Photo by ISIPhotos.com
By DAN KARELL
Chris Pontius will be spending another long stretch on the sidelines due to injury.
D.C. United announced on Wednesday that the midfielder had undergone surgery on his left hamstring and is expected to miss the next four to six months. The surgery is to hopefully fix a nagging hamstring injury that Pontius has been dealing with the last few seasons.
The longest-tenured D.C. United player had yet to make an appearance, and the club’s decision to acquire Chris Rolfe shows that Pontius wasn’t recovering as expected with regular rehab. Pontius’ surgery was conducted by U.S. Men’s National Team doctor Michael Gerhardt of Santa Monica Orthopaedics.
Photo by ISIPhotos.com
By CAITLIN MURRAY
The second week back for the National Women’s Soccer League was (mostly) about the underdogs — teams that struggled last year but are out to prove they belong at the top of the table.
To that end, the Washington Spirit looked like a team ready to shed their old image. After another loss to open the season — although a much better loss — the Spirit dominated an FC Kansas City team that looked so dangerous last year, 3-1.
The Houston Dash made up for their season-opening loss too, coming back from a deficit to put away their first franchise victory. And the Chicago Red Stars were led to victory by the rookies that were such a key part of their offseason rebuilding.
Meanwhile, last year’s league-leading Western New York Flash and FC Kansas City struggled. They have all the firepower and couldn’t figure out how to use it.
The league deck shuffles yet again.
Here are the SBI NWSL Power Rankings this week:
By IVES GALARCEP
Technical difficulties prevented us from posting Episode 132 of The SBI Show last week when originally scheduled, but with so many good topics covered on the episode, we decided it was better late than never.
Episode 132 of The SBI Show previewed MLS Week Seven, while also touching on a multitude of topics ranging from promotion and relegation, to the U.S. national team World Cup roster, and more.
Co-host Garrett Cleverly also had our latest edition of Head-to-Head Q&A, where we asked each other questions about any number of topics.
Give Episode 132 of The SBI Show a listen after the jump:
By DAN KARELL
FC Barcelona will be able to buy players in the next transfer window, at least for the time being.
FIFA released a memo on Wednesday saying that Barcelona’s transfer ban from FIFA has been temporarily lifted due to an appeal lodged by the club. FIFA had placed the ban on Barcelona for the next two transfer windows due to what they found as irregularities in Barcelona’s transfer policies with players under the age of 18. FIFA say they found 10 instances where Barca broke FIFA statute and policy regarding Under-18 transfers.
The statement released by FIFA states that Barcelona asked for the appeal to go into effect effective immediately and that FIFA Appeals Committee chairman Larry Mussenden agreed that he and the Appeals Committee did not have enough time before July 1 to accurately deliver a verdict on the appeal.
The news is huge for Barcelona, who are dealing with an aging squad and are in need of at least two new signings this summer, including replacements for defender Carles Puyol and goalkeeper Victor Valdes.
Here are some more stories to start off your Wednesday:
photo by Michael Burns/ISIphotos.com
By MIKE GRAMAJO
Arizona United SC rebounded from their mortifying USL Pro debut after Jonathan Top’s late-game winner claimed a 2-1 victory over the Sacramento Republic FC on Saturday night at the Peoria Sports Complex.
The Republic broke the deadlock when forward Thomas Steward found Rodrigo Lopez, who struck from close range to beat goalkeeper Evan Newton in the 27th minute. Arizona, however, responded back with the equalizer 10 minutes later when midfielder Matt Kassel found Brandon Swartzendruber, who slotted the ball into the back of the net for the first-ever goal in the club’s history.
Arizona could have gone up 2-1 before the halftime mark when the referee whistled a foul inside the box and sent off defender Micky Daly with a second yellow card. But Kassel’s penalty kick was denied by goalkeeper Dominik Jakubek moments later.
Kassel eventually made up for that miss, paving the way for the game winner when his cross found defender Joseph Toby. Toby then headed the ball down as Jonathan Top executed on the loose ball for the winner in the 85th minute.
With the result, Sacramento now find themselves in a two-game losing streak, while Arizona earned their first-ever victory in front of 3,014 home fans.
Here’s a closer look at the rest of the action in Week 5 in the USL Pro: