Friday, March 19, 2010

Dempsey, Donovan, Becks


Dempsey scored one of the most audacious goals ever by any American in history when he chipped Juventus' goalkeeper with a 30 yarder to cap off a stunning 4 goal comeback.  Fulham beat Juve 5-4 on aggregate goals to move on into the last 8 in the Europa league.  This very well could be the greatest goal in Fulham club history.  Dempsey was quoted to have said, "I just thought, what the heck and tried to put it in far post...".
While Landon Donovan has always been, often frustratingly, cautious and measured (especially with the ball near goal), Dempsey's greatest quality is his daring-ness to let it all hang out and not fearing failure.  While Donovan might possess a bit more raw soccer talent, Dempsey's mindset has allowed him to achieve far more in Europe.  I'm definitely going with a Dempsey shirt this time.


Speaking of Donovan's achievements in Europe, he has far surpassed anyone's expectations with his 2.5 month stint with Everton.  Honestly, keeping in mind Donovan's repeated failures in the Bundesliga, a level below the EPL, I was guarded in my optimism.  Landon operates best in an environment that is comfortable for him and when the manager puts him in a position to succeed.  (Dempsey, comparatively, seems to be able to excel with or without ideal circumstances.  He carves his own niche.)  There is no doubt that David Moyes immediately believed in Landon and gave him the free reign on the wing.

In return, Donovan contributed to an awesome run where Everton tied Arsenal, beat Man City, Chelsea and Man United.  After his goal vs Hull City in his last home appearance (and again after his selfless assist later), his teammates hoisted him into the air in homage while Everton fans, the ones who voted Donovan as the player of the month in February, rained down their appreciation.  Personally, I'm hoping that the MLS has a work stoppage.  I'd really rather Donovan stay with Everton than come back here.

Outrageously, there have been rumors that Donovan is being targeted by Ancelotti to fill Joe Cole's vacancy this summer.  Obviously, Chelsea is able to pay the 10 million plus that the MLS will demand.  However, even Joe Cole didn't play much at Chelsea this season and there's no reason to believe that Landon would get regular playing time.  Plus, with Chelsea's embarrassing Champions League ouster at the hands of Inter and the Special One this week, a massive roster overhaul could occur this summer at Abramovich's command.  Who knows if Donovan will fit in.  Best case scenario, Everton digs deep and buys Donovan this summer.  After all, he's already comfortable there.


Really feel bad for the guy.  He had a chance to play in his 4th World Cup.  He had a chance to score in an unprecedented 4 World Cups too.  After the insane schedule he's gone through the last 2 years to position himself to be eligible for Carpello's selection, it is too bad that his body broke down just 3 months before the World Cup.  I guess someone who has it all, just can't have it all, huh?

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