Update: The play can be seen on the ESPN360 replay at 1hour 9 min than a replay 40 seconds later. There is no timer shown on the ESPN360 replay so I cant tell you when it was, but it feels around the 60th min…
So Andrea Canales of Goal.com has an article out that made made solely because of the run Marvell Wynne had when he burned the shocked Christiano Ronaldo. He recounts a conversation with a typical European biased soccer fan:
“But although Marvell can’t match up in technique with a lot of skilled players, I’d put his speed on par with anyone out there.”
I didn’t realize I’d made such an earth-shattering statement, but my companion stared at me, agape.
“You mean anyone in MLS, right?” He clarified for me.
I shook my head. “No, I think Marvell is up there with any soccer player in the world, speed-wise.”
The look on the face of this press box acquaintance changed from surprise to one of pity.
“Well,” he said carefully, “You haven’t covered enough games abroad, then. You don’t get a sense of how fast these top European players are from the television. They’re incredible. Cristiano Ronaldo is amazingly fast. He’d leave Marvell in the dust.”
Now it was my turn to be skeptical. “Really? I mean, of course Cristiano Ronaldo is faster with the ball at his feet than Marvell in the same situation. Ronaldo’s ball control is awesome. But in a game, if Ronaldo has the ball at his feet, Marvell doesn’t, so he can catch him, or at least stay with him.”
Even as I spoke, I suddenly had the feeling that by starting to lean on unprovable hypotheticals, our debate was sinking to “My dad can beat up your dad” territory.
Yet my opponent wasn’t averse to that. “Let me tell you,” he stated. “If they ran a fifty-yard dash, Cristiano Ronaldo would beat Marvell Wynne by five yards. You think Wynne’s really fast because all you see him against is MLS competition. You just haven’t seen enough of what top soccer is really about.”
He then goes on to mention how that common perception was shattered in front of the entire world last night:
But the odds that I’d feel any vindication depended on either those timed runs, or Wynne and Ronaldo playing against each other, which didn’t look to happen any time soon.
Except it did last night.
Sure, I watched the friendly between Real Madrid and Toronto FC for many of the reasons that thousands of others did – to see how the new galacticos were meshing. Kaka, Karim Benzema, Raul, Cristiano Ronaldo and others on the Madrid squad were amazing to view. Their technique was far above that of the Toronto squad, as their combination passes befuddled the defense repeatedly. Especially for preseason, the athleticism of the Real Madrid players was also impressive.
However, I had my eye on one match-up in particular. Again and again, Wynne defended against Ronaldo.
If anyone who watched the game last night believes he’d ever be left behind by five yards in a short sprint race between the two, they are absolutely blinded by MLS hatred.
Ronaldo has an impressive bag of tricks in his arsenal, and versus Wynne, he had to rely on the ones other than speed, because he simply couldn’t use that to shake Wynne.
Its little things like this that can help break the MLS steroytype and help make it into a top league. This is also great exposure for Wynne who may get looks from Eurpoean teams after seeing his speed and considering his youth. Wynee has a chance to make the US world cup team for next year having already made an appearnce in qualifying. Check out the rest of the article here.