USA vs. Mexico Countdown: The day before (Running Commentary)

USA Crest    MexicoLogo

Good afternoon folks. It is the day before the big USA-Mexico World Cup qualifier and today is the main press availability for the match as well as the day most fans and media are getting in to town.

There is a lot going on today so I decided to offer a running commentary on the day. Why? Well, Why not?

Let's get started:

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6:10pm- That's it from here. No controversies, no bulletin board material. Everyone kept it PC. Thanks for following along.

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6:02pm- Apologies for the delay but there was a big scrum at the end so there was a chance for some one on ones with Donovan and Bradley. The highlight of the session was Donovan being asked to pose with one of those infamous voodoo dolls being given away in Mexico. Donovan wasn't too interested in posing for a picture but I did get a picture of Donovan looking at the doll. He actually tossed it aside when asked to pose with it, not in a nasty way but in a playful way.

Donovan actually avoided any real bulletin board material for once. Something that disappointed the big horde of Mexican media. 

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5:43pm- "I think that type of surface makes for a good game and our players have enjoyed the nights when the game gets played that way and it looks like it's going to be another one so we hope to turn that into our advantage."

Bradley on the fast field at Crew Stadium.

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5:41pm- "since this game was announced two months ago I've been looking forward to it," Donovan said. "I've known that February 11 would be a special day."

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5:40pm- The Mexican fans outside are singing "Ay, Ay, Ay, Ay, Canta, No Llore." Must be practicing for tomorrow.

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5:39pm- Donovan on how he learned how to speak Spanish. "I had a youth team with a lot of Latino players so i had to learn Spanish so I could get the ball."

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5:35pm- Donovan on feeling pressure in this game "Every game has pressure but specially when we are at home. Every game is important. We only play 10 games (in qualifying) and we need points from every game."

"We always feel pressure against Mexico because it's a big game, but more because it's a World Cup qualifier."

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5:33pm- Bradley on the weather, "You can never really prepare for certain kind of days." He doesn't look concerned.

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5:30pm- Sven's press conference is over and Bob Bradley and Landon Donovan are on the stage.

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5:27pm- Sven gives the U.S. team some credit for being a strong team, with strong AND skilled players. he mentions Landon Donovan's speed as a cause for concern. Yes, he's Captain Obvious.

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5:26pm- Sven points out that Carlos Salcido and Guillermo Franco has had just one training session.

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5:24pm- Sven plugs Special 1 TV. Just kidding.

"I hope we come into the game humble because when you look at the statistics we haven't won in nine years. Every Mexican knows this will be a difficult game."

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5:21pm- Sven said he did NOT have a voodoo doll.

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5;20pm- "I'm Swedish, sorry." Sven's comment when asked if he thought the voodoo dolls would help Mexico.

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5:19pm- Sven points out that Wembley was closed just before he took the England job and opened the game after he was fired. The comment came when asked about whether England had a preferred venue for tough opponents like

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5:17pm- Sven on the rumors of him being linked to Portsmouth and Chelsea jobs:

"It's no distraction at all. If Chelsea wants me, the owner will phone me. I know (Roman Abramovich) well, the owner has my numbers, so I don't think that's the problem, and I promise you that he has not phoned me."

"It's not bad to be linked to such good jobs."

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5:15pm- A question in swedish from a Swedish journalist. The whole room looks completely clueless.

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5:13pm- "We will qualify for the World Cup and look to win tomorrow."

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5:11pm- Sven on Wednesday being his last game if Mexico loses, "I have a contract until 2010 and am thinking of that. I never think about the possibility of not coaching here after that. In soccer you never know, but I am confident we will qualify for the World Cup.

"The question was brilliant" Sven said when asked about whether he could be gone if the team loses.

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5:09- Sven says, "We are ready, we have trained and prepared and we are ready."

"It's not only against the United states we have a bad record at home." He points out that Mexico has only won seven road games against the five other teams in the Hex in the past 50 years.

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5:07pm- Sven just said the field is in good shape so it sounds like worries about the condition of the pitch have been eased.

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5:05- Sam's Army is hosting a party at Claddagh's Irish Pub.

Claddagh Irish Pub
585 S Front St # 100E
Columbus, OH 43215
(614) 224-1560

Sven is here.

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5pm- If any SBI readers are in Columbus they should know that the two main U.S. national team's supporter's groups are hosting parties in town tonight. I'll post the info in a minute.

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4:49- Still no Sven. Someone might want to check the local strip club.

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4:53pm- for those of you interested, yes Sacha Kljestan has cut his long hair off and yes, Oguchi Onyewu is sporting a beard. It's not a Freeway beard, but it's pretty impressive.

Landon Donovan arrived last night and apparently the Mexican media found out when he was arriving and swarmed him at the airport. It's fair to say he's a bigger star in Mexico than in the United States.

