Gentlemen’s Agreement – Is Raul Jimenez up to the Challenge

gentlemenIn yet another edition of the Gentlemen’s agreement, the aforementioned swaddled some cognac, lit some cohibas, and dug in to a rather lackluster start to the Liga MX season, among other topics.  Pour yourself a cognac and join in the fun.

 

John Jagou:  Joel, Chivas TV made its regular season debut and it was not terrible, according to the 20 people that watched it. I am sure that Liga MX was thrilled that one of their marquee games of the season was so readily available. But it may not be such a bad thing, because the quality of play from the first two weeks across the league, as my high society Spanish friends would say, ha sido paupérrimo.  The fans have noticed as well.  Attendance has been well below average

 

Joel Aceves:  Yon, the poor start of the Apertura, with very few goals to boot, was to be expected given the early start of the season. Seems like many teams are still on pre-season form. My beloved Goats are even playing a friendly game against Arsenal this Thursday. That said, I was trying to track Chivas TV numbers but have been unsuccessful. I’ve only managed to find estimates. Those being that for every 1 Chiva fan watching the clubs stream in Mexico there will be 20 Americanistas watching their club on television. The reports talk about Chivas TV having 500,000 people watching their stream compared to 10 million for free T.V. The numbers for the Tshirt presentation were at 190k and that was free. We must also add that Chivas TV reported that 46% of the people that watched their match against Monterrey were Rayado fans. Then there are the numerous complaints about the streaming qualities with the image freezing and the delayed sound.

Not all is lost though. Chivas owner Jorge Vergara already saidt hat if Chivas makes the league final the match will be on television. However, I am guessing that if Chivas TV streaming doesn’t pick up, as they are already offering 2 games for 1 specials, if they make the playoffs, their games will be shown on Television. Read more

Ep. 43: Dos a Zero Futbol Podcast – The show keeps on rolling

Joel and John talk about ChivasTV and its failures. Also talk about Argie press dissing on LigaMX and what that actually means. As well as general LigaMX talk. Rony busts in on the show to provide some more lolz. A viewer that was listening live made a derogatory comment to our fellow Americanista panelist to which was responded in kind. So nice live viewer interaction takes place.

Joins us each Wednesday night at 9pm Central time!

Gentlemen’s Agreement: 10/8 Consequences and Chivas TV

gentlemen

 

After a bit of a hiatus, the gentlemen have returned to discuss the upcoming Liga MX season, the best story out of the Eurocopa, and Chivas’ shame spiral.  Join Futmexnation’s Joel Aceves and soccerchronicle.com writer John Jagou for another edition of the Gentelemen’s Agreement.

 

Joel Aceves:  Time to talk Liga MX which will be kicking off soon and the new 10/8 Rule has begun to take effect. Former Pumas striker, and U20 player, David Izazola has retired at 24 years of age. He released a letter claiming Mexican players aren’t treated fairly in Liga MX. Looking at the recent draft about 200 Mexican players were left without a club. Is this something to worry about or its just growing pains as the 10/8 Rule gets cemented in the league.

 

John Jagou:  It would be interesting to see how many foreign players were left out in the cold. Jared Borgetti, a few weeks ago, lamented the fact that opportunities for Mexican players are finite, while foreign players get second, third, fourth, fifth chances. Couple that with the fact that national players have a finite number of days to work a contract out while foreign players are given a much bigger cushion.  What the rule does mean, is that Mexican players are going to have to expect a very high level of competition for roster spots. In that sense, we could see players rise to the occasion. That may not be such a bad thing.

 

JA:  There is no guarantee, however, that the players that do make it will be of high quality. The Premier League and the English national team has been our example as to which direction Mexico is headed. Well see a more dynamic league but a NT that struggles. It is my belief that the more nationals we have playing the more talent that we will naturally develop. The Argentine league expanded to 30 teams. They have a 3 player foreigner limit for their 23 man squads giving them a pool of 600 players for their national team to choose from. Liga MX with 18 clubs and about 10 Mexicans per team is looking at a pool of 188 players. And seeing how the 10/8 Rule extends to 2nd Division I feel that ultimately the league will fail to produce enough talent to make the Tricolor a top 10 team.

 

JJ:  There is no question that a deeper talent pool would generate a greater amount of above average players. But the two leagues you cite have different objectives than Liga MX. First off, the Premier league makes no accommodations for having a minimum number of English players. It is not uncommon to see starting XIs with nary an Englishman, and it is why English players are sold at a premium.

