The Iceberg


Nov 7, 2023
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Friday, December 16, 2022 12:13pm Golden Valley, MN

You know what word I hate? Moist. Its a horrible word. Yes, its descriptive and all that but I still hate it. I wiped my hands on my pants. Then the horrible thought occurred to me that I’d left sweat marks that would freeze. I looked down and, thankfully, no marks.

I’d better get inside before my sweaty hands get frostbit. Minnesota in December isn’t very nice. Its 15ºF with a decent wind.

“Well, bombs away,” I mumbled to the departing taxi. I turned and yanked the door open.

“Hello, sir, how may I help you?” The young woman at the front desk said, looking up at me.

“Uh, I have an appointment with Manny, Alex, and Amos,” I said.

“Name, please?”

“Eric Sandberg.”

Click, click, click with her mouse. “Yes, Mister Sandberg is here.” Pause. “Yes.” Pause. “Yes, I’ll tell him.” Then to me: “Can I get you a coffee or water? Tea?”

“No, I’m good, thanks.” Honestly, I’d probably slop any beverage all over myself right at this moment. Need to steer clear of anything moist right about now.

“Have a seat, they’ll be right out,” she said as the trio entered.

We exchanged pleasantries about the weather. They inquired about my flight and hotel as they led me through the offices.

“You’re bigger than I thought you’d be,” Alex DeRosa, Vice President of Soccer Operations said as we walked past a set of conference rooms. We didn’t stop at the conference rooms.

“Yeah, I get that response sometimes,” I replied as we stopped again.

“One sec,” Manny Lagos, Chief Soccer Officer, said. He stepped into his office and reappeared with his parka.

“Really?” Amos Magee, Vice President, Youth Development said. “I guess I’d seen you that last season, your last season. Which year was it?”


“Yeah, 2019 with the Quakes.” Amos stopped and grabbed his coat. “I think we beat you twice that year, didn’t we?. That was a rough one for you guys, yeah?”

“Yeah to both.” This small talk was making my hands moist again. “Then Covid hit and I decided it was the perfect time to retire. End the suffering.”

“Then you got your certifications,” Amos continued. “And coached at DC United.”

“Yeah, Jimmy got me in.”

“Good old Jimmy,” Amos agreed. “He still there?”

“Last time I checked.”

Alex grabbed his coat.

I hate small talk.

“Didn’t we go over this on Zoom?” Manny said. I suppressed a smirk. “Alright, Eric. I’m not about to make you sell yourself in a conference room. Let’s drive over to the stadium for a tour. At least a tour of the warm parts. Then I think we’ll drag you up to Blaine to see the training facilities. I think we’ll have decided if we want to work with you once we’ve taken you around and, also, I hate interviews.”

MNUFC had missed the play-offs the previous season and sacked their one and only manager, Adrian Heath. The Minnesota franchise had joined Major League Soccer for the 2017 season. They weren’t promoted. There is no promotion or relegation in the USA. Its weird; they call it soccer here.

The stadium is right on Interstate 94 in Saint Paul which is a 20 minute drive east of the Golden Valley headquarters. At least if there is no traffic. In the afternoon, there was no real traffic in Minneapolis. The Twin Cities, as they are fondly known around here, are separated by the Mississippi River. You have to drive past downtown Minneapolis to get to Saint Paul from Golden Valley.

So we talked about the sport, theories of play, the low block, gegenpressing, and the latest fad sweeping outward from Brazil - Dinizball. We talked about England, Italy, Germany, and France. I’d played in all these countries. Well, the English Championship with Derby, Serie B with Parma, Bundesliga 2 with Schalke, and got relegated from Ligue 1 with Reims. We talked about San Jose where I spent five seasons. We talked college soccer, too, as we’d all played.

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The stadium is really nice, really new. The training facilities up in Blaine were top-notch. Blaine is a northern suburb and the team played there at National Sports Center which boasts the most pitches in the Americas prior to joining MLS. Like all of the Americas — north, south or in between. It also has hockey rinks — Minnesota is the State of Hockey, and a velodrome.

Then it was all over and they dropped me off at my hotel as the sun set. Now if you’re not from Minnesota, you wouldn’t know how early this was. The sun sets in December at 4:30pm.

I flopped onto the bed in my room and stared at the ceiling.

After a minute my phone bleeped. It bleeped again. I answered.

