition matches for our MLS sides. Plenty of people going on about how no self-respecting league would disrupt their season calendar (but then again the EPL has the Carling Cup which is about as worthless of a tournament as we've ever seen), but no one will argue that these "Summer of Soccer" series playing out across the U.S. have been anything but a boon to our domestic game and the visibility and profitability of the teams involved in the matches. There are some 41 (we think...) international teams that have or will have played a match stateside and there's no doubt that the world sees America as a soccer hotbed and a place ripe for investment. Unless your Portsmouth.... then coming here was a terrible idea.

But as American soccer fans watch on in starred-eyed wonder as the likes of Manchester United, Real Madrid, etc come to our shores its worth taking stock in the fact that our domestic sides are putting up one hell of a fight against their "superior" opponents. Now many of these European giants are rolling out their youngsters and B/C-sides, but that shouldn't take away the fact that even that wouldn't have been possible even a few short years ago.

Kai Kamara going all "Poltergeist" on the ball.
So kudos to the Kansas City Wizards and Red Bull New York for convincing wins against Manchester United and Manchester City, respectively. The beer's on us! Perhaps a Boulevard for The Wiz and some Brooklyn Brewery for New York (not RB and Vodka, for sure).

New York hosted a great little tourney over the weekend, the Barclays New York Football Challenge with clubs City, Tottenham, and Sporting Clube de Portugal. A great feature for the new home of former French international Thierry Henry. He bagged his first goal for the Bulls and we're tickled pink as to what he might bring to MLS for the rest of the season and beyond.

Kansas City was the fourth stop on United's five city "US Tour" (that included a stop in Toronto, CANADA) and Manchester's loss to the 10-man Wizards. In The Guardian they used the word “embarrassing.” The Daily Mirror calls it a “surprise” while The Sun used the term “preseason shocker.” We call it "fun".

Fun that 50,000+ came out to Arrowhead Stadium in the heart of the Midwest to see a soccer match. Fun that, hopefully, many of them will return to watch the Wizards for the rest of the season. Fun that KC launched their 2011 season ticket drive for seats in their brand new stadium on the back of this game. Fun that catching a soccer match on a beautiful Sunday evening is the perfect end to the weekend.

Wayne Bridge, check your bedroom. You just got scored on again.
Lest we forget that Red Bulls took a scalp as well on Sunday. Henry and Co., falling to Tottenham on Friday were the top team on yesterday afternoon over Blankchester City. Dane Richards was an absolute beast and burned Wayne Bridge like he was John Terry in his bedroom (Ouch! Couldn't resist!). One (spectacular) goal, one assist. Now only if he could do that in league play. Over the weekend nearly 100,000 caught four games in the sparkling Red Bull Arena.

This Wednesday the "fun" continues as the Major League Soccer All-Stars will play Manchester United in Houston, Texas. The Free Beer Movement will be there and we're looking forward to a spirited, if in the end, meaningless match.

What do all these international friendlies mean to us Americans? Money in the bank for the foreign teams for sure, but in a larger sense it puts the thought in the heads of many Americans, soccer fans and otherwise, that the U.S. is a great destination for top-notch soccer and the home of some pretty good games as well.

We'll drink to that.

Photo Credits: Getty Images

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Friday, July 23, 2010

VIDEO - Thierry Henry's Debut for Red Bull New York (from MLS MatchDay 360)

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Coolest part?

Henry scores in his Red Bulls debut and repeatedly points to the turf saying "I'm here. I'm here."

Yes. You are.

Welcome to America.

Welcome to Major League Soccer.

May you help build this great sport in this great country.

Thoughts on Henry's debut? His impact on Major League Soccer? Soccer in America in general? Leave 'em in the comments section.

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Photo and Video Credit: Major League Soccer

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The Flight: The Most Random, Tastiest Bits from the Soccer and Beer World

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Welcome to a new feature on the Free Beer Movement site blog, "The Flight". In "beer-speak" a flight is a serving of several choice brews to whet one's appetite and that's what we hope our flight does for you.

As with any good beer tasting it's important to serve up some variety and try all sorts of good stuff. That's why we're debuting "The Flight," compiling the soccer's (and sometimes beer's) most random and tasty bits.

We'll serve up video clips, news items, opinion, or complete random-ness. It might come in piles or just in a single serving. Hopefully most of it peaks your interest.

