Farewell to South Africa (and it’s Q&A Time)

After an exciting, unforgettable and fulfilling five weeks in South Africa, I am about to head back home to the United States.

Apologies in advance for not providing SBI readers with my wrap-up diary on the trip, but illness prevented me from doing it before I left. I'll have 16 hours to kill on the flight back so I think I'll be able to write then.

Since the World Cup is over, and since I haven't had time to do a live Q&A this week, I figured it was a good time to do an old-school Q&A. Submit your questions in the comments section below and I will answer the best of them later this week.

I also want to thank the SBI staff, who held things down while I was on the other side of the world. Thanks to Avi, Franco, Travis, Adam, Kurtis, Anthony, Mike and Jose for doing their thing and keeping SBI Readers in the loop on all things soccer.

Now, send your questions my way and I will answer them once I'm back home.

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154 Responses to Farewell to South Africa (and it’s Q&A Time)

  1. Tyler says:

    Artur Boruc is out at Celtic… is this good news for Dominic Cervi?

  2. Scott says:

    Do you think St. Louis has a good shot at the 20th MLS spot?

  3. Zac says:

    Will the MLS ever do away with trades and move towards a transfer period at the halfway point like European clubs do?

  4. Paul says:

    How soon will Landycakes be available in europe?

  5. Charles says:

    What are your predictions for Bob Bradley’s future? (if he’s leaving, then the prediction for his replacement)

  6. RBNY fan says:

    Why do the Red Bulls have to wait to announce the signing of Henry? The Sounders didn’t have to wait to announce Nkufo and we could’ve had Henry in training by now, maybe fit for the Crew game. I don’t see how waiting benefits anyone.

  7. Jeremy says:

    your recent tweet said Union want a DP who will make a long-term commitment to the club- are there any aging European/International stars willing to do that? Or is an American DP more likely?

  8. tedhill says:

    Does the USA beat Ghana and maybe even Uruguay if a pre-accident Charlie Davies starts over Robbie Findley? Also, should Maurice Edu move to a bigger league, or is Rangers still a good fit for now?

  9. World Cup withdrawl says:

    Am I a degenerate for watching France-Colombia U-20 women and Polish-Azerbijani champs on the internet?

  10. Paul says:

    ives, thanks for ALL the work you and your staff have done! love the site.

    2018 or 2022… what tend to be the biggest influences in FIFA making decisions on where the cups will land?

    what does the US need to do to continue boosting its bids? where would you rank the States right now for each bid?

  11. Tom says:

    Thanks for the awesome WC coverage.

    Where do you think Damarcus Beasley and Benny Feilhaber will end up this year?

  12. Mark says:

    Besides N’Kufo and Henry, are there any rumors you’ve heard about other World Cup players coming back to MLS? Blanco? Marquez? Any of the Italian over 30s?

  13. Josh says:

    Who do you think will be manning the US backline in ’11 and beyond? Spector and Gooch seem like obvious choices, but what about the other two positions, and who’ll be backing them up?

  14. Minor says:

    Is it me or does the US badge look weak and amateurish when compared to icons like the England badge, the Dutch, Germany, Brazil, well pretty much any other country? I get that the jersey’s are going to constantly change, but we need a better badge to keep the consistency.

  15. EA says:

    Crappiest airport you’ve been in on your travels?

  16. Raymon says:

    1. What was the most memorable game that you saw in person in the WC?

    2. What was the best US game that you saw in the WC?

    3. What was your favorite stadium/venue in SA?

    4. Should we start saving our pennies for Brazil 2014?

    5. Any scuttlebutt on the US chances of hosting 2018 or 2022?

    6. Do you ever cover the women’s national team here? What does our Women’s World Cup team look like?

    7. Will you be in Houston for the MLS-ManU game?

  17. cmodi says:

    Tim Howard
    He did not look like himself after the England game, there were a couple of goals that I thought he should have saved.
    Am I holding him to a higher standard than other keepers, or was his injury against England worst than we thought, or am I just talking nonsense?

