Monday, May 09, 2016

Some Soccer News for May 9, 2016

It's Day 130 of 2016.

Liga MX Clausura Laguilla begins this week. And there are 4 great matchups to begin the playoffs:
1st Leg
-Wed May 11
Tigres (8) v Monterrey (1)
Morelia (6) v Leon (3)
-Thu May 12
Santos Laguna (7) v Pachuca (2)
Guadalajara (5) v America (4)
-2nd Leg games on 14 + 15.

Lots of Americans will see regular action in these games:
Edgar Castillo - Mon
Jose Torres - Tig
Omar Gonzalez - Pac
Jorge Villafana - SL
William Yarborough - Leo
Ventura Alvarez - Ame


NASL Week 6 Matches:
-Wed May 4
Jacksonville 0-1 Edmonton
-Sat May 7
Ottawa 2-2 Minnesota
Jacksonville 0-1 OKC
Carolina 1-3 Ft Lauderdale
Indy 1-1 Edmonton
Miami 0-3 Cosmos

15 goals in 6 games = 2.5 gpg.

My NASL Notes:
  • Carolina has lost their 2nd game in a row and this time it was a shocking loss to the previously winless Ft Lauderdale Strikers. FLS scored their 3 before CRH got the 1 back.
  • AND the game was in Carolina!
  • Cosmos rolled back to the top of the league with a strong road win against horrible Miami.
  • Miami might have the worst defense I have ever seen in the 5 (or is it 6) years of the reformed NASL. Really really bad. And the coach and president are defensive legends in Italy. I hope Gazzetta doesn't decide to come and cover this team any time soon.
  • Montons got a 2nd win in a row on Wed, then tied on Sat to give them 7 pts in last 3 games.

My Minnesota Notes:
  • Shut out streak of 3 games snapped.
  • Two good Minnesota goals, by Ramirez and Speas, where negated by two mental lapses that cost them 2 points.
  • After MU scored in the 13th minute they began a slow wind down of their engines that gave Ottawa 2 good chances late in the half. This was something the team did even more dramatically under Manny Lagos. They just coast and give up too much possession. Painful stuff to watch.
  • Luckily Minn was not punished for the laissez faire attitude until the 60th min when a loose defense got torched.
  • As soon as Ott scored MU turned it right back on and romped to a 2nd goal, in the 75th min.
  • But in the dying seconds errors by Pinho and Ndock left an open net for the Fury to grab the tying goal. Again painful stuff to watch.
  • I can't say the final score should have been different to what the scoreboard said it was. Ottawa did not deserve to lose and Minnesota threw away a win.
  • Marcel de Jong came on as the left fullback at half time for Ott and got both of their goals. He might not be NASL Player Of The Week but he should be.
  • Lance Laing had a fairly invisible game. I did not expect to see that. He wasn't bad, just mostly ineffective.
  • Our beloved Jonny Steele went the full 90 for Ott and missed an open net early in the 2nd half which would have tied the game at 1-1. Woof.

A few hours after the Ott v Minn game ended I dictated this note into my phone:
"No excuses. You can't go on the road and give up two leads and walk away with one point and be satisfied with that. That's a cop-out. When you get them down you gotta put your boot on their neck and crush them. That's a problem this Minnesota team has had for years and years. I know normally a tie on the road is deemed acceptable, but this one was not."


Some sheer ugliness from USL:
Romeo Parkes of Pittsburgh has been cut from the team for this insane incident on Saturday night. [VIDEO] That is a full on assault on NYRB II's Karl Ouimette.


Ale Bedoya got a goal for Nantes over the weekend, but they lost at home 1-2 v Caen.
  • Bedoya could have potentially been playing his last game for Nantes. Lots of talk of him moving for a while now. And after the game he led the home fans in a very familiar and boistrous chant! (With his little kid in his arms no less):


MLS Week 10
-Fri May 6
Orlando 1-1 Red Bulls
-Sat May 7
Vancouver 2-1 Portland
Toronto 1-0 Dallas
Columbus 4-4 Montreal
Houston 2-0 KC
Colorado 1-0 Salt Lake
Seattle 2-0 San Jose
-Sun May 8
LA 4-2 New England
DC 0-2 New York City
27 goals in 9 games = 3 gpg.

