Ben Olsen let ‘em have it. But good!
He had just seen D.C. United – surely one on the real disappointments in MLS this year – fall once again. At home. Without scoring a goal.
While perfunctorily acknowledging his team’s complicity in the latest setback (failing to score a goal at home, that is) he then proceeded to roar in the direction of referee Matthew Foerster.
The boiling point was a penalty kick awarded to Vancouver, which became the game’s only goal. Olsen was not exactly wrong; his team got a bad break when Foerster adjudged that goalkeeper Bill Hamid had fouled Vancouver’s Matt Watson. It wasn’t the worst call ever, but most referees would probably rule that Hamid did enough to get the ball to simply wave “play on.”
(Olsen was wrong about the late PK shout for his own team, a little nick of a Vancouver handball that really provided no advantage for the Whitecaps.)
So, while Olsen had a case to make, here’s the thing: his complaints ring hollow. It’s really not complicated:
You cannot win in this or any league if you cannot score one goal. At home!
You cannot win in this or any league if your offense is so pitifully ineffective that you are driving toward historic, league record lows in production. And that’s D.C. United.
Halfway through the season United has eight goals – a rate of scoring that will re-write MLS record books for offensive ineptitude. United’s offseason personnel moves have failed spectacularly. (More on that later … hint: it isn’t Olsen’s fault.)
An abysmal 2-12-3 record is not referee’s fault. Olsen didn’t say so, of course … but that’s how it comes across. It’s on him to recognize that.
Olsen began Saturday’s roaring rant by saying “no one want to hear the coach in last place complain about the referees.” Exactly! He should have quit while ahead.
Despite sitting at the top of the table in the Premier League, things are not going well for Manchester City.
Star striker and leading goalscorer Sergio Aguero suffered a torn hamstring while playing for Argentina, and now he is joined by David Silva on the injured list.
Silva lasted nine minutes in Spain’s EURO qualifying match against Luxembourg, forced off after taking a bad challenge from behind. Silva went down in pain and tried to play on, but asked for a substitution just minutes later.
[ RELATED: Alejandro Bedoya to miss USMNT vs. Mexico ]
Spanish news outlet AS is reporting that Silva has suffered “lateral internal ligament damage in his right ankle,” and could face 2-3 weeks on the sidelines.
With Aguero set to miss at least a month, Silva’s injury could leave Manchester City without two of their top players in the coming weeks.
Silva has arguably been the best player in the Premier League this season, the quarterback of the City attack, which has scored a league-leading 19 goals through eight matches.
City travels to Old Trafford for the Manchester derby on October 25, which falls into that 2-3 week range for Silva’s recovery. In a match that could decide who sits top of the table, Manuel Pellegrini would be very shorthanded without Silva and Aguero.
Alejandro Bedoya will not feature for the United States in the CONCACAF playoff against Mexico on Saturday, and has been replaced on the roster by Bobby Wood.
Bedoya traveled to Los Angeles from his club team Nantes in France, but Jurgen Klinsmann has announced he will be unable to play after falling ill.
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Without Bedoya, Union Berlin midfielder Bobby Wood has been added to the USMNT side. Wood scored the first two goals of his international career this summer in wins over the Netherlands and Germany, and has scored four goals in ten matches for Union Berlin this season. Wood has been training with the U.S. camp throughout the week for the upcoming friendly against Costa Rica.
Bedoya has played well for the USMNT, discounting his short performance against Brazil in September. In that match, Klinsmann played Bedoya out of position against a potent Brazil attack, and he was substituted before halftime. However, playing in his more natural role as a winger or attacking midfielder, many believed Bedoya could be in line for a start against Mexico.