The Five Billion Person Party

Notes of a wandering American soccer fan

Pulling a reverse Blanco — baseless Donovan speculation

Posted by steigs on January 14, 2008

It’s the transfer window market and the papers, particularly the British ones, are alive with speculating, gossip, and wishful thinking.  The BBC even offers a daily round-up, as a public service. 

So I was surfing through the comments on Goff’s blog today and, among random claims about DC United signings and debates about players acquiring British accents, came across this beauty:


1)Any truth to Landon “Landy” Donovan heading to Club America (Mexico)? spoken rumors this morning on a spanish radio show…

Ah, that’s perfect — big name player, loosely sourced, makes little sense.  We all know Donovan is deeply attached to California.  He gets plenty of criticism for not wanting to play in European leagues, something many fans would develop his immense talent further — or at least toughen him up more.  What are the chances he’d pick up and head to Mexico City instead?  Sure, he speaks Spanish (good for him, by the way) but, jeez, the Mexican fans hate him.  (That said, if there’s anything to this, I’d expect to hear about it on the excellent Sideline Views blog first…)

Oh, but let’s pretend for a minute this was actually in the works.  It would actually have the potential to further bring together American and Mexican soccer cultures.  It would be…a reverse Blanco!  Bringing Blanco’s anti-hero act to the Chicago Fire has been a great success on the field and an even greater one off the field, bringing Mexican league fans to MLS games to see “Mr. White.”  If we sent Donovan down to Club America, the big money glamor team of the Mexican league, he’d be anti-hero for them.  If Landon played to his potential, I’m sure he’d do well down there too, which might nudge a bit more respect for American players from Mexico.  And more English-speaking American fans might go looking for Mexican league games on television….

 Imagine a CONCACAF Champions League final between a Club America with Donovan and a Chicago Fire with Blanco!

 Oh, well.  Never going to happen.  I expect Landon to stay in California, maybe moving back to the ‘Quakes if playing for the Los Angeles Beckhams gets to be too much for him.

 But here’s another thought.  I know an American player who’d be perfect for the Mexican league — Clint Dempsey.  He’s a good Texan boy, he understands our neighbors to the south.  He’s doing too well in Europe right now but maybe in four or five years, after a good run in the EPL, Club America will come calling for him.  And he’s got just the attitude to embrace the anti-hero role and play it to the hilt….


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