Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Ed loves Ed Too Much

Has his money bag hit him in the head? Did he drop it on his foot? Or is the pressure of the sudden fame and big dollars given FC Dallas striker Ed Johnson a case of, "Be careful what you wish for"?

Depending on who you believe, the foot injury that kept him out for over two months was either the result of a Pablo Mastroeni tackle (aren't they all?), as Johnson's people claim, or it was the result of a all too familiar Johnson tantrum, where he kicked a water cooler after being subbed out in the following game against Chivas as some inside the Dallas club claim. It is said that Ed's agent blames Dallas' coach, Colin Clarke, for playing him when injured against Chivas, which ended up keeping Ed from playing in crucial World Cup qualifiers.

Johnson's new contract also appears to have had a negative effect on his attitude. The "big man" cockiness that plagued his early days in Dallas are back. With the media he has started referring to himself in third person, and on separate occasions decided to stop talking to certain local soccer writers. Team mates have privately said that practice is better when Johnson is not present and that his contract is not an issue - but his attitude is. He recently has been asked to leave or walked out of practice.

Johnson's on-field play also has returned to less than desirable. He has claimed it is the injury that is keeping him from returning to form. It is not lost on anyone that he appears to not be exerting a lot of effort, but when he found some minutes for Arena against Guatemala last week - the flashy, hard working player magically returned.


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