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About Blake Owen

FFG is run by Blake Owen, a sports fan who happens to like soccer in addition to traditional American sports. Blake has an MA in Teaching English as a Second Language and lives in Frisco, TX. He teaches ESL in the Dallas-Ft. Worth area. Blake can be reached at blakeowen@futbolforgringos.com.
Website: http://www.futbolforgringos.com
Blake Owen has written 308 articles so far, you can find them below.


Potential USA Formations for the World Cup

The absence of starting striker Charlie Davies poses a riddle for Bob Bradley: does the manager use his traditional 4-4-2 or find a new formation? The likely solution is moving Clint Dempsey into Davies’ spot and keeping the 4-4-2. Unfortunately, there is no clear-cut backup for Dempsey’s right midfield position. Stuart Holden may have been [...]

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World Cup Roster: Locks, Bubble Watch, and Where’s Charlie?

The provisional World Cup roster has been announced. We’ll address the big news first: why no Charlie Davies? Say It Ain’t So, Charlie The official company line, straight from Bob Bradley, is that “he (Charlie) hadn’t been given full medical clearance” from his club, Sochaux. This statement, however, does not come without a conflict of [...]

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USA Names Provisional World Cup Roster: No Charlie Davies

The following players have been chosen to participate in the United States’ pre-World Cup training camp beginning this Saturday, May 15th. GKs: Tim Howard, Brad Guzan, Marcus Hahnemann FBs: Jonathan Bornstein, Steve Cherundolo, Jonathan Spector,  Heath Pearce CBs: Jay DeMerit, Oguchi Onyewu, Carlos Bocanegra, Clarence Goodson, Chad Marshall Mids: Michael Bradley, Maurice Edu, Ricardo Clark, [...]

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Gringos Around the ‘Net

It’s time for another edition of Gringos Around the ‘Net. Yanks Abroad published an interview with Clarence Goodson, who should end up as the USMNT’s third-choice center back (behind Oguchi Onyewu and Jay DeMerit). ESPN tracked down the US players from the 1994 World Cup squad.  The team competed in an era when there wasn’t [...]

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Holden Returns, Beasley on His Way Out

Stuart Holden, out since February with a broken leg, came on as a substitute in Bolton Wanderers’ final match, making his return in the 66th minute.  According to ESPN’s match report, he appeared fit and even “sent a shot narrowly wide of the post in the 70th minute.” Holden will look to build on the [...]

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The Universality of ‘Coach Speak’

Two years ago Yahoo Sport’s Michael Silver, perhaps inspired by Brendan Fraser’s spot-on interview impression, documented the ‘coach speak’ of Patriots coach Bill Belichick and how his manner of speaking had pervaded the entire team. A few choice examples: Junior Seau – “We work one day at a time. We’re working today so we can [...]

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Two Gringos Start the Weekend Off Right

Two Americans who suit up in Germany recorded influential results this morning. Steve Cherundolo helped assure his club, Hannover 96, of an 8th straight season in the Bundesliga.  Hannover’s 3-0 victory condemned Vfl Bochum to the 2nd division while simultaneously ensuring their own safety. Michael Bradley’s Borussia Monchengladbach, who cleared the relegation zone a few [...]

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Site Update and Weekend Matches

Site Update As the World Cup nears, we’re continuing to add to the static portion of the site (tactics, terminology, etc).  To that end, here are new Player Profiles for midfielders Benny Feilhaber and Stuart Holden. Gringos to Watch This Weekend A few American internationals will head into their club’s last match with a bit [...]

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Promotion, Relegation, and Gringos Part the Third

With one round of matches remaining, all the English Premier League’s honors are known save one – 1st place. What’s Locked-in: Champions League Participants: Chelsea, Manchester United, Arsenal, Tottenham Europa League Participants: Manchester City, Aston Villa, Liverpool Relegated teams: Hull City, Burnley, Portsmouth Chelsea and Manchester United, 1st and 2nd, are still separated by one [...]

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Using Prior Lineups to Predict USA’s World Cup Roster

On June 1st, Bob Bradley will send FIFA his 23-man roster for South Africa (injured players can then be replaced up to a day before the squad’s first match). A training camp starting May 15th will help him pare down his selections. This will be Bradley’s 5th tournament as manager, and he’s shown remarkable predictability [...]

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Tactical Trends and the USA

Like all sports, soccer is beholden to shifts of philosophy. Zonal Marking recently chronicled the latest rise of the 4-3-3 formation. In short, the article posits that teams of the early 2000s were obsessed with employing a physical, defensive midfielder (unimaginatively termed a ‘destroyer’) in conjunction with a creative, attack-minded foil (the ‘creator’), using the [...]

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History of Soccer – Antiquity

Football is as old as the world … People have always played some form of football, from its very basic form of kicking a ball around to the game it is today. – Sepp Blatter, President of FIFA Blatter believes modern soccer can trace its development to ancient China. The picture at the top of [...]

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