SNOW doubt about it!

My U17 team played a college showcase event in temperatures that hovered around 30- 35 degrees last week and it actually wasn't too bad. Our league has been postponing matches because of cold weather and forecasted cold weather for days now. And then there was our United States Men's National Team playing a World Cup Qualifier against Costa Rica in Denver, Colorado during a blizzard!

I love the idea of home pitch advantage. We took the Costa Ricans to the Mile High City to play at altitude and seasonably chilly weather only to be blessed with blizzard conditions. And they played on!

Have to credit the Costa Ricans for playing through it all. Great effort by them!  They could have folded and just played it out, gotten on their flight home and cursed the soccer gods for such rotton luck, but they battled and were quite dangerous at times.  At the 55 minute mark when it looked like the game might be called, the Costa Ricans were standing side by side with the Americans extolling the referee to allow them to play on!  Gotta love it!  That spirit and their effort made this an epic match to watch!

That's not to discount the United States effort for it was superior as well. Dempsy slamming home the rebound for a goal will be frozen into US soccer lore for all time. The images of players and referees with snow accumulating and freezing in their hair. Snow crews shoveling lines, injured players lying in the snow... pretty sure no one was flopping last night.  All memorable and in front of a sold out stadium crowd whose numbers will go from 19,000+  to 190,000+ as the tale of this game is recounted through the ages.

An extraordinary effort by the referee crew as well.  How they could see the lines at times is beyond me. Did the CR miss a foul in the PA that would have given the US a penalty kick?  Who knows?  Sure looked like the player was inside where the PA was supposed to be, but who knows?  Just thankful the visibility was good enough for the AR to see the offside on the Costa Rican goal... and for the CR to see the AR's flag up although I imagine they had buzzers on the flag and a communications system for the referees per usual.

I found myself yelling at the TV for the US players to "Clear it!"  or "Just boot it down to the other end!".... lol.... normally sacrilege, but last nights game was anything but normal. Far, far from it.

At the final whistle, The United States had earned a much needed 3 points... and a huge amount of respect for fighting through a blizzard to secure them. Well done gentlemen!

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