Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Top-heavy

I've enjoyed watching the Gold Cup and following it as much as I have. I think I enjoyed this tournament more than the 2005 one because I came into it trying to figure out what teams would be ones to watch come qualifying next year and in '09, whereas last time the tourney was right in the middle of the hexagonal.

Maybe that's why I'm a bit disappointed. I wanted to see more from some teams to make me believe that World Cup qualifying won't be a foregone conclusion for the U.S. and Mexico... not that I necessarily want to see one of those two fail to reach the World Cup. That's not my point, but it would be nice if it were more challenging than it was last time. You'd get some real drama and excitement. It was like the '01 hexagonal where Mexico rose from the ashes, the U.S. held on, Costa Rica wrapped up a spot and Honduras tanked.

Instead, it's been business as usual: U.S. and Mexico in the semis, what else is new?

I touched on this for my PE column. I argue here that the Gold Cup has set up a future where the US and Mexico are 1-2 (or 2-1, depending on how you look at it), and the rest of the field is far behind.

Now, I did mention Canada's exploits and how they are the only ones to threaten to make it more than just a two-team show.

What I didn't do is trash Gold Cup. The tournament may have its faults but it's been enjoyable and I think teams have taken it seriously and the games have reflected as much.

3 comments:

briguy said...

Regarding the Gold Cup and the MNT, I was wondering if you or AC saw this and would care to offer comment on Sideline Views?

http://www.slate.com/id/2168476/
slideshow/2168583/fs/0//entry/
2168582/

A.C. said...

I did, and while it's a cute feature, the examples are picked to make a point. A lot of countries change their uniforms, and if they don't that doesn't necessarily make their national team great. Taste in uniforms is so subjective, really.
Mexico has a maroon third jersey. They also had an Aztec patterned one years ago that personally, I really liked.
My favorite national team jersey was from the 1998 World Cup. But cheering for the U.S, with the flag bearing three primary colors, is always going to create that variety in the fan uniform as well. Whether it be the Olympics or whatever international sport, U.S. fans have never really settled on one color. I personally don't see the problem with it. Wear red, white or blue or all of the above. Show up. Cheer the team on the field for their play, and don't make excuses about not liking their uniform.

briguy said...

I agree with what you're saying, A.C.

What matters most to me is the product on the field, regardless of the unis.