MLS: All The News That Sits to Mince

Good morning.

Why not begin today by watching Gregg Berhalter, soon to be seen coaching a U14 club team near you, getting pantsed by Yura Movsisyan last night:


I love how the color guy - is that Mark Rogondino? - then goes into a commentary on whether Arena will be angry at Donovan Ricketts for allowing the goal.

Gee, I suppose it's possible, but normally I'd take a look at the defender who got absolutely torched and ended up sitting on his ass as the ball went into the net.

But that's just me I guess.

In other action the St. Joe Earthquakes, fresh off of a couple mid week trades in what Ives Galarcep aptly called a "fire sale", welcomed Darren Huckerby back to the lineup for the first time in two months just in time to join newcomers Chris Wondolowski and Antonio Ribero, recently of the Montreal Impact.

Huckerby scored his first of the year, but Seattle's Freddie Ljungberg and Freddie Montero both hit as well and the Joes kept their road winless streak alive and well at 16 games and counting.

The Quakes haven't won a road game since June 7, 2008.

On the other side of the ledger, Cam Weaver, the guy they traded to Houston in order to land Wondolowski, scored twice against Dallas. Apparently he wasn't the problem.

Houston's 3-1 win ran Dallas' all time record against their cross-state rivals (if you can use that term) to an ugly 1-7-5 and awarded something called "El Capitan" - which is apparently a cannon of some kind - to the Dynamo for winning the season series.

Of more concern to all of us was the reported attendance of 8,580.

It says here that nothing much but winning some games is likely to change that, and winning some games is, alas, something that just doesn't seem likely anytime soon. MLS has been through too much to begin hitting the panic button now, but this is quickly reaching crisis mode.

Some "fans" - particularly those of some of the newer teams - have been mewing about how that team needs to relocate, something which simply isn't going to happen. Period. Forget it.

That aside, it's becoming clear that the locals just won't pay to see a bad team. HSG, with a wink and a nod from the Boys in New York, is going to have to find some guys who can play and coach this game, and the longer they wait the harder it's going to be.

The bottom line here is that this is not a team problem it's a league problem. Single entity makes it so and we're all in this together.

If you've got some answers, instead of enlisting in Toronto's Protest of the Week - don't worry, the TFC crowd will be protesting something else in a few days - send them to The Don, c/o MLS, New York, New York.

Would someone please tell us what's going on in Chicago?

After coming out of the chute this season looking like the reincarnation of that brilliant 1998 squad, the Fire has seemingly hit a brick wall.

Three straight losses - by a combined score of 6-1 - finally caught up with them last night as they handed over the game and the Eastern Conference lead to DC United.

That's taking "adding insult to injury" to a whole different level.

Chicago was without Mr. White once again, as Hamlett chose to sit him down after a mid week international, but for their part DC was without Luciano Emilio who was sitting out a red card suspension.

The difference in this match was stark, simple, and excruciatingly painful for the Fire: Jaime Moreno hit a PK, Brian McBride didn't.

So DC finds themselves back atop the East, a position their fans see as sort of their birthright.

Soccer, being a sport which allows games to end in ties, gives us both the "unbeaten streak and the "winless streak", with the ties counting towards either one.

For example, the 1999 New York Metrostars had a 19 game winless streak (although in that case they only drew 4). More typical is the RSL streak from 2006 where they lost 6 and tied 9.

But there are no extenuating draws to make what's going on in New York any more palatable: they just lost their fifth straight game (six if you count US Open Cup) and scored their first goal in three games.

Making it worse - as if it COULD be worse - they were beaten by a seriously struggling Toronto side which had scored all of one goal in three matches, including an embarassing loss to the Galaxy which is still the latter's only win since May 2.

To be honest, it's reached the point in New York where whether canning Juan Carlos Osorio will solve any problems or not; at some point before all of your fans take a walk on you, you've got to do something, anything, to show that there's a chance things will change.

As it is, you'd be hard pressed to findmany RedBulls fans who believe that anything will get better while Osorio is there.

At the end of the day, MLS is - are you sitting down? - a business, and when yor customers decide there is no hope that your product, which is undeniably lousy, isn't going to change then what you really need is either a new product or new customers.

Since neither one is possible in midseason (well OK, so the latter isn't possible at all) then the best you can do is come out with some snappy new packaging.

The betting has to be that this is the end for Orsorio.