My soccer-watching exploits for the past week.
AFC Ajax vs. Vitesse (14 Aug 2010) – I have to admit that this is the kind of game I enjoy watching. Granted I’m sure the football purist found the defensive lapses on both sides lacking. But I liked how the lead changed several times in the first half. I like how three goals were scored in about 5 minutes of the first half. I like how Ajax scored a goal within seconds of kicking off the second half. I like that the over-matched Vitesse despite being outplayed by Ajax seemed to have a chance of pulling off an upset, at least until Ajax scored their fourth goal. I like that Ajax won. Match report.
Chicago Fire vs. New England Revolution (18 Aug 2010) – Tuned in hoping to see the Revs extend their 8-game unbeaten streak and streak of not allowing goals in league games, but alas it didn’t finish well. The Revolution took an early lead in a very entertaining first half on a goal by Marko Perovic. Chicago equalized in the 32nd minute. Then the game began to get bogged down with penalties with most of the calls – and some non-calls – going against New England. The most egregious referee error was not calling a penalty when Perovic was knocked down in the Chicago penalty area in the 90th minute. Boston Globe coverage.
FC Bayern München vs. VfL Wolfsburg (20 Aug 2010) – I watched this game on ESPN 3 which didn’t show the first 30 minutes of the game nor was there any commentary. It was interesting to watch a televised match with only the sound of cheers and drumming of the fans. The game was very defensive when I first tuned in with Bayern protecting a 1-0 lead. There were so many back passes it seemed the two sides were playing toward their own goals. The second half opened with Wolfsburg making an impressive barrage of long-range shots stopped only by the goal post before finally putting in a header off a corner kick. With the score tied Bayern took control of the ball and got many free kicks due to the suddenly desperate physicality of Wolfsburg. It looked like it would end a 1-1 tie but instead Bayern won the game dramatically on a stoppage time goal by Bastian Schweinsteiger. Match report.