By Tony Edwards - San Jose, CA (Sep 27, 2012) US Soccer Players -- In Thursday’s column, Tony looks at a possible return for Bobby Convey, strategizes one MLS team’s bold season-ticket strategy, and wonders why Steve Cherundolo’s club team plays in red?
Didn’t Kansas City trade for Bobby Convey last offseason?
They did, but injuries have limited him to less than 1,000 minutes of playing time this season. With four games left, Convey is back to full training and he is not listed on the injury report, as of Tuesday. In my advanced statistical analysis of their game, Kansas City needs to score more goals. We’ve seen Convey carry teams in this league before and this is a chance for him to do so again.
Going into this weekend, which team currently in a playoff position has the biggest difference between their home and road goal differentials?
I’ve been ragging on the Red Bulls for their inability to win on the road for some time, so imagine my surprise when I looked at the standings and discovered DC United is +19 at home and -11 on the road. That is the largest differential between home and road goal difference in the League, right now. Chicago is +25 at home and -3 on the road, suggesting that getting the second-leg at home is crucial for them also.
Which MLS team will not be including a high-profile friendly game in their 2013 season-ticket package?
Seattle, who have sold more tickets to three League games this season than to their high-profile friendly against Chelsea this season. General Manager Adrian Hanauer cited both ticket-buyer feedback and a better negotiating position as reasons behind the move. “…the feedback is ‘We’re way more interested in competitive games than exhibitions,’” he told the Tacoma News Tribune.
This is a bold statement from Seattle, especially playing in a gridiron stadium. Here we have a franchise prioritizing MLS games, even though they have a track record of drawing big crowds for prestige friendlies. Then again, this is the same team MLS commissioner Don Garber singled out for criticism after they played reserve and youth players against Manchester United last season. Deciding to separate their season ticket schedule from their friendlies is an interesting move.
Why are the colors of US National Team player Steve Cherundolo’s Hannover ’96 listed as black-white-green on the official Bundesliga website when they wear red at home?
Die Roten - aka, 'The Reds' - is Hannover's nickname, but they officially adopted the black-white-green scheme when the club was formed through merger in 1896. It's one of those oddities of professional sports that the same team is known for wearing red home shirts with their official color scheme reserved for their club crest. As an aside, many leagues could learn from the Bundesliga’s site as to how to build an English-speaking fan base.
If you want to see an MLS game and not sit through a lot of fouls, which teams do you watch?
Chicago and New England, who have each committed only 302 fouls, the least in league play. Yet, US National Team player Benny Feilhaber of New England and Patrick Nyarko of Chicago are third and fourth in the most-fouled list this season. Feilhaber has been fouled 66 times in 26 games and Nyarko 64 times in 29 games.
Tony Edwards is a soccer writer from the Bay Area.