“Hi, mom.”

“How’d it go, sweetie?”

“Fine, I guess.” I sat up.

“When will you know?”

“I don’t know.” The sunset was pretty out my hotel window. “I’ll know when I know, I guess.”

“Are you still feeling up for dinner? Your brother and them are all available.”

“You bet,” I said. “Where?”

“Where do you want to go, honey?”

“Let Ben decide.”

“Okay, we’ll text you. Should we pick you up?”

“No, Mom. I’ll Uber.”

“Bye, love you. Can’t wait to see you.”

“Love you, too. See you soon.”



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BanhMi.jpg"I still can't f***ing believe it," my brother said, mouth full of his Banh Mi sandwich. We'd met at his favorite Vietnamese restaurant.

"Oh, Ben," Mom said. "You and your swearing."

"But seriously? Can you believe it?, Mom?"

"I haven't gotten the job, yet," I said.

"Bro, its just f***ing cool," my older brother said.

"Uncle Eric?"

"Yes, Emma?"

"So ... um ... you'd be standing down there on the sideline?" My older brother had season tickets to United.

"If they hire me, yes."

"Would you wave hi to me?"

"You bet," I replied.

"Did they say anything about when?" Ben asked. I shrugged. "So what did you talk about? What were their questions?"

"You know, philosophy. Tactics. Style."

"You'll get rid of Trapp and DJ Taylor, right?" My brother hated Team Captain Will Trapp and right back DJ Taylor. "We need a midfield general not a small, slow guy who can't read the game. And don't get me started on Taylor."

"I won't. We did talk about injuries."

"And?" Ben prodded.

"We talked about preseason. How preseason sets you up for the season, my ideas about preseason training. Training in general. I said I'd want to bring in my own fitness team. I'd want to change the medical setup a bit."

"Like what?" Ben asked.

"Ice baths, acupuncture, dietary analysis improvements. They've been doing it all except the acupuncture. I think my ideas on diet are the latest."

"What are your chances, honey?" Mom asked.

"I dunno. I mean ... I'm a local boy, right? Well, grew up in Minnesota at least. I've played in Europe. Um ... I'm up against some experienced managers, though."

"Yeah, so I've read," Ben added.

"What about Emily and your ex-wife?" Gina my evil sister-out-law asked.

"Yeah, dunno. One thing at a time, I guess. They've got to sign me, first."
Monday, December 19 10:22am Bethesda, MD USA

My phone bleeped. Minnesota area code. Is this the call?

"This is Eric."

"Good morning, Eric. Its Manny."

Holy s***. Oh. My. God. My palms instantly moistened. The coffee I'd just drank turned sour. I'm glad I'd only had a piece of toast for breakfast.

"Hey. How's it going?"

"Great. Is this a good time?"

It depends. Bad time for bad news, good time for good news.

"You bet."

"Well, we are impressed with you. Everybody we've spoken to about you spoke highly of you."

Holy. S***. Holy s***. Hoe. Leigh. She. Eight.

"Um, cool."

Oh. Great. Super eloquent response there big guy.

"Its time we discuss next steps and move forward," Manny continued. "First there's the contract. You don't have an agent, correct? That isn't a problem if you want to get one. Second, we need to discuss staffing and how you want to handle current staff. Third, we've got to get you up here so we can start planning the upcoming the season."

"Yeah, I do my own contract. I've got family in town so you don't have to arrange housing for me or anything."

"Oh, that's good to know. Well congratulations and we all look forward to working with you. You're going to get a bunch of phone calls today and emails, too. Texts probably as well. I guess you'll be home in Minnesota for Christmas."


"What's your general feeling on the coaching staff?"

"Um, I'd like to bring in my own."

"Great. We'll get that process started. Talk to you soon!"





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"Morning to you, lad."

"Good evening to you, Darren."

Darren Wassall had been Assistant to Steve McLaren at Derby. I'd lived with him when I first arrived. We'd stayed close.

"What's new?"

"I'm going to be the next manager of Minnesota United."

"In MLS? Well, congrats. That's great news. I'm really happy for you."


"And you're wondering ..." Darren said.

"I am," I said. "I can't think anyone I'd rather work with."

"Honored you thought of me, lad. Isn't Minnesota cold?"