  18. A Guest says:

    Have you heard about what the potential changes to CONCACAF World Cup qualification might be? CONCACAF Ex-com is said to have briefed FIFA already.

  19. EA says:




  20. Troy says:

    Ives, question on vuvuzelas. I was in S.A. and heard them for myself, but my barber is CONVINCED (mainly because of Italian TV) that the noise is not entirely created by the crowds. I tell him its all real but he won’t believe me. On a scale of 1 to 10 (1=fake, 10=real), is the sound in the stadiums/on TV real or fake.

  21. Adam says:

    Ives, Thanks for your work. I have 2 questions:

    1) Do you have a sense as to what country Sebastian Lletget is leaning toward representing at the senior level?

    2) I know Charles Renken has battled injuries this year but I dont hear his name mentioned as a potential star nearly as much as I did. Were his injuries serious enough to threaten his career?

  22. Alex G says:

    Any real chances on getting Klinsmann for the USNT?, I am wondering because no one in the USSF has mention anything for sometime and we need to start preparing for Brazil if we want to do something different and whorty as opposed to what we did this time in SA.

  23. CoachK says:

    Ok Ives Now that the World cup is over,does anyone know what So Africa thinks they will do with all those gorgeous brand new empty stadiums? Clearly their own league cannot fill them?

  24. Lioness says:

    Did you ever make it to a game park like you said you might?

  25. Joe B. NYC says:

    Has there been any movement on who will/may replace Bob Bradley as US coach?

  26. A Guest says:

    Any news about healing our D2 rift?

  27. mexicanbluefish says:

    Thanks IVES, great month. I’ll definitely keep reading you even if you do piss me off sometimes.

    Do you have any reason(s) to believe that the quality of play in the MLS will continue to improve? Has it possibly reached its full potential based on the structures currently in place?

  28. Big Chil says:

    Favorite stadium to attend as a fan? Mine was Soccer City, but I didn’t get a chance to see games in Cape Town or Durban.

  29. jonk says:

    Personally, I don’t mind the flying soccer ball so much. But why are the stripes blue and why are there 3 stars?

  30. tmurph says:

    whose the next mls player to move to europe other then donovan? im thinking edson buddle or maybe fredy montero?

  31. World Cup withdrawl says:

    I usually use livescorehunter.com

  32. A.S. says:

    Ives, Thanks for your coverage of the World Cup. One of the stories of the Cup was the prevalence of the 4-2-3-1 formation, which seemed to have been used by a majority of the most prominent sides (did any big teams other than USA and England use a standard 4-4-2?). Do you know if there was ever any thought for Bob Bradley to use it? It has been prominent at club soccer for a while now, so it can hardly be unfamiliar to Bradley. And given Davies injury, our lack of other top level forwards and our surplus of good midfielders, it seems to me in hindsight that it could have perhaps been useful (especially if Bradley had had the foresight to practice with it in the run up to the Cup). Any thoughts about the USA’s formations in the Cup? Or in the next cycle?

  33. A Guest says:

    What’s the deal with the MLS Youth Cup? Are the MLS academy teams in the USDA eligible? I thouhgt they were more restricted in the play they were allowed?

  34. cfig says:

    Why do the Dynamo not seem to get any of the big exhibition matches with European clubs despite being one of the top overall teams in MLS the last several years?

  35. Prosneef says:

    Favourite gatorade colour? I like orange.

  36. Mike F. says:

    When will the announcement on where the 2011 Gold Cup is hosted be made, and is there a chance of it actually being co-hosted or entirely hosted in Mexico?

  37. Aaron in StL says:

    Assuming Bradley leaves for a new challenge, who (other than Klinsmann) would you see as a likely replacement?

  38. Aaron in StL says:

    It would be nice to see another country get it, but CONCACAF will definitely go the money play.

    Even Mexico would be great, give the guys a little more hostile environment training… as if they don’t get enough of that when playing Mexico at home.

  39. Jeff M says:

    Feilhaber had a good World Cup – so good that it’s hard to picture him playing in the Danish second division next year. Are you hearing anything about a transfer for him?

