The Clean Sheet: Forward thinking

that kind of stuff.

TCS SAYS: Unfortunately, no matter what happens, I just don't think it can top Shaq vs. Kobe. This thing has gotten downright unreal. Kobe accuses Shaq of dropping a million bucks in hush money for his extra-curricular activities and now Shaq fires back with: "I'm not the one buying love." Wow.

THE NEWS: Wayne Rooney opens his Manchester United career with a hat trick in Champions League and suddenly people are ready to name him the new George Best. While Sir Alex is trying to downplay the kid ("The important thing for me as a coach is for him to develop without too much press attention and public attention, and just to make him as ordinary as we can."), Fenerbahce coach Christoph Daum isn't helping with quotes like: "Maybe he will become the player of the century."

TCS SAYS: Same thing is going on in Chicago. Andy Herron fires home two in his second MLS game and suddenly it's like there was never a Roman Kosecki.

THE NEWS: I put FIFA-bashing right up there with inhaling Krispy Kremes as a fave hobby of mine, so when they get it right I need to give them their due. Nice job outta them for pledging a million bucks to help rebuild soccer programs on the islands of the Caribbean that got beat up with all the hurricanes.

TCS SAYS: I know it's impossible logistically with World Cup qualifiers and all, but too bad the U.S. and Mexico can't throw together a quick benefit game at the Rose Bowl or something to add to FIFA's donation to our CONCACAF mates (though the U.S. Soccer Federation did at least throw them a little cheese).

THE NEWS: In case you were worried that Cletus was done being Cletus, catch what he did last Saturday? Guy comes off the bench late, bangs in a goal, and then according to the New York Daily News, "He ran down the sideline, grabbed his crotch, gave [his manager] an angry look and tapped his wrist at an imaginary watch as if he was saying his entrance came late in the game."

TCS SAYS: I miss him. Seriously.

THE NEWS: Freddy, to the Cleveland Plain Dealer, on getting his driver's license next March: "I can't wait. I've got a couple of luxury cars picked out and I'm just trying to make up my mind which one I want."

TCS SAYS: Uh, rookie, little advice: probably not the quotes you want your teammates, or your opponents, reading in the media. Not everyone can afford to pick out a luxury car or two ... but they do all wear pretty sharp cleats.

FOR RECREATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY:

I know a guy, who knows a guy, who knows a guy ... so every week TCS is gonna put a little action on the action, if you know what I'm talkin' about. Each week in this space we'll track how last week went and what's on the books, so to speak, for the upcoming week.

LAST WEEK: I stink. Got the Wizards over Mile High Club correct, and bombed on the other four.

CURRENT BANK: -500

THIS WEEK: It's crunch time for the MLS teams, and it's crunch time for me to get out of this hole, so 100 apiece on: Columbus over the Fire, Dallas over the Revs, the Metros over D.C., Mile High Club over San Jose and L.A. over K.C.

GRAB A COLD BUD (OR AQUAFINA) AND PUT YER FEET UP:

WHAT I'LL BE WATCHING:

Saturday - BURN at REVS (7:30 p.m. ET on Fox Sports World): It says here the Revs are done, so my Burn need the full three points at the Big Razor.

Monday - CRYSTAL PALACE vs. FULHAM (3 p.m. ET Fox Sports World): Being the tactical genius that he is, Palace gaffer Iain Dowie has had his team play a wonderful bit of possum this season, lulling the entire Premiership into thinking his team stinks by ... stinking. Just wait till he lets the boys loose for real ...

Tuesday - "SCRUBS" (9:30 pm ET on NBC): Two words: Heather Graham.


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