"If you look at the won-loss record, yeah, let's fire everybody and start again," says Stillitano. "But look at the credibility we've brought to this league. This team has brought three world-class coaches to MLS, and it's fair to say I had a hand in the Donadoni and Matthaeus negotiations. If you look at it fairly, those are probably the five hardest signings this league has ever had."
Not everything in the Metros' future looks dim. After all, Matthaeus, last seasons player of the year in Germany, could become the leader they've never had. What's more, by the end of this year the club hopes to announce specific plans for its own $45 million, 30,000-seat English-style stadium, which would be located either in downtown Newark or next to Giants Stadium and be ready for the 2001 season.
For now, though, that won't keep the ESC from belting out its achingly hilarious Songs of Cynicism in Section 101 of Giants Stadium, just as the club did during the 2-1 loss to the Fire. To honor Eduardo Hurtado, the striker who has scored only two goals in 17 matches, ESC members modified Guantanamera ("He couldn't score in a whorehouse!"). For Milutinovic they spoofed The Doors' Love Me Two Times ("You've won only two times, now go awaaaaay!"). And as the final seconds of another defeat ticked off, they sang their all-too-common requiem:
We lose at home and we lose away.
We lost last week and we'll lose today!