Sunday, November 30, 2008
Today's highlights: KV Mechelen 0, Standard Liege 0
Thursday's highlights: Partizan Belgrade 0, Standard Liege 1
Adding to the intrigue is the fact that Rennes manager Guy Lacombe is the former gaffer for PSG. He left in January before coming to Rennes. Since then, PSG has turned around significantly, and they currently lie in 6th in the table, level with Rennes on 26 points.
You can tune in to see Bocanegra and Rennes in action, as the game kicks off at 3 p.m. ET live on Setanta.
Fulham stoically held on for another road draw on Saturday, digging in to earn a 0-0 draw with Aston Villa.
The tie marked Fulham's second consecutive away draw against tough opposition, after the Cottagers tied Liverpool last weekend.
Clint Dempsey went the full 90 minutes for Fulham, and earned a yellow card in the fourth minute. Goalkeeper Brad Guzan was in his customary position of backup for the hosts, though he could be back on the field in midweek when Aston Villa take on MSK Zilina in the UEFA Cup.
Another American goalkeeper, Brad Friedel, added another award to his already storied career thanks to his appearance in Saturday's game. Friedel broke the record for consecutive starts in the Premier League, when he took the field for the 167th consecutive time against Fulham.
For Nancy Armour's article on both Brads (Friedel and Guzan) at Aston Villa, click here.
Next up for Fulham is a return to Craven Cottage to take on Manchester City next Saturday.
Picture from soccernet.com
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
Next, the San Luis will host Santos, and they will do it without head coach Raúl Arias on the sidelines. Arias as suspended for two matches for arguing with the referees. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. ET on Saturday, Nov. 29.
Monday, November 24, 2008
Clint Dempsey played 85 minutes in the match, as Fulham spoiled Fernando Torres' return to the starting lineup for Liverpool.
In other Fulham news, Eddie Johnson, on loan to Cardiff, played 90 minutes in Cardiff City's 2-1 loss to Plymouth in the English Championship.
Next up for Fulham is a trip to Villa Park to meet a tough Aston Villa side with Brad Guzan.
Picture courtesy of fulhamfc.com
Saturday, November 22, 2008
- Clint Dempsey and Fulham earned a 0-0 draw at Anfield against Liverpool. Dempsey started and played 85 minutes as Fulham earned a point against the side placed 2nd in the Premier League table.
- Tough day in the Bundesliga for our guys: Michael Bradley and Borussia Möchengladbach fell 3-1 to Schalke 04, while Steve Cherundolo and Hannover lost 4-0 to Eintracht Frankfurt.
- In Scotland, DaMarcus Beasley came off the bench as Rangers beat Aberdeen 2-0. Beas spoke to SkySports.com before the match.
Wednesday 11 February
El Salvador-Trinidad and Tobago
Saturday 28 March
Trinidad and Tobago-Honduras
Wednesday 1 April
Costa Rica-El Salvador
USA-Trinidad and Tobago
Wednesday 3 June
Saturday 6 June
Trinidad and Tobago-Costa Rica
Wednesday 10 June
Mexico-Trinidad and Tobago
Wednesday 12 August
Trinidad and Tobago-El Salvador
Saturday 5 September
Honduras-Trinidad and Tobago
Wednesday 9 September
El Salvador-Costa Rica
Trinidad and Tobago-USA
Saturday 10 October (*)
Costa Rica-Trinidad and Tobago
Wednesday 14 October (*)
Trinidad and Tobago-Mexico
(*) simultaneous kick-off
The top three finishers from the final 'hexagonal' round will qualify automatically for South Africa 2010 as the region's representatives, while the fourth-place team will contest an intercontinental play-off with the fifth-place finisher from the South American Zone over two legs. The winner will also go to South Africa.
Friday, November 21, 2008
On Saturday, Nov. 22, at 5 p.m. CT, Michael Orozco and San Luis will travel to Torreón, Coahuila, to face off against Santos Laguna in the first leg of the 2008 Apertura quarterfinals. San Luis heads into the quarterfinals, not only at the head of Group 3, but also at the top of the overall Primera División table, with 29 points at the end of the regular season. San Luis and Santos have met only once in Apertura 2008, resulting in a 2-2 draw in the second to last regular season game.