If there's anything floating around the Inter-net-blogo-sphere that you've seen and think should be featured on the site just leave us a comment in any of the "Flight" posts or drop us an e-mail at freebeermovement@gmail.com.

Enjoy!

Soccer


Two great articles about "what's next?" for soccer in America. Both a great "call to arms" for American soccer fans to take action to promote the game in the U.S.

You know, kind of, like what we do here all the time.

* Grant Wahl of Sports Illustrated gives the new soccer fan some ideas of what to do now they're hooked on the sport. Some great ideas for already soccer fans as well (book suggestions, too) to help the newbies their now bringing to games across the nation.

* Jack Rozier at Yanks Abroad says it's time to get off the couch and help America become a soccer nation.

Rozier writes:

Whoever the "man in-charge" is will undoubtedly shape the immediate prospects of American soccer development and success in World Cup 2014, 2018, and 2022. However, the FUTURE of American soccer lies elsewhere…
In our willingness to patiently and enthusiastically explain the rules and technicalities of the game to the casual fan who will add his voice and his wallet to the American cause (whether it be professional or national team)…
In our willingness to leave our TIVO dormant at least one night a week and take a ball to the park, court, or field to juggle and invite the curiosity and imagination of children to come alive in the game…
In our willingness to accept the challenge of coaching and coaching education in order to raise the overall level of play in the American game, despite the fact that there are few overt immediate rewards…
More so than anything, the future of American soccer lies in our willingness to take ownership of this game and this country and develop our own models and mentalities. We have worn the badge of the "melting pot" for nearly a century, but neglected the difficult work of trial and error to arrive at the steady position atop the fence where the grass is greenest on both sides.
Good words and good ideas for moving forward as an American soccer nation.

Beer


*The world's strongest beer is now available from the crazy brewers at BrewDog in Scotland. It's 55 percent alcohol and comes in bottle inside a dead animal! Called "The End of History". Not sure who we have to write to get a free sample of this stuff, but at a cost of $750 a bottle I don't think we'll even waste the time to write an e-mail.









From Metro.co.uk:

BrewDog, of Fraserburgh, Aberdeenshire, is the firm behind the new ale that's apparently stronger than whisky and vodka at 55 per cent volume.
Indeed, the brewer recommends that the tasty beverage is served in a shot glass 'to be enjoyed like a fine whisky'.
Twelve bottles of The End Of History have already slid off the production line and been placed inside seven dead stoats, four squirrels and one hare.
These wee beasties will set you back £500 (NB no animals were harmed in the making of this product)
The animals weren't killed specifically for the purposes of housing the bottles, but died of natural causes.
The critters also sport a range of eye-catching outfits including a kilt and a top hat.
BrewDog co-founder James Watt describes The End Of History as 'a perfect conceptual marriage between taxidermy, art and craft brewing'.
'This is the beer to end all beers. It's an audacious blend of eccentricity, artistry and rebellion; changing the general perception of beer, one stuffed animal at a time,' he continues.
'The bottles are at once beautiful and disturbing - they disrupt conventions and break taboos, just like the beer they hold within them.'
Infused with nettles and juniper berries, the blond Belgian ale is created by freezing the liquid to separate water from the solution, fact fans will be delighted to know.


*Love beer and bicycling? Here's the bike for you from Hopworks Urban Brewery and Metrofiets in Portland, Oregon. It's a bike! It's a tap bar! It's SUPER AWESOME!

Warning, though, you can still get pulled over for drunk driving while riding a bike so don't get any ideas!


Photo Credit: “Corky” Miller www.corkymiller.com (bike)






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Going Suds Up: The Best Soccer, The Best Beers

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By Kirsten Schlewitz / Senior West Coast Beer and Aston Villa Correspondent

Sorry to have abandoned you all last week, but I was off vacationing in sunny San Diego. In fact, I was doing research for this very column. In just three days I sampled over thirty beers, just so I could be suitably informed on the absolute best beers-to-soccer pairings. It’s tough being a soccer and beer writer.

What’s on your TV this weekend? Besides a bunch of MLS friendlies, not much is on national TV.

