I’m Dustin “El Jefe” Christmann and I am an FC Dallas fanatic from Day One of the Dallas Burn. I’m also a hater. I used to yell mean, hateful things from the stands at the Cotton Bowl and Toyota Stadium, but now, I’m sharing my id with you to help guide you, my fellow FCD fans, in your enjoyment of Major League Soccer on TV.
Normally, a week with two points in two games isn’t a cause for optimism, especially when one of them came last weekend in Fortress Frisco.
On the other hand, the other one came in Philly, where the Union just doesn’t drop points. And Philly doesn’t drop points often after scoring first. And FCD rolled in with a heavily rotated lineup. So… not bad!
Because you know want to see it again, here’s Joya’s goal:
EL SUPERCLÁSICO DEL SIGLO (de la semana)
Los Angeles FC vs. Real Salt Lake (FS1 and Apple TV+ free game, Sunday at 7:00)
This week actually has a few good choices for this slot. I’ll hit one potential choice later, but I’m going with this one because
- It has ✨PLAYOFF IMPLICATIONS✨.
- This column cares more about the Western Conference because that’s where FCD is.
- It’s on FS1 and is free for Apple TV+ subscribers, not just us big spenders who paid $70 for MLS Season Pass. I’m looking out for you, the hard-working FCD fan.
LAFC is famous for telling anyone and everyone that they want to win everything. Let’s look at the report card for 2023:
- CONCACAF Champions League: ❌
- Lamar Hunt US Open Cup: ❌
- Leagues Cup: ❌
- Supporters Shield: ❌
- El Tráfico: ✅
- Favorite MLS club of celebrities: ❌
And now we can add…
- Campeones Cup: ❌
On Wednesday night, LAFC played Tigres in one of MLS’ multitude of competitions that they’ve set up with Liga MX, this one between the MLS Cup champ and the Liga MX champ. (I’m expecting MLS and Liga MX to announce a Showdown of Second Place any day now.)
To their credit, LAFC drew with Tigres and only lost on penalties, but an L is an L. Couldn’t happen to a nicer bunch.
At least they get to stay home when RSL comes to town. And I still can’t believe that any team coached by Pablo Mastroeni is as high in the standings as they are.
Then again, maybe he wasn’t the problem in Colorado. It seems that coaches have a habit of blossoming after they leave the shadow of the Suncor refinery — Gary Smith, Óscar Pareja, and now, Pablo Mastroeni? This would genuinely shake my worldview.
Jefe the Hater’s rooting pick: Draw. And frankly, such a result would be befitting of the crab bucket that is the Western Conference in 2023.
Little Brother Game of the Week
Colorado Rapids vs. Austin FC (Apple TV+ free game, 8:30)
Friends, you have no idea how hard I struggled to not make this game the Sickos Game of the Week. The only reason why I didn’t is because there’s an even better choice. But this game will be pure sickos-grade in its own right.
Colorado has already been eliminated, Little Brother Green is in 12th and is dropping like a rock, and the air in Commerce City will probably make you sick. (That last one is pure conjecture on my part, but it seems like the refinery has a toxic release at least once every other month.)
Both teams came into the season with higher expectations, to be frank. Little Brother Green expected to compete for the Western Conference title. Colorado expected to not be their usual 30 varieties of ass.
Both failed miserably.
Rapids fans are used to suffering terrible season after terrible season out of sight and out of mind of the league, the media, and their own ownership, but this is a new one for the Broccoli enthusiasts who have been on the following ride:
2021 – Hurray, we’ve got an expansion team! We’ve got McConaughey! We’ve got a stadium in Austin’s second downtown! We’re the toast of MLS!
2022 – Same as 2021, but we’re good now!
2023 – Oh no, we stink again! Hey, where did everyone go?
But maybe FCD and Little Brother Orange will salvage your season by drawing on Saturday night, which would deliver the prestigious Copa Tejas title to the broccoli. Go celebrate in the parking lot at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park and give Josh Wolff an extension.
Jefe the Hater’s rooting pick: Colorado. At least Little Brother Green can’t drop a seventyburger on the Rapids, which already makes them better than the Broncos.
