Wednesday, July 05, 2017

Some Soccer News for Jul 5, 2017

It's Day 186 of 2017.

My latest for 1500ESPN: Minnesota United FC Mid-Season Player Grades + Awards.


Kenny Saief has suffered a groin injury and been removed from the USMNT Gold Cup roster. He has been replaced by Chris Pontius.
-That is unfortunate. He looked really lively in his debut against Ghana.


-Tue Jul 4
Minnesota 0-1 Columbus

My MNUFC Notes:
  • Game highlights. [VIDEO]
  • I asked myself this question over and over, from the minute I saw the starting lineup until I went to sleep at 1:00am: "Who puts out that lineup and then makes those subs? Who?"
  • The Columbus goal was the height of pathetic defending by MN. But before it all began a foul should have been called against Columbus at the top of their box - Warner was pushed from behind while taking a ball on his chest. No whistle was blown though and Colu turned it into a quick counter. Wil Trap jogged 40 yards up field without being challenged by Ibson, Jome or Cronin. When KVenegas finally stepped toward Trapp he slid the ball forward to a wide open Manneh. Cronin then tried to get back but was turned inside out by a simple move and Davis stood watching while Manneh drove toward him and shot uncontested from 25/26 yards out, easily beating Shuttleworth to the back post for the games only goal.
  • The team started in a 5-4-1 but only had 3 true attacking players on the field - Molino, Danladi and Molino.
  • Danladi subbed out in the 1st half with another apparent leg injury. The team was warned of this before drafting him #1 overall.
  • Warner was the subbed who came on for Danladi, taking the team down to 2 attackers. No one in the world can win with a line up like that.
  • So why wasn't Ibarra the preferable sub. Turns out the coach was punishing him for not playing hard enough in NYC last week. So Heath handicapped himself while already severely lacking in roster depth.
  • Thiesson had a terrific game, shutting down numerous attacks all by himself, while playing inside on a 5 man back line. His best game as a Loon possibly?
  • Like in other games this season Cronin faded as the game wore on. This is not a good trend.
  • Ramirez was almost invisible. I know he didn't get much service but he has to do more to make it happen for teammates when things aren't coming to him.
  • Molino and Ibson had average games.
  • OK, I don't feel like writing anything more. It was a bland performance amplified by a thin roster and bad lineup/substitute decisions.


Schedule (4 more in a row at home):
-Wed Jul 19
Minnesota v Houston
-Sat Jul 22
Minnesota v New York Red Bulls
-Sat Jul 29
Minnesota v DC
-Sat Aug 5
Minnesota v Seattle

MNUFC is only ahead of last place DC in the overall standings on the third tiebreaker (goals scored.) Both have 18 points from 19 games, 5 wins, and a goal differential of -17. MN has the advantage with 25 scored to DC's 14.
  • Salt Lake has the most losses with 12, while MN, Colo and DC each have 11.

Jerome Thiesson has been a great addition to Minnesota soccer this season, and he seems to be enjoying living here too:



My MLS Notes:
  • Of the 5 games on Tuesday, 4 of them were very high scoring. An average of 5 goals per game!
  • As bad as it was for MN at least it was a 1 goal game. LA was in a similar roster situation with injuries, call ups and suspensions and got crushed 6-2 at home by Real Salt Lake. Damn.
  • SIX GOALS by RSL! On the road. Bravo!
  • Atlanta has become one of the best teams in MLS. I think they are currently #6 in the Supporters Shield standings. Very impressive.
  • The big goal scorers had quite the night:
-2 more goals for Josef Martinez of Atl. If he hadn't missed half the games so far this season he would be leading the league in goals and the player everyone is raving about.
-2 goals in each of the last 2 games for Roland Lamah in Dallas. And a couple weeks before that he hit for a hat-trick. Yeah, he is on fire.
-A pair for Clint Dempsey.
-And 2 for Jefferson Savarino, the new kid in Salt Lake.
  • Chicago plays tonight and are the best team in the league. They have won 8 in a row at home, 4 in a row overall, and 10 in a row without a loss.
  • 5 games tonight and 1 on Thu, then we see all the teams take a league break until Jul 19. (Although several teams play Open Cup games next week.)

Midseason grades for all 22 teams and league awards. By Matt Pentz for ESPNFC.

Michael Bradley has lead Toronto from futility to the top of the league. By Kurt Larson for the Toronto Sun.

Week 19 schedule/results:
(11 Games)
-Tue Jul 4
Atlanta 4-2 San Jose
Minnesota 0-1 Columbus
Dallas 4-2 DC
Colorado 1-3 Seattle
LA 2-6 Salt Lake
-Wed Jul 5
New England v New York Red Bulls
Orlando v Toronto
Houston v Montreal
Vancouver v New York City
Portland v Chicago
-Thu Jul 6
Kansas City v Philadelphia


David Villa of New York City named MLS Player Of The Month for June.


