Extra Time and Penalty Kicks
The Round of 16 in the World Cup is four games in and already two of them have gone to penalty kicks. Brazil and Costa Rica both advanced after going an extra thirty minutes that gave way to penalty kicks. The Houston Dynamo also had a recent brush with extra time that didn't go all the way to penalty kicks, but their brush didn't end so well. Facing off against FC Dallas in the Lamar Hunt Open Cup the game ended regulation time tied 2-2. Both teams looked completely gassed as they played an additional thirty minutes. Tesho Akindele scored eight minutes into extra time and the Dynamo weren't able to draw level with the team from Frisco. After the game head coach Dominic Kinnear had some things to say about extra time namely that we shouldn't have it.
"I think the first thing we should do is cut out extra time in this competition," Kinnear said. "I think it's ridiculous. It's insane the amount of minutes they put on these guys and I think US Soccer has to look at that and realize it's stupid, just go straight from regulation to penalty kicks. To play an extra 30 minutes doesn't make any sense."
While it would be easy to write it off as a coach who wants rid of extra time because his team lost, but perhaps it's something that should be looked at more closely. Any game that a game goes a full 90 minutes and gives way to extra time players are going to be exhausted. You aren't going to get good soccer out of exhausted players nor will you get safe soccer. As play goes on and players grow tied they give in to making sloppy tackles which lead to injuries. With the way the rules are set teams are also required to play a full thirty broken down into two fifteen minute periods.
Plus chances are a game that is going to extra time is a 0-0 or 1-1 match that you really don't want to spend another thirty minutes of your life watching. Play slows down during the extra time and after a certain point players will begin looking to run out the clock to take things to penalty kicks. However, penalty kicks usually go by fairly quickly and even faster if one team misses while another makes theirs. They are also immediate excitement that leave you with little time to digest one kick before another player is up taking the next one.
Is it realistic to expect U.S. Soccer to change it any time soon if ever? Nope but games going straight to penalty kicks sure it fun to think about.
The Dynamo are set to announce their jersey sponsor on July 1. The fun thing with sponsorship is that no matter who you get someone will hate the choice. And before you counter with some sort of beer sponsor that everyone would love I promise you there is someone out there who would hate it on the basis that alcohol is bad or some such reasoning. It doesn't matter who you get as a sponsor someone will have a problem with it.
In 2007 the team reached a four year sponsorship deal with Amigo Energy. Greenstar Recycling became the teams sponsor starting in the 2011 season, but the two parted ways in 2013 after Greenstar was purchased by Waste Management. Fans have been frustrated since that time expecting the Dynamo to quickly find a new sponsor. Instead the team spent last season with no sponsor and have spent this season without one. After the initial loss of Greenstar team President Chris Canetti had said that they hoped to find a local sponsor with 'roots' in Houston. As time went on that seemed less likely and the team began casting a wider net to find a sponsor. A good sponsor. Not a company that is seen as a pyramid scheme like Herbalife or a company that has come under fire for false marketing claims like Xango. The Dynamo is one of the top teams in MLS with a top notch front office who are fully capable of getting this team one of the top jersey sponsorship's in this league.
In case you haven't watched the Dash play this season something you should know it that Ella Masar is a beast. All over the field up top scoring goals and dropping back defending. To say that she gives 110% would surely be under selling her and what she gives on the field.
Tiffany Blackwell did this amazing interview with Ella Masar and if you don't have a box of tissues handy I would suggest you go and grab some before you press play.