“Let’s Pretend to Care About the Eastern Conference” Game of the Week
Columbus Crew vs. Philadelphia Union (MLS Season Pass, 6:30)
The Supporters Shield and the top spot in the Eastern Conference are both all but wrapped up by FC Cincinnati, but below them, you’ve two points separating Orlando in second and New England in sixth. Between those teams are Columbus and Philadelphia, who are sitting at third and fourth with 50 and 49 points, respectively.
Back before the MLS media machine started devoting itself to All Things Messi, this would be the sort of matchup they’d hype up. It’s two really good teams and it’s at the East Coast-friendly hour of 7:30.
In the Messi era, it needs no hype.
And for a change, I’ve got nothing hateful to say about either team. Honestly, this’ll be a good game with ✨ PLAYOFF IMPLICATIONS ✨. Watch it.
Jefe the Hater’s rooting pick: Draw. Both should stay behind Orlando, however.
Sickos Game of the Week
New York Red Bulls vs. Chicago Fire (Apple TV+ free game, 6:30)
This game is like when you see some band that was big back in the day performing in front of a sparse, mostly disinterested crowd at a county fair somewhere. Both these teams have spent time at the summit of Major League Soccer.
OK, OK, in Chicago’s case, it was back when Britney Spears was still known for selling records, not… doing whatever she’s doing now.
But now, they’re both down below the playoff line, tied at 34 points, and yeah, they’re only three points out of the playoffs, but time’s running short and frankly, if either one made it, it would be a glaring example of “there are too many teams in the playoffs.”
Frankly, both teams are crap and despite the ✨ PLAYOFF IMPLICATIONS ✨, there’s no good reason to watch this game unless you’ve got a family member playing for either team or you’ve got money on it. And if you’ve got money it, you’re likely a degenerate who bets on NFL preseason games.
But rather than dwell on the self-harm that would result from watching this shambling pile of mediocrity which will be played in front of friends and families at Red Bull Arena, here are some other alternative activities you could be doing instead:
- Watch almost any other sporting event.
- Talk to your friends and family.
- Cook a nice dinner for yourself and your family.
- Go through your closet and pick out clothes that you want to donate to charity.
- Spend a couple of uplifting hours on social media.
- Watch some Phil Hartman sketches from SNL on YouTube.
But whatever you do, don’t watch this game. And don’t bet on it, either. Have some self-respect.
Jefe the Hater’s rooting pick: The Red Bulls, I guess. As always, the Fire must go down, and they must go down hard.
Good Guys Game of the Week
Houston Dynamo vs. FC Dallas (MLS Season Pass, 7:30)
First, a little bit of business.
[deep mournful sigh]
OK, with that out of the way, I absolutely loathed the Open Cup Final on Wednesday night. I am so happy that FCD had their rescheduled game against Philly overlapping it because if I had seen the whole thing, I would’ve gone Elvis on my TV and shot a hole right in the middle of it. But I don’t have Elvis Presley money, so I can’t be doing that.
I loathe it because Little Brother Orange won something. I loathe it because they’ve now won this trophy TWICE since the last time FCD even beat another MLS team in the Open Cup.
I loathe it because it reminds me that Nico Estévez, by all appearances, would rather spend the day having a colonoscopy and a root canal on the same day than actually put out a lineup that is in any danger of advancing in the Open Cup.
It infuriates me.
The Lamar Hunt US Open Cup is named after the patriarch of not only the Hunt family but of Dallas soccer. It is a competition that this club has been a part of for all 28 years of its history, and FC Dallas might be the only club in MLS that can say that. It is very much part of this club’s fabric and this is how you treat it, Nico?
But enough complaints about the boss. We’re here to shit on Little Brother Orange, the original little brother. Do you know what’s great about Little Brother Orange? Nothing.
“We’ve got more trophies than you do in Frisco.”
You clowns won the first two because you got a fully-baked Supporters Shield winner from San Jose. Then you won an Open Cup by beating Philly, who as we all know is a formidable opponent in cup finals. And now, you won another cup by beating Miami without Lionel Messi and Jordi Alba?
Yes, we know that sometimes, the sun shines on a dog’s ass some days, but that’s the only way you bunch of dog’s asses ever win anything.
Saturday night, the Kings of Texas are coming to the stadium that Houstonians actively avoid like they avoid vegetables and after 90 minutes, they’ll head back home, having vanquished your third-rate club yet again. You’re the little brothers and you will forever be the little brothers.
You dodged one Argentine on Wednesday night, but another one’s coming on Saturday to throw your sorry asses on the grill.