Mexico mandates a minimum of Nationals on a gameday roster. England does not. Where the two leagues are similar, is that they are both importer’s leagues. Which is in stark contrast to the other league you mentioned: Argentina. The business model for most Argentine clubs is to develop players and sell them in the market. Transfer fees are their life blood. There are hundreds, maybe even thousands of Argentines playing all over the world. Look around any league. I would bet that Argentines compose the majority of foreign talent from the Americas. Even more than Brazil. And that doesn’t even take into account the Argentine coaches that permeate every league on the planet. I am not a big fan of the rule either, but without it teams could field a roster of foreigners and naturalized foreigners. Look at Xolos a few years ago.

Moving on to the Eurocopa, Iceland’s performance in qualifying for Euro and their run in the tournament itself has turned the model of how talent is developed on its ear. Less people live in Iceland than those that live within 4 square miles of you. England was humiliated (I am not sure why, they were beaten by a better team) and US fans are second-guessing their models.

 

JA:  One word John: Consistency! This Iceland team was close to qualifying to the 2014 Brazil World Cup. You can say because of lack of a deeper pool they have had to maintain their same squad but that is a proven method of success. We have often talked about how recent World Cup champions all have one thing in common: a core group of players that play week in, week out, in the same squad. This is something England lacks given how their top teams are filled with mostly foreign born players. I’ve seen English Premiere League games were out of the 22 players on the field there are only 2 nationals.

As for the U.S. it seems like they have never been able to settle on a model even though they were quite good under Bruce Arena. Like Mexico the USSF’s fault lies in trying to find answers abroad.

 

JJ:  People seemed to have forgotten that Iceland knocked off Holland in qualifying. They were a good side, but their lack of depth did them in against the French. Those were some tired Vikings in Stade de France. Les bleus n’ont pas perdonné. Regardless, people should now begin to realize that a soccer player’s most important characteristic is not necessarily being athletic. In a sport controlled by a foot, there will always be imprecisions. Technique, awareness, and intelligence should be the boxes ticked before athleticism. I am not saying athleticism isn’t important, but it should not be what coaches look for first.  Oscar Pareja, the FC Dallas coach who has had a lot of success with his youth system, says it takes him a year to eliminate new players’ bad habits.  He is all about teaching skill first.  A lot of good players get overlooked in the US because they do not pass the eye test.

As for England, they, like Mexico had a lot of individual players who had fine seasons. But, like Mexico their coaching did them in. In this case, Roy Hodgson did little to adjust to the game. JCO over-adjusted. But you are right. Both Mexico and the US have the pieces, they just need someone to see it.

 

JA:  Speaking of pieces the Mexican Football Federation has decided to bet on Juan Carlos Osorio’s project. Which leads us to two interesting questions. The first: will he continue to call up the European based players that broke down on him and second will he decide for a more manageable Liga MX squad? This comes along with the introduction of the *10/8 rule which has already given this upcoming Apertura season a record number of foreign player signings…and the transfer window has yet to close!

 

JJ:  If Any Liga MX team with a base of Mexican players has success, then Osorio has to make that group the base of the national team. That will be a big if, though, as clubs appear to be facilitating the signing of foreign players. It is one of the reasons why I believe the national team’s best hope lies with a strong Chivas team. But as we both know, you more than me, if there is one team that is mismanaged more than Mexico, it is Chivas.

 

JA: This is how my beloved Chivas is currently being managed. The club has recently begun ‘restructuring’ and decided to release General Manager Jaime Ordiales and physiotherapist Rafael Ortega from their positions which duties will now be handled by the technical director Matias Almeyda! Now, I can understand the GM not being needed but Ortega is a former Chiva player and renowned doctor that specializes in football injuries. He loves the club to the point that he offered to still be of service. Seems a bit absurd to be placing so much responsibility on Almeyda who will leave if the right offer comes along.

We must also keep in mind that Chivas CEO Jose Luis Higuera doesn’t have any football experience and is even on record admitting to this. So, it’s scary to think what can happen if the team has a bad season or there is a falling out with Jorge Vergara. In the past the club was able to recover from slip ups because there was staff that cared about the team. People like Jose Luis ‘Guero” Real that Vergara could approach for advice. Now, we just have Mati as the only one that knows futbol and two wildcards in Higuera and Vergara. It’s a ticking time bomb.

 

JJ:  And you didn’t even mention the best part: with all their dysfunction and incompetence, the club still maintains a strong allegiance with their fans. So Chivas rewarded their loyalty by forcing them to pay to watch home games.

