Monday, April 17, 2017

Some Soccer News for Apr 17, 2017

It's Day 107 of 2017.

There was a lot of talk over the weekend about the 3 game suspension that MLS gave to Colorado keeper Tim Howard for 2 supposed altercations with fans in KC during a Week 6 game. Three games is pretty damn harsh, and a lot of the debate has been centered around that. What we don't really know is the totality of what went down. There is video of 1 incident with fans heckling Howard and him firing off a "fuck your mother" in retort. OK, pretty dumb of Tim. The other is said to be Howard grabbed a fan as he was leaving the field. No idea what that one is really all about. Here is the why I think Howard got the 3 games though: He is one of the faces of the league, and is a focal point of their "Don't Cross The Line" anti-discrimination campaign. Whether you agree with the 3 games or not is perfectly debatable. But I see why he got 3.



A very important comeback tie for MNUFC. Vital.

Head coach Adrian Heath: Heath said. “Are we getting better? Yes. Have we got a long way to go? Definitely.”
  • Keep up the hard work.
  • And correct those mistakes in the lineup before kickoff.

For the 1st time this season MNUFC went a full 45 minute half without giving up a goal - the 2nd half at Houston. More please!

-Sat Apr 15
Houston Dynamo 2-2 Minnesota United - HD goals by Mauro Manotas + Alberth Elis. MU goals by Christian Ramirez + Johan Venegas.

My MNUFC Notes:
  • Game highlights [VIDEO]
  • Luck played a big part in this road point for MNUFC.
  • They were down 2 goals and 2 injured players in the first half.
  • So they had to come out in the 2nd half and make things happen.
  • They sure did!
  • Within 90 seconds of the start of the 2nd half Minn got on the scoreboard with Molino putting a corner kick to the back post where Ramirez leaped over the out-matched Boniek to head the ball in powerfully.
  • 12 minutes later Minn hit Hous on the counter with Molino driving down the right wing all the way to the end line then trying to cut the ball back to middle of the field. The Hous defense got a deflection on the ball but it bounced right into the path of the late arriving JVenegas who first timed a high bouncing ball into the left side of the net!
  • Molino set up BOTH goals with his sheer-will to make things happen.
  • When Kallman hit the field to start the game MNUFC fans gasped, "He cut his hair?!?!?" He did look sharp, but we hoped it would not be a Samson moment. It was his most challenging game of his 5 MLS starts, but he stood just strong enough to dispel any myths.
  • For some odd reason Schuller started on the left hand side of midfield. I thought we learned this lesson in Week 2 when Saied started out there and we got toasted.
  • There is no mistaking what happened when Ibarra came on for Schuller - the offense kicked up into the next gear.
  • Cronin and Warner both starting together is not a positive. Again. We only need 1 of them, and then someone in the other spot to jump start the offense.
  • Ramirez missed 3 very good chances at goal, twice in the 1st half and once in the 2nd, and on top of that he earned a deserved penalty call. He cannot miss all those chances. On a better team that would cost him his starting job.
  • Injuries forced 2 first half subs, Schuller went out with a hip injury in the 43 min replaced by Ibarra, and moments later Shuttleworth went out with a head injury in the 45th replaced by Alvbage.
  • Minn did not use its 3rd sub until the 89th min when Danladi replaced Molino. Turns out:

  • I would have put Danladi in the game in the 80th min for Molino who was obviously exhausted (he gave the ball away on 4 consecutive attempts,) and told the team to hoof the ball over the top and have Danladi run his ass off to track it down or at least harass the Dyna defenders. Stretch the damn field and kill off the game!
  • Houston continuously had 5-6-7 players attacking the Minn goal
  • Minnesota usually only had 3, until after they fell behind 2-0 (just like last week in Dallas,) and then finally pushed a 4th and a few times a 5th or rarely a 6th player into attack.
  • Would someone, preferably a teammate, tell Johan Venegas to STOP DIVING. He is not getting the calls, and now when he does get fouled the refs think twice about giving him the correct call. KNOCK IT OFF JOHAN!
  • Iron Skillet Time: Elis of Houston scored on 2 set pieces late in the first half and both times he was completely unmarked. Luckily for Minn the first one was erroneously called back for offside. So why wasn't the issue fixed immediately? Minutes later Elis was free again and scored for good this time. To make things worse on that play Elis knocked goalkeeper Shuttleworth out of the game with an inadvertent blow to the head. Then there were the 2 throw-ins by Hous that lead to a terrific shot (awesome save by Shuttle) and the first goal of the game. WTF? Terrible marking, terrible concentration, terrible team effort.
  • Both teams were denied a goal scoring opportunity by the referees:
  • -Ramirez was hauled down from behind in the box on a breakaway, but no foul was called. Should have been a PK, and a red card to Houston centerback Machado.
    -Elis scored a header goal on a set piece but saw it waved off by the assistant referee who said he was offside. He was not.
  • Down the stretch Houston had several decent chances to win the game, but took bad shots badly.
  • Alvbage made a couple solid saves and timely clearances in this return.
  • The Minn defenders also made some nice clearances at the end.
  • In the second half of the game MNUFC kept a clean sheet for 45 minutes for the time this season. Hooray! Huzzah!
  • Good: Kallman, Calvo, Cronin, Molino, Alvbage, Ibarra
  • So-So: Burch, Warner, JVenegas, Ramirez, Thiesson, Shuttleworth
  • Bad: Schuller (not his fault he was used in such a poor spot in the lineup and got hurt)
  • The team is in 21st place in the league on Points Per Game at 0.71. Philly is last at 0.33. Colorado, who they play next Sunday is in 20th at 0.80 ppg.

Post game Media:

-Sun Apr 23
Minnesota v Colorado - 5:00pm CT on My29 + Altitude

Is veteran centerback Vadim Demidov already on his way out of the team? This article makes the case, but says there is no plan in place. By Jeff Rueter of Fifty One Fifty.



More entertaining to watch than John Terry in MLS:
  1. Take $2M
  2. Blend with water
  3. Drink
  4. Piss it down the drain

This week 3 road teams got wins and 1 got a tie. Better than average for the away team.

My MLS Week 7 Notes:
  • Wow! Villa with the mighty 50 yard chip!
  • Schweinsteiger, McCarty, Nikolic are getting it done for the Fire.
  • Petke is 2 for 2 as head coach of RSL.
  • That KC defense is great - Melia, Opara, Besler, Sinovic, Medranda, Zusi, Espinoza, Feilhaber, Ilie!
  • Orlando steals one at the end.
  • Vancouver wins another Cascadia Cup game.

9 highs and lows from Week 7 action. By Caitlin Murray for Fox Sports.

All the weeks top analytics. By Matt Doyle of MLS.

XI moments for Week 7. By Alexander Abnos for Sports Illustrated.

Week 7 Schedule/Results:
-Fri Apr 14
Philadelphia Union 0-2 New York City
Vancouver Whitecaps 2-1 Seattle Sounders
San Jose Earthquakes 1-1 Dallas
-Sat Apr 15
Montreal Impact 2-1 Atlanta United
Orlando City 2-1 LA Galaxy
Chicago Fire 3-0 New England Revolution
New York Red Bulls 2-0 DC United
Columbus Crew 2-1 Toronto
Houston Dynamo 2-2 Minnesota United
Colorado Rapids 1-2 Real Salt Lake
Portland Timbers 0-1 Sporting Kansas City

Hot Stats:

29 goals in 11 games = 2.6 goals per game. (You want at least 3.)
Goals scored:
  • 16 Portland
  • 14 Atlanta
  • 13 Houston
  • 12 Minnesota
  • 11 Columbus
Goals allowed:
  • 24 Minnesota
  • 11 Houston
  • 11 Philadelphia
  • 11 Vancouver
  • 10 DC
  • 10 LA



Its official:
-Sat Jun 3
USA v Venezuela - 9:00pm CT on FS1 + Univision
Sandy UT, Rio Tinto Stadium
  • NOTE: Minnesota United plays that day at KC - 4:00pm CT kickoff


Former USA assistant coach and Olympic head coach Andi Herzog has plenty to say about Jurgen Klinsmanns relationship with MLS and US Soccer. From ESPNFC.
  • On several things he is not wrong.
  • On several things he is not right.