  40. Brandon says:

    If (or when) Thierry Henry and Rafa Marquez join JPA in New York, are they new dominant force in MLS?

  41. Jeff M says:

    I completely agree. It’s a bit unimaginative to have the crest for US soccer consist of the letters “US” and a soccer ball. Pretty literal.

  42. Ben says:

    Who is going to be captain for the USA in 2014? Donovan? Howard?

  43. Ives For President says:

    What does Houston need to get itself back into the top portion of MLS? They have lost vital players in Rosario, Holden, Clark, etc….And they aren’t getting any younger as well…

  44. Joe says:

    Any thoughts on Danny Mwanga getting citizenship and joining the USMNT pool in the near future? He seems interested and based on early progress could be on track to be pretty useful in 2014 or 2018…

  45. obxfly says:

    Where will Altidore end up this year? Where would he best fit?

  46. Jeff M says:

    Oh, one more: is there any chance Andy Najar might play for the US (once he becomes a citizen), or is it pretty much a foregone conclusion that he’ll play for Honduras if he plays for anybody?

  47. brian says:

    did you try biltong….and? was SA on par with germany 06?

  48. spencer says:

    We know LA and NY use their dp’s. Who is next?

  49. alex says:

    I know the answer to question #6:
    Who gives a f***

  50. matt says:

    Really? Nevermind the fact that our woman’s team has achieved more than our men’s team will in the next 30 years. Or the fact that they are considered the best team in the world

  51. Franky says:

    Why dont I just sum up all the Yanks Abroad transfer questions like this…Where will these guys be playing next season???








    Bob Bradley:

  52. Andrew says:

    “________________ is the USA’s first WORLC CLASS STRIKER.” who will fill this blank and when will it be?

  53. Goalscorer24 says:

    Hello Alex G,

    If you want Klinsmann as the US coach please sign my petition at:

    link to ipetitions.com


    Pass it on folks. I have already made Gulati aware of the petition. Let’s have our say!

  54. Terrapin says:

    Something tells me Ives isn’t going to want to answer part A of this question for the umpteenth time. Summation of the gist of his responses for the previous multitude of times he’s been asked this: with a healthy Davies, Onyewu, and Jones he expects we would have done better and a semi-final appearance would by no means be out of the question.

  55. Goalscorer24 says:

    Ives, love the site.

    Question: Will we see instant replay at the World Cup in 2014?

  56. Dank says:

    You are correct, and we have been overrating Howard for a while now. He was not one of the top 5 keepers in the EPL this year (Reina, Hart, Given, Friedel, Cech), certainly not close to top 10 in the world.

  57. Terrapin says:

    I don’t mind the badge, the three stars definitely need to go, though. We can add one back when we win a World Cup.

  58. Josh D says:

    What did Bob Bradley have to do to keep his national team coaching role?

  59. DanC says:

    nice two part question! well done!

  60. Adam M. says:

    They should use the Eagle/crest symbol on the back right side of the one dollar bill. Its so perfect its amazing that it isn’t already the badge.

  61. danc says:

    With the reunion that everyone has been waiting for finally coming to fruiton, who is your favorite New Kid on the Block, and why?

  62. Cabrito says:

    To reduce the amount of “flopping” and diving, what do you think about having referee’s calling “delayed fouls”, like is done in the NHL? In other words, a foul is identified by the ref but he doesn’t blow his whistle until the team making the foul gains possession of the ball. That way, advantage is always given and there’s less incentive to “dress up” a foul.

  63. Paul (not the octopus) says:

    (1) Assuming Bradley is not retained, are you convinced that Klinsmann is the right man for the MNT? His performance with the Mannaschaft (where Loew ran the tactical show) and Bayern Munich (where he was run out of town) may be a cause for concern.

    (2) Do you think the MNT roster against Brazil will be mostly the WC squad, or might it be a look-see or a consolation prize for some guys who didn’t make it to SA?

  64. Brian B says:

    What USMNT players do you see moving teams this summer and where do you see them going?