As a defender, Orozco may face off against a new face in the Santos attack, as Chicago Fire midfielder Cuauhtémoc Blanco has been loaned out to Santos for the Liguilla. San Luis will host the return leg at 7 p.m. CT on Saturday, Nov. 29.
If you haven't noticed yet, Orozco is nominated for U.S. Soccer's Young Male Athlete of the Year Award, along with Robbie Rogers, Maurice Edu, Stu Holden, Marvell Wynne, and Sacha Kljestan. Head over the 2008 Best Of Blog to cast your ballot.
Picture courtesy of isiphotos.com
The international break is over, which means the Global Blog is back in operation! Here's what's going on this weekend:
- Bayern Munich are reportedly set to bring Landon Donovan to the Allianz Arena in a loan deal similar to David Beckham's at AC Milan. According to Soccernet, Donovan will join Bayern on Jan. 2 and stay at the club until mid march. Here's a photo gallery from this week's training at Munich and also a short article from Bayern's website about Landon. (picture courtesy of fcbayern.t-com)
- Clint Dempsey and Fulham head to Anfield to take on Liverpool on Saturday. Fulham will be fighting history when they take the field this weekend; they've never won in any competition at Anfield. However, Fulham's recent form has been good, and they'll look to get at least something from the tough game. If you remember, Clint Dempsey scored his first Fulham goal against Liverpool back in May of 2007.
- Borussia Mönchengladbach and Michael Bradley fought back for a 2-2 draw with Bayern Munich last week, and they'll look to transition some of that momentum into this weekend's game with Schalke 04. Shalke have lost two games in a row, while 'Gladbach are attempting to claw their way up the Bundesliga table. They're now just two points behind Steve Cherundolo and Hannover 96, who take on Eintracht Frankfurt on Saturday.
- Carlos Bocanegra and Rennes take on Bordeaux in a high profile matchup between two clubs separated by one point in the Ligue 1 table. Rennes are the in-form team in the French top flight, but manager Guy Lacombe has warned his side not to get carried away with their recent run of good results.
- The absence of Joseba Llorente means there could be a bit of time for Jozy Altidore when Villarreal take on Valladolid on Saturday.
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
The U.S. closed out 2008 with a 2-0 win over Guatemala. Goals from Kenny Cooper and Freddy Adu gave the U.S. a good win to end the semifinal round. Now the U.S. looks towards 2009, where they will meet Honduras, El Salvador, Costa Rica, Trinidad & Tobago, and Mexico in the final round of CONCACAF qualifying, aka 'the hexagonal.'
5:48 p.m. - Just a reminder: Guatemala needs to win tonight. Los Chapines are three points behind Trinidad & Tobago, so they'll need a win and a T&T loss to have any chance of advancing to the Hexagonal. In Group 2, Mexico, Honduras, and Jamaica are still fighting over two spots. There's still much to play for in these last games of the semifinal round.
5:46 p.m. - More highlights from today, with England beating Germany 2-1:
5:45 p.m. - Brad Guzan has had enough, and he's marched back to the locker room. The team should follow pretty soon.
5:43 p.m. - Looks like we're wearing our whites tonight, with blue shorts and white socks. That may sound fairly straightforward but actually it wasn't - there was a bit of a snafu with some of Guatemala's gear getting here, so we were not quite sure what colors the teams would be wearing. Anyhow, looks like it's going to be the U.S. in white, and Guatemala in blue
5:41 p.m. - The stadium soundtrack has reverted back to its traditional form: The Boss' "Born to Run" is playing now.
5:37 p.m. - Sean Franklin and Matt Pickens are inactive tonight.
5:35 p.m. - Tonight's referee crew is from Mexico, with Benito Archundia taking the whistle as the center ref.
5:33 p.m. - Apparently the Snake Pit was goin' off! Here are some pictures from the pre-game festivities out in the parking lot.
5:26 p.m. - Out come the U.S. and Guatemala for warmups...