 

JA:  Agreed John, even more shameful is Higuera’s claim that because Chivas is fighting a relegation battle that the Club can’t afford to lose money by showing their games for free. It is a weak excuse given how much the club makes on television deals and sponsorships. As it stands the club is in danger of losing money on that front. Their main sponsor BIMBO won’t be renewing their contract after the clauses 2017 season whilst other sponsors will be waiting to see how Chivas TV plays out before signing any deals.

Higuera went on to say ‘the Mexico were everything is free doesn’t exist anymore.’ That really shows the disconnect Higuera, a banker and Americanista, has with the clubs fans the majority of which are poor. When I would visit family in Guadalajara my uncle would joke about his brother in law not feeding his family so he could have enough money to go to the stadium. And there’s some truth to that. Chivas fans haven’t gotten anything for free their support through thick and thin has kept Chivas relevant. Let us remind Higuera that football became popular when the rich lost possession of the sport.

 

JJ:  It sounds like you are prepping the countdown clock for when the Chivas takeover by Carlos Slim becomes a reality. The pieces are starting to come together. Chivas appears to be negotiating almost exclusively with Grupo Pachuca (Of course, the cynic in me says that they are the only ones who are actually producing enough local talent to keep and sell) for players. At what point does Telmex or Sanborns become the shirt sponsor? How quickly will Chivas be airing games on Claro Sports? Those are the logical next steps. Chivas will become a Slim property whether we like it or not. But by the sounds of things, it appears that any option is better than the current reality.

I feel for Chivas fans, but they haven’t had much to cheer for anyway in the liguilla era.  3 League titles in 40 years is a sobering statistic if you are a goat with a penchant for red and white stripes.

 

JA:  That’s a bold statement John. And I agree, it would be an improvement over Vergara whose overall history as club owner has left much to be desired. My one concern with a possible new owner will be on who will be appointed to manage the club. I’ve always been an advocate for allowing former players to remain involved with the institution to which they have dedicated their careers.

That said, this season will be key for Chivas as Higuera’s plan for the club begins to unfold. This Sunday Chivas will have a very important match against Veracruz: Liga MX Copa de Campeones which will earn the winner a spot in CONMEBOL’s Copa Libertadores which can help Chivas TV gain subscriptions. It would also be Almeyda’s trophy as manager.

 

JJ:  I certainly hope things go well for Almeyda, even with all the extra responsibilities.  I hear he is also the new podólogo.  But a 3-game slide could make things very uncomfortable for him. His boss, after all, fired a coach despite the fact the team was 2nd in the table. But like I mentioned earlier, Vergara will be divesting his holdings in Chivas sooner than later, when pen is put to paper on his deivorce decree.  It will be interesting to see when we meet the new boss, will it be same as the old boss.

But I am sure you won’t get fooled again.

 

JA:  Nope.  Hasta la proxima, Jon.

 

JJ:  Keep the dream alive, Joely.

 

Listen to the Dos a Zero Futbol podcast every Wednesday Live at 9ish PM CT.  Download the podcast on itunes. 
Follow John Jagou on Twitter @jjagou
Follow Joel Aceves on Twitter @joelyaceves

 

 

Ep. 42: Dos a Zero Futbol Podcast – Euro talk, CR7 vs Messi, 10-8, MLS and more.

cascaritacholaAn enjoyable night of chat, with another appearance by Jonny Rico. We began talking a bit of Euro and how CR7 has took his team to the final. We noted the success CR7 is having and the bad news Messi is going through. The 10-8 rule came up again as a topic and Jonny gave us his take on it and how it could be fixed.

We then got into a huge debate about MLS with our man Fernando. This was a prolonged debate about the validity of MLS, the Giovanni issue and more hardheaded opinions. ROFL.

We also had a viewer question about a 5v5 cascarita match between our podcast and the Mexican Soccer show. That was a fun idea.

Another good episode. Be sure to check it out.

Ep. 41: Dos a Zero Futbol Podcast – ChivasTV fail, USMNT/Jurgen possession, Messi failure and Copa America.

#ChivasTVA bloody good time on the Dos A Zero podcast mates. Ragging on ChivasTV streaming failure and high prices was fun. Guadalajara sound clips were in effect. We also had fun discussing Messi and his emotional retirement announcement, right after missing a penalty and losing the Copa America final. Next time he may want to take a few days to clear his mind and think about his decision. Emotional Messi is emotional.

