Friday, September 26, 2008

Weekly Interview #7 - Jonathan Leathers

The player selected by the fan vote to be interviewed is Jonathan Leathers. He told me that his mom probably stuffed the ballot box. His mom let him know that he was in the fan vote and the fan question that was directed to him so I believe she may have influenced the voting. That is okay, she is a fan as well.

Part 1 - He answers the fan question: Did knowing Harrington and Holhbein help with joining the team? He talks about who he looks up to, his strengths, his hometown, Kansas City...

Part 2 - Jonathan answers his own question, talks about the dealing with adversity and says Hi mom!

I've had a lot of opportunity to watch Jonathan in practice but this was the first time I actually had the chance to talk with him. My observations of him in practice has always been that he is a talented, fast and hardworking rookie. Leathers has been thrown into the fire early and performed well. He is a rookie, he has made his mistakes in games but normally recovers quickly.

I was impressed in person as well.

Leathers closes the distance on Buddle...

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Maple Woods College 3 - 0 KCK CC

09/23/2008 - Maple Woods scored a couple minutes in but KCKCC seemed to control the play through most of the first half. KCKCC put too many of their shots wide or high but they certainly managed to keep the Maple Woods goalie busy. He made some good saves and talked his team through the entire time.

I was told a couple days before the game that this would likely be a physical game and they were right. There were hard tackles...

And even a takedown by a keeper.

With KCKCC dominating the first half and being down a goal, I expected them to come out extremely strong in the second half. While I think KCKCC came out ready to play in the second, I had misjudged Maple Woods. They had made a formation change at half and that seemed to frustrate KCKCC.

KCKCC got a few more shots off but the momentem had changed, Maple Woods started pressuring the KCKCC keeper more and more. I had seen this goalie a couple weeks earlier and was very impressed with his play. He kept his team in the game throught most of the second half. Here he guides the ball over the bar...

Securely wraps up a shot...

Here the KCKCC keeper cuts down the angle...

And forces the shot wide.

Eventually the pressure got through. After the second goal slipped through the team was a bit deflated. The keeper never gave up but made an error in clearing the ball which led to this easy shot for a Maple Woods attacker.
Overall it was a good game. It was an entertaining and hardfought game. Even one of the Wizards players stopped by and watched for awhile. If this game was an example of these two teams normal play, I plan to watch as many as possible.
For more photos like this one and the ones above, check out this gallery: Maple Woods vs KCKCC

Kansas City Wizards practice 09-25-2008 and press conference

The lineup should be the same as the last two games with the execption of Jack Jewsbury (who is sitting out with card accumulation). In the press conference today, Coach would not divulge who would be playing in place of Jack. Based upon what I saw I think it will be Kurt Morsink starting and Kerry Zavagnin and Kevin Souter will be there to back him up if needed. It does sound like both Kerry and Kurt will be on the bench. I assume that Claudio Lopez will be available as well. After that I am not sure who will be in the 18.

I saw Chance was practicing today and I was told he started back on Tuesday. I did not see anyone that was not practicing so it looks like everyone is healthy enough.
Myers at practice today.

I managed to interview Jonathan Leathers today. What a surprise it was. He knew I was coming to interview him because his mom told him about it. So I guess that means Jonathan's mom reads this blog at least once in awhile. Hi Jonathan's mom!!! I will have the interview up later tonight or first thing in the morning so please check back later.
Leathers in the LA game.

I also talked to Nelson Pizzaro a little while today so that will be some bonus coverage.

I finally posted an interview I did with Kevin Souter from last week. I started it last week so it shows up down below but please check it out as well.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Interview Poll #7

Mike of Down The Byline and I are continuing the weekly interview poll. We will setup interviews with a player of your choice (if possible). We have selected players that we think you may want to hear interviewed. The selection was based upon their performance in the last game, other newsworthiness and the probability that I can get them to stop for a few minutes to talk. Cast your vote and leave a comment with a question you would like to ask the player. We will of course ask additional questions as time permits. Go to the poll on the side of this blog and vote for who you want interviewed. You can also vote at Down The Byline and both votes count. One of the few times you can vote more than once. Leave questions in the comments to this post and at the post on Down The Byline. Let us know if it is a player specific question or a general question to any player. Be reasonably polite.

This week the players are:
Kevin Souter - open tryout success gets goal
Jonathan Leathers - starting defeneder 2 games in a row
Jack Jewsbury - holding mid takes PK

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Kevin Souter and David Beckham

I wanted to get this interview up late previosly but everytime I tried something kept getting in the way. It is a little out of date now but I think it is still worth it.

As you most likely know, Kevin Souter got his first MLS minutes when he subbed in for the Wizards against LA. Here is heading to the bench to get ready.

Kevin Souter interview.

After the game, I noticed Kevin walking off the field. He saw Beckham walking up behind him.

Kevin stopped and talked to Beckham.

As Kevin said in the audio, he is a big fan of Beckham. I think it was a big thrill to get into his first game and have his hero on the field really made it special.

At the end of this interview I said I would have to talk to him again in a week or so to talk about his first goal. Guess I got that one right...