It’s finally here. The point in the MLS season when everybody takes a short, pointless break so the league’s best players can have a friendly against an EPL club in preseason form. This year, the opponent is Chelsea, who I am begrudgingly obliged to remind you are champions of Europe.
Now, if I had my druthers, I’d do away with this nonsense and just keep the league going. But that will never happen since this game does manage to generate revenue for the league, and you can’t say no to that, right? Besides, these games have often been pretty entertaining. More thoughts after the jump.
Since switching to the All-Stars v Euro Club format in 2005, MLS has had a mixed record: they spanked Fulham 4-1 in Columbus, beat Chelsea 1-0 in Bridgeview, beat Celtic in Colorado, and beat West Ham in Toronto. Four straight wins was nice, but they followed it with a draw against Everton (lost on pks) and two successive beatdowns at the hands of Man Utd.
Tonight’s game in Philly should be tall order for the MLS stars, but it all boils down to what version of Chelsea we get to see. Do we get Fat Frank walking around the pitch while he tries to work off a month’s worth of beer and sausages, or do we get Eden Hazard and Romelu Lukaku cutting the MLS defense into little Belgian pommes frites?
But wait! ESPN has deemed to serve up an appetizer for the ASG, so tune into Fenway Park to watch Liverpool v Roma. I bet Andy Carroll somehow manages to trip on the pitcher’s mound. I have it on good authority that our very own Orr will be there in person with some of you lot, so squint real hard and you might see them in the stands.
Beyond that, several of us on the 452 crew have been to some of the other EPL in USA friendlies this summer, so you can look forward to our firsthand reports in the minutes or hours or days or weeks to come (or possibly never).