TGIF my fellow sports fans. This morning we have a bevy of links to keep you occupied until the you're able to slip out the door and into the much deserved weekend. Just remember to keep a spreadsheet open so you can quickly change screens if the boss walks by.
I'll be looking forward to a delayed weekend. As you're reading this I'll probably be heading through security at O'Hare hoping my flight isn't delayed and the TSA didn't see anything incriminating in the back-scatter X-ray machine! So, if you're wondering why I'm not on the ball in answering questions in the comments question you can rest assured that I'm a mile high in the sky suffering from severe Internet withdrawl.
Ahh...I miss Seattle already...
Now to the links!
Sons of Ben (SoBs) Blowing Bubbles: How stylish can one be while blowing bubbles? We'll soon find out as the SoBs are featured in an article to be published in the UK GQ. Yes, the home of soccer, and soccer supporter groups, will soon know of the SoBs. While the article isn't available online some of the pictures are out and they aren't all complimentary. I mean...who wraps bandana around their nose and mouth nowadays? Wild West bankrobber is sooo last year. I mean it's not even ironic anymore. And, for those of you Germanically inclined, you can read in German some of the alternate meanings for SoB. I wonder if Prost America can do a translation without violating their blog host's terms of service?
Can the Whitecaps Capture the Luck of the Irish? One of the ongoing mysteries of the MLS off-season is where the Whitecaps will get goals. Well, it looks like their front office has an idea. That idea is pursuing Irish striker Robbie Keane. Although 86 Forever author Benjamin Massey believes there is little reason for either Keane or Tottenham to take what the Whitecaps can offer. Perhaps Canadian international Andrew Ornoch is the answer. If not, then it looks like Omar Salgado might be called on to live up to his potential on a tight time-frame.
Bradley's Arrow:In the recent 1-1 draw against Chile Bob Bradley experimented again with a 4-2-3-1 that would look familiar to dedicated readers of SAH. It seems like a formation well-suited to the strengths of the US team. Dax McCarty's performance against Chile showed the depths of talent the US has in central midfield.
The 20th Team: If you haven't already bought into the Cosmos hype bandwagon then denz over at RSL Soapbox has an interesting read on other choices for the 20th MLS team. Lots of great ideas in the blog post that follow-up on some of the great conversation from K61's Relocation, Not Expansion fan-posts. Maybe if I write about Relocation in my links post Fake Sigi will link to me!
Headgear...It's Not Just for Haberdashery Jokes Anymore:Ahh...I remember those crazy Petr Cech to the Whitecaps rumors like they were yesterday. At least until 86 Forever threw a bucket of cold water on my hopes and dreams with the funniest Internet poll ever. But enough about Cech's famous headgear. Over in Fake Sigi land the issue of headgear in soccer comes up and I'm interested to see what information Fake Sigi may dig up on the issue. I don't think it's something that's on the near-horizon, but we can't assume that football is the only sport with an undiagnosed concussion problem.
A Preseason Tournament I Can Get Behind: I've never been a big fan of the SuperLiga. It always seemed like a mid-season distraction simply for the sake of revenue. With the SuperLiga rumored to be on the way out...another tournament might be on the way back in. The Star Advertiser is reporting that ESPN is interested in bringing back the Pan-Pacific tournament in 2012. The pre-season tournament would feature a collection of teams from MLS, Korea's K-League, Japan's J-league and Australia's A-league.
More Training Camp Fun:The SAH crew was bringing the heat this week with multiple stories and interviews from the start of Sounders training camp. You can read Jeremiah's overview of the first two days here for the low-down. If, however, you have an insatiable appetite for Sounders news there's more to go around. Joshua Mayers has notes and photos from yesterday's training, quotes from the Real Sigi and Leone Cruz, an interview with Adrian Hanauer and the great news that Zakuani may still play for the USMNT some day. Over at Prost Amerika there are interviews with new Sounders Danny Earls and Erik Friberg.