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Chivas USA 0, Columbus Crew 0: That's not entertainment

Action's so dull on the field, even a viewer at Home Depot Center changes channels.

April 09, 2011|By Grahame L. Jones
  • Columbus' Julius James jumps for a free kick against Chivas USA's Zarek Valentin (20) and Ante Jazic during Saturday's scoreless tie at the Home Depot Center.
Columbus' Julius James jumps for a free kick against Chivas USA's… (Stephen Dunn / Getty Images )

Up in the Home Depot Center press box Saturday night, someone from the stadium's catering staff was intently watching the Ducks and the Kings on television.

Why?

Because down on the field, Chivas USA and the Columbus Crew were playing a game of such crashing boredom that even hockey seemed preferable to the soccer on offer.

For 45 agonizing minutes, absolutely nothing happened. The ball and 22 players moved around the field, but even the patterns they created were dull.

Then came halftime, and the opportunity here to mention something interesting that occurred in Spain recently.

Remember Shakira, the Colombian singer whose "Waka Waka" song — not to mention her presence — lit up the World Cup in South Africa last summer? It turns out she is dating FC Barcelona defender Gerard Pique.

That, in turn, has caused rival Real Madrid to ban her songs from being played at the Santiago Bernabeu stadium in Madrid.

Naturally, that doesn't have a thing to do with what turned out to be a 0-0 tie on Saturday night in front of 13,385 almost comatose fans in Carson, where sadly Shakira did not put in a guest appearance. All the same, Real Madrid's odd ban does hopefully enliven what would otherwise be a sparse game account.

That Saturday's match would promise little was indicated beforehand by the teams' respective records. Columbus came in all even at 1-1-1, its only victory being against FC Dallas.

The 2008 MLS champions lost much of their fan appeal when they failed to re-sign Argentine playmaker Guillermo Barros Schelotto.

As for Chivas USA. It came in off a 1-1 tie at Toronto last weekend but, still without its first win of the season, was 0-2-1.

Columbus managed two shots on target, but the only dangerous one was by Eddie Gaven in the 74th minute that Chivas goalkeeper Dan Kennedy tipped around the right post for a corner kick that came to nothing.

The Crew had another chance earlier in the game when it was awarded a free kick 19 yards out and directly in front of the net after Chivas midfielder Nick LaBrocca fouled Emmanuel Ekpo.

That also came to naught when Dejan Rusmir shot high over the crossbar.

Chivas USA took five shots, three on target, but did not trouble Crew goalkeeper William Hesmer.

The tie gave Chivas its second point of the season and its first shutout. Nothing to write home about but at least something.

Of course, if Chivas forward Justin Braun were dating Shakira things might have been different.

grahame.jones@latimes.com

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