We also talk about the USMNT/Jurgen’s response to Fernando Regino’s question on possession tactics. We have talked previously about the “cat and mouse” game of giving the opponent possession and luring them to bring lines forward, with the purpose of releasing a lethal counter attack. This is apparently not what Jurgen’s intention was, during the Copa. Everyone wants to have possession, and a great first touch. 😀

Tune in live on Wednesdays at approximately 9pm Central on our Youtube channel and follow us on twitter for podcast announcements.

Ep. 40: Dos a Zero Futbol Podcast – More Fracaso discussion, ARG owns USA, Chile moves on to final and more.

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We continue to talk the Failure that was Mexico’s 7-0 loss to Chile. We also include the USMNT into the discussion as they fall to Argentina 4-0 with no shots during the entire match.

Joel brings on the hate on Juan Carlos Osorio, and we have some good discussion as to how he has really performed as DT and what should happen next.

We talk USMNT and how they failed to show up vs Argentina. Klinsman gets no heat and is seen laughing during his post game press conference. He made it to Semis so he is good. It is interesting how on the show, “the herd” the question is asked why no one is questioning him after a bad showing vs Argentina.

An interesting show with more level heads than the Siete a Zero podcast made prior. 🙂

Make sure to catch it on iTunes if you missed the show last night.

Ep. 39: Siete a Zero Futbol Podcast – Embarrassment!

OHumillacionne of the worst Golizas in Mexican history deserved a post game podcast discussing the fatal events. Take a listen. In moments like these, one cannot be too upset, but as this gentleman in the picture, laugh and find humor.

Day 1, Goliza Historica!

Ep. 38: Dos a Zero Futbol Podcast – Mexico avoids Argentina! Vamos al Angel!

Dos A ZeroShort on protagonistas, but we podcasted anyways. Talking how Mexico performed vs Venezuela, opinions on Juan Carlos Osorio’s coaching and lineups/rotations, as well as the future for Mexico in this tournament. Mexico has a huge challenge in Chile and this will be the biggest game for JCO as head coach. I feel Chile will not want to lose to a CONCACAF team and will come out fighting.

Now on the topic of avoiding Argentina, yes it’s news, but nothing to overstate. Everyone wants to beat the best, and I would love for Mexico to face Argentina. I just would love for that epic matchup to be in the Final. Selfishly, I am not ready to see Mexico play Arg in quarters and potentially see them bow out slightly early. Argentina is a special type of opponent. One who has eliminated Mexico in a couple of World Cups. It is time for revenge and Copa America Centenario a big stage in which to do it.

Ep. 37: Dos a Zero Futbol Podcast – Copa America is underway!

Mexican vs Uruguayan fans :DCopa America is what we are about right now. Mexico beat Uruguay in its first match and we talk about how salty Uruguay is, as well as Mexico tactics, drama and Rafa maybe not being such an old man. Rafa is being played in a position where they are protecting him and he seems to be doing well. The goal especially helped his cause.

These results have also helped Juan Carlos Osorio’s cause as head coach. Many skeptics are now being slowly persuaded that JCO is doing good and possible great things. Especially after his win vs Uruguay. Some still won’t be convinced unless he wins Copa America. 😀

We also discuss the tournament as a whole and some of the blunders made. Also the rumors that the Gold Cup and Copa America could be combined. South Americans do not like this idea, but the money is what could sway the interest. Complaints that the tourney is catered to Mexico or that Copa America is a CONMEBOL tournament and not CONCACAF could just disappear with the right amount of zeros on a check.

One last topic we covered was the mentality of South American teams having an attitude of superiority against Mexico and CONCACAF teams. So when they lose to Mexico it’s extra painful and hard to accept. This is similar to how Mexico feels when they lose to the USMNT seeing that soccer is not the main sport in the US. Interesting thought that we touch on.

 

Ep. 36: Dos a Zero Futbol Podcast – America is still on someone’s mind. :D

manoIn this episode that took place on Wed Night, day before the Liguilla Final partido de Ida, we talked America, America and more America. With a mix of Arbitro. This episode of the podcast was cut short, but contains a good hour 2 panelists going against the sole Americanista on the whole Samudio drama as well as lack of quality reffing.

The hand ball was discussed, the notion that the ref helps America was also discussed. It was a passionate discussion between the 2 sides.

Also we began some discussion on the 10-8 rule in LigaMX and more. Tune in on iTunes.

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