I'll be working on my Press-Enterprise column this morning, and right now I'm leaning towards writing on the early trends in MLS this season. I'll probably also write about the local teams as well since they've got trends of their own to discuss.
One of the two major early trends this season is the high number of red cards. Two weekends ago there were quite a few red cards handed out; Dema Kovalenko and Andy Iro were sent off on separate days at Home Depot Center alone. But last week, there were even more, seven in all including three during Saturday's Chivas-Galaxy game.
Here's a piece by Greg Lalas for SI.com on the trend.
Now, I know the official for Saturday's Chivas-Galaxy game took a lot of criticism for his performance, and while I agree that there were a lot of cards handed out, I feel that the three ejections were warranted.
* Paulo Nagamura's first yellow may have been a bit soft but he earned it with his constant yapping and aggressive play before that. He nailed Landon Donovan's ankle from behind, however much Donovan embelished the play afterward doesn't matter.
* Carey Talley took a forearm to the chest from Alan Gordon. That's a yellow, and it was his second.
* Gregg Berhalter dragged Alecko Eskandarian from behind and was the last man standing between Esky and the Galaxy goalkeeper. That's a straight red card in any game from high school to the World Cup.
There have been 31 total red cards this season, and it's a bit head-scratching why there have been so many. Not sure what the solution is to stopping such a high number of cards or if there is one really. Hopefully it's just a trend that will pass soon.
I'll be back later with at least one more troubling early-season trend: low attendance.