"Quite. But summers are lovely. Great sunsets. Great club, great supporters. They are soccer crazy over here. The fanatics here really have a good time and the soccer culture is something else."

"Sock her, eh?"

"You know I'm from here. For me it'll be great to move home. The Twin Cities is a really great place. Great music, theatre, park systems, the food is awesome. Its a real multi-national metro area. They sell out a twenty thousand seat stadium for every match. This club has some talented players who haven't quite geled and I think you and I could make something beautiful here."

"Hmm ... let me talk with me lovely wife. I'm not opposed to the idea. A change might be good. The kids are gone, as you know. I'll watch some vids then lets talk more."

"You're the best, Darren."

"Talk to you soon, lad."

"Hello, Sean here."

"Hi Sean, this is Eric Sandberg calling."

"Ahh, Eric. So ..."

"Yeah ..."

"Is this the pink slip call?" Sean McAuley was Adrian Heath's Assistant.

"Not unless you want one. Would you consider staying on? We have a bunch of mutual acquaintances who speak highly of you. Also, you know the squad."

"I would consider it. Are you cleaning house?"

"Mostly. But I'm going to call Stewart Kerr, too." Kerr was the goalkeeping coach. "You know, I want that new coach smell but ... you know ... not kick everyone to the curb ... um ... so to speak."

"I'll certainly consider it. When you do you arrive? I'd be willing to meet with you."

"I'm not sure, yet. Soon? Everything is moving fast."

"Funny that. I'm in Florida through the holidays. I'll confer with Mister Kerr. I'm certainly willing to talk with you about staying on. Who are bringing on as your Assistant?"

"Darren Wassall. Or at least I've asked him and he's considering. I think he will."

"Oh, I know of him. Don't know him. Well keep me posted. We can chat while I'm basking in the sun."

"Great. Thanks for considering it. I'll keep in touch."



Now I need to find Stewart Kerr's phone number.
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Friday, December 23, 2022 10am

"Alright let's get started," Manny Lagos said. "Bill, you want to start it off?"

"Yes, today is a great day for Minnesota soccer," Owner Bill McGuire said. "We have an early present for all you United fans. After seven years of great leadership from Adrian Heath, we are going in a new direction with a young man from right here in Minnesota. The staff have grilled him, checked him over, and whole-heartedly believe he is the right man to lead us forward. Its a great day. I hope Minnesota soccer fans have a great holiday season."

"Thanks, Bill," Manny said. "Last season did not meet expectations. We had a lot of injuries. We had some rotten luck. All good runs come to an end. That's soccer. When we as an organization looked at how we move forward, we prioritized. We decided we wanted a younger manager, we wanted an American manager, and the man sitting next to me stood out. After our initial interviews, it was clear he was our first choice. Without further ado, I'd like to introduce the next head coach for Minnesota United Football Club, Eric Sandberg."

"Uh, hi," I said. "Thanks Bill, Manny, and everyone here at Minnesota United. I grew up in Rochester just south of here and I'm still pinching myself that this all fell into place. I've played across Europe. I played in the MLS with the San Jose Quakes. I'm really excited. I'm humbled to be here. Its good to be home. Um, I'm not really much for speeches. How about questions."

"Scott Guy, ESPNFC. What does it mean for you to be given this opportunity?"

"Yeah, its great. I can't hide my excitement. I'm so happy. Dream come true kind of stuff."

"Why United? Sorry, Joel Diaz CBS Sports. The allure of coming home?"

"Yeah, sure. But this is a great organization. Great players. Great fans. Soccer is growing so fast. I'm just honored to be a part of it."

"What made you think this was the right club?" Scott Guy asked.

"Never had any doubts. From the moment the opportunity came up I knew I wanted it."

"Sam Taylor, Star Tribune. Why are you a good match?"

"This club is very close being great in this league. Last year was unlucky. I think I bring a new philosophy, a new outlook, a new energy. I think we are poised to really do something."

"But this is your first job," Taylor said.

"Yes, everyone has to start somewhere. Starting here is perfect. I know how much soccer means. I grew up dreaming of playing pro. I did. I get how much this matters to this community. Alllianz Field is always full and the Wonderwall is thunderous ... um ... I guess that pun is intended. Yeah, I think I can take this club to the next level."

"And just to jump in here," Manny added. "We think so too. He's got it all; the drive, the intensity, the playing experience. Everyone who knows him speaks very highly of him."

