Many questions were answered last night: how would the US fare against El Tri without the injured Michael Bradley and three suspended players (just fine), would they beat Mexico 2-0 once again in Columbus (they did), would Honduras send us through to Brazil (also, yes).
But the one question that we still don't have a clear answer for is what in god's name happened to Landon Donovan's eye?!?
I mean look at this thing!
The picture made the rounds over Twitter and the rest of the Interwebs last night during the match. It became such a meme that someone came up with that oh-so-clever thing of having his eye tweeting in the first-person from a single-serving Twitter account. I wonder how soon that thing will go dormant.
While ESPN's Roger Bennett said Donovan had an eye infection, I came up with my own theories as to why Landon looks like he went toe-to-toe with Floyd Mayweather.
From least likely to most likely:
5) He's been possessed. With qualification still up in the air, Landon took one for the team and sold his soul to the devil to ensure a trip to Brazil. But since selling your soul is a high price to pay, I'm sure Landon got his money's worth and the US is guaranteed to take home the gold trophy next year.
4) He got punched in the eye at Friday's. Now hear me out - the night before the match, the boys went out to the local pub to enjoy a few beers and watch someNight (American) Football. (In Columbus, the place to go is TGI Friday's.) Hailing from California, Landon probably supports the San Diego Chargers, so naturally he was sporting a Phillip Rivers jersey.
Right before he bit into a jalapeno popper (his favorite), some drunk local started jawing at him over his taste in quarterbacks. (Unsurprisingly, Rivers cost the man a fantasy football championship the year before) Landon defended his QB's rep, things got heated and a few punches were thrown. Landon took a fist to the eye. (He deserved it as Rivers stinks.)
3) He's wearing fashion contact lenses and one fell out. He wanted to look intimidating so he bought a pair of those awful lenses. You try finding a tiny, clear plastic lens on a giant green pitch.
2) He's been crying over his breakup with his wife. Yes, his split with actress Bianca Kijilic happened way back in 2010, but I could see why he might still be upset.
and the most likely scenario...
1) He has pinkeye because he doesn't wash his hands properly after wiping / or someone farted on his pillow. Pinkeye, or conjunctivitis, is the swelling of the mucus membrane between the eye and eyelid and it can be caused by allergies, bacteria or a virus (such as herpes!). Hands can become contaminated by coming in contact with infectious tears, eye discharge, fecal matter, or respiratory discharges, according to the CDC.
If pinkeye is indeed the case, it's probably because Landon was in such a hurry to get back on the practice field to ensure US domination that he skipped a step or two while utilizing the training facility commode.
Or maybe someone just farted on his pillow. It could have been a prank gone horribly awry by one of his puckish teammates (my money is on Eddie Johnson) or a revenge stunt by the hotel staff in Costa Rica. We may never know for sure.
What we do know is that pinkeye is pretty contagious, so I'm surprised he didn't find himself in open space more often last night. And while it hasn't been confirmed if beer helps with conjunctivitis, I doubt anybody was in a rush to hold his bottle for him.
- Nick 'The American' Hatcher