Thursday Afternoon AmusementBy: Prederick | March 13th, 2008
To steal a glorious line from Dikembe Mutombo, “Who Wants To Sex Sonko?”
Ladies, you know you can’t resist a man in a suit looking that dapper.
Probably the biggest downside for blogging a team that’s engaged in a relegation dogfight, is that, unless one of your players manages to get caught in some sort of scandal, there’s not really all that much news to report on. Even if Reading were scouting some wonderkid at Grimsby, it’s not going to make the dailies, while if Sir Alex as much as farts loudly, The Mirror will have a special on it. So you end up going to the same few sources, like Reading’s club website, which, while nice (although I loathe the PremiumTV.co.uk hosting service that most EPL clubs seem to use), isn’t exactly giving you a nuanced view of the club.
Still though, there were a few snippets that caught my eye today, such as James Harper winning the club’s Table Tennis championship, and some news from Community Trust Manager Lee Herron detailing a recent trip to the good ol’ U.S. of A. to promote the beautiful game. I’ll let the man speak for himself.
“Earlier this year, myself and Community Coach Chris Sweetman attended the National Soccer Coaches Association Of America’s convention over in Baltimore. It is the biggest gathering of football coaches in the world.
The UK was represented by the likes of Manchester United, West Ham United, Bolton Wanderers and ourselves, and there were speakers such as Gerard Houllier and Steve McClaren, who gave tips on sessions to US coaches.
Events like this have a big benefit to our Community Trust. The convention was a chance for us to really network and spread the good word of Reading FC. The US is a growing market for football, or soccer as they know it, and it was good to get an idea of the work that could be done there in the future.
…Football in the US is currently undergoing a period of exciting growth. And we want to help with the expansion of football over there, it’s a massive market to be involved in. And we also want to have a presence there for any talented players who come through the system that the club might want to recruit in the future.
Lots of the clubs we’ve spoken to are already feeder clubs for the MLS, and the talent levels are certainly on the up out there. If we can get our hands on any budding youngster who the Reading coaching staff think can make the grade, that would be a huge bonus.”
As a total and utter homer for U.S. Soccer (I confess to repeatedly crushing Mexico with the Men’s National Team in Pro Evo more than once), i’m happy about the news, although you can’t get too excited. I’m still most concerned about the development of the game in this country, and hope to see it continue, albeit slowly as it’s going. Still, knowing that Philly will be getting a MLS team and giving me something else to hate is just more good news.
This weekend Reading’s taking on Liverpool at Anfield, which doesn’t sound like a good thing, especially given that the Reds are coming off a 1-0 win over a largely lackluster (but still better than us) Internazionale. That said, two wins on the trot will have done wonders for the team, and has been evidenced so many times before, while Rafa may have the Champions League down to a science, the man has no idea what he’s doing domestically.
Keep an eye out on Sunday for Wigan v. Bolton though, the very definition of a relegation six-pointer. If Bolton win, things at the bottom get even more insane than they already are, with, following Wednesday’s result (thank god Pompey trounced Birmingham) no less than six teams within five points of Bolton, and absolutely noone looking like they’re simply “too good” to avoid relegation (we’re looking at you Newcastle).
Meanwhile, if you have a XBox360, and feel like a friendly pickup game of PES 2008 or FIFA 08 (much, much, much to my surprise, the latter pretty much blows the former out of the water), drop the Gamertag “Prederick” a line. I’m always up to get housed.