Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Seriously Melting Mind News

MLS News


Luis Arroyave of the Chicago Tribune on his blog The Red Card gives us the latest news from the Fire.
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Something I really loved about Blanco's goal from last Thursday night was that one of his teammates was warming up behind the goal and can be seen already celebrating before the ball is in the net, he knew it was going in. I love that stuff.
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Nick Green at the Daily Breeze looks into the rough start to the season by Chivas USA and their defensive woes/injuries.
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After being down 1-0 in the first half at San Jose on Saturday the Crew did all their damage in just 9 second half minutes. Between the 73rd and 82nd minute they scored all 3 of their goals. Impressive.
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Is it really any surprise that on the day when the teams two leaders Brian Ching & Dwayne De Rosario both get their first goals of the season that the defending champs also get their first win of the season? I think not.
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Frank Dell'apa of the Boston Globe on Taylor Twellman who made a 2nd half return to action from a knee injury, scored a goal, then hurt his ankle. How bad is it?
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Michael Lewis of Big Apple Soccer looks at the stiff defense coach Juan Carlos Osorio has the Red Bulls playing, even without much talent.
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Nigel Reed at the CBC looks back at the first 12 months of TFC on the field.
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Robbie Rogers, forward for the Columbus Crew, has been named MLS Player Of The Week.
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Steve Davis at MLSnet gives us his list of early season breakout players of 08.
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And Davis writing for Soccernet give us his notes from Week 7.
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MLS Friendlies

-Tue May 13
Vancouver (USL1D) v Los Angeles in Edmonton
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Landon Dovovan did not make the trip to the Great White North due to a calf muscle strain. Organizers hope to draw 45,000.
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I want to say that the 2 Edmonton newspapers have a combined 12 stories today on this game. That is quite amazing. When the Galaxy played in my city last fall the 2 newspapers each ran 1 pregame and 1 post game article. It was pathetic. Great job Edmonton.
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MLS Coaching Hot Seat

In the first installment of the hot seat this season, we have 2 coaches who are in trouble early. Much of it is due to the fact that both had great teams during last years regular season, but disappointed during the playoffs so the eyeball was slightly on them already. One has already stumbled this season in CONCACAF. While the other is with a team that already had 3 head coaches before him and this is just there 4th year of existence, so they will make a change quickly if they feel it needs to happen.
Here they are:
-Tom Soehn - DC United
-Preki - Chivas USA
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What do you think?
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USL First Division News

The USL First & Second Division Teams of the Week. Including Melvin Tarley from my team, who scored the game winner against Montreal last Saturday.
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I certainly didn't see this coming, but after 4 years of building a new stronghold playing their home games in St Paul, the team suddenly announced that effective immediately they are moving all their home games back to the norther suburbs and their old stomping grounds The National Sports Center in Blaine. While I support the team, and have always felt that the playing surface in Blaine was far superior to the one in St Paul's James Griffin Stadium, all the other factors were far worse in the suburbs. The team has already begun extensive reconstruction at the NSC that will make the place much more fan friendly (it could not have been much worse), the real surprise to me is doing this in the middle of the season. That I don't get. If they said they would do this from Day 1 next season then OK, but now? Curious. The teams plan is still to build a long term home in St Paul however. Here is the teams official press release.
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The Minneapolis Star Tribune has an article on the move.
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The St Paul Pioneer Press with their version of the story.
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But the final word goes to our good friend BQ at Blue Sky Soccer (our sister site about soccer in Minnesota).
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USL First Division Scoreboard

Matches & Scores:
-Wed May 14
Charleston v Montreal
Seattle v Rochester
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Team USA

Luis Arroyave of the Chicago Tribune gives us an updates on the probable host stadiums for USA home World Cup qualifiers later this summer and fall. Chicago, DC & Denver anyone?
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England has released their initial roster for the game v the USA. This will be paired down to 18 for game day.
Joe Hart - Manchester City
David James - Portsmouth
Chris Kirkland - Wigan
Wayne Bridge - Chelsea
Ashley Cole - Chelsea
David Wheater - Middlesbrough
Rio Ferdinand - Manchester United
Glen Johnson - Portsmouth
John Terry - Chelsea
Wes Brown - Manchester United
Jonathan Woodgate - Tottenham
Phil Jagielka - Everton
Stephen Warnock - Blackburn
Gareth Barry - Aston Villa
Frank Lampard - Chelsea
Steven Gerrard - Liverpool
David Beckham - Los Angeles
Jermaine Jenas - Tottenham
Owen Hargreaves - Manchester United
Joe Cole - Chelsea
David Bentley - Blackburn
Tom Huddlestone - Tottenham
Stewart Downing - Middlesbrough
Theo Walcott - Arsenal
Ashley Young - Aston Villa
Gabriel Agbonlahor - Aston Villa
Michael Owen - Newcastle
Wayne Rooney - Manchester United
Peter Crouch - Liverpool
Jermain Defoe - Portsmouth
Dean Ashton - West Ham
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Mexico & FMF News

Quarterfinals 1st leg Matches & Scores
-Wed May 14
Chiapas v Cruz Azul
Monterrey v Guadalajara
-Thu May 15
Necaxa v Santos
Toluca v San Luis
Quarterfinals 2nd leg Matches & Scores (1st leg scores included):
-Sat May 17
Cruz Azul v Chiapas (-)
Guadalajara v Monterrey (-)
-Sun May 18
Santos v Necaxa (-)
San Luis v Toluca (-)
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Copa Libertadores

