Last night, everyone you know was talking about some fight between two skinny men in Las Vegas. But earlier, a much more important clash of middleweights took place — or almost took place — at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Mass.
That battle took place after the New England Revolution handed Red Bull New York its first loss of the season, as the teams came together for some good ol’ soccer shoving. Let’s play the feud!
Beautiful, isn’t it? If you’re as willing to mush another man’s face as RBNY reserve striker Anatole Abang was to mush Jermaine Jones’s, it means you care. It’s good to see this kind of spirit from a league match in early May. Who says the regular season doesn’t matter?
The root cause of the near-fracas was unclear, but as with all well-promoted bouts, the answers were revealed in post-fight interviews. Jones pointed out Red Bull midfielder Felipe Matins as the instigator.
“I told [Martins] the whole game he talked and after the game he talked and I told him that if you lose, it’s better you don’t talk.”
Marginal advice from Jones, here. If you’ve lost the game, you may as well talk shit. There’s no point in walking away completely empty-handed.
“Then [Martins] said something in his language, but I played with some people from that country so I know some words.”
“His country,” in Martins’ case, is Brazil, and “his language” is presumably Portuguese. Jermaine was one “those people” short of making this a really awkward quote.
“I told him, don’t [talk about my family], I love my kids, I love my wife and they have nothing to do on the pitch here.”
As far as talking about family goes, it’s easy to understand Jones’ rage. The Joneses are a German-American treasure and should be treated as such at all times. Insulting these perfectly cool children, or having the nerve to call into question the splendor of America’s one true queen, Mrs. Sarah Jones, should come with an immediate three-game suspension.
Sticking up for his teammate, RBNY’s Sacha Kljestjan suggested that maybe Jones wasn’t completely innocent in all of this. Actually, if what he said is true, it’s damn creepy.
“Postgame Jermaine Jones was being a little cheeky and wanted to be clever and talk a little bit of junk to Felipe and touch his face a little bit and I didn’t like that,”
Here’s Felipe’s face in a glamour shot with his partner-of-undetermined-Facebook-status. I will leave it you to determine his face’s touch-worthiness. His lady friend seems to like it, so bravo for him. Regardless, I don’t know where Jermaine Jones learned to fight, but caressing faces isn’t part of any mixed martial art I’m familiar with. Though it wouldn’t be the first time Jones got too familiar with a Red Bull face.
New York head coach Jesse Marsch added:
“I didn’t like what they were doing at the end of the game; I thought it was wrong. I’m glad our guys stood up for each other and stood up for themselves. We’ll remember this. We’re going to tuck this one away and I think we’ll see them quite a bit down the road and we’ll be ready.”
There’s no video of these words being spoken, but it’s safe to assume that Marsch had just lit a cigarette and the “this one” he planned to “tuck away” was a set of brass knuckles. I may be reading too much into this.
In the end, peace was re-established after a brief summit between Jones and the best left back in CONCACAF, Roy Miller. If these two ever decided to combine their efforts to solve the world’s diplomatic problems, they’d have things like Palestine and Ukraine sorted in weeks.
For now, we have to wait until the next time New York Original and New England see each other in July and hope for more drama.