  65. CMH says:

    As players often sign contracts (e.g. GA) before the Super Draft takes place, is there any incentive for them to perform well in the combine so that they might go high in the draft?

  66. Brian B says:

    What US player will be the next surprise to break into the national team?

  67. Kimo says:

    Is Freddy Adu “dead and buried”? VERY good sources suggest Cuper at Aris wants no further contact with him after some unprofessional behavior at the end of last season. Has Adu burnt his last bridge?

  68. Connor says:

    If players never defected (ex: Alonso and Galindo), what were the chances of Cuba making it to the hex in 2014 Qualifying?

  69. Mark says:

    With the Mexican side enjoying a bit of a renaissance recently in terms of their attacking soccer, with plenty of young talent, does the balance of power shift south of the border in CONCACAF? Or is the US still the team to beat in the region?

    Also, Honduras has a number of older players who may be finished with the national team. Will they remain as the 3rd team in the region, or is there team in the region poised to take that spot? Costa Rica is always strong, so that’s probably the obvious choice, but wondering if there is another team like Jamaice or Canada ready to rebound…

  70. gabe says:

    what do you think the red bulls line up would look like if they were to also get ljunberg or rafa marquez?

  71. John D says:

    There appears to be a large number of young American players in youth academies outside of the US. Which players do you think will have the biggest impact on the senior international level?

  72. bryan says:

    what he said

  73. bryan says:

    good questions!

  74. Glass says:

    To me it seems more and more like old stars are thinking about the MLS to come retire (Giggs just rumored). What effect to you think this will have on the league and development of soccer in the US?

  75. DC Josh says:

    Is Bradley cut out to manage in the Premier League or is he better off going to a smaller league?

    How many Americans will be playing Champions League football next spring?

    Who are your early favorites for 1)Gold Cup ’12, 2)EURO ’12, 3)Copa America ’12?

    Besides the matches, what will you miss most about South Africa?

    I’ll be attending my first World Cup in Brazil and stay for the entire tournament. Any tips for a World Cup virgin?

  76. bryan says:

    agreed. i would rather have the Philly crest on the USA jersey.

  77. bryan says:

    anyone have more info on this? i hadn’t read about this yet

  78. Prince says:

    What do you think of the MIAMI HEAT?!?!

  79. bayonetbrant says:

    Any predictions for US Open Cup, MLS Cup/Supporter’s Shield, and/or CONCACAF Champions League?

    Will the US go after the Gold Cup with guns blazin’ again to make sure they are the rep for the Confederations Cup again?

    Any chance another team breaks the US/Mexico hold on the Gold Cup?

  80. inkedAG says:

    It seems that there has been little news about American players with regards to transfer news. Had the US done better against Ghana, would there be more buzz?

  81. ThaDeuce says:

    Will Bob Bradley get a coaching gig in England?

  82. ThaDeuce says:

    If we get an international to coach the nats, will you worry that our mentality may suffer? No international coach can want to win as much as a native. They might want to win, but only because it is their job.

  83. DC Josh says:

    Uno mas:

    I’m a sucker for plane crashes and scary plane rides. Just a weird fetish. What was scarier: losing cabin pressure in South Africa or the plane ride back from Columbus, Ohio last February in 40+ MPH winds?

  84. ThaDeuce says:

    Do you think Jozy Altidore will grow and mature into a capable player over the next four years or do you see him getting more into the commercial aspects and staying mediocre (ala freddy)?

    For me, 50/50

  85. DC Josh says:

    I think CONCACAF are going CONMEBOL on our asses by having one large qualification group instead of elimination rounds.

  86. ThaDeuce says:

    Not a question.
    I think Michael Bradley captains the next world cup side.

  87. DC Josh says:

    Yeah I had a Brit ask me why we have three stars on our badge when we have never won a World Cup. I just stared at him. No clue.

  88. Julian says:

    Do you agree that playing in the 2009 Confederations Cup was a benefit to our 2010 World Cup effort? Getting to play five games against strong teams in the host country seems like a huge advantage. And for that reason, do you agree that the 2011 CONCACAF Gold Cup is a pretty big tournament for us? Who is your starting XI when Gold Cup play begins?

