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A little tale of national media and the LA Galaxy beat down

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HOUSTON – How’s this for irony:

MLS threw a swell little media happy hour last night. They picked a good spot, too. Lucky’s Pub. The list of beers was about as long as the MetroStars/Red Bulls all-time player list. And if you know your MLS history, you recognize that as a darn substantial list.

One reason they selected Lucky’s is for its soccer friendliness. It’s the official Dynamo site for viewing parties and such. So, I don’t know who this “Lucky” fellow is, but he likes his soccer and appreciates his beer, so that makes him OK in my book.

So it was a perfect setup. We had beer (I mentioned that, right?), we had soccer up on the big screen. I mean, life could only be more perfect if Red Dawn remake bomb Adrianne Palicki herself marched into the place and announced she has this thing for geeky journo types.

Well, until the Galaxy game started, that is. (Read on for the gory details ... including a little top o' the hat to Puerto Rico Islanders boss Colin Clarke ...)


Toronto had done its part to protect MLS honor, squeezing by the Hondurans in the first of two televised CONCACAF Champions League contests. But the Galaxy wet the bed out at the Home Depot Center. Former FC Dallas manager Colin Clarke and his Puerto Rico Islanders embarrassed Bruce Arena and the Galaxy to the tune of 4-1.

(I keep telling folks that Clarke deserves another chance in MLS; he was pretty young when he got the FCD job. He made a few mistakes in terms of toxic team chemistry, but his teams were well-prepared, and his record wasn’t bad at all.)

At any rate, with every Islanders goal, the MLS folks joked about how cable sometimes goes out in this part of town … and that they wouldn’t be surprised to see it happen at any minute!  It was all in good fun, of course. But the unfortunate happenstance was notable; MLS was paying the bill as writers and photogs from two continents watched one the league bell cows take a serious beat-down.

On the other hand, it could have been worse.

This is one of the least-well attended MLS All-Star games I’ve seen in terms of national media. It’s definitely the worst I can remember over the last few years. A lot of that is about South Africa and already stretched budgets. So a lot of the regulars are MIA this year. It would have even been a fairly sparsely attended media HH at Lucky’s, in fact, but for a handful of British writers following Manchester United.

Best I could tell, they weren’t too interested in the Los Angeles Galaxy’s stumble in the little CONCACAF Champions League. I think they have their own Champions League-type tournament back in Europe, right?

MLS All-Star kickoff is six hours away. Until then …