"You speak five languages, does that help in this modern age of international soccer?" Scott Guy asked.

"Sure," I replied. "We've got a bunch of Spanish speakers, a couple of Frenchmen. But the universal language is football. Everyone here speaks football."

"Soccer," corrected Scott Guy.

"Heh, whatever," I quipped.

"I've been led to believe that you'll be heavily focused on the integration of younger talent into the squad," Taylor asked. "How do you intend to do that?"

"Yeah, well the club have already been doing that," I said. "We've brought in a number of good young players. You've been covering them day to day and know better than I do. They're developing. My intention is to have a good mix of veterans and younger players. I think we continue to bring in new talent and give them opportunities. I think I'll do a great job of developing young players. Its critical that we do."

"Follow up," Taylor said. "How much do you think is needed to bring this squad up to standards?"

"We have a fantastic squad here," I said. "I would like to add a few new players as it gets weird during international breaks as the MLS doesn't pause during them. We need to be able to rely on the entire squad."

"Oscar White, KSTP Sports. Have you met the players yet?"

"No. Everyone is on winter break. We'll officially meet in January."

"Mario Washington, NBC Sports, do you have a message for Minnesota fans?"

"Yes, I know how committed the fans are. The Wonderwall is amazing. My brother is a season ticket holder and has told me in no uncertain terms how important doing well is. So the pressure is on and I intend to deliver."

"So how far can you go with this club?" Washington asked.

"Adrian grew this team into regularly making the playoffs," I replied. "We have a plan and a shared vision of how to grow this club into a contender year in year out."

"What about your approach to training?" Diaz from CBS asked. "What can the players expect."

"Hard work pays off. Nobody will outwork us. That starts in January. We started building fitness and learning my system. We've got two months to get to know each other before the season kicks off. That's plenty of time."

"Who are you building the team around?" Taylor from the Star Tribune said.

"Clearly, Reynoso and Hlongwane. Emmanuel Reynoso is a wizard with the ball. Its a no-brainer that everything will flow through him. Bongo Hlongwane is so fast and so talented. Jeong Sang-bin is a really talented and fast young man. Our defense is solid and is the base we build from. I'm really looking forward to upsetting some apple carts in the Western Conference."

"All right, folks," Manny said. "That's all the time we have. Contact us for individual interviews with Eric.

Christmas Eve, 2022 8ish pm, undisclosed location in South Minneapolis

“Alright, you’ve watched the vids of last season, right?”

Dinner was over, dishes were done, and my brother and I eventually found ourselves staring into the fireplace like we do every year.

“Yes, my dearest brother, I have been doing nothing but that except for when I’ve been in meetings.”

“Good. I mean, of course you have. You’re the hard working one. But let me give you the low down. The view from the terraces as the English might say.”

“Alright, but first I’m going to need more eggnog.”

“If you must.”

A moment later and I was back before his roaring fireplace.

“Alright, let’s start at the back,” he began. “You’ve got a great goalkeeper. Dayne St Claire is top notch and never gets hurt. You just need a back-up just in case. I have no idea if those other guys you got are any good.”

“The defense is old,” he continued. “Michael Boxall plays like you did and he’s your size. But he’s 34. Bakaye Dibassy really had a s*** season last year because he was coming from a bad injury but he’s got one more left in him.” He crosses himself. “At least I hope. He’s 33. You’ve got s*** for left back. You’ll need to get one and a back up. Zarek Valentin has the coolest f***ing name in MLS and he’ll do at right back. You’re backup is DJ Taylor and don’t get me started on him.”

“I won’t.”


“Miguel Tapias is too small to play center back. They list him as 5’10” but they’re being too generous. Brent Kallman is a local boy and the last vestiges of our NASL days. Its his last season and he’ll do as backup.”

“Okay, heard,” I said. I burped. “Great dinner, by the way. Now midfield.”

“Right .. now midfield,” Ben continued. “Get. Rid. Of. Will. Trapp. Now. You’ve seen the vids. Poor positional play, slow, easily knocked about by players of any size. I mean … ya know … Mom could push him around he’s so soft. And Gramma’s faster.”

“And Gramma’s dead. I’ve seen the vids.”

