Thursday, April 12, 2007

Ringing Bell News

Richard Mulrooney of Toronto talking to LA Soccer News about reports that he was unhappy to be traded from Dallas to TFC: "I’d love to know who started those reports, because they’re not true at all."

MLS Tonight:
Los Angeles v Dallas - live at 9m on ESPN2
-A former American Idol flunky will sing the national anthem. Personally I prefer the vocal stylings of Alvin & the Chipmunks.
-LA is also giving out t-shirts to the first 2500 thru the gates tonight. The shirts were designed by a local artist that is a favorite of team pres Alexi Lalas. The thought of Lalas approved art scared me very much. Then I saw a design done by the artist in question Terry Davis. It's killer! Really. (image stolen from Andrea Canales's Sideline Views blog, Andrea doesn't know if this is the design of tonight's giveaway shirt, but its cool none the less)
-The Dallas Morning News with a match preview. And a Dallas injury update.
-Tobias Xavier Lopez with pregame notes, from the Fort Worth Star Telegram.
-Luis Bueno with a game preview for the Press Enterprise.
-Andrea Canales at LA Soccer News previews.
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I finally got time to watch the Houston 0-0 LA game from Sunday night, and here are a couple of thoughts:
-The Spanish speaking announcers always say a players full name, or on special occasion just the first name, but never just the last name. Must be a cultural thing. Always "Eddie Robinson" or "Chris Albright" and occasionally "Landon".
-The lead announcer always mispronounced Craig Waibel. He kept saying "Cray-g Way-bull" instead of "Cray-g Why-bull".
-I see LA is wearing a more Emerald Green this season as opposed to last years Forest Green.
-And Houston is wearing more of a Department Of Transportation Orange this season compared to last years Halloween Orange.
-The upcoming change in LA team colors really has me bummed out. I love the gold tops and green shorts, with the sash. We don't need more teams wearing blue and/or red. Damn. They have such a unique look.
-Who was the guy starting at rightback for LA? Ty Harden? Who is that? No one else with some experience was available? They did get the clean sheet, so OK. But, hmmm. Harden is a first year player on the development roster.
-LA also had Ian Russel starting at Centerback.
-What is Santino Quaranta's problem? Is he back to being fat and lazy already?
-Paul Dalglish came on in the second half for Houston, but was subbed out for another midfielder a few minutes later after teammate Ryan Cochran was red carded. Dalglish looked very pissed off about getting pulled.
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Is this picture the definition of a "direct free kick"?
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The Denver Post with a feature story on Colorado's Senegalese goalkeeper Bouna Coundoul. Luckily the team can play him in the nets and not Zach Thornton. Great story.
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Grahame Jones at the LA Times with a feature on Galaxy rookie forward Robbie Findley, and his famous athlete cousins.
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Andrew Rogers of Soccer 365 does a Q & A with LA Galaxy president Alexi Lalas.
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Bernardo Fallas at the Houston Chronicle says Ricardo Clark is back at practice with the Houston Dynamo. Will he be ready for this weekend? We will know soon enough.
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Kansas City has officially signed Argentine midfielder Carlos Marinelli. He has played in the past for Boca Juniors, Racing, Braga, Middlesbrough & Torino among others. He is 25.
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The Kansas City Star is reporting that the Wizards have hired a developer to help them push forward in their quest to build their own stadium.
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New England's team website has a feature on rookie Wells Thompson where they tell you all about him as a person in an "A to Z" format. Not bad. Thompson did a decent job last weekend when he got the start at left midfield v Chicago too.
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Ives Galarcep at the North Jersey Times looks at the situation of a player drafted by Columbus but not willing to sign for the developmental contract rate of $12,900. I get lots of grief every time I say that this pay scale is way too low, and actually insulting to supposed "professionals" in MAJOR League Soccer. There is nothing MAJOR about $12,900. People email me saying that this is "the going rate, take it or leave it". I'm not convinced this isn't a joke of an offer from MLS. The kid is from New Jersey and could live at home if Columbus would let him go or trade his rights, but they won't.
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For those of you who get the print edition of the New York Times, George Vecsey has a story today on Claudio Reyna. If you don't know George's work, then take my word on it when I say he is one of the best. I generally will read anything he writes. You can also read the story if you are an online subscriber to the Times Select, or like me, you have access to Lexis Nexis.
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Chivas USA striker Ante Razov gets a write up in his home town newspaper The Fontana Herald.
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Chivas USA has signed young French forward Laurent Merlin. He was the player who originally came to LA when the Galaxy held an open tryout. He was the last of 800 standing, but in the end was cut from the team. Chivas gave him a shot on trial after that, and now he has a contract. Great for him. Perseverance pays off!
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The Toronto Star says TFC is trying to tempt former Canadian National Team keeper Craig Forrest into unretiring and joining the team. He trained with them this week.
