Wednesday, April 18, 2007

MLS Notes

1) Logan Pause's week one goal to beat the Revs was the first in his MLS career. It came in his 97th regular season game, which had made him 8th on the list of most games without scoring (goalkeepers excluded). Last Summer, the list was updated after #2 Nick Garcia scored. Brandon Prideaux currently remains in front by a wide margin over Rusty Pierce. The only other guy on a 2007 roster in the top ten is Tim Regan, who just now makes it due to Pause's departure.

2) Two streaks to look out for: Toronto FC is winless in their first two matches; the record for the longest time until the first win in franchise history is the 6th game, held by Chivas and New York. The Colorado Rapids have played two games in their new stadium without losing; the record for most games undefeated after the opening of an SSS is five, held by Los Angeles. Both streaks count shootouts as draws (my normal policy on this site).

3) Who will be the 2007 MLS champion? It seems that teams who won the MLS Cup have often won their season opener as well; the eleven former champions are 8-2-1 in the first game of their title winning season (only losers: 1996 DC and 2005 LA). So that's a good sign for Chicago, Chivas, Colorado, and Kansas City.

4) The Columbus Crew have used the starting lineup for both games this year, and there's something very unique about it. Five players out of eleven have last names beginning with the letter G: Jason Garey, Eddie Gaven, Marcos Gonzalez, Ned Grabavoy, and Andy Gruenebaum. They did it for the first time on October 7 of last year.

So counting the 2006 and 2007 versions of the Crew, I believe only five teams total have done this. There's only a few more instances of that happening (that I could find):

A) The Colorado Rapids were the first team to do it, and they did it three times in an eight day stretch in Summer 1996 with Marcelo Balboa, Shaun Bartlett, Brian Bates, Scott Benedetti, and Ian Butterworth.

B) 1997 Dallas Burn, one game only: Mark Santel, Tom Soehn, Diego Sonora, Temoc Suarez, and Alain Sutter

C) Chicago Fire's first ever match in 1998: Frank Klopas, Ritchie Kotschau, Roman Kosecki, Lubos Kubik, and Tony Kuhn.

Of course, if you use the full names of Brazilian players or consider some other things differently, that could change things. Also, the 2005 San Jose Earthquakes seemed like the perfect candidate to tie this record or even beat it, but despite six "C" guys (Califf/Cerritos/Ching/Chung/Clark/Cochrane), never did more than four start a regular season game.

EDIT: The 2007 Colorado Rapids stated Jose Cancela, Conor Casey, Colin Clark, Terry Cooke, and Bouna Coundoul in the last two games of the season.

Comments on "MLS Notes"


Blogger The Manly Ferry said ... (3:54 PM, April 18, 2007) : 

Very pleased someone else caught the "G-thing" with Columbus. After watching their opener, some quick mental math revealed that one could easily field a decent MLS squad comprised only of players whose surnames start with "G". In a 3-5-2:

GK - Brad Guzan
D - Chris Gbandi, Nick Garcia, Marcos Gonzalez
M - Ivan Guerrero, Christian Gomez, Ned Grabavoy, Kelly Gray, Amado Guevara
F - Herculez Gomez, Maykel Galindo

And think of all the guys I left off (Josh Gros, Alan Gordon, Eddie Gaven, etc.)


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