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4:51- The full army of top American soccer journalists is here, including Graham Jones, Steve Goff, Michael Lewis, George Vescey and Filip Bondy. Oh, and Luis Arroyave is here too. (Kidding folks, Luis is my homey).

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4:49- Sven hasn't shown up yet, neither have any of the other Setanta puppets.

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4:48- The Mexican team has finished training and the U.S. team will train pretty soon. For those wondering, it is a wet and overcast day. Not heavy rain, but it's kind of miserable.

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4:46- There is a large group of Mexican fans standing outside of Crew Stadium. They just broke out with a chant of "Si Se Puede" as Mexican players walked by for training. Not sure if that chant is encouraging or saddening. It certainly shows the state of this series.

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4:45pm- The Sven Goran Eriksson press conference is supposed to start now, but we all know it won't start on time.

This entry was posted in CONCACAF, Mexican Soccer, U.S. Men's National Team, World Cup Qualifying. Bookmark the permalink.

53 Responses to USA vs. Mexico Countdown: The day before (Running Commentary)

  1. Rob Usry says:

    Dos a Cero. Shut up Sven.

  2. Richie B says:

    Ives, any concern about the possibility of a postponement due to the weather?

  3. josh says:

    it’s like a twitter… awesome

  4. dan says:

    sven is out trying to get a job at pompey rite now. i think he gave up on mexico

  5. MetroTard says:

    See you in Claddagh after the game Ives. That beer is 4 years coming…

  6. Matt says:

    What does “Si Se Puede” mean?

  7. Chris says:

    Matt it means “Yes we can.”

  8. papi grande says:

    us 1, mexico 0, you heard it here first. donovan scores.

  9. USAFOOTY says:

    “4:49- Still no Sven. Someone might want to check the local strip club.”

    LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOL!

  10. mexicanbluefish says:

    sí se puede is what Mexicans always yell at any sporting, academic etc. events… no big deal, just as common as can be and meant to encourage and animate. To me it has always seemed to lack faith, but it has rhythm, rhyme, etc.

    I much prefer what they yell at opposing goalkeepers when they kick the ball…

  11. Brock says:

    nice with the titty bar recall, I love it

  12. Fid says:

    Sure, he says that today – wait until the inch of rain comes tomorrow during the day and in to the evening. It’s easily the bed field in the US but the weather tomorrow will not be kind.

    Ives – Say hey to the gang, work has kept me late so I couldn’t make the press conference tonight. See you tomorrow.

  13. RK says:

    And Obama borrowed that saying from Mexico, btw.

  14. Andy says:

    Si Se Puedo = Yes We Can– stated in the Mexican/Mexican American, others races marches headed by Cesar Chavez

    Obama should credit were its due, so shuold el Tri

  15. RK says:

    And with that comment, SGE will ignore Ives for the rest of the Q&A :)

  16. BJR says:

    “He points out that Mexico has only won seven road games against the five other teams in the Hex in the past 50 years.”

    Ives, any idea what the US record is like? Is it worse? I can’t remember many away victories in the last 20 years…

  17. chupacabra says:

    That couldn’t have been the real Sven you quoted. He begins all of his comments with “Well . . .”

  18. Relocated Crew Fan says:

    “Really Roman… call, please, please call me…”

  19. Anton says:

    SNARED!

  20. andrewdiceway says:

    This is officially “HexaCrack.” Can’t get enough news about the match right now… Refreshing all my normal reads every 10 minutes or so. Thanks, Ives.

  21. lasoccer says:

    Graham Jones is a top American soccer journalist? Seriously? For breaking stories? For his story-behind-the story analysis? For his in-depth knowledge of the game? For his comprehensive coverage? It brings me no joy to be hard on the guy’s work, but Los Angeles lacks dedicated, compelling soccer journalism.

  22. Russ says:

    this is petty, I know, but I feel that something needs to be said… Can’t US Soccer name some official bars where beers don’t cost $6+?

  23. nico says:

    The Mexican fans outside are singing “Ay, Ay, Ay, Ay, Canta, No Llore.” Must be practicing for tomorrow.

    nice zinger Ives.

  24. ekker says:

    arent top american soccer journalists NOT supposed to be so blatantly biased?

    ives?

  25. Al says:

    Hmmmm..how is it gonna be a fast field if it’ll be raining??

  26. kebzach says:

    this is petty, I know, but I feel that something needs to be said… Can’t US Soccer name some official bars where beers don’t cost $6+?

    Posted by: Russ |

    _________________________________________

    Russ,

    I don’t know if you know this or not…but feel free to go to whatever bar you want to watch the game.

  27. kebzach says:

    arent top american soccer journalists NOT supposed to be so blatantly biased?

    ives?

    Posted by: ekker

    ________________________________________

    Ives is an independent journalist covering soccer “his way” for HIS website. He can cover it any way he so chooses and he can express his personal preferences any way that he chooses.

    He’s not a part of a media organization that promises to be fair and equal to all parties. He’s his own company.

