By CAITLIN MURRAY
Another option is being added to the table for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.
The European Club Association is asking for FIFA to consider a spring World Cup, pushing the tournament to April/May of 2022, so English and Spanish club competitions can be played in June.
The proposal to avoid Qatar’s sweltering summer temperatures is a new alternative to FIFA President Sepp Blatter’s preferred winter World Cup plan with games played in November/December.
“In countries with a significant amount of domestic fixtures,” the association’s proposal says, “the domestic cup could be played following the World Cup in a compact ‘cup-only’ period in June.”
The proposal, which calls for the World Cup to kick off April 28 and finish May 29, will be submitted at FIFA’s Qatar 2022 Task Force meeting on Monday. The European clubs would push their club seasons to begin two weeks early to accomodate the proposed schedule.
Over June and July, when the World Cup is normally played, Qatar sees temperature highs that average as much as 106 degrees. The European Club Association said, by their calculations, April and May in Qatar has a high of 93 degrees. A November/December tournament in Qatar would see less extreme tempatures in the 80s and high 70s.
Here are some other international news items:
By FRANCO PANIZO
MLS wasted no time moving on from Chivas USA, announcing a new Los Angeles-based club with plenty of star power behind it.
MLS officially announced on Monday that it has awarded a new franchise to a large ownership group led by Henry Nguyen, Peter Guber and Tom Penn. The group consists of 22 owners, including NBA great Earvin “Magic” Johnson, former U.S. Women’s National Team player Mia Hamm Garciaparra and retired MLB player Nomar Garciaparra, Hamm’s husband.
The team, whose Los Angeles Football Club name and colors are just being used as placeholders, is expected to begin play in 2017 in a new soccer stadium in the Southern California city.
“We are thrilled to welcome Henry Nguyen, Peter Guber, Tom Penn and their owner partners to Major League Soccer,” said MLS commissioner Don Garber in a statement released by the league. “This visionary ownership group will chart a course that will further elevate the sport in this great city and, combined with a new state-of-the-art stadium, accelerate us down the path toward becoming one of the top soccer leagues in the world.”
By IVES GALARCEP
Though it may not quite be a battle with major title implications anymore given Chelsea’s runaway position as leaders, but the Manchester Derby still has plenty on the line when the red and blue sides of Manchester meet on Sunday at the Etihad.
City currently sits in third place in the English Premier League, but will face a Manchester United side feeling good about a hard-earned draw against Chelsea last weekend. The Citizens saw their three-match winning streak snapped last week against West Ham, and will look to keep Manchester United away from the top four with a victory.
In Germany, struggling Borussia Dortmund will look to halt a surprisingly bad start to the Bundesliga season with a victory against rival Bayern Munich. Jurgen Klopp’s side has lost four straight matches and sits just a point out of the relegation zone, but Dortmund has a history of pushing Bayern to the limit so another memorable match shouldn’t be ruled out.
In MLS, the Seattle Sounders take on FC Dallas on Sunday and the Los Angeles Galaxy meet Real Salt Lake in the West Conference playoffs. In the East, the New England Revolution meet the Columbus Crew in what should be the most entertaining of the conference semifinal series.
Here is a rundown of all the weekend’s soccer action:
Photo by Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports
By DAN KARELL
After starting the season on the outside looking in, Ethan Finlay has developed into an automatic starter for the Columbus Crew and was a big reason for the team’s late season push to end a two-year playoff drought.
The strong performances earned Finlay a new contract, one he signed during a fan Q&A event at a local bar in Columbus last week.
“It feels great,” said a beaming Finlay the next day after training at the team’s practice facility in Obetz, Ohio. “It’s something we’ve been working for. I’m extremely happy, my family’s happy, and the club’s happy. It’s a win-win for both sides.”
The speedy winger, who was drafted with the 10th overall selection in the 2012 MLS Draft out of Creighton University, only started six games total entering his third year in the league.
Heading into a crucial season with the Crew, his first under new head coach Gregg Berhalter, Finlay took his chance to break into the starting 11, first scoring a goal in a wild 3-3 draw at the Portland Timbers on May 17 and then scoring and showcasing his blazing speed in his first start of the season in a 1-0 victory against the Chicago Fire a week later.
Photo by Steven Bisig/ USA Today Sports
By RYAN TOLMICH
The last few weeks have been rough on Jonathan Bornstein.
Just days after Bornstein returned to the squad following the passing of his father, Mexican club Querétaro announced that the American left back is set to miss at least two months of action after undergoing foot surgery.
“Jonathan was hurt last Friday in training, and he suffered an injury to his fifth metatarsal,” Querétaro head of press Alejandro Esponda said Wednesday. “He was operated on last Saturday, and he’ll be out for at least two and a half months.”
The injury is set to keep Bornstein out for the remainder of the 2014 Apertura season. Currently on-loan with Queretaro from Tigres, Bornstein has appeared in just two Copa MX games this season.
Bornstein has made 38 appearances for the U.S. Men’s National Team, most recently in 2011.
What do you think of Bornstein’s injury? Where should the left back go from here?
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Photo by Troy Babbitt/USA TODAY Sports
By RYAN TOLMICH
Six months after agreeing to a sponsorship deal, the Colorado Rapids are taking legal action against the company that emblazons their jersey.
The Denver Post reported on Thursday that the Rapids have filed a lawsuit against the parent company of sponsor Ciao Telecom over $485,000 in missed payments. Ciao Telecom, which signed a sponsorship deal with the club in June, allegedly missed a pair of payments in September and July, while shortchanging the Rapids on an initial payment.
The Rapids were expected to make $800,000 from the deal this season, but Rapids president Tim Hinchey admitted earlier this month that payments could be delayed due to Ciao’s recent business moves, which include a merger.
“They’re still a little behind on their launch,” Hinchey said. “They’re looking at retail locations. As we said before, 2014 was about getting the name out for them, and that’s why they took a punt with us.”
Ciao’s stock price has been plummeting since July and a sponorship with Serie B’s Reggina Calcio has apparently been terminated after the Italian club removed the company logo from the club website.
What do you make of the Rapids’ sponsor troubles? How do you think the league handles sponsors as a whole?
Share your thoughts below.