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Toxic Talk: USMNT Roster Edition

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Welcome to Toxic Talk, where our resident hater tells you what sucks about soccer this week.

MLS: Columbus Crew SC at San Jose Earthquakes Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports

We like soccer. That’s why we keep running this website. But it’s also not known for its wealth of measured, reasoned arguments, and unbiased opinions. So here’s a new spin on a weekend news ticker: Toxic Talk. It’s like Arsenal FanTV with a higher blood-pressure. Try not to take it too seriously.

Soccer is terrible and I’m dumb for liking it. Want to know why? Because I’m a fan of the United States, and our defenders’ tendons have been made of wet cardboard for the better part of the last four years, that’s why. We all spent a month at the Gold Cup watching our second, third, and fourth stringers trying to figure out how to keep high-scoring titans like Martinique off the scoreboard, dreaming of the return of John Brooks and DeAndre Yedlin to restore some sort of defensive acumen to the team just in time for World Cup qualifying and a massively important home game against Costa Rica.

Cool. Coooooool.

Ok. It’s fine. Deep breaths, right? Geoff Cameron is healthy this time around, and Jorge Villafana is still healthy and playing for Santos Laguna. And we still have...Omar Gonzalez?

Alright, so we’re pretty much starting a Five Dollar Footlong™ in the center of defense against Costa Rica. That’s great. Love it.

Deep breaths. We still have America’s sweetheart Christian Pulisic and Darlington Nagbe, fresh off giving Tim Howard a Giovani Dos Santos flashback in the midweek round of MLS games. Fabian Johnson is even healthy. AND! And. Gyasi Zardes isn’t on the rost-

You know what? Forget it. We have a must-win game against Costa Rica and Bruce Arena just strapped Wondolowski to the hood while also dragging along the carcasses of what used to be DaMarcus Beasley and Nick Rimando. This game will basically be Mad Max: Fury Road with Michael Bradley driving the car and Dax McCarty attached to the front with an IV line stuck in his neck. And much like Fury Road, U.S. Soccer probably only wins when the women are the ones doing the heavy lifting.

The USMNT probably wins 2-1. Bah humbug.

Boiling Points

That’s incredible. It’s infuriating.

  • People keep trying to play with Liverpool instead of bunkering - Liverpool look good when you let Sadio Mane run wherever he wants to instead of just sitting behind the ball and daring Jurgen Klopp to try and beat an actual set-up defense. You know who doesn’t know that? Arsene Wenger. You know who does? Tony Pulis, because no one has ever told Tony Pulis he isn’t actually coaching Aussie Rules Football. Watch West Bromwich Albion squeak out a 1-1 draw against them. Swallow your pride and don’t attack against Liverpool, idiots.
  • The general presence of Mark Geiger - Self-explanatory.
  • Wayne Rooney celebrating in front of Manchester City fans - Just kidding. This one made me smile.

FFS, Frank. Pick a side.