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Stephen Brunt of the Toronto Globe & Mail talks to LA Galaxy coach Frank Yallop about the arrival of Becks, and why Yallop left the Canadian National Team. Yallop does not mince words about the Canadian Soccer Assoc.
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James Edwards of the Deseret Morning News with a midweek update on Real Salt Lake from their practice sessions. Injury news too.
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Real Salt Lale has signed 22 year old Cote d'Ivoire midfielder Jean-Martial Kipre.
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A guy from the Denver weekly paper Westword who is a bonafide Eurosnob assmunch takes in the first game at Colorado's new Big Dick. He comes away impressed by the fans, but still dogs the game. And he can't spell Thierry Henry either. Figures.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ with a story on young Toronto FC & Canada forward Andrea Lombardo. He will play for his countries U20 team this summer in the World Championship on home soil.
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The Daily Texan with a story on some of the video technology that ESPN2 will use on their MLS broadcasts this season.
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Sports Illustrated with their second week of MLS Power Rankings, and news and notes. Good stuff.
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Aston Villa are finalizing plans to train in North America in late July, and play matches v Toronto & Columbus sometime between the 22nd and 30th. If you remember, AV is owned by Randy Lerner who also owns the Cleveland Browns.
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I missed this on Tuesday, but both Americans Gregg Berhalter & Josh Wolff were instrumental in leading their team Munich 1860 to a 2-0 win over Bundesliga2 leaders Karlsruhe on Monday night. Wolff set up the first goal, and Berhalter scored the second! Yanks Abroad with the details on this excellent win.
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YA also talks to young American midfielder Michael Bradley about the season finale push at Heerenveen.
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Soccer America with an opinion piece by Minnesota Youth Soccer Association director of coaching Ian Barker on the current state of the youth game in our country.
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Mexican powerhouse Pachuca was beaten last night 2-0 by UANL Tigres, ending the Tuzos 12 match unbeaten streak.
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Copa Libertadores - here are the week's matches:
Apr 10
Cerro Porteno 1-0 Deportes Tolima
Real Potosi 3-1 Parana
Emelec 1-2 Internacional
Apr 11
Cucuta Deportivo 3-1 Gremio
Libertad 1-2 America
Audax Italiano 2-1 Necaxa
-Match reports via Sports Illustrated.
Apr 12
Bolivar - Toluca
Nacional - Velez Sarsfield
-It looks like many of the groups are going to go right down to the last games to decide the top 2 spots for elimination rounds.
-Flamengo, Santos, Colo Colo & Caracas have already qualified for the next round with all teams still having at least one more round of the group stage to play and some others have two.
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Champions League quarterfinal scores:
Manchester United 7-1 Roma - Man U wins 8-3 on aggregate.
Valencia 1-2 Chelsea - Chelsea advance 3-2 on agg.
Bayern 0-2 Milan - Associazione Calcio Milan win the series 4-2 on aggregate. A powerful performance from the Italian's with goals by Clarence Seedorf and Super Pippo Inzaghi.
Liverpool 1-0 PSV - The Liverpeople win 4-0 on agg. Goal by Crouchy.
-The Semifinals, Matchday 11 & 12, will be April 24/25 & May 1/2.
-Man U will next play Milan & Chelsea will play the Liverpeople.
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Why did Rino Gattuso of Milan take that silly dive late in the match v Bayern? He was probably trying to get Bayern's Marc Van Bommel sent off. The two ran into each other and MVB's hand brushed Gatuso just below the throat. Gatuso went down hard holding his face and rolling on the ground in agony. The referee called a foul. Gatuso was pleading for more. It was disgraceful. But why did he do it? What is the point? Why is this crap considered by some players as the thing they need to do? Especially by great players like Gattuso.
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Rob Hughes of the International Herald Tribune recaps the Champions League this week - it's Milan v the English.
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UEFA Cup - second leg quarterfinal matches today (first leg scores included):
-Werder Bremen v AZ Alkmaar(0-0)
-Osasuna v Beyer Leverkusen (3-0)
-Benfica v Espanyol (2-3)
-Tottenham v Sevilla (1-2)
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The English FA Cup semifinals are this weekend:
-Watford v Manchester United at Villa Park - shown at 11:30am central time only via home Pay Per View for $25 or closed circuit at pubs for $20 cover charge
-Chelsea v Blackburn at Old Trafford - delayed at 10am central time on FSC
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Brazil & Real Madrid star veteran full back Roberto Carlos has officially said he is leaving the club at the end of this season. He has not said where he will be playing next, except that it will NOT be back in Brazil. He claims that would be too much pressure.
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The legal wranglings continue in Italy as another court now rules that Catania must continue to play their "home" games (neutral sites) behind closed doors. I am sure we will see yet another appeal on this. Let's hope they get it right and keep the doors shut.
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The Times of London looks at 4 managers in the EPL and asks if they are the worlds 4 best: Benitez, Ferguson, Mourinho & Wenger. I say no, but they are all very good.
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The Guardian with article on Roy Keane, the calm manager behind Sunderland's attempted return to the Premiership. It has been impressive so far.


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