Birthdays of Note: Is there a goofier situation in world soccer today than what’s happening around Chelsea manager Roberto Di Matteo? Seriously, what does the guy have to do for Chelsea management to give it up and say “Alright, already … you got the job!” ? Champions League win against all odds? Meh. What else you got? C’mon ye stingy sticklers of Stamford Bridge, give the man the job! And to it today, on Di Matteo’s 42 birthday.
Longtime Italian international and Milan defender Massimo Ambrosini turns 35.
Longtime German international and current Chicago Fire defender Arne Friedrich turns 33.
Russian international and Andrei Arshavin (current property of Arsenal) turns 31.
Big Important Story of the Day: Fourteen third-round matches happen tonight in the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup (with two more on Wednesday). Upsets? Yep, there are bound to be a few – especially considering Chicago, D.C. United, New York Red Bulls, New England, the L.A. Galaxy and Colorado are all playing on the road, at lower-tier clubs.
Ahead on the blog today*: Thoughts on the U.S. Open scheduling, weekly MLS rankings and a foursome of Group B previews ahead of the European Championships.What we should all be watching on TV: xxx
RASNoD (Random American Soccer Name of the Day): Jerry Yeagley
On this date: It was on this day in 1985, during the European Cup final between Liverpool and Juventus, when things went so terribly wrong in the Heysel Stadium disaster. Fans trying to escape some pre-kickoff madness were crushed against a wall in the Heysel Stadium in Brussels, Belgium. A total of 39 fans died; more than 600 were injured.
Twitter daps: U.S. national team defender Carlos Bocanegra (@BocaBoca3): Feeling very patriotic today. Happy Memorial day and thanks so much, past and present, to everyone who protects this great country.
PST background noise while blogging today: Moby, from back in the day
*Always subject to change; you know how it is