U.S.A./Italy – A look back

Italy celebrates

OK, it’s been almost 24 hours and I think I’ve calmed down enough to give my reactions on this debacle match.

1. Clark’s red card – There’s just no way Ricardo Clark’s tackle warranted a straight red. There just isn’t.

It was the first time he hit the ground all match. It was a silly foul, but surely not more than a yellow. I just hope Pablo Pozo, the referee from Chile who made that shocking call, is off the world stage for a while.

Awful. Just awful.

2. Conspiracy theory – Is it in the FIFA rulebook that the U.S. isn’t allowed to beat a European power?

I give you exhibit B, since the clip above is the latest entry into evidence. This one is from the 2006 World Cup against Italy. We got red cards at about the 1:00 and 1:15 marks of the clip. And this was after Italy got one for an elbow that left striker Brian McBride a bloody mess:

And, of course, who can forget the non-handball call against Germany’s Torsten Frings which helped the Germans beat the United States, 1-0, in the 2002 World Cup knockout stage. Watch at about 2:12:

If soccer hadn’t had its share of match fixing scandals through the years, I might not be so prone to this line of thinking…

3. The Rossi story– By now, you’ve heard the Giuseppe Rossi story. He was born in New Jersey to an Italian father and American mother and left here at about age 13 to train in Italy, the country for which he now plays.

Look, he made his choice. He’s playing for Italy. I can live with that. But celebrating after scoring a brace against the country in which you were born? That’s not right.

You can say I’m over-reacting here, but it is custom in soccer not to celebrate when you score against former clubs or birth countries.

At least he didn’t kiss the Italian crest. And he did tone it down a bit after the second goal. He’s a great player and he had a tremendous match.

But how about a little class after twisting the dagger in the country in which you were born?


4. What’s next? – Oh, not much really. We’ve got Brazil on Thursday and a strong-looking Egypt side on Sunday. Believe it or not, I’ll take my chances.

Assuming, of course, the referee keeps his cards in his pocket…


4 Responses to “U.S.A./Italy – A look back”

  1. Hard at work – in other places « The Sports Page Says:

    […] The Offside Trap […]

  2. maca Says:

    its not conspiracy theory its just the same old story when you play the big boys….refs just seem to assume that the best team on paper just has to win.

    ronaldo when at man united springs to mind….its easier to understand a gordon strachan than it is to get a penalty at old trafford.

  3. Randy Capps Says:

    I’ve heard that. It’s been something like 10 years since a visiting team had a penalty there?

    I’m just hoping that we keep all 11 guys for the full 90 minutes against Brazil…

  4. maca Says:

    i think you will get many chances….problem is i think they will have many more.

    hoping for a good un

    ps rumors of aliadiere to fulham and scholes as asst mgr/player at the boro….just what we need some more inexperinced staff

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