Jan 22, 2013, 9:58 AM EST
I was introduced to the term “wanderlust” about 15 years ago in Douglas Coupland’s seminal book Generation X.
It seemed to stretch the definition of the word, expanding it beyond geographical attachments. It was more than the tendency to physically wander; it could also apply to wandering desire.
Today I am wondering about wandering, as it applies to the Vancouver Whitecaps.
The news of the day is that Barry Robson and the Whitecaps have cut ties.
In a vacuum, the move makes perfect sense, especially as the veteran midfielder may have had family issues to consider. Either way, Robson never had the desired impact. Not even close in my mind.
I kept hearing that the caffeinated ginger made the team better, that his influence was more than the sum of his passes and midfield interaction. I tried ever so hard to see it – but I simply could never get there. I did see the feisty Scotsman holler and gesticulate a lot. But there was generally more sizzle than steak, and the team’s long, slow spiral upon the man’s summer arrival did nothing to support hopes of an impending Robson revelation.
He was 34 and set to make $600,000, so yesterday’s choice seemed easy – in a vacuum, that is.
The trouble I see is with the bigger picture at Vancouver. Specifically, what is the bigger picture?
They hired a technical director (Tom Soehn), who named a manager (Teitur Thordarson, who was already with the club). That lasted three months. Time for change.
I mean, hey, they gave it a shot! Right? It was clearly never going to work. Right?
Soehn took over. That lasted a few months; he returned to his former post as Martin Rennie came in.
Soehn and Rennie seemed to be onto something as they remade the roster for 2012. The season was going pretty well, especially considering this was a sophomore side in MLS.
So, clearly … time for do-over!
They endeavored to re-make the re-make, and things eventually were not much better for it.
Obviously, that’s a condensed version of events. It’s all more involved. But the bottom line is this: I see a lot of wanderlust at work.
I see something similar in a few of my single friends, what I like to call the “illusion of infinite choice.” That is, this dangerously misguided notion that something better is always out there. Just waiting to be had.
Talented types have come and gone with too much frequency around BC Place, Davide Chiumiento, Sebastien Le Toux, Lee Nguyen, Eric Hassli, Mustapha Jarju, Terry Dunfield and others. And this for a club that has played exactly 68 league matches.
And now Robson, who was the centerpiece of the first remodel. Or, was that the second remodel?
Honestly, it’s getting too hard to track them. And that is not a good thing for a club so new to MLS.
Dec 9, 2013, 7:49 AM EST
Who gets your vote? Sit back, relax and watch some stunners from Osvaldo, Assaidi, Cabaye and others:
Dec 8, 2013, 11:54 PM EST
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KANSAS CITY, Kan. — The difference between missed opportunities and bad luck.
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Fulham decided it early against Aston Villa, while Giroud was denied late at The Emirates.
Dec 8, 2013, 7:40 PM EST
KANSAS CITY, Kan. — Collin, Feilhaber, Findley and Schuler may have changed the way we see their careers.
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Dec 8, 2013, 6:38 PM EST
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Dec 8, 2013, 5:43 PM EST
New depths for Moyes, Everton continues to convince, and perspective required for Chelsea’s, City’s stumbles.
Dec 8, 2013, 2:51 PM EST
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Dec 8, 2013, 2:23 PM EST
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Dec 8, 2013, 12:59 PM EST
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Dec 8, 2013, 11:47 AM EST
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Dec 8, 2013, 10:33 AM EST
Dimitar Berbatov looked like a changed man and Steve Sidwell scored as well to give Fulham their first win in seven weeks.
Dec 8, 2013, 10:31 AM EST
Arsene Wenger has the Gunners flying high at the top of the league, with a chance for another impressive win against Everton to put them 7 points clear.
Dec 8, 2013, 9:14 AM EST
Fulham are well on their way to ending a run of six consecutive defeats.
Dec 8, 2013, 8:36 AM EST
It’s slowly coming out that David Moyes has been keeping an eye on summer target Kevin Strootman of Roma.
Dec 8, 2013, 7:50 AM EST
Can Rene Meulensteen breathe life into Dimitar Berbatov and a weary Fulham squad, or will it be Villa’s away day magic that continues to shine bright at Craven Cottage?
Dec 7, 2013, 11:05 PM EST
We’ll know in the next few days:
Dec 7, 2013, 11:00 PM EST
Can the Gunners stretch their lead at the summit? Will Fulham stop the rot? Both games live on NBCSN:
Dec 7, 2013, 10:00 PM EST
Experience was key early, set pieces came back to haunt them, and nobody will remember how you lost.
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