Except, of course, the Women’s U-20 World Cup and the USWNT against Nigeria on Sunday morning. Which, I might add, is being shown live at the crazy time of 4:30am CT, on ESPNU and ESPN3.com. I guess it is in Germany, but wow, I thought getting up at 4:30am for the men’s WC was insane—this would be 2:30am for me. But for you dedicated U-20 fans, or for anyone who plans to finish the night out by winding down with a match, I have a perfect beer for you:

Pizza Port Coffee Monster. If you are anywhere near Carlsbad Pizza Port in Southern California, grab your growler and run down to fill it with this delicious beer. Skip the morning coffee and just drink this sucker. It smells exactly—exactly—like coffee. I know I recommend coffee beers for morning matches quite often, but this is probably the best coffee beer I’ve ever had. It tastes like freshly brewed espresso with just the faintest hint of chocolate. But be warned, it packs a 9.3% ABV. Just like the USA women. One might be tempted to think they’re just sweet and innocent, patronizingly challenging them to a game of soccer, but they’ll knock you on your ass.

Not looking to get up so early, or stay up so late? Well, y’all, I don’t want to get in the habit of over-recommending the Sounders, but their match against the Colorado Rapids is the only non-friendly on national television this weekend (Sunday at 9:30pm CT on Fox Soccer Channel). Considering I am absolutely against teams promoting friendlies in the middle of a season—how many professional leagues are willing to do this?—I refuse to feature one of these. So in honor of the ridiculous rumors that have been swirling around Seattle for the past couple weeks, I give you:

Green Flash Extra Pale. I Found this at Tap Room in San Diego. Very light gold with just the tiniest bit of off-white foam on top. Very grassy and fresh aroma. The taste is awfully earthy, and every so slightly bitter. Not that this sounds like a soon-to-be-ex-Sounder or anything…

About Kirsten:

Ever since Brazil caught my eye during the 1994 World Cup I’ve considered myself a soccer fan, but it wasn’t until the summer 2008 that I decided to find a club. I focused on the Premier League and eventually chose Aston Villa. Initially drawn in by the pretty clarets and blues, I found I liked their organization, their owner and their manager. I fell hard and now it’s too late—I can’t give them up. As for MLS, that was easy, as I live in Seattle. I also support Exeter FC, SSC Napoli, FC Koln, Estudiantes Tecos and Tooting & Mitcham FC, all for a variety of reasons including cider, tattoos, scarves, owls, and a soccer player texting while on the pitch. I’m the Managing Editor of SB Nation’s Aston Villa site, 7500 to Holte. I also will be contributing to Two Footed Tackle after the World Cup.


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Thursday, July 22, 2010

Doing Good With a Brew - Abita Brewing Company's S.O.S. Campaign

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From Abita's Website:
Working with the Louisiana Seafood Promotion & Marketing Board (LSPMB), Abita Beer announced that it has established ‘SOS – A Charitable Fund’ that will assist with the rescue and restoration of the environment, industry and individuals fighting to survive this disastrous oil spill.
The fund has pledged that 100% of all money raised will go to charity. In addition, the Louisiana Seafood Marketing Board will play an important role in advising where the money can do the most good. An advisory committee is being established as the donation process and grant procedures are finalized.
The centerpiece of the fundraising effort is a new charitable beer created by Abita. The brew, called SOS – A Charitable Pilsner, will generate 75¢ for every bottle sold. This Abita Beer is a message in a bottle...a distress signal for the troubled waters of our Gulf Coast. For every bottle sold Abita will donate 75¢ to the rescue and restoration of the environment, industry and individuals fighting to survive this disastrous oil spill. This unfiltered Weizen Pils is made with Pilsner and Wheat malts. It is hopped and dry hopped with Sterling and German Perle hops. It has a brilliant gold color, a sweet malt flavor, and a pleasant bitterness and aroma.
In addition, related retail merchandise (hat, tee shirt, lapel pin, decal and car magnet) will be sold and 100% of the net proceeds will also go to the SOS Fund.
For more information please visit Abita's SOS page.


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How To Calculate a "Silly Season" Rumor

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How much for this guy?
Late July and early August might be the deadest time in the news year. People are taking summer vacations, spending their time outdoors, and generally not paying attention to the world around them.  Unfortunately we're all still stuck with the 24-hour news cycle and the media's desire to make news, any news, important to us in hopes of snagging readers and viewers.

That's why you'll see lots of stories about shark attacks only in August (and this "Shark Week" on the Discovery Channel) or Lindsey Lohan's jailing as "breaking news".