  89. Aaron in StL says:

    I always really dislike the whole “Jogi Loew ran it” argument…who gave him a shot in the first place?? Nothing in his career screamed ‘future stellar NT coach’ (check his resume). Give Klinnsy some credit, he’s good at putting the puzzle together

  90. Andolini says:

    What did you and/or Grant Wahl think about ESPN pairing Ruud Gullit and Alexi Lalas for their studio show? If I remember Grant’s book correctly, they did not get along, and Alexi did not want to hire him in LA.

  91. ernj says:

    Who coaches Brazil for the Aug 10th friendly? How about the US?

  92. EA says:

    Might want to do some fact checking there, skeeter.

    “Meanwhile back in Greece, Aris are still trying to re-work Freddy Adu’s loan contract to retain him from Benfica at a lower cost.”

    From the article about Eddie Johnson on another site, which I won’t link to from here. (You’re welcome, Ives.)

  93. DanTheGooner says:

    What do you know about jemal johnson? Everything I’ve heard from people is that he’s immensely talented but has attitude problems. Any chance he makes the usmnt?

  94. phil says:

    yeah, like van brockhurst?

  95. raymon says:

    +1 Matt! Alex, we own the Women’s game. If you ever watch the WWC, you will find that the level of play and passion is quite admirable. They deserve our support too, in my opinion.

  96. phil says:

    how about a bunny eating a chocolate chip pancake?

  97. phil says:

    word up!

  98. jcl says:

    Unprofessional behavior? Was Adu drinking at UMD again?

  99. welshdragon says:

    And add to this list:


    Eddie Johnson

  100. Raymon says:

    In his QA from SA, Ives said that they did not get the ESPN coverage. So he prolly cant answer questions about the performances of Ruud, Alexi, Martin, Ian, Jurgen, John Harkes, etc. on ESPN/ABC.

  101. 45245245246423 says:

    How does that reduce the amount of diving if you don’t know the referee will blow his whistle? I would think it would make them roll around more, but then again I barely know the rules of hockey..

    Can’t see anything like this ever going through, even in MLS or college soccer

  102. Paul Thomas says:

    68 game round-robin!

    (In all seriousness, there’s a practical limit of about 20 games for qualifying. The current system is about the only way that CONCACAF can do qualification in a manageable number of games and have USA-Mexico actually play each other without running a major risk of one of them not qualify. Not sure why they’d want to change that…)

  103. Raymon says:

    With Chamakh as an attacker, and Cesc probably staying put, along with Nasri, Robin v Persie, Arshavin, etc., what else do Arsenal need to improve on their #3 finish at EPL?

  104. CJ in OC says:


  105. Troy says:

    Where is Clint going? What have you heard on Davies performance so far in his first games back?

  106. coachclue(less) says:

    All things being equal 4-4-2 or 4-3-3?

  107. BetaMale says:

    maybe I can help with #1.

    I read that he has been battling mono for 6 months and is having issues with his spleen. In order to be 100% safe, West Ham would not release him for the upcoming Milk Cup. Rongen said that Lletget was devastated not to be able to play and that USA fans shouldn’t worry about him not playing for the stars and stripes.

    Sounds like we shouldn’t worry.

  108. 45245245246423 says:

    Will Dempsey remain a Fulham player or does he look for a bigger club??

    Will Jonathan Spector leave West Ham this summer?

  109. CJ in OC says:

    A Keeper and more depth at central defense, hopefully Koscielny meshes well with Vermaelen.

  110. Teymy says:

    What resources and support are being extended to Claudio Reyna to really go after solving the youth player development problem in the US?

    A website with coaching guides and a travel budget for Claudio to observe how European clubs do – doesn’t inspire confidence that the USSF is committed to urgently tackling the fundamental problem limiting our potential as a soccer nation.

  111. phil says:

    Howard overrated? You’re joking.

