Game starts at 8 p.m. in Jacksonville, but we get the tailgate started early at NSC. Pop some tops and let's get to it.
The most intriguing news to come out of camp this week were perplexing comments from Donovan that put voice to the lackluster visuals we've been seeing from LD in MLS this season. They are, in case you hadn't read them, as follows.
I think all players reach a point in their career where it's natural to lose some of that hunger, that desire, to sort of break out or be a star. … That's a part that's always a challenge for athletes: trying to keep the passion alive while knowing it's still your job. There's no question that, at some point, probably sooner rather than later, I'll be pretty burned out. … There's a natural point where it's not as fun anymore, not as enjoyable and you still try to find ways to keep it enjoyable.Donovan found joy at Everton and, more importantly, whipped up an exuberant second wind that typically doesn't hit soccer players at 30. It's no secret why Donovan suddenly went from career form to the gutter in a month's time. The fire in the belly just isn't there, and for a guy who's summited MLS four times, why should it be? There is, aside from a comfortable bed and a convenient English-speaking LA culture, literally nothing more for Donovan in MLS. His comments worry me for his USMNT form merely because there is no switch to be thrown here for immediate effectiveness. He will need to find his legs on a daily basis before he does it with his Nats buddies.
My vote is to see a midfield at some point with Donovan, Corona and Torres. Seeing Gooch paired with Boca in the center will be salve for a position that's rotated guys for months, and I'm interested to see if Wondo's blistering domestic form ever truly translates to the big stage. Still waiting, still hopeful.
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