Quarterfinal 1st Leg Matches & Scores:
-Wed May 14
Sao Paulo v Fluminense
Boca Juniors v Atlas
-Thu May 15
America v Santos
San Lorenzo v LDU Quito
Quarterfinal 2nd Leg Matches & Scores (1st leg scores included):
-Wed May 21
Fluminense v Sao Paulo (-)
Atlas v Boca Juniors (-)
-Thu May 22
Santos v America (-)
LDU Quito v San Lorenzo (-)
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The knockout rounds bracket.
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England News

The Guardian with their Premiership 07-08 season awards.
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Fulham defender Moritz Volz gives us his feelings on his team surviving relegation on the last day of the season.
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The Guardian with an article on Fulham's survival and another article on their manager Roy Hodgson.
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Richard Williams of the Guardian loves lower division football in England, and says the Championship Division will draw better attendance than Serie A for the 3rd consecutive year. Plus other news.
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The Daily Mail lists their top 5 new signings of the just ended Premiership season.
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English Championship Division Promotion Playoffs

Playoff 2nd Leg Matches & Scores (with 1st Leg results included):
-Tue May 13
Bristol City v Crystal Palace (1-2)
-Wed May 14
Hull v Watford (2-0)
Playoff Final Match & Score:
-Sat May 24
3rd-6th Winner v 4th-5th Winner
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European News


Sid Lowe of the Guardian looks at Atletico Madrid who sold top striker Fernando Torres to Liverpool last summer, and then saw their strikers get better! Kun Aguero & Diego Forlan ripped it up, and the team is in the Champions League for next season, for the first time since the late 90's.
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Phil Ball at Soccernet paints a very gloomy picture of the carcass previously known as Barcelona, and other La Liga thoughts.
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In Spain, Levante players are set to walk out on the last game of the season, against Real Madrid, because they say they have not had full paychecks in 2 years. What a mess.
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Karim Benzema of Lyon has been named France's Player Of The Year.
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Roma fans will not be allowed to attend their teams final game of the season at Catania because of their tendency to turn good or bad situations into an excuse for violence.
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Paolo Bandini of the Guardian looks at Roma who are 1 game and 1 point out of stealing the title from Inter.
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Just in time for their last game of the season Parma have fired head coach Hector Kuper and hope to avoid relegation by beating Inter who are trying desperately to hold on to their top spot and the scudetto.
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Raphael Honigstein of the Guardin looks at Nurnberg who must win next weekend or be relegated a record 7th time.
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Final in Manchester at the City of Manchester Stadium.
Match & Score:
-Wed May 14
Zenit v Rangers
-It's St Petersburg v Glasgow, two very overlooked cities.
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Zenit will be without their top forward Pavel Pogrebnyak due to yellow card accumulation. He had scored 10 goals in the UEFA Cup, top for this season.
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The Russian team is getting a lot of bad press about it's fans, but Jonathan Wilson of the Guardian says Rangers fans can be quite bad.
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All the latest news from the official UEFA Cup site.
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England, Germany & Denmark were all given an extra spot in next seasons UEFA Cup, and those 3 teams will be picked using something called the Fair Play rules. I think it has something to do with fouls and cards against.
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2008 UEFA European Championship

Twohundredpercent gives us a rundown of all the teams shirts: 1st shirt - and - 2nd shirt. Great collection. (thanks for Rich for pointing me in this direction)
-My favorites are Croatia's 1st shirt, and Germany's 2nd shirt. My runner up goes to Greece's 2nd shirt.
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World News

Simon Kuper at Channel 4 continues his Political Football XI series with a feature on Colombian goalkeeper Rene Higuita! He was infamous for his connection to his countries awful drug wars of the 80's & 90's, and famous for his kick The Scorpion (video included, and must be seen to be believed - it's phenomenal!).
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Jack Bell of the New York Times on Rangers preparation for the UEFA Cup grand finale. And other world soccer news.
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African News

Frenchman Roger Lemerre is the new coach of Morocco.


Anonymous sasha said...

i'm not that fond of the NSC or the suburbs, but the plan to move the field closer to the stand is a huge step in the right direction--maybe even makes it worth while to go back to Blaine....it's not a bad facility by USL standards.

and dare I say it, for the first time ever in my opinion, Nike has topped Adidas in producing better jersies. Adidas used to have the best shirts for tournaments, this years Euro line is pitiful--the only thing worse is puma not showing any creativity.

my top vote goes to Portugal's home shirt - its simple and yet elegant. Nike has improved recently, that's for sure.

3:56 AM  
Blogger digchros said...

Wow, Sasha summed up almost everything I just wanted to say.

I also wanted to add, it's a shame they are getting rid of the track at NSC though. While it makes for better soccer, it was a pretty unique track and, if maintained, a gem of the north.

Lastly, what is the status of Eddie Lewis? Is there any chance he makes a return to MLS now that Derby is done? I feel like he could fit in quite well on quite a few MLS sides.

12:04 PM  
Anonymous peteo said...

Interesting read by the way. Thanks.

"...seven of the teams playing at Euro 2008 will be wearing red shirts (four of them, surprisingly, in Group A - I don't know what the odds against that happening were, but they must have been long), whilst a further four will be wearing white."

3:19 PM  
Blogger Jonathan Geissler said...

funny that preki and soehn were the two main candidates for coach of the year last season

5:20 PM  

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