GalaxySounders1019 (USA Today Sports)

The SBI Show: Episode 173 (Talking CONCACAF Champions League, Previewing MLS Week 34, and more)

Episode 173 of The SBI Show looks back at the Major League Soccer’s disappointing showing in the CONCACAF Champions League, looks ahead to MLS Week 34, and more.

StuartHoldenBolton1-Sunderland2013 (Getty)

Holden releases open letter to fans; reiterates commitment to return

U.S. Men’s National Team midfielder Stuart Holden has reiterated his desire to return to the field in an open letter released Friday, stating that retirement is not an option.

LuisSuarezBarcelona3-ClubLeon (Getty)

This Weekend’s Soccer on TV

Luis Suarez will make his debut this weekend as Barcelona takes on Real Madrid in El Classico

NWSL stars Wambach, Angerer, Boquete named to 2014 FIFA Ballon d’Or shortlist

AbbyWambachUSWNT1-Mexico2014 (USATODAYSports)

Photo by Russ Isabella/USA TODAY Sports

By DAN KARELL

FIFA revealed their shortlist for the 2014 Women’s Ballon d’Or award on Friday afternoon, and the list contains a number of familiar faces as well as some noticeable absences.

U.S. Women’s National Team all-time leading goalscorer Abby Wambach headlines the shortlist despite a club year with the Western New York Flash that was plagued by some injury.

In addition to Wambach, the National Women’s Soccer League was represented by three other star players — German goalkeeper Nadine Angerer and Spanish midfielder Verónica Boquete for the Portland Thorns, as well as Japanese midfielder Nahomi Kawasumi from NWSL’s Seattle Reign.

Also included on the shortlist for the 12th consecutive year is Brazilian star midfielder Marta.

Notably absent is Alex Morgan, who was on the shortlist the last three years but struggled to overcome a lingering ankle injury over the past 12 months, and was ruled out last week for the rest of CONCACAF World Cup qualifying with another ankle knock.

Former USWNT head coach Pia Sundhage made the coach’s shortlist for the award, as did Seattle Reign head coach Laura Harvey.

The ten-player and ten-coach shortlists will be whittled down to a top three on Dec. 1 by a partnership between FIFA and French publication France Football. The men’s shortlist will be named on Oct. 28.

Here’s a look at the full player and coach’s shortlist for the FIFA women’s Ballon d’Or:

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Posted in FIFA, International Soccer, U.S. Women's National Team, Women's Professional Soccer, Women's Soccer | 1 Comment

NASL Week 17: A Look Ahead

FCEdmonton-Strikers

By EVAN REAM

With just two weeks remaining in the NASL season, FC Edmonton travel to Fort Lauderdale to take on the Strikers, with the winner stepping into the driver’s seat for the fourth and final playoff spot.

While the Strikers are on an absolute tear with 10 points in their previous five matches, head coach Günter Kronsteiner made waves by benching NASL second-leading goalscorer Fafa Picault against Carolina for a perceived lack of effort in practice.

The Eddies come into the match in good form as well following a convincing away win in the Canadian derby at Ottawa, but will face a stiff challenge in south Florida where the Strikers have won their last three matches at home.

Fort Lauderdale currently has a two-point lead on Edmonton in the combined standings.

Here’s a look at the rest of the weekend’s action in the NASL: Continue reading »

Posted in NASL | 3 Comments

Midweek College Rewind: Indiana edges Notre Dame, UCLA tops UW again, and more

Men's soccer UCLA at Washington

Photo by Wilson Tsoi /Huskies Athletics

By AARON CRANFORD

SBI No. 4 Washington fell to UCLA for the second Thursday in a row, and to make matters worse for the Huskies, a Seattle native scored the game-winning goal.

Seattle native and Seattle Sounders Academy U-18 product Seyi Adekya scored the game-winning goal in the 54th to give the Bruins a 2-1 victory, and extend UCLA’s winning streak to three games.