5:20 p.m. - Some Guatemala fans have arrived and they're making their home behind the near goal. They've got their blue and white streamers out already...
5:16 p.m. - Here come Brad Guzan and Troy Perkins, they're the first players out on the field as they walk across the pitch to the far goal box.
5:14 p.m. - The players should be out any minute now...There was a full slate of international games around the world today. Perhaps most notable was Diego Maradona's debut as head coach of Argentina in Scotland. Argentina grabbed the 1-0 win for their new coach.
5:10 p.m. - Here's how the U.S. will start tonight's game against Guatemala:
Guzan; Thorrington, Goodson, Parkhurst, Bornstein; Mastroeni (c), Clark, Adu, Kljestan; Cooper, Altidore
That's a 4-4-2, though expect Clark and Mastroeni to operate a bit behind Adu and Kljestan, who will use the wings to get forward and support the strikers.
Six players make their first ever starts in World Cup Qualifying: Thorrington, Goodson, Parkhurst, Bornstein, Clark and Cooper.
Four players retain their places from the previous game against T&T: Guzan, Adu, Kljestan and Altidore.
5:08 p.m. - In case you haven't seen it yet, here's today's pre-game video:
5:05 p.m. - Currently The Killers' new single, Human, is playing over the loudspeaker. Um...Where is "R.O.C.K. in the USA?" Where is James Brown's "Living in America?"
5:03 p.m. - Our U-20's got off to a great start in the World Cup today, defeating France 3-0. Alex Morgan opened the scoring before substitute Sydney Leroux added a brace to nab all 3 points.
5:00 p.m. - We've put out the lineup over on the U.S. Soccer Twitter. Go check it out! Or just wait here if you want, we'll have it in a few minutes.
4:58 p.m. - Pre game sprinklers are watering the field. At this time of year, usually the grounds crew wouldn't water the field - since the ground would freeze. It's unseasonably warm here, almost 60 degrees! That'll cool off more into the tonight but it shouldn't be nearly as cold as we (or probably Guatemala) expected.
4:55 p.m. - The team arrived a few minutes ago, but nobody is on the field yet. A few coaches and players walked out onto the pitch to check it out. Jozy Altidore, Ricardo Clark and Freddy Adu trotted out to the center circle, along with assistant coach Mike Sorber.
4:50 p.m. - Hello from Commerce City, Colo! We've settled ourselves in the press box and we'll be here live blogging up until kickoff.
Three players are in the squad from the Colorado Rapids. In addition to team captain Mastroeni, Conor Casey and Cory Gibbs return to the U.S. fold. Casey looks to get his first international action since 2005, while Gibbs comes back after a knee injury knocked him off the 2006 FIFA World Cup roster.
Got us thinking about which player has had the longest interval between national team appearances. One player in the running may very well be starting tonight! Anyway, you know the drill. Starting the stopwatch ... now.
7 - 10:30 a.m. - Breakfast available
8:30 - 10:30 a.m. - Pick up Game Day Attire
2 p.m. - Pre-Game Meal
2:45 p.m . - Team Meeting
4:10 p.m. - Depart for Stadium
6:11 p.m. - Kickoff
9 p.m. - Post-Game Meal
(Somewhere around 8 p.m., we're hoping to pencil in 'defeated Guatemala')
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
Best Assist - Drew Moor vs. MEX, Feb. 6: "I wasn't at this game, so I was watching it on TV. Drew hit a pinpoint cross and Jozy finished well. It looked like a great crowd at the game, it's just too bad we couldn't get the win."
Best Goal: MNT - Michael Bradley vs. TRI, Sept. 10: "This was a good finish on a set piece that we had worked on. It's pretty difficult to score with a touch like that and the goal started out the game really well for us. It set us on pace for the 3-0 win and took us closer to qualifying for the next round."
Best Goal: WNT - Carli Lloyd vs. BRA, Aug. 22: "This was an important goal, not just for the Women's team but for U.S. Soccer. It gave the U.S. another gold medal and marked a big win over one of the toughest teams."
Fan Photo - Jeff York: "I picked this photo because it shows the spirit of the home fans we had in D.C. It was a good atmosphere at the game that night, and it really helped us get a 6-1 victory that put is in the next round of qualifying."
