Mad. Angry. Upset. Incensed. Furious.
All of those words sum up Maurico Pochettino’s demeanor on Saturday, as he felt his side were extremely hard done by in their 4-1 defeat to Manchester City.
He’s got a point.
Saints dominated vast swathes of the first half, both in possession and chances as Man City struggled to get going at the Etihad Stadium. Two penalty kicks were traded early on, as it was 1-1 going into first half stoppage time. Then the game-changing moment that Pochettino is so unhappy about, arrived.
A through ball went in to Edin Dzeko, who flicked the ball around the corner to David Silva. The Spaniard was standing at least four yards offside, but the linesman failed to raise his flag, as Silva teed up Samir Nasri to slot home and put City 2-1 up at a crucial stage of the game. Silva was so offside it’s scary, as Southampton’s players protested to referee Chris Foy but the goal stood.
All game Pochettino simmered on the sidelines, but at the full time whistle he stormed onto the pitch and gave the officiating crew a piece of his mind. The fiery Argentinian manager wasn’t finished there, as he let some telling words slip in his post-match interview.
“This action from the linesman for the second goal killed the game, the linesman killed the game. It’s clear that the second goal changed it. We were superior up that point, we can analyze the game to that point but there is no point after that. It just killed off the game.”
Many would say Southampton would have succumbed to Man City’s vast array of attacking talents at another time, but the fact that Saints were undone right on the stroke of half time by a clear officiating mistake soured their defeat.
Pochettino could be facing a fine for his actions, but you have to sympathize with him as his side put in a superb first half performance, but were somehow 3-1 down at the break and the rest is history. You have to feel sorry for Saints.
It isn’t Dortmund, but that’s a good thing for Liverpool.
Our own Joe Prince-Wright was on the scene for Jurgen Klopp’s unveiling as the latest Reds manager, and the 48-year-old German had a lot to say.
Perhaps most poignant for Liverpool fans are Klopp’s words on the talent he inherits from Brendan Rodgers. Sure there are quips that will hit the headlines, but how about Klopp’s assertion that success shouldn’t take nearly as long as his dramatic work at BVB.
From JPW on Merseyside:
“We did in Dortmund what we had to do, to improve the players, to work for a common idea of play. That is what we did and its the same thing we want to do here. They are not the same players of course,” Klopp told NBC Sports ProSoccerTalk. “These players from Liverpool are better, more experienced in some ways and younger in other cases. Everything is okay, I am here. I am not here only because LFC was calling. I believe in the potential of this team. Four or five strikers you can work with when they are not injured, midfielders is really good, defenders experienced and very young, goalkeeper is really good. Everything is there.”
Everything. A powerful word and one that doesn’t get lost in translation. Liverpool has a batch of world class talent, and Klopp’s is anxious to organize it in world class fashion. Strap in, Anfield.
So here we go: the biggest rivalry in U.S. Soccer, the one that sends fans racing for the stadia for a glimpse of history.
It’s the U.S. and Mexico for the right to go to the 2017 Confederations Cup in Russia, and it will play out at the Rose Bowl on Saturday night.
National pride is on the line, and national jobs may rightly be in jeopardy. Let’s swing through our coverage, and what’s at stake in just over 24 hours time.
Who is the key to Saturday’s match? Is it Michael Bradley? Fabian Johnson? Andres Guardado? Will Klinsmann opt for players with Liga MX experience, stay Euro Heavy, or appease the domestic set? Read more here.
So how will Klinsmann line ’em up? JPW has his preference, some options, and a prediction of what the manager will do.
What are the chances this one finds its way into the upper echelon of matches in the Mexico/U.S. rivalry? This is the company it could join.
The folks in the anti-Klinsmann brigade seethe with pure detestation of the USMNT boss. Any quote from him is self-serving and dishonest, any success accidental. Beat Germany or the Netherlands in friendlies on the road? Coincidental and Unimportant. Lose a friendly to Brazil? The worst thing ever.
[ MORE: The case for firing Klinsmann after a loss ]
So this match, being meaningful and testing his unbeaten mark vs Mexico, is going to be a clarion call for U.S. Soccer fans. Barring a cataclysmic loss in horrific blowout fashion, he won’t be canned. But a win will be validation for his supporters while a loss would cue a genuine hot seat. And for his detractors, already foaming at the mouth from the words of icon Landon Donovan? Kablammo.