Has it already been a year? It seems like just yesterday I was watching wonderteen Christian Pulisic, now a wonderman, sob tears of abject despair and humiliation on a ratty old pitch after being knocked out of the World Cup qualifying rounds by Trinidad and Tobago. Let us take a trip down memory lane:
Did you forget how truly horrifying Omar Gonzalez’s own goal was? Or that he probably should have been hit with a penalty a few minutes later? Do you remember that, uh, one guy from Trinidad and Tobago thundering one in from like 40 goddamn yards out? Do you remember our poor sweet wonderteen doing his best to save the day with a beauty of his own in the second half? Do you remember how his teammates only answered that moment of brilliance with 43 more minutes of putrid soccer?
Boy, that all sucked ass. Remember how much ass that sucked? Let’s have a palette cleanser:
So here we are now, a year later, and things still suck, because the shame and agony of that night won’t be erased until the very moment the USMNT qualifies for the 2022 World Cup. How they’ll managed to do that still remains to be seen. There are positive signs, like the fact that most of the old-timers who hung on the 2017 roster like dead leaves have been done away with, replaced by promising youngsters like Josh Sargent and Tim Weah and Weston McKennie. There’s also Pulisic, who is only getting better and could very well be a true European soccer superstar by the time this qualification cycle kicks into high gear. But there are also worrying signs, like the fact that the team still does not have a manager, and that U.S. Soccer remains without a true philosophical direction. Also, Michael Bradley is still playing soccer.
Anyway, the USMNT will play Colombia tomorrow and Peru on Tuesday. Hopefully they don’t get their asses kicked.