Friday, June 18, 2010


In a sport that for many Americans is simply superfluous, the United States took hold of the door and opened it to a new destiny for the first time, only to find out that destiny has a doorman and his name is Koman Coulibaly.

With less that four minutes remaining, a free kick garnered by Josi Altidore's sprint forward was translated by Landon Donovon into a brilliant scoring chance that Maurice Edu didn't miss.  His one-timer zipped past Samir Handanovic for the second time in less than ten minutes, shocking the world.  Set plays, the difference maker in many World Cup challenges, has always been one, among many of past U.S. teams' weaknesses.  But Donovan proved that he can provide dazzling re-starts, the kind of which European and South American players claim their deserved reputations.  And today's match against Slovenia calmed all criticism in that regard, with Donovan placing opportunity after opportunity in front of his U.S. cohorts.

Coulibaly's call, now being labeled as an offsides whistle, could hold water if it weren't for the fact that the offending player, Michael Bradley was being marked by his defender with what can only be called the 'bear-hug' technique.  It's a lesser known tactic, one of which usually draws the referee's ire and results in a penalty kick when it takes place in the penalty box.  Thus, if anything, the worst the U.S. should have received was that.  The fact that the ball went over Bradley and laid onto the awaiting foot of Edu, who promptly planted it into the net is simply adding insult to injury.

The U.S.'s door to destiny still isn't closed yet though.  With two points, and the chance to defeat Algeria Wednesday, the U.S. could still advance with five points in their Group.  Let's hope those same Algerians put England to the test today.