Best Performance: Player - Tim Howard vs. ARG, June 8: "This was a great individual performance and Timmy came up with a ton of saves, especially early to keep us in the match against Argentina. The atmosphere at giants stadium, with the cheering fans and the heavy rain at the end. For Tim, it must have felt great to put in such a good performance in the stadium he used to play in for the MetroStars."
Best Performance: Team - U.S. MNT vs. Guatemala, Aug. 20: "In a hostile environment our team did really well to handle the pressure; we needed to start out semifinal round with points. Maybe it wasn't our best soccer at times, but we got a good result because of a great collective team effort and I think that's what made it such a good performance."
Best Photo - Triple Celebration: "I remember when this photo was taken; it was a good moment for our team. Getting the second goal in that game solidified our lead and help us qualify [for the Olympics]. It was early in the half and Freddy stepped up and just buried the free kick (Ed. See Best Goal - MNT) , and the keeper didn't move. We were so happy and ready to celebrate."
Best Video: All_Access - It Starts Here: "It's an inspiring video about preparing for World Cup Qualifying and I think it really captures a lot of the feelings you have getting ready for these big games. I've been lucky enough to be a part of these squads, and the team has done really well and we hope to continue getting better throughout the rest of qualifying."
Sacha didn't get a chance to vote for his favorite blog before heading to dinner, so we just cast his vote for the MNT Blog. We think it's what he would have wanted. Remember to cast your votes at the Best Of Blog!
Today's training took place inside of Dick's Sporting Good Park. We had the customary one hour on the field, and because the guys were split up into groups of starters and non-starters, we can't show you too many pictures! Muuahahahaha! Instead, you can get by with a few shots of what was a beautiful sunset tonight.
Be sure to check out the full gallery at ussoccer.com.
It may be getting close to winter time, but The Official U.S. Soccer Bars are continuing to heat up across the nation as fans gather to support the U.S. national teams. There are 27 locations ready to turn on the tube live for kickoff when the U.S. takes on Guatemala on Nov. 19 at 6 p.m. MT, including the November 2008 Bar of the Month, Summers Grill and Sports Bar. Click here to find the Official U.S. Soccer Bar near you.
The election is over but you voters out there still have a bit more work to do. The finalists have just been announced for the 2008 Best of U.S. Soccer Awards and we need your help deciding winners in 12 different categories. Make your way over to the Best Of blog, to cast your ballot...
Monday, November 17, 2008
Bob Bradley and Mike Sorber also took timeout to address coaches of various teams in the U.S. Soccer Development Academy. Visitors from the Development Academy have become a common occurrence in the past year, as coaches from around the country come out to watch training whenever we're nearby.
Edit: The full gallery is now up on ussoccer.com. There you go, Kim!
We begin with a look back at the match against the Chapines on Aug. 20 in Guatemala City, which also happened to be the first match of the semifinal round of qualifying. Team captain Carlos Bocanegra provided all the scoring the U.S. needed to end a 20-year drought of defeating Guatemala on their home turf, nodding a home a corner kick from DaMarcus Beasley after a crafty play in the box from Brian Ching. Tim Howard earned his third shutout in four World Cup qualifying appearances, and the U.S. left Guatemala City with a 1-0 win and a crucial three points to kick off the semifinal campaign.
Well, sir, we would like to remind you that the blog is only one source of information for all things U.S. soccer, the flagship obviously being ussoccer.com In fact, there are photo galleries from the previous two training sessions just waiting to be seen!
We'll make it easy on you this time, but don't forget to check ussoccer.com for all the latest news on our national teams, Coaching Education, Development Academy, Referee Week in Review podcasts, and much more.
Photos from Nov. 14
Photos from Nov. 15
Sunday, November 16, 2008
The travel roster:
Goalkeepers: Luis Pedro Molina (Jalapa), Ricardo Jerez (Rentistas -Uruguay).
