Dirty work (US-Guatemala R)

"Hey, guys! Turns out I flew all that way, and didn't even play in the game! Bob says hi, by the way. How was Houston?....what?"
- Sacha Kljestan in practice today

Dear Mr. Bocanegra,

I offer a complete and utter retraction. The imputation was totally without basis in fact, and was in no way fair comment, and was motivated purely by malice, and I deeply regret any distress that my comments may have caused you, or your family, and I hereby undertake not to repeat any such slander at any time in the future.

Archibald Leach
Barrister or solicitor or whatever

Although right now, thanks to font issues, the US Soccer page seems as surprised at Bocanegra's heroics as I am:

It could have been vastly worse, thanks to Steve Cherundolo being unable to handle the awesome talent of a FREAKING COLUMBUS CREW reject. Fortunately, a current Columbus Crew player was there to cover for the position. And fortunately, Gustavo Cabrera lost his freaking mind. Somewhere Michael Orozco is saying "Wow, bad play."

I don't want to diminish the accomplishment in Guatemala, although I do want to diminish the Guatemalan team. Guys, the national style isn't working, please learn to play soccer. It's easy to look at Carlos Ruiz and Pando Ramirez - has-beens long before their time - and conclude that the US should have beat Guatemala much more decisively. But in Guatemala City, apparently by candlelight, the result was all that mattered. Usually the happiest day in CONCACAF is the holiday we have every four years when Guatemala is officially eliminated, and the US took a big step closer to that last night. Let the gift horse smile all he wants.

Also of interest was this conversation overheard before the game:

"Hey, Eddie! Good to see you!"
"Hey, Landon!"
"Where you going after the game?"
"What do you mean? I'm going with you. To the Galaxy."
"You are?"
"Yes. I asked you what it was like to play for LA, and you said the organization was great, the team was playing well, the media has been wonderful. You said San Jose fans would totally understand that I'd rather play for LA. You said the only thing better than playing with Beckham was meeting the wonderful people in his entourage, like Tom Cruise, who isn't crazy at all. You said Tim Leiweke has been like a father to you. You said it was been a totally fulfilling experience all around and you were going to sign a lifetime contract."
"And you didn't pick up on any of the sarcasm?"
"Eddie, don't you read the papers?"
"In the last two years I've played for DERBY and LEEDS, NO I don't read about soccer! You lied to me!"
"You're an idiot for believing me!"
"You have David Letterman hair!"
"You look like Peter MacNicol!"
"Patrick Warburton phones it in on your wife's sitcom!"
"Aw...hey, Landon, I'm sorry. I didn't mean that."
"No, it's true! He's so good on Venture Brothers! It's not fair!"
"Well, he's also phoning it in these days on Family Guy."
"You're just saying that to be nice. So, is it too late to get out of playing for the Galaxy?"
"I dunno. Maybe I'll hit my head during the game or something and flunk the physical."
"There you go. Hey, after this, do you want to kidnap some Guatemalan infants?"
"You know it! USA! USA! USA!"