PPG Top 5
2.00 Colorado
2.00 LA
1.89 Salt Lake
1.63 Philadelphia
1.56 Toronto

Hey Unimas what the fuck is up with this picture in picture shit??? I could barely see the 2nd half of the Fri night MLS game cuz you had a mini-window of a Liga MX game up on the screen too, a game that did not matter at all! And I really couldn't see the Mexican game at all cuz the picture was too damn small. So what was the point? You basically ruined the view of 2 games. STOP.

My MLS Notes:
  • The New England Revolution technical staff should just fall on a grenade right now and get it over with. NOT because the team they put on the field is terrible, they're not, but because THEY LET JERMAINE JONES WALK AWAY AND HE IS TEARING IT UP FOR ANOTHER TEAM!
  • In the one and a half seasons Jones was with the Revs how many games did they lose with him on the field? NOT VERY MANY!
  • And where did Jones go? To the lowly Colorado Rapids. But guess what happened since he arrived.....
  • Colorado beat their rivals RSL this weekend and are now the Supporters Shield leaders. That is not a typo.
  • Germ-Jerm is playing, can you believe it, as the withdrawn forward and has delivered 3 goals in 4 games for the Rapids. Wow.
  • No mistake Jermaine leads in a way Colorado desperately needed, and New England desperately needs back.
  • KCs current run: L D D L L L W L - 5 points from their last 8 games. This coming after starting the season winning 3 in a row.
  • Fanendo Adi, David Villa and Chris Wondolowski lead the league with 7 goals each.
  • Portland scored 1st (not Adi though), but lost their Cascadia Cup game in the Couve.
  • David Villa scored the game winner and has 25 goals in 40 MLS games. He is worth every penny they pay him.
  • DC United had 0 shots on goal against NYC. And NYC does not have a good defense. DCU needs to spend some damn money on real depth.
  • 4 games in a row with a goal for Jordan Morris in Seattle!
  • Robbie Keane returned from injury for LA. He has been out since Mar 19. He scored 2, both on assists from Gyasi Zardes.
  • Toronto has improved their defense for the first time in their 11 year life. How can you tell exactly? They have 4 shutouts so far this season. They had 5 last season.

And we will finish with a separate note on the biggest story of the weekend - the meltdown in Columbus!
The Crew has not started the season well. It appears as though losing the Final at home last year knocked a lot of their confidence out of them.
Slowly they have been improving, getting 6 points from the last 3 games, and giving up just 3 goals. And on Saturday they built a great 3-1 lead and earned a Penalty in the 52nd that should have all but sealed the game.
What happened next is where the "big story" comes in:
  • Coach Gregg Berhalter said both Federico Higuain Kei Kamara are designated to take Penalty Kicks. Why two guys? No one knows.
  • Kamara already had 2 goals in the first half of the game, so he was looking for a third that would give him the first hat-trick of his professional career. A big milestone for any forward.
  • But after the penalty was called Higuia got to the ball first and wanted to take the PK himself.
  • The two literally began struggling over the ball! In each others face.
  • Captain Michael Parkhurst was back in his centerback position near midfield and had to race up and get in between them before something escalated. The home fans were booing.
  • Parkhurst took the ball and gave it to Kamara.
  • Kamara dropped it and walked away.
  • Parkhurst picked it up and threw it to Higuain. who scored.
  • Now 4-1 to the Crew.
  • But it didn't end there.
  • The whole Crew team seemed to have come unglued. And they let Montreal back in the game.
  • Montreal got two goals to make it 4-3.
  • And then in the 3rd minute of 2nd half stoppage time Montreal scored one last time to tie the game at 4-4!
  • Meltdown complete.
  • After the game Higuain did not talk to the media.
  • Kamara did though, and he went off on Higuain, saying that the two star players have no chemistry between them, and that if you watch the games closely you will see that Higuain rarely passes the ball to Kamara!
  • Oh boy.
  • I think we know part of the reason why this team has stumbled out of the gate this season.


I am sure you thought this happened a long time ago, but it happened to day - Michel Platini resigned as president of UEFA. Many months after he was banned by FIFA.


With just 1 round left in La Liga and the race is basically down to the usual two.
  • Atletico Madrid lost and although not officially eliminated I really can't see them making up a 37 goal differential if they were to win and the other two lose.
88 Barca (+80) - W 5-0 v Espanyol - Sat May 14 at Granada
87 Real (+74) - W 3-2 v Valencia - Sat May 14 at Deportivo La Coruna
85 Atleti (+43) - L 2-1 at Levante

The Bird Is The Word


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