MLS unveils new logo

Major League Soccer has unveiled their new logo, transitioning to a shield crest that is being released in conjunction with FIFA 15.

USMNT climb one place to No. 17 in latest FIFA rankings

The U.S. Men’s National Team have jumped up one place in the FIFA World Rankings to No. 17 on the back of their 1-0 victory over the Czech Republic on Sept. 3.

Thursday Kickoff: Schweinsteiger remains sidelined; Ronaldinho makes debut; and more

Bayern Munich midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger is still far from returning to full training as he deals with a recurring patellar tendon injury.

NASL Week 11: A Look Back

Atlanta Silverbacks v New York Cosmos

By EVAN REAM

The rematch of the 2013 NASL Soccer Bowl did not disappoint as former MLS midfielder Danny Szetela grabbed a late goal to give the New York Cosmos all three points in a wild 3-2 win over the Atlanta Silverbacks in front of an announced crowd of 4,502 fans at Hofstra Stadium in New York.

Despite scoring twice in the opening 10 minutes of the match, New York nearly gave away an easy win as the struggling Silverbacks scored twice to level the match with 30 minutes left to play.

With just six minutes remaining in the match, Szetlea scored a dramatic winner from 12-yards out to give the Cosmos a nine-point cushion for a playoff spot in the combined NASL table.

The loss dropped the turmoil-ridden Silverbacks to ninth place in the fall table, seemingly out of the playoff picture with just 11 points from 10 games.

Here’s a closer look at the rest of the weekend’s action in NASL:

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Posted in NASL | 12 Comments

MLS Ticker: Espindola’s red card appeal denied; Pogatetz convinced by Berhalter; and more

FabianEspindolaDCUnited4-NewYorkRedBulls (USATodaySportsImages)

Photo by Brad Mills/ USA Today Sports

 

By RYAN TOLMICH

The MLS Disciplinary Committee dished out fines to players on both D.C. United and the New York Red Bulls for their part in a mid-game fracas, but it was one move they didn’t make that is stealing the headlines on Monday evening.

MLS evidently has denied Fabian Espindola’s red card appeal, meaning that the Argentine forward is suspended for D.C. United’s next match, on Saturday at the Chicago Fire. Espindola was sent off in the 32nd minute of D.C. United’s 1-0 defeat to the Red Bulls last Wednesday for a high boot in a challenge with Dax McCarty.

The Disciplinary Committee also fined D.C. United defender Sean Franklin and midfielder Davy Arnaud, as well as Red Bulls defender Roy Miller for their roles in a confrontation that took place in the 38th minute of Wednesday’s matchup. In addition, D.C. United and head coach Ben Olsen were also fined for the incident as a result of the club’s second violation of the mass confrontation policy.  As per league policy, the exact amounts of the fines were undisclosed.

The incident stemmed from a conflict between Miller and D.C. United midfielder Nick DeLeon. After seeing the two exchange words, Franklin intervened, causing a confrontation that soon included Arnaud. Miller shoved and grabbed Arnaud before referee Mark Geiger diffused the situation.

Here are some more of Monday’s news and notes from around MLS:

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Posted in Featured, Major League Soccer, MLS- Colorado Rapids, MLS- Columbus Crew, MLS- D.C. United, MLS- New York Red Bulls, MLS- Vancouver Whitecaps | 16 Comments

Monday Evening Ticker: Champagne announces FIFA candidacy, Peru lines up friendly in USA; and more

JeromeChampagne2 (AP)

By DAN KARELL

Sepp Blatter will have at least one challenger in the next FIFA presidential elections.

Former FIFA executive Jerome Champagne wrote on his campaign website that he intends to run for FIFA president in the 2015 elections, against one Sepp Blatter. Champagne has contacted all 209 federations to tell them that he’ll be a candidate.

“I have the honor of informing you that I have just written to the FIFA Ad-hoc Electoral
Committee and its president, Mr. Domenico Scala, to confirm my intention to run for FIFA
president,” Champagne wrote.

Champaign, a Frenchman, is hoping to reform FIFA and make it a more transparent organization. In his letter, he states that he hopes the presidential candidates can debate publicly in front of all 209 FIFA members.

Here are some more notes from around the world:

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Posted in European Soccer, Featured, South American Soccer | 10 Comments

Report: Hamburg manager fired two days after Julian Green’s debut

MirkoSlomkaHamburg1 (Getty)

By DAN KARELL

Less than a month into the 2014/2015 Bundesliga season, Hamburg SV have decided to move in a new direction.

According to a report from the Associated Press, Hamburg have fired manager Mirko Slomka just three games into the season. Slomka’s dismissal comes on the heels of a 2-0 defeat last Sunday to Slomka’s former club, Hannover.

The news means that U.S. Men’s National Team winger Julian Green will have a new manager to impress and prove that he deserves a spot in the lineup just a couple of weeks after arriving. Green made his Hamburg and Bundesliga debut in the defeat to Hamburg, starting and playing in the first half before being substituted at halftime.

