ASN Morning Read: The Future of Mr. Friedel
The former United States No. 1 goalkeeper wants to keep playing until he's old and broken down. Make that more older and more broken down. Elsewhere, Belize talks a big game but carries a small stick.
Alex Labidou caught up with 42-year-old Brad Friedel, who (not surprisingly) plans to play until he physically can’t. "I'll see if I can walk down the stairs in January," Friedel said. "I'm going to play until my body says I can't do it anymore or the club doesn't want me." Friedel is in the process of getting UEFA coaching licenses and already has the badge necessary to coach goalkeepers. He says he should have his full badge by next summer. Just spitballing here, but wouldn’t it be cool if Friedel were with the team in some capacity next summer in Brazil? He could be like David Beckham in South Africa, but you know, way more handsome than the Englishman.
The president of the Belize football federation made a bold proclamation to his team and country ahead of the Gold Cup opener vs. the U.S. “I call on our national team to not only beat the United States but to humiliate the United States. It is your responsibility. It is your task.” We’ve since done extensive Wikipedia research on Belize so you know who we’re dealing with. Belize was granted independence from the UK in 1980, but didn’t have a national team until 1995 and this is their first appearance in the Gold Cup. It’s a constitutional monarchy with a population of 312, 698 (according to the 2010 census). Biggie also referenced the country in a verse on "Young G’s": “I be smoking trees in Belize when they find me.” In other news, that’s a great song.
The draw for the first and second qualifying rounds of the UEFA competitions was Monday afternoon, and five Americans will participate in the opening rounds. Josh Gatt and Molde take on Ireland’s Sligo Rovers in the Champions League while Mix Diskerud and Rosenborg face Crusaders FC of Northern Ireland. The Champions League ties are scheduled to be played on July 17 and 23/24, while the Europa League plays July 4 and 11. Both of these guys are on the provisional Gold Cup roster, with the U.S. getting underway on July 9 and the final (fingers crossed) on July 28. It’ll be interesting to see how Klinsmann plays this.
FIFA is "not ashamed" of the Brazil World Cup. Said FIFA General Secretary Jerome Valcke: “There is no Plan B and, by the way, I have never received any official offer from any other countries around the world to stage the World Cup in 2014.” Other countries are probably too busy laughing at the egg on FIFA’s face to make any official phone calls.
John Anthony Brooks signed a two-year extension with newly-promoted Hertha Berlin. That doesn’t give us any news on his U.S. vs. Germany decision, but good for him.
Finally, we should all own a pillow as cool as Tony Beltran’s:
June 25, 2013
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