    First off, I think rating keepers is like comparing apples and oranges and that there is simply no way to come up with a “top 5″ or “best in the world” title for any position, especially goalies. (i.e. Is Victor Valdes better than Iker Casillas? depending on your criteria you could come up with each of them as being number 1 but how do you determine that?)

    I personally think that there are a group of about 25 world class keepers that on any given day and any given season they trade off being hot or lukewarm, but it’s a group that takes years to establish membership in. I think you’d be hard pressed to say that Howard doesn’t belong in that company.

  112. Kevin_amold says:


  113. BMW says:

    Assuming Jermaine Jones get healthy this year and earns his starting spot back at Schalke, does he partner with Bradley at the Gold Cup next year? Or do we just move on from him and grow the Bradley/Edu partnership (assuming thats our best pairing) for 2014?

  114. phil says:

    boo. hiss.

  115. phil says:

    boo. hiss.

  116. Benred says:

    Who will get the first draft pick in 2011? Portland or Vancouver?

  117. Matt says:

    LA is clearly the top team in MLS right now, thanks in large part to their depth. Do you think that this will allow them to be the first MLS team to make some serious noise in the CONCACAF Champions League this time around? Also, do you think Arena can continue to reload the roster given the amount of aging players (Lewis, Berhalter, Klein, Kirovski, etc.) or is this year “do or die” for their chances of silverware any time soon?

  118. Tyler says:

    Hey Ives,

    You’re President of FIFA for a day. What’s the best way to stop the terrible diving (and the even worse acting) while still staying true to the game? Is there any place for some kind of replay or is more officials on the field the answer?

    After your successful one day tenure you are hired for the same duration by US Soccer to be its president. Do you re-sign Bob Bradley or do you maybe try and call Klinsmen first?

  119. ABou says:

    Can you tell us anything about what is going on with Joseph Guyau (spelling) or Carlos Martinez or Charles Renken or any of the other exciting players from that US u17 team

  120. Is there any chance that Tim Ream gets a callup for the USA-Brazil friendly in August?

  121. Paul Thomas says:

    Soccer could take a lot of lessons from hockey, really: an offside rule that actually makes logical sense… a penalty system that fits the punishment to the crime… two referees for an area about 1/4 as large as the area one soccer referee is somehow supposed to cover… video review…

    The difference is that hockey’s governing body actually realizes that rules should have the purpose of making an entertaining, attractive and competitive sporting event, while soccer’s operates under a theory which differs from Papal Infallibility only in the subject matter.

  122. Ken says:

    Any news on where super jay is going?

  123. alex says:

    actually all of you are wrong.

    The women’t team plays the u16 reserve boys team and loses every time. The women’s team’s level of play doesn’t even match that of our mens

  124. pat says:

    Do you have any info about the US v Poland friendly that is listed on the FIFA site for October, in NYC? Is it going to be a doubleheader with the NYRB game already scheduled for that day?

  125. Cairo says:

    Dream Scenario: Paul Allen creates a $1 billion endowment for MLS, producing, say, $50million in interest that the league could spend annually. If you were commissioner, what would you do with the windfall to improve, market, or solidify the league??

  126. Cairo says:

    Ok, dreaming aside, are there any big businesses out there that MLS could sell league naming rights to? For example, Barclay’s Major League Soccer, or perhaps Google’s Major League Soccer? There have to be ways to cash in on the post world cup interest window here in the US, no?

  127. LittleMaradona says:

    With Edmonton becoming the 4th Canadian city to get a MLS/D2 team, who do you see being the 5th and when will it happen?

  128. LittleMaradona says:

    Please more on this Ives

  129. LittleMaradona says:

    Miami thrice, Dynasthree, El tri terible…

  130. LittleMaradona says:

    I’ve been wanting to know this. Probably a coin flip. I think the owners should arm wreastle for it. Maybe a front office tug of war?

  131. Cabrito says:

    He can raise his arm, like the referees do in hockey, or like a soccer ref does on indirect kicks until a second player touches the ball. That way, you know there’s a “delayed penalty” coming up. The team that was fouled can push everyone forward because as soon as the offending team touches the ball, play stops. Just a half-baked idea.