Slomka was hired by the club last February to save them from relegation, which he managed to do on away goals in the Bundesliga relegation playoffs against Greuther Fuerth. Hamburg fired two managers last season, Bert van Marwijk and Thorsten Fink, before Slomka was appointed.

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What do you think of this news? Worried that Green’s place in the lineup could be gone? How do you expect Green to be impacted by this change?

Share your thoughts below.

Posted in Americans Abroad, European Soccer, Featured | 21 Comments

Bradley blasts referee following controversial disallowed goal

Bradley-RefereeTorontoFCFire-USATodaySports

Photo by Mike Dinovo/USA Today Sports

By RYAN TOLMICH

After seeing his team miss out on a crucial victory due to a controversial referee decision, Toronto FC’s Michael Bradley let loose.

The midfielder blasted the state of refereeing in MLS, insisting that Saturday’s official David Gantar, a Canadian referee assigned by the Canadian Soccer Association as opposed to PRO, is “just not good enough” to referee in the league.

“They continue to assign Canadian referees with Canadian teams playing against American teams,” Bradley said. “It makes no sense how you can continue to assign Canadian referees when an American team is playing against a Canadian team. It’s obvious that these guys are going to make a conscious effort to show they’re not biased one way or the other.

“It’s not the first time we’ve had (Gantar) this year,” Bradley contined. “What can you say? He’s just not good enough. It’s just unfortunate because we’re fighting for our lives and when you see how much every guy in here puts into it and the performance over the course of 90 minutes, to have two points taken from you at the end of the game, it’s just not good enough.”

Bradley went on to continue with the message that it is the league’s responsibility to clean up the state of refereeing in the current game.

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Posted in Featured, Major League Soccer, MLS- Toronto FC | 93 Comments

Liga MX Round 8: A Look Back

MauroCejasSantosLaguna1-ClubLeon (Imago7)

By DAN KARELL

Eight weeks into the 2014 Apertura season, defending champions Club Leon continue to sink lower and lower in the Liga MX standings.

Taking on Mexican power Santos Laguna, Leon were no match to Los Guerreros, as the hosts ran away to a 2-0 victory. Santos were all over Leon from the onset of the match, and Javier Orozco nearly scored from a bicycle kick, but it clanged off the left post.

Santos did find the breakthrough minutes later though when Mauro Cejas ghosted past the backline to flick a free header past Leon goalkeeper Christian Cedillo in the ninth minute.

Cedillo made save after save for his under fire Leon side but the evening continued to get worse for the visitors. Fernando Navarro was shown two yellow cards in three minutes, and was sent off in the 28th minute, reducing Leon to ten men. In the 78th minute, Jose Maria Cardenas was shown a second yellow card and received his marching orders, while coach Gustavo Matosas was also ejected.

In the third minute of second half stoppage time, youngster Jesus Escoboza put the finishing touches on the match, slotting home to put Santos up by two goals and close out the game. Santos moved into third place with 15 points with the win, while Leon drops to 16th place.

Here’s a closer look at the best of the rest from Liga MX Apertura Round 8:

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Posted in Mexican Soccer | Leave a comment

SBI MLS Player of the Week: Blas Perez

Perez-FCDalasWhitecaps-USAToday

 

Photo by Jerome Miron/ USA TODAY Sports Images

 

By RYAN TOLMICH

In need of a victory to give his side some breathing room in the battle for playoff positioning, Blas Perez produced in spectacular fashion.

Perez scored a a pair of goals Saturday as FC Dallas knocked off the Vancouver Whitecaps, 2-1, to put eight points between the two teams for fourth place in the Western Conference.

The FC Dallas forward’s first effort was a magnificent one, as Perez magically curled home a hopeful ball while being defended adjacent to the corner flag. The Panamanian added a second in the 78th minute, scoring just 11 minutes after the Whitecaps leveled the scoreline.

Perez’s brace led his side to victory, as FC Dallas now have plenty of points on those that occupy the positions below them. Perez’s efforts also earned the forward recognition as SBI MLS Player of the Week, beating out Obafemi Martins, Lee Nguyen and Graham Zusi for this week’s honors.

What did you think of Perez’s performance? Which player stood out to you in MLS Week 27?

Share your thoughts below.

Posted in Featured, MLS- FC Dallas, SBI MLS Player of the Week | Leave a comment

SBI MLS Rookie of the Week: Pedro Ribeiro

Pedro Ribeiro (USA Today Sports)

 Photo by John Gellebter/USA TODAY Sports Images

 

By RYAN TOLMICH

With less than one-and-a-half games under his belt and his team in the thick of a potential make-or-break clash with the New York Red Bulls, Philadelphia Union rookie Pedro Ribeiro played hero.

Entering the weekend trailing the Red Bulls by one point in the standings, Ribeiro scored and drew a penalty, as the Union earned a late draw to keep playoff qualification within striking distance.