“Then you’ve seen, man, you’ve seen the truth. Seen the light, my brother. Here’s the thing. If Kelvin Arriaga can stay healthy, and that is a big big if, you’ve got your protection in front of your defense. Maybe he could be your midfield general. Maybe. Hasani Dotson will do in a pinch, but he’s not the same. Just not the same somehow.”

“You know I probably can’t sell Trapp, right?”

“Why?" Ben said. "His salary?”


“F***,” he swore. “Yeah. He’s a Designated player. I suppose nobody wants to pay him that huge wage. Anyways, midfield is where the happiness and joy is and that all revolves around Emanuel Reynoso. He’s top class for this league. If he was quicker, some Premier League club would’ve paid 20 mill for him. But he’s ours. His ball skills are sick, passing is slick, and everything goes through him.”

“But who pairs with him? Gregus or Lod, right?” I asked.

“The problem last year is Robin Lod did his achilles. That was a huge blow. Their understanding is telepathic. Keep Lod healthy wherever you end up playing him. Jan Gregus is good but not as dangerous as when Lod and Reynoso are feeling it.”


“You know about the big playoff run in 2019?” I shook my head no. “Well, in late September we didn’t have a healthy striker. Not that any of them were scoring. So striker duty fell to Lod. Otherwise, it was the backup keeper or Boxall. No seriously, I don’t think we even had any teenagers for MNUFC2 who were healthy. Regardless of how I might be misremembering it all, we had a really bad exploding striker syndrome.”

“So Lod goes on a tear, scoring two goals every three games and we get to the Western Conference Final. Him and Reynoso were insane. It was Reynoso’s first season. He only joined us that August. He had like ten assists in his first ten games or something sick. Out of nowhere Lod would blast it past their keeper. It was an amazing run.”

“So Reynoso and Lod for the win.”

“Pretty much.”

“You thirsty?” I said. I needed something other than eggnog. “Yuck.” I held up my half-drunk glass. “Why do I drink this anyways.”

“No idea. Thanks, but I’m good.”

A moment later and I was back with a glass of water.

“Okay, the first and most important thing about you compared to Adrian Heath is you are not Adrian Heath.”

“Ooh, that’s sounds almost mystical. Be the ball, Danny. Breathe through your eyelids like a Lava Lizard, Nuke.”

“No, seriously. It didn’t matter who Heath played as striker. Whomever played there suddenly couldn’t score. I mean … seriously … Teemu Pukki tore up the Prem for Norwich. Didn’t he score half of all goals they scored that first year he was in the Prem? What I mean is that dude can finish. And he could finish for a team that got relegated. But here? No luck and then … f*** … and if you are only a moderately talented forward? Ohmalord it was ugly at times.”

“But Bongo Hlongwane and Jeong Sang-bin are scary fast. Mender Garcia and Franco Fragapane are excellent back-ups. You’re good up front.”

“Daddy?” Emma said.

“Yes, dear?” Ben said.

“Gramma says its time to open presents.”

“Then its time for presents,” I said.


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"Mister Sheringham?"


"Uh, hi. This is Eric Sandberg calling. I'm the new manager for Minnesota United in MLS. I was looking through the English FA database and came across your name."


"I noticed in your profile that you are interested in coming across the pond to work in the colonies."

"The colonies, eh?"

"Well, euphemistically speaking. I've already brought in Darren Wassall formerl of Derby as my Assistant. This club has a history of forwards who cannot score. I thought who better than an England and Premiership star to get them scoring. We fill a brand new twenty thousand seat stadium every week. Teemu Pukki is my main striker and I've got two young, fast wingers who are really promising."

"Minnesota, that's cold, right?"

"In the winter. Summers are lovely. Its a lot like Sweden. That's why the Scandinavians settled here back in the day."

"Alright. Thanks for calling. I'll consider it. Call me in two days. Let me google Minnesota and the club."

"Search for Twin Cities. Minneapolis, Saint Paul."

"Okay, will do. Cheers."

January 1, 2023 2:35pm Oakland, CA

"Well, we're here," I said as I stopped the rental car.

"Mmmm," my daughter said looking at her house. Technically, her Mom's house. My ex-wife's house.

"It was really great to spend a few days with you," I said.

"Daddy? Um ..."

"Yes, Emily."

"Why ... um ... I wanna see you more often."

"Yeah, I know. And I want to see you more, too."

"But you can't, can you."

"Well, like I told you I start a new job."

"Where's Minnesota again?'

