David Hirshey will write regularly during the World Cup.
I'm still in shock. It's inconceivable to me that a team with so much talent, and with their World Cup lives on the line, couldn't raise their game and pull out a W. It was that simple: Win and you're in.
I'm speaking, of course, of the Czech Republic, a team that just two weeks ago I thought was destined for the semis — at worst. But I guess that's what happens when you put too much stock in a World Cup tune-up against a tiny nation like the United States.
Ah yes, the US. Apparently they played today as well, although I was busy following the Larry Brown euthanasia at the time. Is it just me, or does Bruce Arena seem like a natural to replace Isiah when the Dolans tire of him by Thanksgiving?
Thanks to Eric Wynalda — who didn't even wait for the teams to exchange jerseys before showing his firm grasp of the obvious and declaring Arena dead meat — we now know that Cousin Brucie has a bright soccer future behind him. Honestly, even Ozzie Guillen would have handled that with a little more sensitivity. Because let's face it: While Arena certainly didn't remind anyone of the second coming of Alf Ramsay (look it up), it's hard to coach players whose command of soccer's rudimentary skills is worthy of, well, the MLS. Whatever you think of the egregious penalty kick call, it is undeniable that the US were outplayed, outhustled and outthought by a Ghana team that clearly had something to prove.
Show of hands. Other than Freddy Adu's mom, who took Ghana in their office pool? If you were Brazil, wouldn't you rather face the mercurial Italians than a team that even stripped of its best player — Michael Essian picked up a second yellow and will have to sit out — has that giant killer glint in their eyes? The World Cup now has its Gonzaga, and, come to think of it, Ghana and Gonzaga even sound a little alike, if you insert the word "zaga" into everything you say.
As for me, I won't be joining the cast of "CSI Germany" in their autopsy of the American team, because I'm too busy booking my aisle seat on the Ghana bandwagon. At least until they get their asses kicked by Brazil.
David Hirshey will return on Tuesday.