Wednesday, March 12, 2008

U23: Canada - Mexico live blog

11:00: Just got back from curling. Watching it live is as much fun as you would expect from watching it on TV. My friends and I were the youngest in our section by about 30 years, though not the rowdiest. The old broad who kept yelling "B.C. sucks" takes the honor. But more importantly, WTF! Canada up 1-0? I joined in before the goal was scored, so I don't know who did it. The word is Ornoch.

Here's the stream. How's your Spanish?

14:00: Horrid backpass by someone (for Canada). Players I've seen or heard named on the pitch so far include Ornoch, Wagenaar, Johnson, Ricketts, Ledgerwood, Hainault. Maybe that's it. Mexico controlling things right now, but nothing too dangerous.

19:30: The CSA live match page has all the deets, with respect to lineups and the like. Apparently it was Johnson who scored in the 3rd minute.

20:30: Damn. Penalty for Mexico. Looked a clear dive, but surely I'm biased. Hainault is the guilty party though others are to blame for the buildup. Shooter scores, and in true Latin style, over-celebrates. I think there should be a ban on complicated celebrations of PKs. If you don't score, you're a moron. It's easy. So no backflips, please.

26:00: Half a chance for Ricketts, linking up with Ledgerwood. #12 for Canada, Vancouver Whitecaps' Diaz Kambere, sure has a good set of wheels.

36:30: It's hard to keep this up when you're into the game. I've been impressed by Ricketts, not only by a few nice runs but also the subtle mohawk that he is rocking.

38:30: A lot of giveaways, so far, by the Canadian back four and midfield. It looks to me like a lack of understanding, which could be attributed to the minimal prep the team has had together. Free kick now to Canada . . . Ricketts gets a head to it and forces the keeper to punch it over the bar.

Halftime
: Some thoughts ...
  • Canada has looked reasonable, which is better than I had expected.
  • Ornoch looks like a tough S.O.B., and I'm glad we have him. He showed a bit of skill getting past two Mexicans at one point.
  • I don't know much about the positions of our players, but I'm surprised to see Dejan Jakovic starting in the centre of defense with Hainault.
  • Jacob Lensky started, which means he's cap-tied to Canada, something that had long been in doubt (Czech passport, plays with the Feyenoord team of traitors).
And, for kicks, some curling photos:
Ok, only one. The rest were garbage, or pictures of women from Saskatchewan (same difference, some might say).

We'll see if I can last the whole 2nd half. The time change is still killing me, and I have to be up early to begin with. And the Spanish dulcet tones of these announcers are slumber-inducing.

45:01: There don't appear to be any changes to the lineup to start the 2nd half.

55:00: Canada looks better to start the second half, although Mexico just had a chance. They are keeping the ball and giving it away cheaply less.

56:30: Yellow card to Mexico's #9 for being a douche. And well deserved. Until now, the theatrics have been pretty minimal and the ref solid, the questionable penalty notwithstanding. Although #10 for Mexico is a real scumbag, it seems.

58:30: Lensky off, Kyle Hall is on.

60:00: A shameless dive by Mexico's #10 in the penalty area near the end line had me worried for a second. The ref saw through it, though Ledgerwood earned a yellow for something else.\

65:00: Ornoch off, Andrea Lombardo on. Ornoch played really well and I'm looking forward to seeing more of him. Canada soaking up pressure right now.

67:00: A second yellow to Mexico's #9! He's off. That should change things, as the target forward had caused his share of trouble. We'll see if Canada can press the advantage.

76:00: Johnson sees red for a shirt pull 80 yards from goal. Extremely harsh!

81:00: Canada made a sub. I don't know who, as I was brushing my teeth. Gyaki I think, maybe for Ayre.

Full time: OK, a bit of a lapse there. It got pretty tense, with Mexico throwing lots of pressure at the Canadian end with a few close calls, but no goals. Wagenaar made some brave challenges.

Canada has to be happy with the result. A 2nd place finish in the group is still likely (on goal difference), but I'm impressed with the play of the team, and in particular, Dejan Jakovic and Andrew Ornoch.

I'm in bed now, and the light is about to be turned out.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

As soon as Johnson left the field, Canada sagged. Lombardo was not good for much of anything though admittedly the service to him was lacking. Still, a point against Mexico is a good thing.