20 year old Matheus Silva who plays for Reno 1868 on loan from San Jose Earthquakes drown while swimming on Tuesday but was revived on shore and is in critical condition. So very sad.



Is it make or break time for Juan Agudelo? By Jeff Carlisle for ESPNFC.

A Gold Cup preview for some of the less heralded USMNT players. By Brian Straus for Sports Illustrated.

The one thing this USA roster is short on is goal scoring. Who is going to do the damage over a potentially 6 game run?

Friendly Result:
-Sat Jul 1
USA 2-1 Ghana - USA goals by Dom Dwyer + Kellyn Acosta. Gha goal by Asamoah Gyan. Pratt + Whitney Stadium - East Hartford

Gold Cup Group Stage Schedule:
-Sat Jul 8
USA v Panama - 3:30pm CT on FOX
Nissan Stadium - Nashville
-Wed Jul 12
USA v Martinique - 8:00pm CT on FS1
Raymond James Stadium - Tampa
-Sat Jul 15
USA v Nicaragua - 6:00pm CT on FXX
FristEnergy Stadium - Cleveland

USA Gold Cup Roster
  • G: Brad Guzan - Atlanta United, Bill Hamid - DC United, Sean Johnson - New York City
  • D: Matt Besler - Sporting Kansas City, Omar Gonzalez - Pachuca, Matt Hedges - Dallas, Eric Lichaj - Nottingham Forest, Matt Miazga - Chelsea, Justin Morrow - Toronto, Jorge Villafana - Santos Laguna, Graham Zusi - Sporting Kansas City
  • M: Kellyn Acosta - Dallas, Paul Arriola - Tijuana, Alejandro Bedoya - Philadelphia Union, Joe Corona - Tijuana, Dax McCarty - Chicago Fire, Chris Pontius - Philadelphia Union, Cristian Roldan - Seattle Sounders, Kelyn Rowe - New England Revolution, Kenny Saief - Gent, Gyasi Zardes - LA Galaxy
  • F: Juan Agudelo - New England Revolution, Dom Dwyer - Sporting Kansas City, Jordan Morris - Seattle Sounders

The place to watch the USMNT in the Twin Cities is Town Hall Brewery in the Seven Corners neighborhood of Minneapolis. They have some great rooms off the main bar with big TVs, and in the very back room a projection screen. Plus the staff is great, excited to see you, and the food is top notch. My beer drinking friends tell me the suds are excellent too (they are known for their award winning beers.)



Group A
-Fri Jul 7
French Guiana v Canada
Honduras v Costa Rica
-Tue Jul 11
Costa Rica v Canada
Honduras v French Guiana
-Fri Jul 14
Costa Rica v French Guiana
Canada v Honduras

Group B
-Sat Jul 8
USA v Panama
Martinique v Nicaragua
-Wed Jul 12
Panama v Nicaragua
USA v Martinique
-Sat Jul 15
Panama v Martinique
USA v Nicaragua

Group C
-Sun Jul 9
Curacao v Jamaica
Mexico v El Salvador
-Thu Jul 13
El Salvador v Curacao
Mexico v Jamaica
-Sun Jul 16
Jamaica v El Salvador
Mexico v Curacao

-Wed Jul 19
1 A1 v B2
2 B1 v A/C3
-Thu Jul 20
3 C1 v A/B3
4 C2 v A2

-Sat Jul 22
5 Winner 1 v Winner 2
-Sun Jul 23
6 Winner 3 v Winner 4

-Wed Jul 26
Winner 5 v Winner 6

-Follow the entire Gold Cup here.



Danny Williams has left Reading and signed with American head coach David Wagner at newly promoted English team Huddersfield. They will play in the EPL next season.

Perry Kitchen leaves Hearts to join Randers in Denmark. He started out so strong in Scotland and then faded away. I wonder what happened there?

Top 5 goals by Americans in the Bundesliga last season:

Timothy Weah who just finished a successful qualifying tournament for the U17 World Cup with the USMNT has signed with Paris Saint-Germain.



Germany has won both the Confederations Cup (with a young team) and U21 European Championship on the same weekend. That is impressive. They are already big favorites to repeat as World Cup champions next summer in Russia.


Glasgow Rangers suffered one of the most humiliating losses ever for a Scottish team, in the Europa League. They lost to a team called Progres Niederkorn from LUXEMBOURG! By Craig Forbes for the Scotsman.


My columns for 1500ESPN.

The Bird Is The Word


Blogger Demko said...

July 29 is going to be huge: the two worst teams in MLS go head to head! I might have to fly out for that shit show.

9:31 PM  

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