For the soccer world and particularly the Euro-centric world this summer time is referred to as the "silly season" and it's particularly bad following a World Cup.  The silly season is defined by an echo chamber of ridiculous rumors about a certain player and a certain team and some absurd amount of money that they might pay for said player. Pretty much anyone that showed a shred of talent in South Africa is a moving target for the press and their appetite for making (as opposed to breaking) news.

In year's past the American media has been immune to the silly season because, well, few were looking through the American storefront. But in the four years since the last World Cup in Germany much has changed.

In 2006 the U.S. was coming off a disappointing Cup run and few American players were seen as attractive to Euro-sutors.  Certainly a few went across to pond to ply their trade (Dempsey, Edddie Johnson, Howard, etc), but real deals were to be found elsewhere.

With the electric performance of the 2010 U.S.squad there is plenty of interest around Europe for many American players. Some are looking to jump from stateside to Europe (Donovan) and many others are looking infinitely more attractive to larger European clubs (Bradley, Dempsey) or bigger North American clubs (Bornstein, Gomez). Even Americans that didn't make the South African journey have picked up European contracts (Kljestan).

Another important side to the silly season is that the money of clubs in Europe has gotten beyond "silly".  With the oil bucks of Manchester City in the market in 2010, as That's On Point joked, they'll be the first senior side with 100 players on their roster. There is more money to be splashed that ever before.

Lastly, the media world has grown by leaps and bounds since the previous World Cup.  The advent of Twitter and other social media, the growth of blogs and other similar publications, alongside the mainstream sports media has made the echo chamber of news, views, and rumor more "echo-y" than ever. The desire for each semi-professional soccer writer in the U.S. to make their views heard via blog post, Tweet, or online smoke signal has flooded the silly season rumor mill with more worthless opinions that ever before. 

Granted their are many intelligent online voices contemplating the weight of such transfer whispers, but most spend their time cranking out 500 words of nothing on their sites or several 140 character word vomits to their followers.

Us Americans are no longer safe from falling into the silly season trap.  We laughed while European clubs splashed crazy cash for players and speculated until blue in the face about player moves, but now we're apart of it all.

So how do we sort through all of the BS of the now-Americanized silly season? Well, we're pretty fond of statistics, so why not a formula to determine the accuracy of such rumors swirling about the Inter-Net-Blogo-Sphere?


For your consideration:
Player A X European Super Club + Ridiculous Sounding Monetary Amount X Number of News Articles, Blog Posts, Guardian Sport and The Sun Articles Written  / Amount of Rational Thought and Consideration of Said Club's Actual Needs Applied to Situation = Accuracy of Rumor




Let's see how this plays out and define our variables:
Player A is Landon Donovan
European Super Club is Manchester City
Ridiculous Sounding Monetary Amount is $15 million
Number of News Articles, etc is 650 news reports, 2,190 blog posts, 1 The Sun article and 2 Guardian Sport articles (2,743 in total)
Amount of Rational Thought and Consideration of Said Club's Actual Needs Applied to the Situation is Undefined (We're still searching for a sound voice on all this madness.)


Either way you run the numbers this whole situation is absolutely bonkers.


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Wednesday, July 21, 2010

New Feature - The Flight: This Week's Most Random, Tasty Bits

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Welcome to a new feature on the Free Beer Movement site blog, "The Flight". In "beer-speak" a flight is a serving of several choice brews to whet one's appetite and that's what we hope our flight does for you.

As with any good beer tasting it's important to serve up some variety and try all sorts of good stuff. That's why we're debuting "The Flight," compiling the soccer's (and sometimes beer's) most random and tasty bits.

We'll serve up video clips, news items, opinion, or complete random-ness. It might come in piles or just in a single serving. Hopefully most of it peaks your interest.

If there's anything floating around the Inter-net-blogo-sphere that you've seen and think should be featured on the site just leave us a comment in any of the "Flight" posts or drop us an e-mail at freebeermovement@gmail.com.

Enjoy!

Today's Most Random and Tasty Bits

"Football At Fenway"

While Manchester United face the Philadelphia Union tonight (6:30pm CT on ESPN2) there will be several other international matches occurring tonight as well. Including Celtic FC and Sporting Lisbon in Boston at historic Fenway Park.

The "Football at Fenway" encounter is really intriguing as it's the first time the ballpark has hosted a soccer game in 45 years and that the Glasglow club appeared at the Red Sox stadium back in 1931.