The Huskies could not enact revenge against UCLA even though they jumped out to an early start with a goal from Ian Lange in the 3rd minute. But Leo Stolz assisted Aaron Simmons to tie the match in the 37th.

Adekya provided the winning finish for the Bruins, who struck a blow to Washington’s Pac-12 title hopes with the victory.

SBI No. 1 Indiana found the early winner from a common goal-scoring defender Wednesday against No. 17 Notre Dame.

In the 19th minute, Hoosers senior Patrick Doody scored his third goal of the year direct off a corner kick, which makes him tied for second for goals with Indiana. The Fighting Irish could not find an equalizer after attempting nine shots throughout the match.

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Posted in College Soccer | 1 Comment

MLS referee Rivero suspended after arrest for fraud

Rivero-referee-USAToday

Photo by Ron Chenoy/USA TODAY Sports
 

By RYAN TOLMICH

Almost a month after being charged with insurance fraud, an MLS referee has been issued a suspension.

Jose Carlos Rivero, who most recently took charge of the Columbus Crew’s 3-1 win over the New York Red Bulls on Saturday, was suspended Thursday as a result of an Oct. 6 arrest for allegedly claiming over $14,000 in unemployment benefits while employed.

“The Professional Referees Organization is fully aware of the alleged charges against Jose Carlos Rivero,” P.R.O. said in a statement Thursday night. “Mr. Rivero has been suspended with immediate effect and will not be assigned to any further matches pending the outcome of the legal proceedings.”

Rivero, who has officiated 17 games this season, worked at least three games following his arrest earlier this month.

The 33-year-old was set to work this weekend’s meeting between Toronto FC and the New England Revolution as the fourth official.

What do you think of the handling of Rivero’s case?

Share your thoughts below.

Posted in Major League Soccer | 34 Comments

Liga MX Round 14: A Look Ahead

ArevaloRiosTigresUANL1-Toluca (Mexsport)

By DAN KARELL

This season’s bi-annual Clasico Regiomontano has even more on the line, with both Tigres UANL and Monterrey battling for top seeds in the Liguilla.

With four weeks remaining in the season, Monterrey host archrival Tigres in the most anticipated game of the weekend. Both squads are tied on 23 points, but Monterrey have a game in hand, and are looking to recover after a 2-0 loss to Club America. Tigres are rolling on all cylinders as they hold a nine-game unbeaten run in all competitions, including four wins in Liga MX in that span.

The likes of Dorlan Pabon taking on Hernan Berbano and the American pair of Jose Torres and Herculez Gomez make this weekend’s bout a must-watch encounter.

Elsewhere in Liga MX action, Club America visit Ronaldinho and Queretaro, Toluca takes on defending champions Club Leon, and Club Tijuana face Chivas Guadalajara, with the Goats hoping to stop their slide toward relegation.

Here’s a look at this weekend’s Liga MX slate:

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Posted in Mexican Soccer | 1 Comment

The SBI Show: Episode 173 (Talking CONCACAF Champions League, Previewing MLS Week 34, and more)

GalaxySounders1019 (USA Today Sports)

 Photo by USA TODAY Sports

 

By IVES GALARCEP

Major League Soccer fans will endure a wide range of emotions this week as the CONCACAF Champions League failures of some teams come just as other teams prepare to take important steps toward the MLS playoffs.

Episode 173 of The SBI Show takes a look back at a disappointing group stage for American MLS teams, with just one of four advancing to the CCL quarterfinals after Sporting KC and Portland were eliminated. D.C. United join the Montreal Impact as the lone MLS representatives in the knockout rounds.

Co-host Garrett Cleverly and I also look ahead at MLS Week 34, including the key Seattle Sounders-LA Galaxy clash, as well as the New York Red Bulls’ visit to Sporting Kansas City. We also discuss the season’s first edition of ‘El Clasico’, between Barcelona and Real Madrid, and more.

Give Episode 173 of The SBI Show a listen after the jump:

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Posted in Featured, Major League Soccer, Podcasts, U.S. Men's National Team, Uncategorized | 1 Comment