Users make their picks for MLS Cup 2002Posted: Thursday October 17, 2002 7:39 PM
CNNSI.com's Steve Almasy and Jeff Green went Head2Head on who will win MLS Cup, and invited users to make their own picks. A selection of the responses follows.
This championship is dedicated to Alexi Lalas, the original pioneer of soccerock. No one deserves a ring more than him for all his contributions to U.S. soccer. It does not matter who is playing; it is his destiny.
Despite the presence of a home crowd for the game, New England is going to be hard pressed to find an answer to two key items. First, Ruiz's scoring presence. I attended a few games, including the Game 1 playoff game versus Kansas City this year, and Carlos Ruiz just has the uncanny ability to do two things a scorer must do. First, he puts himself in opportunistic positions. Second, he creates shots where none seem to exist, quick turnarounds with his back to the goal. Second, the controlling touches by LA's midfield. Despite the fact that LA had the leading defense, I believe it will be LA's midfield that will dictate the play on Sunday, creating opportunities for its forward players, primarily Ruiz and Jones. Look for a sizable victory, somewhere in the 3-0 or 4-1 realm.
True the fans will be in the Rev's corner, but the fans can't deny destiny. The Galaxy were able to taste the feeling of being called champions last year, but still have the desire to be called MLS Champions. They know that, although they've been in the championship game three times before, it's not easy getting there. What better way to end the tenure at the Rose Bowl and start the new one at their new home next year then to be crowned MLS Champions? They're finally going to end this MLS Cup curse and start a real dynasty as D.C. United had a few years ago!
I think the LA Galaxy will win the MLS Cup because they have one of the most prolific scorers in American soccer sitting on the bench by the name of Mckinley Tennyson Jr. If Carlos and Cobi cannot take LA to the promised land, he's very capable of completing this mission. New England better hope this forgotten soccer jewel stays on the bench Sunday. By the way, he scored the most goals in a half-season in the history of the A-League. God has truly blessed this young man with talent!
Steve Almasy says "Jones is one of those money players who excels in the biggest games." I beg to differ.
Cobi Jones' record with the US National Team, in "big games" (i.e. FIFA tournaments, FIFA qualifying, Copa America, and Gold Cup) is absolutely abysmal. He only has 3 goals, one every four years of his Nats career.
The first meaningful goal he scored in a "big game" for the United States occurred in 1992, and that was the last one as well. The other two were in garbage time, the last one in 1998.
Every other goal scored by Cobi Jones for the United States came in a friendly.
Look it up.
No, Cobi Jones is not a player who puts the ball in the net when silverware is on the line. At least he's never done it for his country, in spite of all the caps and USSF marketing hype.
So Sunday is a chance for Cobi to redeem himself. The difference on Sunday could well be Cobi Jones. If he buries the two chances he's sure to get, the Galaxy will be in cruise-control. Little Fishy will get his goal or goals. But so will Twellman.
The 10-year mystifying career of one Cobi Jones will be under the microscope on Sunday. Twellman and Ruiz have their whole careers ahead of them.
This could be Jones' last moment to prove his naysayers wrong.
For Cobi's sake, I hope he *does* bury that important goal for his team, the same one he never scored for his country.
Almasy fails to recognize that the Rev's worst defense is because of Jurgen Sommer. Adin Brown has had 4 shutouts in 6 games during the playoffs. The Revs will win this game.
I'll be flying up there from Texas, and join the 50,000 other fans rooting against the Bills... oops, I mean the Galaxy.
New England all the way. Remember the Super Bowl? Patriots were heavy underdogs to the powerful Rams. Now, the Revolution are heavy underdogs to the powerful Galaxy. The same Galaxy that draws unfavorable comparisons to the Buffalo Bills for their inability to win a championship. Robert Kraft won a Super Bowl last February as the Patriots' owner. Now, he wins a MLS Cup this October as the Revolution's owner.
I love soccer and I love my country, and if a fellow citizen is playing soccer abroad, I will be following up his track. And so I have been doing with Carlos Ruiz since he has been with the L.A. Galaxy. I must say that my expectations were exceeded enormously. His achievements are magnificent and he already has made history in his first MLS year. I am so glad for him and for me as a Guatemalan. I wish for him Sunday a cool head and an inspired day. If this happens, buckle up Revs, since a rocket will cross the goal line and not only once. I wish you the best Carlos, I wish you the best L.A. Galaxy. Go for it and make the dream come true!
I believe there will be another Cinderella story and the Revs will win. I deserve it more than the Galaxy. This is their Cup. It's on their field. It was fate. Let the Galaxy win next year at their new stadium at Victoria Street. But give the Big Razor to hold two champs of "football."
You gotta go with the home-field advantage here, as good as LA has been all year. Also, they might get caught looking ahead to the U.S. Open Cup championship as well.
The Galaxy have been one of the best
teams in the league since its inception,
but they are the Buffalo Bills of
MLS. They will lose, because its their
nature to find a way to do so. Plus,
New England has had some of the best
fan support with some of the worst
teams through the years. Those fans
want the win and 40,000 strong will make
their presence felt.
Reasons for the Galaxy to win-
1- The Revs scored 49 goals in the regular season -- half of these were by Twellman (24), who is hobbled by injury and will not be much of a factor in this game. The fact that their best postseason scorer is a midfielder (Kamler) points up the fact that goals have not been easy to come by for this team. LA scored 16 goals in this postseason and allowed 6, while the Revs scored just 8 and allowed 4. Both defenses have played well, but LA's offense is healthy and productive and that of the Revs is not.
2- To get to the final, the Revs beat the Crew and Fire, two teams without effective midfield-striker cohesion. LA brings the best front-to-back team play that they have seen all year, and the Revs will not be able to overcome that.
3- LA lost to NE 3-2 at Gillette Stadium while missing Cobi Jones to the World Cup, but they had all starters present and beat NE 2-1 at home. They are healthy, and the home crowd will not be enough to overcome their relative lack of talent and cohesion in the midfield and defense. The Galaxy is the better, more veteran team, and they will win either 2-1 or 3-1.
The Galaxy will be able to better impose their style of play on the Revs than an unimaginative Crew team and a half-strength Chicago squad were able to do. The Revs, on the other hand, with a hobbled Taylor Twellman, will struggle to muster an effective counter-attack. Despite a solid defensive effort, the Galaxy will be able to slip a couple past Brown. Call it a 2-1 win for LA, thereby separating the Galaxy from the tough-luck Buffalo Bills (0/4), and putting them in a class with the Atlanta Braves (finally got ONE).
I think LA is clearly the better team. They play a more attractive (and effective) style than the Revs so you have to give them the edge going into the game on Sunday. However, a home advantage in soccer is always significant and we all know that anything can happen in a soccer game. The Revolution defense has been stubborn in recent playoff games. If Twellman and Pineda Chacon can work some magic and get a goal or two, don't be surprised if the Revs steal this one.