You know that soccer is becoming something in America when one of the most famous baseball stadiums in the country has to make room for the sport.

Video of yesterday's practice and presser (thanks to "A Football Report"):




The soccer pitch was laid out over the baseball diamond, with the goals along the third-base line and in front of the baseball bullpens in right field; sod had been placed over the infield dirt and where the pitcher’s mound would be.


Celtic FC (SCO) v Sporting Clube de Portugal (POR) from Fenway Park will be broadcast live on Fox Soccer Channel at 8pm EST.


Finally a Real MLS Ambassador?

Thierry Henry is set to make his Red Bull New York debut tomorrow night against old London rival Tottenham.  So far everything suggests that TH14's time in New York is set to be one of the best for any of the Designated Players that Major League Soccer has signed yet.

David Beckham came to MLS with a bang, but so far has more like a whimper in the league between injury woes and desires to play aboard rather than here in the U.S. Henry retired from international soccer (for good reason probably) and has made all the right statements about his commitment to soccer in the United States.

He's just an all-around more flashy player than Golden Balls as well. Here's hope the former Arsenal and Barcelona striker can find his form stateside.




Photo Credit: Flickr, PinkFish13, Fenway images from Daylife

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Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Hejduk Watch - Week of July 18th

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(Editor's Note: We've laid pretty low on this for a while, but we're re-doubling our efforts to recruit Columbus Crew defender and "former" USMNTer Frankie Hejduk as the spokesperson for the Free Beer Movement. Why, you ask? Read our post, "The Case for Frankie Hejduk" and there will be no doubt in our mind that Frankie "Hair-cut" is the right man for the job.)

Frankie. Frankie. Our little watch series on you is only a few weeks old and you're killing us. No one can slam a beer like you, but right now the on-field mistakes are killing ya!


Frankie celebrates one of the Crew's tallies against New York in happier times.

Last Thursday at the Kansas City Wizards, hustle-Hedjuk ran down a long corner kick only for hurtful-Hejduk to give up possession and have that turnover become a quick counter-attack for the Wiz and result in their only tally on the night and good for the win.

This past weekend the Crew were all over the not-yet-Thierry-Henry-Red Bulls and took the spoils with a convincing 2-0 win, but Captain Free Beer did his best Nigel De Jong impression by cleating RBNY Carl Robinson after a hard tackle. Both seemed to get pretty steamed, but Hejduk lost his composure like someone just stole his beer.

Low-lights of Frankie's tackle and subsequent sending off:



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Frankie Rating: Surfboards out of Surfboards.

The is a pretty dark week for our boy. Buuuuut Captain Free Beer does remain the captain of his Columbus Crew annnnnnd an one game suspension could just mean extra training time with the ol' 12 oz. weights.

Anyone remember one of the last times he was suspended? Oh....we do:



So next week our update has the potential to be TOTALLY AWESOME!

United States Soccer National Team Status:

Included in the 40-man player pool for the USMNT. Did not feature in the 2010 World Cup in South Africa. As of press time, no phone calls from Coach Bob Bradley. The next USMNT Friendly is on August 10th in New York against Brazil. If Hejduk doesn't get a jingle from Coach Sweatpants we fear the worst about his international career.

About Frankie:

Read his Major League Soccer profile.

Photo Credit: Major League Soccer Talk (or where ever they got it)

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Monday, July 19, 2010

Free Beer Feature: Newcastle Brown Ale and the "Geordie Schooner"

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It's not everyday that we get stuff in the mail (We are very lonely and have no friends) so it's extra exciting when the mailman(person) dodges the elaborate traps and the guard dogs we have set for him to drop a package off at FBM HQ.

We were expecting some thing in the mail (discreetly labeled, of course), but the contents of this package were entirely surprising.

Free beer!

Free Newcastle Brown Ale to be exactly. The lovely gents at Newcastle were acute enough to recognize the brilliance that is this site and sent, for our enjoyment, two bottles of the good, brown stuff.

Luckily, they also anticipated the fact that the refrigerator box we call home lacks beverage containment devices otherwise known as glasses. So in with the beer were two of their new Newcastle "Geordie Schooner" serving glasses.

Next time you're having a Newcastle Brown Ale at the bar make sure you get it served in one of these sharp-looking glasses. It makes the beer taste even better! (Not sure if that's scientifically verified, but who do we look like? Science-y people? Ha!)