"Remember? You've visited your Gramma. Same place."


"I will fly out and visit when I can. And when we play in California. And you can fly to Minnesota this summer to visit. Okay, I have one last present."


"Let's get out, its in the trunk."

I opened the trunk and proffered the gift.

"Its really big." She opened it. "Its a map. In a frame." She had that what-am-I-going-to-do-with-this look on her face.

"Its a map of the US," I said. "Its so you'll know where I am. Like today, I fly to Minnesota. That's here. Here's San Francisco."

"That's a long way."

"Right. That's why airplanes are awesome. So each time we travel somewhere to play, I'll text you about and you can see where I am."

"Okay. I get it, Daddy. We have to say goodbye now don't we."

"Yes, there's your Mom and I have to catch my flight."

"I love you, Daddy," she said dropping the map on the lawn and jumping into my arms.

"I love you, too, Sweet Ums. I'll see you soon."

"Bye." She grabbed her map and walked up the steps and into her house.

My ex-wife waved from the door.
Monday, January 9, 2023 9am MNUFC training facilities at National Sports Center in Blaine, MN

"Morning everyone," I said. "Welcome to the first day of the 2023 season. I'm Eric Sandberg. This is my Assistant Darren Wassall. That's Teddy Sheringham. You all know Stewart and Sean. Some other new coaches are Lee Wallace. That's him over there. Next to him is Pat Lyons. Him right there is Tom McLoughlin our Set Piece Coach. Him over there is Mateus Manoel. I'll introduce him in a minute."

"I've talked with a number of you already. I think this squad can make the playoffs." Everyone nods in agreement. "I'll have an individual meeting with each of you to discuss your personal goals for this season. To achieve what we want, we need to find out what your maximum ability is and then push past that. To that end, I'd like to introduce Mateus. He's my fitness guru. We worked together at DC United."

"We need to establish your baselines. That's cardio, the rate you convert oxygen, your recovery times, your weightlifting, 100m, jumping, all of it. Mateus and I believe that your fitness for the season starts today. At some point during this upcoming week you are going to be cursing me and Mateus. You might think we are trying to kill you. Mateus?"

"Ya hi guys," Mateus said in his thick Brazilian accent. "I am going to work you incredibly hard these next four weeks. Eric and I believe that the fitness we build now pays off in August and September. We need you all fit then and we need everyone available for our playoff push. We want to do everything possible now to make sure each of you have maximum fitness. We want to alter your food intake, supplements, vitamins, your sleeping, your napping, your stretching. We will use massage, chiropractic, acupuncture. You may have noticed the ice baths. They were just installed. Also, let me explain the training for this week:

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Several players groaned as Mateus explained training for the next month. Then we reviewed the Code of Conduct. The players liked that better. I intend to encourage my players to get stuck in so I don't want fines for multiple booking suspensions.

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"That wasn't too bad of a first friendly," I said once everyone was crammed into the Al Lang stadium's visitor's manager closet. "I hope none of you are claustrophic. This office is tiny. Um, first things first. We need a left back."

Murmurs of agreement from my coaches.

"We need a partner for Boxall," Teddy Sheringham said. Michael Boxall is the 6'4" central defender and defensive lynchpin. Nodding, murmurs of agreement. "Tapias is just too small."

"Dibassy was his partner year before last," Sean McAuley added. He was one of the two holdovers from Adrian Heath's coaching staff. "But if we can find an upgrade ..."

More nodding, murmuring.

"I was impressed with the kids," I said. More agreement. 15 year olds Adam Hollingsworth played the second half at left back and Brent Cobos came on in the 75th minute as striker. "We just need to bring them along slowly."

"I have a big picture question," Assistant Manager Darren Wassall said. "Do we need a couple more midfielders? Do we need an understudy to Reynoso?"

"Like not the same exact player because, honestly, where are we going to find someone like him," Sean McAuley said. "But someone with some creativity who is willing to come to the US, come to Minnesota, to come off the bench with some occasional starts."

"And maybe someone who could also play out wide if we needed," added Pat Lyons.

"Teddy?" I said. "First impressions of Pukki and Mender Garcia in action? Do we need another striker?"

"Pukki will be fine," Teddy said. "I'll withhold judgment until I see MG more."

"Fair enough?" I said. "What else?"

"Lets get out of this shoebox," Mateus Manoel said.