Defenders: Jaime Vides (Municipal), Carlos Castrillo (Comunicaciones), Wilson Lalín (Suchitepéquez), Claudio Albizurís (Municipal), Carlos Mercedes Vásquez (USAC– 1era División), Luis Rodríguez (Xelajú MC), Cristián Noriega (Municipal), Yoni Flores (Marquense)
Midfielders: Wilfred Velásquez (Suchitepéquez), Freddy Thompson (out of contract), Jean Jonathan Márquez (Comunicaciones), Carlos Castillo (Suchitepéquez), Marco Pappa (Chicago Fire - USA), Carlos Figueroa (Xelajú MC).
Forwards: Mario Acevedo (Municipal), Marvin Ávila (Municipal), Mynor Ignacio López Campollo (Xelajú MC), Guillermo Ramírez (Municipal).
Tonight the team headed the Pepsi Center to catch the Denver Nuggets taking on the Minnesota Timberwolves. There was a good crowd and our seats were great - fifth row! The Nuggets even came back in the second half to get the win.
For better or for worse, the highlight of the game may have been the accident during the "Sandwich Race" midway through the 3rd quarter. You know how you always hope something wild happens during one of these ridiculous promotional gimmicks? Well... Our best wishes go out to the cheerleader who face planted while running at full speed in the bread costume. A few stitches, a little blood, but hopefully she'll be ok.
One more news item on the new media front - our page over on Facebook. Click on the link to the right to join the quickly growing Official U.S. Soccer page on Facebook.
Saturday, November 15, 2008
Later in the first half, Tottenham's Gomes was at fault for some shocking goalkeeping to let Fulham open the scoring. In the second half, the Cottagers continued to have the better of the exchanges, and the home side extended its lead through Andy Johnson in the 70th minute.
A late Tottenham consoloation goal was not enough to trouble Fulham, who moved up to 9th place in the Premier League with the win. All five of Fulham's wins in the league have come at Craven Cottage. Watch manager Roy Hodgson talk about Fulham's win here.
Elsewhere in England, Marcus Hahnemann and Reading defeated Sheffield Utd. 2-0, Eddie Johnson played 90 minutes in Cardif's 2-1 win over Crystal Palace, and Jay DeMerit and Watford fell 2-1 to Barnsley.
Michael Bradley opened his Bundesliga account as Borussia Monchengladach fought back for a 2-2 draw against Bayern Munich in the Bundesliga.
Bradley started the game in midfield for 'Gladbach, who went behind early to a Luca Toni goal. Bayern added to their lead in the 65th minute courtesy of a penalty from Frank Ribery.
'Gladbach fought back though, and Rob Friend halved the deficit in the 79th minute. Just two minutes later the score was level with Bradley nodding home the equalizer from close range. Bradley got forward well throughout the game, and his goal marked his first for 'Gladbach.
The result keeps 'Gladbach in 14th place, while Bayern slip three points behind Hoffenheim and Bayer Leverkusen.
Here's what Michael had to say about the game:
"The team has earned a point and we have really worked hard today. At the end to come back and get that tie was a great feeling. We never stopped running, working or fighting and it was a good result in such a great atmosphere"
In other German action, Steve Cherundolo and Hannover tied Bochum 1-1 on Friday.
Full highlights of 'Gladbach taking on Bayern Munich:
Picture via soccernet.com
San Luis qualified for the post-season two games ago, and currently lead the league table with 29 points, three ahead of second-place Pumas. A win against Toluca would solidify their place at the top, ensuring home field advantage in each post-season series. Their biggest task will be to overcome the apparent "Curse of the League Leader," as the team that has finished in first place during the regular season hasn't won the league title since Mexico switched to the short tournament format in 1996.
The U.S. wrapped up their four-day camp in Commerce City today in near perfect conditions. With the shining sun exposing the heights of the Rocky Mountains, the 19-man group had their last chance to impress before U.S. head coach Bob Bradley announces the roster that will train in advance of the FIFA World Cup qualifier against Guatemala. The players that are going to remain have the night off in Denver (any restaurant suggestions?), while more call-ups arrive over the next two days as training resumes Monday.
