OTS: US falls to Mexico in World Cup qualifier

*UPDATE: Unfortunately, Mexico scored in the 83rd minute, giving the game to Mexico.  Damn.

This has nothing to do with books (which is why it’s an ‘OTS’ or ‘Off the Subject’), but I’m keeping an eye on the World Cup qualifying match between USA and Mexico, going on right now in Estadio Azteca in Mexico City.  It’s a tough stadium to play: Mexico is something like 66-1-4 there, the altitude’s high, it’s smoggy, it can seat more than 100,000 people and nearly every seat is filled to watch the showdown between these bitter rivals.  US is doing well in CONCACAF standings–they’re second right now, behind Costa Rica, while Mexico is barely hanging on in fourth and need a win.  Since barely anyone has beaten Mexico in this stadium, I’m looking for a tie.  The US will most likely advance to the next round, but Mexico will be put in an even tougher spot,  especially considering their next game is away against Costa Rica.  GO USA!

On a different note, I was a little annoyed with ESPN earlier.  I was at the gym watching the Sportscenter Special leading up to the game, and let me just say that I NEVER watch Sportscenter.  I only watch ESPN when soccer’s on, but never Sportscenter.  They were hyping up the rivalry between USA and Mexico, giving some good commentary, and right before kickoff, the announcer tells the camera: “Watch this game. If you’re at work, go home. Whatever you do, watch this game.”  So what does ESPN do next?  They inform their viewers that the game would be broadcast on Telemundo, while ESPN moved on to the NFL.  I swear… This is a big game for the United States, and it’s part of the BIGGEST sports competition on the globe–the World Cup.  But ESPN is more concerned with a sport that’s in pre-season.

On the subject of ESPN being outrageous, I heard a great story on NPR the other day on just that subject.  “High-and-Mighty ESPN Should Take It Down a Notch” by Frank Deford is a great listen, and I highly reccomend it for sports fans and anti-sports fans alike.

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