Friday, June 30, 2006

Donovan: Where Do We Go From Here?

Disclosure: I am a Landon Donovan fan. Or, more accurately, I was until he went belly-up in this World Cup. And he didn't do that from a lack of technical ability or from tactics gone awry. Rather, Landon -- our self-confessed "kind of Buddhist" -- just didn't have the stomach for the fight.
And really, who can blame him? He's rich, he's well taken care of on the bird front (Bianca Kaljich, anyone? Yes, please!), and his place in the starting 11 is all-but guaranteed by "Our Fat Coach" (as Eric Wynalda calls him) Broooooce!!!!!!! Arena.
That said, it would have been nice if the Golden Boy of American Soccer (TM) showed up for more than the 45 minutes against Italy that we were treated to over 270 minutes of his field time. Landon, you're better than that. I know your California mindset might not allow for such thinking, but you really caused the Germans a spot of bother in that 2002 quarterfinal, Heck, with a bit more confidence maybe you stick one of those shots past Kahn and we find ourself in the semifinal.
But this time around, when you could have taken the initiative to the opponent (I'm still trying to figure out why you pass to Olsen while in the box v. Ghana), you chose to be the Zen master.
Bad choice, Donovan.