It's been a very useful experience for both players and coaches, and now it's on to the business of playing spoiler to Guatemala on Wednesday night at Dick's Sporting Goods Park. In the latest news from Guatemala City, midfielder Marco Pappa (Chicago Fire) and Freddy Thompson (Veracruz) have arrived into camp to complete the group called in by new head coach Benjamín Monterroso. The Chapines will make their way to Denver on Monday with a final list of 20 players in tow.
Here's their second effort at prognostication:
Matt Pickens (formerly played for Chicago) Red Bulls - "I can't predict a score. Might be overtime, might be PK's, but they will do it. They have made the most of their life lines so far, and will do it again."
Troy Perkins (formerly played for D.C. United) RSL 3, Red Bulls 0 - "RSL have been great at home. They have great fans, and they want to prove that they are the real deal."
Jonathan Bornstein (Chivas USA) RSL 2, Red Bulls 0- "They are at home in front of a good crowd. They play with a lot of energy, and I expect the same tonight. Yura Movsisyan will get one."
Drew Moor (FC Dallas) Red Bulls 2, RSL 1 - "New York are on a bit of a hot streak and are playing with a lot of confidence. These are uncharted waters for Salt Lake."
Michael Parkhurst (New England Revolution) RSL 3, Red Bulls 2 - "I feel like goals are coming. Angel will score, but RSL are the better team."
Ricardo Clark (Houston Dynamo) Red Bulls 2, RSL 1 - "Angel gets at least one."
Sacha Kljestan (Chivas USA) RSL 2, Red Bulls 0 - "Hate to go against my brother, but RSL are on a good roll and playing at home. Yura Movsisyan gets the first goal, then Robbie Findley scores late while New York is pressing for the equalizer."
Davy Arnaud (Kansas City) RSL 2, Red Bulls 1 - "New York scores a late goal to make it interesting."
Chad Barrett (Toronto FC) RSL 2, Red Bulls 1 - "RSL are hard to score on, especially at home. The game goes to OT and Robbie Findley gets the game-winner."
Kenny Cooper (FC Dallas) RSL 2, Red Bulls 1 - "They're at home, and have a team of hard-working players."
Friday, November 14, 2008
In the meantime, a list of the former winners:
2007: Maurice Edu –
2006: Jonathan Bornstein – Chivas
2005: Michael Parkhurst –
2004: Clint Dempsey –
2003: Damani Ralph –
2002: Kyle Martino –
2001: Rodrigo Faria - MetroStars
2000: Carlos Bocanegra – Chicago Fire
1999: Jay Heaps – Miami Fusion
1998: Ben Olsen – D.C. United
1997: Mike Duhaney –
Tim Howard and Everton put their four match unbeaten streak on the line against Middlesborough (also unbeaten in four) at Goodison Park. For the ambitious ones among you there are still some seats available.
Jay DeMerit and struggling Watford host Barnsley in the Championship. Watford managed a 1-0 win over Swansea in the Carling Cup midweek, but their league form has been poor and they'll look to get back on track with an important away game on Saturday. In other action, Eddie Johnson and Cardiff host Crystal Palace, while Marcus Hahnemann and Reading face off with Sheffield Utd. in a match between teams placed three and four, respectively, in the Championship table.
Thursday, November 13, 2008
So we suppose it makes sense then that in the parking lot outside of the team training session this afternoon, there was a group of EMT's going through ambulance-driving training. Everything from navigating a course, driving in reverse, and we're not making this up, parallel parking.
We are certainly proud and grateful for the work of the professional and volunteer EMT's across the country. We only have one question. When does one have to parallel park the bus?
We've broken their responses down by position - for no particular reason, really ...
Matt Pickens (formerly played for Chicago) Chicago 2, Columbus 1 - "Chris Rolfe will get at least one."
Troy Perkins (formerly played for D.C. United) Chicago 2, Columbus 1 - "The Fire are more experienced in the playoffs. Being the lower seed, they have something to prove."
Jonathan Bornstein (Chivas USA) Columbus 2, Chicago 0 - "They are feeling it right now."
Drew Moor (FC Dallas) Chicago 3, Columbus 2 - "The Fire score a lot of goals. Columbus are a good team, but I have just have a gut feeling."