  132. josh says:

    Ha! The Italian over 30’s are busy preparing for the Euros!

  133. Jim from NC says:

    What was the name of the musical piece that was played at every game as the teams were walking out onto the pitch and also who was the artist?

  134. Terrapin says:

    Link or some other proof of this statement?

  135. Terrapin says:

    Ives has already said he expects Donovan to be captain in 2014.

  136. Terrapin says:

    +1 to this, I’m also curious as to who you see on the starting XI for Gold Cup 2011.

  137. Dave says:

    Any reason to think Spector won’t return to old form after some rest. I’ve been under the impression an entire year of playing between international and club play just wore him out, which led to mistakes and a loss in confidence. With all the injuries he’s had over the years, this really was his first full season.

  138. tmurph says:

    which dp other then henry has the biggest impact on the mls- branko, mista, nkufo or someone else

  139. Turgid Jacobian says:

    Fun question!! I hope ives picks it. And I hope we see some in-depth reported pieces from Ives or his stable on devlopment.

  140. Turgid Jacobian says:

    They should play for it.

  141. Solo says:

    don’t bite Terrapin…it’s a patently false statement from Alex

  142. kimo says:

    Ok skeeter…easy with the tone jacka$$…

    I guess you believe everything that you read in the papers. Good for you. Do you really think if Adu was wanted badly that a team would try to renegotiate him at lower fees? Trust me. He’s not wanted.

  143. josh says:


    See Revs game.

  144. BN says:

    Does Bob Bradley deserve to remain the USMNT coach? If not who should replace him?

  145. Chuck says:

    Ives, except for the final have you ever seen goalkeeping this bad in a World cup? And we can’t blame it on the ball.

  146. A Guest says:

    here and here (obvs neither are direct support of Alex’s claim; however, both support the notion that the USWNT is scrimmaging quality U-XX boys teams).

    Also, Raymon’s comment is really dickish. The USWNT play well, and are a great credit to US soccer.

  147. Erich says:

    Ives, what can we do to stop all the diving? Not only does it ruin the flow of the game but it also seems to be a big sticking point for people who aren’t yet fans of the (now not so) beautiful game. Any chance of handing out yellow cards after the game based on video replay? They can hand out red cards or fines for things refs miss, why not yellow cards for egregious diving offenses?

  148. Evan says:

    I’m know I’m in the minority on this issue, but I don’t think the “system” is the problem with US Soccer. The high school/AAU/college/pro team system works for all the other sports in the US dominates on the international level–basketball, baseball, track and field, swimming, etc. This system even works for women’s soccer. I’m not saying the system is perfect, but in my opinion, the main issue is the coaches in the “system”. The US doesn’t have enough elite coaches with soccer minds to coach kids from ages 6-18 to play an international style of soccer. Most coaches are dads who grew up playing baseball and football so they use that mentality to train kids. So those are my thoughts, what do you think is the most pressing issue for the US Soccer program and how can it be fixed?

  149. A Guest says:

    Dang it. Fouled up my html or something. Or maybe just can’t use the a href tag.

    Anyways, google confirms, the USWNT scrimmages elite boys teams sometimes. E.g., they scrimmaged U-17s from Bayern Munich (no result given, but the implication was clear link to womensprosoccer.com), and have scrimmaged against ODP U-16s to lopsided losses. link to bigsoccer.com

  150. Brandinho says:

    What was the best dive of the World Cup? Fernando Torres vs Chile, or Daniele De Rossi vs Paraguay?

    Also how much do you think is a safe budget for those of us who want to go to the 2014 World Cup from beginning to finish? What was your budget for S.A. and was it enough to cover all your expenses?

  151. CJ in OC says:

    Hey Ives, thanks for the good work– your site makes studying easier and harder all at the same time.

    Can you recommend some titles in the sports genre (non-fiction; Soccer and other sports)?

    Would you say that any of these is a must read for American Soccer fans?

  152. Brian says:

    It’s Gold Cup ’11

  153. Brian says:

    It’s Gold Cup ’11