With the Union resting some of the team’s regulars due to the upcoming U.S. Open Cup final, Ribeiro provided the spark, starting with a goal in the 41st minute that came just moments after the Red Bulls opened up a 2-0 lead. Then, as time ticked away, Ribeiro played his part yet again, earning a penalty kick that was converted by Sebastian Le Toux to grab the Union a crucial point.

Ribeiro was the catalyst behind the Union comeback, which was enough to earn the 24-year-old rookie recognition as SBI MLS Rookie of the Week. Ribeiro beat out Tesho Akindele and Chris Duvall for this week’s honors.

What did you think of Ribeiro’s performance? Which rookie stood out to you in MLS Week 27?

Share your thoughts below.

Posted in Featured, MLS- Philadelphia Union, SBI MLS Rookie of the Week | 2 Comments

USL Pro Playoff Rewind: Islanders shock Orlando City

Press Image 3

Photo by Orlando City SC

By AARON CRANFORD

The Orlando City Lions will head to the MLS without their sixth USL Pro title, following a shocking 1-0 playoff quarterfinal loss to the Harrisburg City Islanders.

Philadelphia Union loanee Antoine Hoppenot scored the only goal of the match in the 40th minute. Jamiel Hardware played a perfect pass on the goal, splitting the defense to find Hoppenot, who beat Carl Woszczynski to score the only goal in front of 4,855 fans.

Both sides had many opportunities, but the Islanders held USL Pro scoring leader, Kevin Molino without a single shot on the night.

The Islanders’ Robbie Derschang was shown a red card in the 90th minute, so he will miss the semifinal match against Richmond, but that didn’t stop the Islanders from celebrating their massive upset when the final whistle blew.

The eighth-seeded Islanders will look to upset another top team, when they visit Richmond on Saturday.

Here is a look at the rest of the USL Pro playoff quarterfinal results:

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Posted in Featured, USL Pro | 9 Comments

Sunday European Rewind: Manchester United rout QPR; AC Milan win thriller over Parma; and more

DiMaria-Herrera-ManchesterUnitedQPR-ISI

Photo by ISIPhotos.com

By RYAN TOLMICH

For the first time this season, Manchester United appeared to resemble a team capable of living up to the history and tradition of the club.

The Red Devils surged past Queens Park Rangers Sunday by a 4-0 scoreline, as Man United picked up their first English Premier League victory of the 2014-15 season.

Meanwhile, in Italy, AC Milan and Parma combined for nine goals with the Rossoneri emerging victorious via a 5-4 scoreline.

In other European action, Lille topped Nantes to ascend to the top of Ligue 1, Valencia remained unbeaten with a victory over Espanyol and Inter Milan scored seven against Sassuolo.

Here is a closer look at all of Sunday’s action from across Europe’s top leagues: Continue reading »

Posted in European Soccer, Featured | 6 Comments

SBI MLS Team of the Week: Seattle Sounders

SoundersRSL-USAToday

 Photo by Steven Bisig/USA TODAY Sports Images

By RYAN TOLMICH

In what was billed as a clash between MLS Cup contenders, the Seattle Sounders once again asserted themselves as the league’s top team.

The Sounders officially clinched their spot in the playoffs and extended their lead over the rest of the Western Conference Saturday by claiming a 3-2 victory over fellow contenders Real Salt Lake.

As a possible postseason preview, the Sounders were able to emerge from CenturyLink Field victorious due to a stoppage time winner from substitute Andy Rose. With RSL down a man, the Sounders did what was necessary by earning all three points to take yet another step towards claiming the league’s top spot.

The Sounders continued dominance atop the table was enough to earn recognition as SBI MLS Team of the Week, beating out Sporting Kansas City, New York Red Bulls and FC Dallas for this week’s honors.

What did you think of the Sounders performance this week? Which team impressed you most in MLS Week 27?

Share your thoughts below.

Posted in Featured, Major League Soccer, MLS- Seattle Sounders | 9 Comments

Monday Kickoff: Costa Rica wins Copa Centroamericano; Bayern struggling with injuries; and more

CostaRica-CopaCentroAmericano-USATODAYSports

 

Photo by USA Today Sports

By RYAN TOLMICH

After surprising the world at this past summer’s World Cup, Costa Rica have earned another chance to impress on the international stage.

Los Ticos defeated Guatemala, 2-1, Saturday in the finals of the Copa Centroamericana to earn a place in the 2016 Copa America, which is set to be hosted in the United States.

Costa Rica were led by goals from Bryan Ruiz and Juan Bustos, who combined to cancel out an early Carlos Ruiz penalty kick for Guatemala.

In other Copa Centroamericana action, Honduras earned a spot in the Gold Cup qualification playoffs with a 1-0 victory over Nicaragua in the fifth-place match, while Panama defeated El Salvador 1-0 in the third-place match.

Here are some more news and notes to kickoff your Monday morning:

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Posted in European Soccer, Featured, International Soccer | 10 Comments