Michael Parkhurst (New England Revolution) Columbus 2, Chicago 1 - "Columbus have been the most consistent team all year. And my fellow Demon Deacon alum Will Hesmer is going to get it done."
Ricardo Clark (Houston Dynamo) Chicago 3, Columbus 1 - "Rolfe will get two, and Blanco one."
Sacha Kljestan (Chivas USA) Columbus 2, Chicago 1 - "Columbus has been the best team in the league all year, and they are at home. Alejandro Moreno and Robbie Rogers score for the Crew, and Brian McBride gets one back."
Davy Arnaud (Kansas City) Columbus 2, Chicago 1 - "Columbus has been tough to beat at home all year long."
Chad Barrett (Toronto FC) Chicago 2, Columbus 1 - "Chicago has always played well in Columbus."
Kenny Cooper (FC Dallas) Columbus 2, Chicago 1 - "Columbus has been strong all season."
- Landon Donovan is still in Germany training with Bayern Munich. Here are a really long video taken from training. Really long.
- Speaking of Bayern Munich, they're playing Borussia Monchengladbach this weekend as one of Germany's biggest rivalries gets renewed for the first time this year. Back in the 1970s, these two teams dueled for Bundesliga supremacy on more than one occasion so Saturday's match could make for an interesting throwback. Michael Bradley could be in line to play for 'Gladbach, who jumped out of the relegation zone with last weekend's win.'Gladbach meanwhile got a boost with players returning from injury.
- In cup reults, Carlos Bocanegra and Rennes were eliminated from the French Cup by Le Havre. Villarreall and Jozy Altidore met the same fate over in the Spanish Copa del Rey.
Everyone here wishes the best for Juan Carlos and his family
Watch the goals here.
Be sure to log on to ussoccer.com's MatchTracker when the U.S. takes on Korea DPR in the 2008 FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup Final on Nov. 16 at North Harbour Stadium in Auckland. Kickoff for the championship game is 4 p.m. local (10 p.m. ET on Nov. 15).
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
- The average number of days where the temperature dips below freezing is 24.
- The average amount of snowfall is nine inches. Wouldn't that be great to see snow for the first time ever? Sure it's extremely cold, but it's awfully pretty and makes for photos your friends will be amazed to see!
- Game-time temperature on Wednesday is expected to be 30 degrees. It's not as bad as it sounds - just ask Mexico!
We hope you find this information both useful and informative. Check back next week when we will give you the lowdown on living at altitude...
So screams the headlines in Norway - it literally translates into "Valerenga are Cup Masters".
Just before traveling to Denver, goalkeeper Troy Perkins and Valerenga claimed the 2008 Norwegian Cup with a resounding 4-1 win against league champions Staebek. In terms of national importance, it's considered bigger than winning the league - the King of Norway presides over the match! We asked Mr. Perkins about the significance of the trophy, and about winning silverware in his first year in Norway.
ussoccer.com: So what's it like shaking hands with the king?
Troy Perkins: "It was very cool. He's a big guy. I can tell my kids in the future the story of how I met the King of Norway."
ussoccer.com: Why is winning this tournament such a big deal in Norway?
TP: "For one, everyone talks about the Cup Final. In addition to the king, all of the dignitaries of Norway turn up for the game. It's not just that you are champions of your league, you are effectively the best team in Norway. For my club, its even more important because of our supporters. We have the biggest fan club in the country, and it means a lot to them."
ussoccer.com: Probably didn't hurt that you played at home...
TP: "It was quite special thing. Ulleval Stadium is not only our home stadium, but the national stadium as well. It helped a lot of us to be a little more relaxed, especially when you have 17,000 of your own supporters behind you."
ussoccer.com: What was the week like leading up to the game?
TP: "We spent the whole week at our sponsor's conference center, which is a 250-year old farm that they have owned for more than 200 years. [Editor's Note: No soccer fields on the farm. They trained at the local club.] We got away from everything, and spent all of our time together as a group. It was a good bonding experience, and a nice atmosphere to be in leading up to game. The night before, we went to a rally set up by our supporters, and there were 4,000 people there crammed under a circus tent."
ussoccer.com: We understand the team was almost late for the game.