Photo Credit:
Free Beer Movement, 2010. Damn right... we know how to use a camera!

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Sunday, July 18, 2010

The Game Is In US: Sign the Go USA Bid Petition

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In a nation of 300 million and one that nearly 25 million watched the World Cup Final if we're serious about wanting to bring that experience home to the United States...

Please show your support for bringing the world's greatest sporting event back to America by signing the GoUSABid petition at their site.

Think free beer helps our sport? Try free beer + the World Cup!



Head over to GoUSABid.com and sign the petition and join the almost 1 million people in saying "The Game Is In US"


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Saturday, July 17, 2010

Photo Essay: Free Beer Match Day Six - The Movement Does the Women('s Game)

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Not one to miss out on an opportunity to mix business (none, really) and pleasure (lots, really) the Free Beer Movement stopped in Omaha, Nebraska to catch up with the United States Women's National Team in an international friendly against Sweden this past Tuesday.

Mr. FBM and newly soccer-mad Mrs. FBM picked up cousin Sarah for the match and treated her FBM-style; free beer on the night for her first soccer game.

Soccer newbie, Cuz Sarah, and Mrs. FBM.

We also met up with some of the local American Outlaws from Omaha and nearby Lincoln. It's really funny how quickly the FBM has grown in this first year....


Guy: Hey, you're from Austin? I was thinking about checking out the soccer down there. I'll hit you up with an e-mail if I come to town.

Me:
Sure. Here's my e-mail.

Guy: No. I won't remember.

Me: It's easy to remember: freebeermovement@gmail.com

Guy. Other Guy. Another Guy. And Fourth Guy: OH MY GOD. YOU'RE THE FREE BEER MOVEMENT GUY!

Me (very overwhelmed given my anti-social nature): Yup. Yup, I am.
And so you have it. I'm a D-List, Kathy Griffin-esque celebrity in Omaha, Nebraska. These are the things you dreamed of when you were a small boy.

Good parents helping create the next generation of American soccer fans.

The line ups.

Three little Mia Hamms.

Game time. Whoop!

Oh, Hope Solo. How sad we were that you did not play tonight.

Nicole Barnhart admirably deputized.

Goal!

The only score that really matters!

A packed house of over 6,000 watched the match. A beautiful night for American soccer.

National AO Knuckleheads, Justin Brunken, Megan Brunken,
Korey Donahoo, Joe Blow (sorry!), and Zach Stivrins.
Great view of the proceedings from the Beer Garden!

Don't forget the Lady Nats face Sweden again tonight on Fox Soccer Channel at 6:30pm CT.

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Friday, July 16, 2010

Homeward Bound: A Wisconsin Beer-grimage (Part 3)

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We've settled in back at FBM HQ in Austin, Texas, but there juuuuust a bit more to share from our journey to Wisconsin. Plenty of great memories to recall here including: checking out my Milwaukee Brewers (even though they blow this year), a trip to the New Glarus and Minhas Breweries, a limburger cheese shop and bar, and reliving a part of the ol' college days.

If you're just joining us check our parts one and two.

Not that I don't like the delicious milk (and later, cheese)
that you produce, but you think one of you could evolve to making beer?

Miller Park. I think I'll be able to get a beer in there.

Gettin' artsy.

Yeah, that's right, I wore my U.S. jersey to a baseball game. Move over "America's Pastime"!

Sorry Miller Brewing Co. Just passing through. Besides I used to give your tours. I could give it myself.



Ahhhh.... memory lane. Putting in some quality pine-riding time at ol' Breese Stevens (a former polo ground).


New Glarus Brewing Co.'s brand new brewing facility. (New Glarus, Wisconsin)

Copper kettles. Nice!


Minhas Craft Brewery (Monroe, Wisconsin). Formerly the
Joseph Huber Brewing Co. and makers of Berghoff Beer.
The second oldest brewery in the United States after
Yuengling.




Baumgartner's Cheese Store and Tavern.
Only makers of limburger in the United States. And for good reason!



The most fantastic piece of art in the world. "The Battle Between Beer and Wine" hangs over the bar at Baumgartner's. Beer wins, of course!

Memorial Union on the University of Wisconsin - Madison (Go Badgers!) campus.

Rooting for the dirty Dutch in the FBM Household.

Sunset at the waterfront Union. See ya later, Wisco!

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