USMNT U-17 team hits the World Cup qualifying and CONCACAF championship tournament this week.

April 21 - May 7 in Panama.

USA Roster:
  • G: Carlos Joaquim Dos Santos (Benfica), Justin Garces (Kendall)
  • D: Christopher Gloster (New York Red Bulls), Jaylin Lindsey (Sporting Kansas City), James Sands (New York City), Arturo Vasquez (Golden State), Akil Watts (IMG Academy)
  • M: George Acosta (Weston), Taylor Booth (Real Salt Lake AZ), Christopher Durkin (DC United), Blaine Ferri (Solar Chelsea), Christopher Goslin (Atlanta United), Indiana Vassilev (IMG Academy), Adrian Villegas (Portland Timbers)
  • F: Ayomide Akinola (Toronto), Andrew Carleton (Atlanta United), Zyen Jones (Atlanta United), Bryan Reynolds Jr (Dallas), Joshua Sargent (Scott Gallagher Missouri) Timothy Weah (Paris Saint-Germain)

Group C
-Sun Apr 23
USA v Jamaica - 12:30 CT
-Wed Apr 26
USA v Mexico - 5:30 CT
-Sat Apr 29
USA v El Salvador - 10:30am CT
-Streamed live on the CONCACAF Facebook page.

  • 1st Group stage (round robin) - 3 groups of 4 teams - top two advance
  • 2nd Group stage (round robin) - 2 groups of 3 teams - top two qualify for World Cup
  • Final - 1st place teams in each group play for CONCACAF championship.
  • World Cup is Oct 6-28 in India.



Emerson Hyndman Baby!!! Set up another one for Rangers as they beat Partick Thistle 2-0:

Christian Pulisic never gives up on a play, and set up Marco Reus for a beauty, as Dortmund win 3-1 over Eintracht:

DeAndre Yedlin returned to the field this weekend for Newcastle after 6 weeks out.
  • On Fri he played the last 6+ minutes of a 1-1 tie v Leeds.
  • Today he started and went 78 min as they lost 3-1 at Ipswich.
  • With 3 games to go they are in 2nd place and have a 6 point lead on an automatic promotion spot.


The Terrence Boyd + Torstan Frings + Darmstadt Tracker:
  • Results - Sun Apr 16 Won 2-1 v Schalke
  • Note - Huge win, but still not nearly enough to matter in the long run, plus the teams they are chasing (Augsburg + Mainz) both won. Boyd not in uniform
  • Standings - 5 games left, in Last place, still 14 points below relegation playoff and 15 points from safety
  • Up Next - Sat Apr 22 at Hamburger


The Miguel Herrera + Several Americans + Tijuana Tracker:
  • Results - Sat Apr 15 Won 1-2 at Chiapas
  • Note - big big win, with Arriola going 90 and setting up the game winner and Corona starting and playing 56 min. Orozco still injured
  • Standings - now just 3 games left, they move up to 2nd place, 1 points behind 1st Toluca...
  • Up Next - And wouldn't you know it: Fri Apr 21 v Toluca!



No there are only 3 rounds left in the regular season! And not a single team has been officially eliminated from the play off race.

-Sat Apr 15
Pachuca 0-0 Guadalajara - remain at #8 + drop to #3
-Sun Apr 16
Toluca 1-1 Monterrey - staying #1 + falling to #4



-Sat Apr 15
Inter 2-2 Milan - the Derby della Madonnina, Inter led 2-0 until 83 and 2-1 until 90+7, remain #7 + #6
-Sun Apr 16
Manchester United 2-0 Chelsea - but stay #5 + #1. Big win for Mourinho gained nothing for his team.


Leg 2
-Tue Apr 18
Real Madrid v Bayern (2-1) - 1:45pm CT on FS1
Leicester v Atletico (0-1) - 1:45pm CT on FS2
-Wed Apr 19
Barcelona v Juventus (0-3) - 1:45pm CT on FS1
Monaco v Dortmund (3-2) - 1:45pm CT on FS2


Very sad news to end the day: Panamanian player Amilcar Henriquez of Arabe Unido was murdered on Saturday. Very few if any details are known.

The Bird Is The Word


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