TP: "Yeah. We got on the bus and drove to the center of Oslo, and turned onto the main drive leading up to the stadium. All of a sudden, no cars were moving. As it turns out, our supporters march from our old stadium (Bislett) all the way to Ulleval, so traffic was at standstill. We wind up driving amongst our fans for a little bit, and it was just a mass of people. They were led by marching band, and there were thousands of people singing and chanting. I've never seen anything quite like that."
ussoccer.com: Other than shaking hands with the king, what will you remember most about the win?
TP: "First, we stayed on the field for about an hour after the game celebrating with our fans. Then we got on the bus and drove back to the tent from the night before. As we're getting out, there was a line of people lighting flares leading our way inside. The place was completely full. Our supporters have a song for every player, and they sang every one. I'll never forget seeing our team and our fans that excited to win. You see how important it is to them. I haven't seen guys react like that ever in my life. It was really something special."
No word on whether NKOTB will stay here in advance of their gig on Friday night.
Spain is still tops in the world, with Germany climbing to the #2 position ahead of Italy. Brazil dropped to the fifth position, while England moved back into the Top 10.
Of course, rankings don't mean much on game day...
In the Copa del Rey, Jozy Altidore and Villarreal have lots to do as they try to overturn a five goal first leg deficit against Club Polideportivo Ejido.
In Scotland, Rangers are playing a midweek SPL game against Motherwell at Fir Park Stadium. In cup news, the draw for the semifinals of the Scottish Cup have just been made, and the Old Firm has been separated in to different halves, with Rangers taking on Falkirk and Celtic facing Dundee United.
By noon today, all 19 players on the mini-camp roster will have arrived as Brian Ching and Ricardo Clark make their way in this morning. The coaching staff will spend the next four days evaluating options for the Guatemala match, next year's January training camp, and beyond. On Sunday, U.S. coach Bob Bradley will announce the group that will train for Wednesday's match at Dick's Sporting Goods Park, the first-ever World Cup qualifier held in Colorado. Expect a dose of foreign-based players as well as guys who are on the unfortunate side of results from the MLS Conference Finals.
Meantime, we're up and running, so feel free to send us your thoughts and questions.
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
On the bright side, Davies finished with an impressive 14 goals, tying him with Henrik Larsson of Helsingborg (yes, that Henrik Larsson) for fourth best in the league. While we couldn't find video of Davies' goals from this weekend we did find this really sweet video somebody made of Charlie in FIFA 09. Big props for the soundtrack choice too.
Landon Donovan is keeping busy in the offseason by heading over to Germany for a 10-day training period with Bayern Munich. "I know Landon from my time with LA Galaxy," said Bayern head coach Jurgen Klinsmann to the club's website.
Klinsmann calls Southern California home and famously took the job coaching the German national team while still living abroad in the States. Donovan, who will use the visit to keep in shape during the MLS offseason, joins Bayern as they are in the midst of preparing for the traditionally busy buildup to the holiday period. The German giants next face Michael Bradley and Borussia Monchengladbach on Saturday Nov. 15.
Picture courtesy of Bayern's official website. You can also read the full article about Donovan's arrival (in German) here.
Monday, November 10, 2008
Tim Howard's appearance in Everton's 3-1 win over West Ham on Saturday marked his 100th game for the Merseyside club. In addition to achieving the century mark, Howard also wrote his name in the record book with an interesting achievement for his club: he's the first Everton goalkeeper to average less than a goal a game over his first 100 games.
As you can see from this nifty chart (from Everton's official club website) Howard just comes in under the 1 GAA mark and he's even done a few better than Wales and Everton legend Neville Southall. Below is a list of the top Everton keepers over 100 games with appearances followed by (goals conceded).
- Tim Howard - 100 (99)
- Neville Southall - 100 (102)
- George Wood - 100 (108)
- Gordon West - 100 (113)
"Neville is a legend and the reason he's a legend is because he did it over a long period of time," Howard told Everton's website. "I've got a long way to go, I know that. But I hope that I can stay consistent, stay here for a long time and do it with this club."