Breaking news reports out of England are already calling the upcoming visit to the colonies by Alan Curbishley's West Ham "The Trip From Hell", and they're still in England.
THIS IS LONDON HAS THE JUICY DETAILS but basically it's like this:
MLS promised the Hammers a comfy, leg-room-galore Business Class flight across the pond but (snicker-snicker) the travel company "went under" at the last minute (wink-wink-nudge-nudge, say no more, eh?) and so the team will be jammed into "economy" seats on two different planes and brought into Chicago after a nine hour flight.
THE GUARDIAN SAYS THE PLAYERS ARE "FUMING" about spending nine hours in coach, and that's before they discover the in-flight double feature MLS has arranged for them: Norbit and I Know Who Killed Me. There's a good chance they'll be begging for parachutes before they clear Ireland.
THEN, after the second flight touches down, they'll be forced to hang around O'Hare for a while before boarding another plane for the "three hour flight to Columbus".
Having made that one hour flight many times, I can only ask: What has MLS booked them on - a Ford Trimotor? A DC3? Hell, The Spirit of St. Louis could have made it in under two.
Even given the fact that the writer may not be aware that they cross time zones, that's still only one hour.
Frankly, it's clear that this whole thing is one big MLS dirty trick aimed at giving our boys a competitive edge. I'm betting the flight plan for Chicago-Columbus includes a lovely aerial tour of the Grand Canyon.
Then we hit them with the dirtiest trick of all, but I'll let the writer tell you himself:
To cap it all, this game is on astroturf and many players are reluctant to turn out because of injury fears.
THE MAIL PUTS IT THIS WAY:
"Twelve hours on separate planes, no leg room then a plastic pitch to play on - Curbishley's recipe for pre-season Hammers harmony"
I tell you guys, we've got them right where we want them.
Apparently they're not the only ones: contrary to published reports yesterday, former Man City hitter Paul Dickov has apparently spurned Toronto and IS REPORTEDLY GOING TO SIGN WITH BLACKPOOL and take a player-coach role.
Stay tuned today for the announcement of Peter Nowak's 18 man Olympic squad. I'm betting he doesn't leave Robbie Rogers home this time.
The team will begin training on Sunday in Palo Alto, Calif. and will leave for a tuneup tournament in Hong Kong on July 25
The Colorado Rapids announced the signing of FORMER NOTRE DAME MIDDIE GREG DALBY after a less-than-successful stint overseas.
Dalby was one of the more highly-regarded prospects in the 2007 Superdraft, arguably the best senior available but MLS didn't offer what he felt was enough money so he left to try his luck elsewhere.
Colorado took a gamble with the #17 pick (he would have gone much higher) and they may have lucked out.