Watch globally, cheer locally
One of the great (and terrifying) things about being a soccer fan is that there is no offseason. There are meaningful matches being played somewhere on the planet at practically every possible moment. They really should have treatment centers for footy addicts.
Take recent months. Major League Soccer kicked off in April, just as the major European leagues were winding down their campaigns. But as soon as the English Premiership, La Liga and the rest hung up their boots, the Gold Cup kicked off. Which was followed immediately by Copa America and the U-20 World Cup. Now we're in the middle of the inaugural SuperLiga, which pits top Mexican clubs against their MLS counterparts--and which has been ridiculously fun. (Don't believe me? Watch the absurd highlights from L.A.'s 6-5 victory over Dallas.)
Meanwhile the Mexican Apertura season kicked off last weekend, as did league play in France and Scotland. This week they'll be joined by the Brits and the Germans. It's all enough to make one's head hurt. And thanks to Fox Soccer Channel, Gol TV, and Setanta, you can now watch practically every glorious second of it.
But of course the matches that really matter involve the mighty Minnesota Thunder. Unfortunately the squad's miserable fortunes have not improved of late. After putting together a modest four game unbeaten streak (2-0-2), they've failed to win any of their last three contests, which included a mortifying home loss (which luckily I missed) to fellow cellar dwellers California Victory. The inclusion of Tony Sanneh has done nothing to inspire the squad. In fact by all reports he was miserable in the California game. With just 10 games remaining on the schedule, the Thunder are entrenched at the bottom of the table. On the plus side, they're still Dan Loney's favorite 1st Division team!
The Thunder will now try to turn things around on the road. A three-game swing through the northwest starts on Thursday when they face the top-of-the-table Portland Timbers. A half dozen jackasses are making the trip out west. Perhaps the squad will be inspired by their delusional loyalty and heroic alcohol consumption. Or maybe not.