Hello everyone and welcome to today's Jamie's Journal. We have had two games since the last installment, which means plenty of soccer talk in today's entry. Let's get it started off with a You Call the Shots similar to last week's with the Feature Player of the Day, RSL playmaker Andy Williams.
You Call the Shots
Today Andy Williams sits down and discusses some very important issues surrounding who his favorite players are, what people think of him and his moodiness, and how he likes to bury the ball in the back of the net on our 'keeper, DJ Countess. Sit back and prepare to laugh as the Jamaican International answers your questions.
How did you first get involved with soccer?
Andy Williams: My dad used to play soccer for Jamaica
If you weren't a professional soccer player, what would you be doing?
AW: Working a 9-5 in an office.
Describe yourself in one word.
How would your teammates describe you?
Favorite American soccer player and favorite non-American soccer player?
AW: Tab Ramos; Raul
What is the something most people don't know about you?
AW: Even though I don't smile a lot, I'm not moody
How does it feel being in the new Real Salt Lake commercial?
AW: Not bad, it was fun making it. The best part that never made it on the commercial was DJ Countess trying to dance for the camera. He looked like he was going to hurt himself dancing. It was also painful watching.
Proudest moment of your life off the field?
AW: Meeting my wife and the birth of my daughter Alexia.
Best player you have ever played against?
AW: George Weah
What CD do you have in your car CD player?
AW: John Legend's new CD
Best fast food joint
AW: Burger King
AW: BMW X5
AW: Ridiculously funny
McDonalds or In-N-Out
AW: McDonalds, In-N-Out tastes like I made it (Editor's note: I'm guessing that's not a good thing)
Mint chocolate chip or Cookies 'n' cream
Better way to score a goal: chipping the 'keeper or 'megging the 'keeper
AW: Chipping, just ask DJ
Kobe or Shaq
N*SYNC or Backstreet Boys
AW: Whichever one Justin Timberlake is in.
Jessica Simpson or Beyonce
AW: My wife
Pele or Maradona
AW: Gotta go with Maradona.
Real Salt Lake vs. Club Deportivo Chivas USA
As I promised last time, here is your game report from our match last week vs. Chivas USA. The game started off with Chivas USA having the run of play. They came out with a very high-paced and very high pressure defense that caught us off guard and was tough to handle. This proved to be costly as Arturo Torres broke free for a one-on-one vs. DJ Countess early in the half, resulting in a 1-0 lead for Chivas USA.
The game settled from there as both teams picked up the level and the game was back and forth with us finding our feet and getting some quality chances. The half came to an end with Chivas USA forward Matt Taylor getting sent off for a poor challenge from behind on Mr. Rustin Pierce. Rusty did well to keep his cool as the shot from behind was blatant and very reckless. However, Chivas USA coach Thomas Rongen and Real Salt Lake Coach John Ellinger had a quick conference and came to the conclusion that Chivas USA could play with 11 men since it was still a preseason game.
So, at the half the score was 1-0, and it was time for a complete line change as the entire RSL team came off and was replaced by 11 other players. From there on the game changed dramatically. We came out on fire and turned the momentum around, which was highlighted by a through ball from Kevin Novak to yours truly that put me in on a one-on-one with Chivas USA 'keeper Brad Guzan. I was able to slide it under the 'keeper before Ryan Suarez was able to catch up, and we tied the game up at 1-1.
Less than 5 minutes later, Chris Brown played a great ball to Leighton O'Brien in the box and right as Leighton was about to fire off a shot, he was pulled down for the penalty. Since Leighton has a disgustingly accurate shot, he was the one to take the PK and he scored to the keeper's right to make it 2-1.
The rest of the game was played mostly in the midfield with each team having to battle for possession and scoring chances. With the game nearing the end, Chivas USA got a very "friendly" call from the referee giving them a corner kick. After a scramble in the box for the loose ball, a Chivas USA forward pounced on the loose ball and finished a one-time shot into the corner to steal a tie. The game was a good game and sets the stage for a war when we play Chivas USA on May 7th in Los Angeles.
Real Salt Lake vs. Colorado Rapids in LaPorte, Texas
This past Friday we traveled to the great state of Texas to play in a preseason game against the rival Rapids in a city outside of Houston called LaPorte. The fans from LaPorte were very nice and showed us a lot of support in coming out to watch our game at their local high school on Saturday night.
As for the game, we started off slowly, giving up a free kick, which Eric Denton of Colorado capitalized on. He hit an absolutely sick ball that would have beaten any 'keeper in the world. It was one of those goals that you just tip your hat to and move on. As if giving up a goal four minutes in was bad, we gave up another golden chance just a few minutes later as Chris Henderson got through along the sideline and put in a perfect ball on Jeff Cunningham's right foot that made it 2-0 bad guys less than 10 minutes in.
After a poor start by us, we stepped it up and started going forward with confidence as Dipsy Selolwane had two good chances, including one that hit the inside of the post and somehow stayed out of the net. The half ended 2-0 and we were left with the question of whether or not we could show enough heart to mount a comeback in the second half.
Well, any doubts were quickly thrown out the window by Jason Kreis and the rest of our team. Jason was simply a different class in the second half as he scored his first goal of the night on a blistering shot from the top of the box that went just inside the post to cut the lead in half. We started gaining momentum and came close to equalizing, until finally Marlon Rojas sent in a sweet ball that found Jason's head to level the score at 2-2 with about 20 minutes to go. We pressured and pressured without giving up many chances but were unlucky and could not take the lead to win the game. We showed a lot of heart coming back and it made the trip worthwhile as we learned a lesson about ourselves that can't be taught on the training grounds about character and determination.
Where are they Now ...
I thought I would do a VH1-ish "Where Are They Now" segment regarding Brian Dunseth and his fashion brand Bumpy Pitch. In a previous journal we talked about his website www.bumpypitch.com and a lot of you asked about when the site would be up and running and when could we see some of the finished products. Well, your questions have now been answered as the site is up and running and will be completed soon. Since today's Feature Player of the Day was Andy Williams, I thought it might be cool if we showed a picture of Andy and myself sporting some of the Bumpy Pitch apparel. There you have it, today's "Where are they Now: Bumpy Pitch."
Check back in with us for next week's Jamie's Journal. Thanks for joining us today and take care everyone!