  28. hoyanick says:

    Ekker, take a look at the top of the page.

    “Soccer by Ives: The World of Soccer with an American Voice”

  29. Al says:

    Ekker = Erickson

    C’mon Sven, I know you’ve been browsing SBI in your spare time.

  30. nico says:

    Ekker- I’d also add that ESPN has never pretended to be unbias (just listen to the in-game commentary). So why would one of their regular contributors be any different? Just accept the slant from Ives, ESPN, Univision, FSC, or any other place…so long as you recognize it and don’t accept it has unbias then there is no harm, imo.

  31. Robert says:

    There’s nothing wrong with being biased for your own country…. especially for soccer.

  32. docsocer says:

    no fn kidding peopel are so (lame) nowadays you cant say anything without people being critical. and im also sure obama came up that “yes we can” on his own the mexicans werent the first to say t and wont be the last. you dont have to give credit for a phrase it ridic. im sure he was scouring th ever so successful and popular south american political scene for slogans. thats kind of an oxymoron sucess and south american politics or meixcan politics.

  33. Cindy says:

    loved the Freeway reference haha

    link to nahright.com in case ya’ll didn’t catch it

  34. Ryan G says:

    “and im also sure obama came up that “yes we can” on his own the mexicans werent the first to say t and wont be the last. you dont have to give credit for a phrase it ridic. im sure he was scouring th ever so successful and popular south american political scene for slogans.”

    Cesar Chavez was American, you genius. He’s a very famous Mexican-American who improved work conditions for thousands of people. You should show some respect and give credit where it’s due.

  35. JustinG says:

    Convey is officially a San Jose player…

    link to web.mlsnet.com

  36. Ives says:

    Can someone help me out and tell me how I was being unbiased in this post? I make fun of Sven and Mexico fans and I’m biased? Settle down people. Sometimes a joke is just a joke.

  37. Kevin says:

    24 HOURS!!!!

  38. Rocco says:

    Don’t worry Ives – sometimes people try to make a big deal about stuff that just isn’t there. Nothing can be done without SOMEONE taking offense. It’s your blog, you can be biased/unbiased if you want. Keep up the good work.

  39. HIncha Tim says:

    Rio Tinto Stadium, Sandy UT has been awarded the El Salvador qualifier Sept. 5th.

  40. Luis Mex says:

    De la sierra morena cielito lindo vienen bajando …. ay ay ay ayyyy caaaanta y no lloooresss porque cantando se alegran cielito lindo los corazones !! is our second national anthem and always will be wherever the Mex NT will be playing ,

    Dos a cero MEX shut up gringos!!

  41. Deacon Palmer says:

    how many mexico fans are there in town?… i got the impression there wouldn’t be any… wtf!!!!!!!!!

  42. Luis Mex says:

    Deacon Palmer
    more or less 5000 will be in crew stadium !!

  43. Scott A says:

    Luis Mex, the more times you call us gringos the more it calls into question your ability to intelligently insult people

  44. Joe in Fla says:

    SHUT UP SVEN. No special scarf can help you in this game. I hope you are working on a good rotation.

  45. Matt says:

    Ives can you tell us what hotel mexico is staying in? just out of uh curiosity

  46. JSF says:

    I guess that I’m the only one that thought the Ives was interviewing Sven at the bar.

    Brilliant!

    ==========================================
    5:05- Sam’s Army is hosting a party at Claddagh’s Irish Pub.

    Claddagh Irish Pub
    585 S Front St # 100E
    Columbus, OH 43215
    (614) 224-1560

    Sven is here.

  47. This Guy says:

    Ives,

    you are doing great things on here, don’t worry about criticism. I mean Mexico has voodoo dolls for God’s sake and this is the only place I don’t get called a gringo when I comment

  48. Peter Bering says:

    Santa Anna and Sven are with the Mexicans!

  49. Jason says:

    September 5 right here in Sandy as Rio Tinto Stadium is set to host the U.S. Men’s National Team in their 2010 World Cup Qualifying clash with El Salvador.

  50. ekker says:

    my bad ives, i reread your updates and rescind my “biased” remark.

    word

  51. Sean says:

    Well Sven has been working hard on the formations…and the movement.

  52. Jim says:

    Ives,

    Filip Bondy is a writer and is an American but he is not a soccer writer. Unfortunately for the public he does not know much about the game.

    That has not stopped him from offering his observations, much to our regret.

  53. Eye of the tiger says:

    I love it how all of you bad mouth mexicos team and think you guys are the greatest team in the world, why do you guys want to go to a world cup anyways you cant even get passed a first round bunch of loosers, Mexico will always be your father like it or not, we run the Concacaf like it or not, I cant wait to see Donovans face today after our win, Ive been waiting for this day for a while. Ill post another comment tommorrow after our sweet win. Mexico 3-0 Castillo 2 goals Carlos Ochoa 1goal