We close 2013 with a final pod, part wake for AVB, part renewing our vows with Luis Suarez. Andrew Luck ups the intelligence quotient, and we launch our “First Annual Biped of the Year” competition with Limited Edition Men In Blazers copies of EA Sports FIFA as prizes.
Happiness and health to all GFOPs over the holiday season.
In this latest pod, narrative flips, wheels within wheels, Ryan Seacrest, Olivia Newton John and a commentating masterclass from GFOP NBC’s Arlo White. The gents also need your help with a Guinness World Record attempt
We were honored to have the mighty Barry Hearn return to the pod to dispense lessons about football and life. With his mighty Leyton Orient soaring, Barry was on resplendent form. “Pressure,” he says, “is only felt by those who fail.”
A big win for the U.S. deserves a big pod. In our World Cup special, the Men in Blazers praise America, mourn England, and tag on a bonus interview with Bob Bradley.
Listen to the podcast here.
Ol’ Rog returns to the Crap Part of SoHo, a little worse for the wear after spending the last few weeks weathering the unrest in Brazil for the Confederations Cup. Still, he endures. On this week’s pod, our July 4th Special, the Men in Blazers praise this new, winning Brazilian squad, consider the end of Spain’s dominance (was it all just a mirage?), and finally acknowledge Roman Abramovich’s 10-year anniversary at Chelsea.
But the real focus of the pod is not Brazil, England, or even Tahiti for that matter. Here in the Land of the Free and the Home of the Beckerman, the real focus of our latest suboptimal offering is the mighty US. As the men’s national team gathers, via minivan, in San Diego for the Gold Cup, midfielder Stuart Holden joins the blazers for a quick chat about which American bakes the best apple pie. It’s exactly who you think.
Happy Independence Day, America. The Men In Blazers admit, you won that one fair and square.
There’s too much football, so says MLS commissioner Don Garber. But for the Men in Blazers, there’s not hardly enough. In this week’s pod, Michael and Roger consider it all — from these fine shores to Prussian dominance on the continent — before returning to recent developments in the English Premier League. It’s around the football world in 60 minutes of suboptimal podding.
We start things off in the US of A, dateline 2013. Michael and Roger hail the reported news that MLS will soon welcome a proper oil sheik to its mix of owners — all it needs now is a Russian oligarch with an affinity for miniature giraffes to be considered a bona fide top flight. And in keeping with the Stars ’n’ Stripes palette, Good Morning America’s Josh Elliott returns to the pod to discuss the agony and fleeting ecstasy of being an Arsenal supporter. Though he’s a recent convert, his apocalyptic prescription for the season’s conclusion shows he’s true Gunner through and through.
Old-school fan violence reared its ugly head this weekend, from the hallowed terraces of Wembley to the streets of Newcastle upon Tyne. Even hardened criminals from the depths of Her Majesty’s Prison Service were in disbelief over the audacity of one horse-punching Magpie supporter.
Somewhere amid this nonsense, football was played, and in this week’s suboptimal podcast the Men in Blazers consider it all — from the Chelsea–Man City FA Cup semifinal to Everton’s continued late-season form, courtesy of a win against relegation-threatened QPR that sent Harry Redknapp into his ritual comical rage. Now, with just a month left in this Premier League season, Michael and Roger handicap the race for Arsene Wenger’s coveted “fourth-place trophy.”
With Michael Davies away, Rog goes solo, welcoming USMNT Coach Jurgen Klinsmann to the pod. Fresh from the March of the Penguins win against Costa Rica, and a gutsy draw in the Azteca thunderdome, Klinsmann candidly discusses his own identity, management style, change strategy, and vision for American soccer’s future. He is also willing to broach the big topics: the heroic role Kyle Beckerman could play for the US team at World Cup 2014 in Rio.
Normal suboptimal Men In Blazers service will be resumed next week.
American soccer fans battling the Black Dog after last night’s eye-acher against Canada can find solace in the one thing our nation does astonishingly — producing a pipeline of the world’s finest follicularly challenged goalkeepers. In this week’s pod, the Men in Blazers sit down with USMNT and Everton’s Tim Howard for an expansive interview. The New Jersey native reflects on the American style of goalkeeping, shares how he first journeyed to England via Manchester United, and pegs Fabian Johnson as a young Von Trapp to watch. His confidence will be the perfect remedy on this day of midwinter discontent.
On happier matters, Michael and Roger mourn the passing of Lady Sybil and delve deep into the resurgence of their beloved FA Cup as the likes of Brentford, Luton, Oldham, and Leeds finally have their day of glory on the pod.
It was a snowy weekend of mid-season football in the Premier League, with the weather providing a cleansing effect for Clint Dempsey in Tottenham’s home meeting with Manchester United. After close to 93 minutes of disappointing form, Deuceface slotted home the equalizer as America, Andre Villas-Boas, Manchester City, and Under Armour all rejoiced. In this week’s Men in Blazers podcast, Michael Davies and Roger Bennett review the title race that’s back on, only because it was never really off. But it’s not only the glory of the top of the table that’s up for discussion. The Blazers also consider the relegation battle and bid sacked Southampton manager Nigel “Happyface” Adkins farewell.
To add a modicum of intelligent insight, Fox Soccer’s very own Rob Stone drops in to recap the Brek Shea saga and shed light on what life is like these days for a soccer- and cheerleader-lovin’ American at the network that gave us Cleatus the dancing robot.
Apparently, England’s antiquated past is the new present here in the U.S. The weekend offered a welcome return of everyone’s favorite aristocratic family, the Crawleys, of PBS’s Downton Abbey. We laughed, we cried, we gasped at the audacity of Sir Anthony’s bold sexual advances upon Lady Edith’s virtue. Elsewhere on the dial, the FA Cup made its network broadcast debut in suitably dramatic fashion, proving there’s still life in the old dog yet. Needless to say, both developments brought much joy to the Men in Blazers in this week’s pod, as Michael Davies and Roger Bennett borrow George Michael’s Sports Machine, traveling across the English countryside to recap these far-flung matches featuring the likes of Mansfield Town and Cheltenham. Get ready for a geography lesson, America.
Of course, the biggest story from the weekend was Luis Suarez’s handball game winner, dashing the hopes of Mansfield’s escort turned CEO. To examine just how Liverpool supporters can stomach their morally dubious striker, the Blazers welcome GFOP, comedian, and Liverpudlian John Oliver back to the pod to offer his thoughts and expectations for his beloved club. If you’re a fellow fan of the Reds, prepare to lower the bar.
As mentioned in this week’s pod. John Holdsworth, referee WWE style. Just what the Premier League needs.
We think it may be time to retire the generic Bill Simmons synth open. What do you think of the below ditty? Sir Ian kindly agreed to be our herald.
The football again provided superlative theater over the weekend. Goals, pitch invasions, blood, Scientological sightings — the Manchester Derby had it all, even if it did feature two teams neutrals love to loathe. In this week’s pod, Michael Davies and Roger Bennett brave the apocalyptic 12/12/12 to recap all the action from the Premier League, a place where, as Tottenham realized yet again, dropped points hurt more than a straight loss.
But the true attraction to this week’s pod is a guest appearance by FIFA Player of the Year finalist Alex Morgan. The U.S. striker has reached rock-star status since winning Olympic gold in London and joins the Blazers from the road during the final matches of the Fan Tribute Tour. Morgan offers her thoughts on her growing celebrity, playing at Old Trafford, nicknames, and the launch of the next professional women’s soccer league. Courage.
Send your telegrams via raven to the Crap Part of SoHo, reach us @MeninBlazers or drop an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can subscribe to the pod in iTunes or via our RSS feed.