Terry Duffelen
Wed 15 July 2009

Football Americana Week 17: Greenwash

There is probably only one place to start our weekly round up of the MLS and that's in LA. Not just because of the much publicised spat between the Galaxy's two alpha's, Landon Donovan and the other fella but because the Super Classico took place last weekend between the Galaxy and their house-mates Chivas USA. And it was Edson Buttle who stole the headlines for about five minutes after his glancing header beat Zack Thornton in the Chivas goal to settle the derby.

That's three wins on the bounce for the Galaxy who will, no doubt, be hoping that they can take advantage of Whatsisname's return and push on for a place in the Post Season. Assuming he can make peace with Landon that is.

From LA to San Jose and a rare goal from Darren Huckerby. The Earthquakes striker was always an explosive player and judging by last season, the MLS seems to be his level. However, this year has not been kind to him or his team. The former Norwich, Man City and Newcastle striker's goal proved to be a consolation as his team collapsed to a 3-1 defeat to Toronto. Chad Barrett scored two but there was more than an element of good fortune about his second. Running onto a through ball down the middle, the Earthquake's defender Aaron Pitchkolan looked to have the pass covered only for him to suddenly fall over clutching his groin. Barrett, was free to round the keeper and score. The replay showed no contact between Barrett and Pitchkolan, the poor guy's groin just popped at the worst possible time.

The Earthquakes are languishing at the bottom of the Western Conference and enjoy the dubious honour of being even worse than FC Dallas who got no change from a visit to Colorado. Kosuke Kimura's near post strike was enough for the Rapids to claim the points.

Elsewhere, Columbus and Chicago contrived a goalless draw. Ditto New England and Kansas. So that leaves us in the Pacific North West and Qwest Field, the home of the villainous Seattle Sounders. The thirty thousand plus support base of the 2009 expansion team dominated the popular vote in the line up for the upcoming All Star game against Everton. Despite the vote being open to the entire MLS fanbase, ten of the eleven players selected by the fans were Sounders. Only Landon Donovan survived the Greenwash.

The fan vote represents 25% of the ballot so once the coaches and media had stuffed the boxes with their block votes, a more balanced line up was selected with only two Sounders (Kasey Keller and Freddie Ljungberg) making the team.

On the pitch, the Sounders half-tracks keep rolling across the US Soccer landscape. They entertained Houston in a top of the table clash and emerged 2-1 winners despite going down 1-0 after a well worked goal by Brad Davis. The equaliser came from Freddy Montero who's exquisite half volley was saved off the line by a fantastic clearance from Davis again. The only problem was that the linesman saw it differently and gave a goal. Someone needs to have a word with that fella as it looked pretty clear cut and you wonder if MLS officials need to guard themselves from getting carried away by that Sounders crowd. Anyhoo, shortly after the start of the second half Patrick Ianni's scored with an overhead kick from a corner and Seattle closed the game out.

That's it. Results and tables here. Badly edited highlights below.

Chris Nee is on holiday.

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