Omar Salgado's first career MLS goal energized his play and that of his Vancouver Whitecaps, but
Emilio Renteria was a handful for much of Saturday night's match and scored two goals of his own as
the Columbus Crew downed Vancouver 2-1 at Crew Stadium.
Sebastien Le Toux scored his first goal of the season, doing so from the penalty spot, and the
10-man Philadelphia Union held off the San Jose Earthquakes for a 1-0 result at PPL Park Saturday
Philadelphia was gifted the penalty when Earthquakes centerback Jason Hernandez went to ground
to block an Amobi Okugo cross by the end-line, and referee Mark Geiger deemed that Hernandez
handled the cross.
Four games remain in the English Premier League season and if Chelsea is going to have any
chance of catching Manchester United atop the standings, the Blues will likely have to win every
one of them.
The first of the four comes today in the form of a stiff test from London rival Tottenham, which
is trying to do it's on catching up by closing the four-point gap behind Manchester City for fourth
The Houston Dynamo offense had struggled to generate goals for much of the 2011 season, but the
cure for the lack of scoring came in the form of the D.C. United defense, which provided little
resistance on Friday night.
Dynamo rookie Will Bruin scored a hat-trick to help lift the Dynamo to a 4-1 thrashing of D.
The Houston Dynamo will look to extend a five-match unbeaten streak against a D.C. United team
looking to erase the taste of last week's 4-0 thrashing against New York in tonight's MLS match-up
(8:30pm, Fox Soccer Channel).
The Dynamo will be without forward Brian Ching once again, but will be lead by midfielder Brad
For Real Salt Lake, there will be no time toÂ dwell onÂ its crushing home defeat in the CONCACAF
Champions League second leg on Wednesday, as it now faces another steep challenge: trying to get a
result at Jeld-Wen Field.
The Portland Timbers are undefeated at their boisterous home field and will be trying to keep it
that way Saturday against Salt Lake.
If you are a New York Red Bulls or Philadelphia Union fan and you're in need of tickets to this
weekend's matches, SBI has the contest for you. As we do on a regular basis, SBI is having contests
for tickets to both the New York-Sporting Kansas City match as well as the Philadelphia Union-San
Jose Earthquakes match on Saturday.
Chile's Universidad Catolica, Brazil's Fluminense and Argentina's Velez Sarsfield put
themselves in prime position to advance to the quarterfinals with favorable results in this week's
first legs of the Copa Libertadores Round of 16 stage.
It's been a tough season for Jonathan Spector and West Ham United, but they can still manage to
climb out of the basement and avoid relegation with a strong run during the final month of play.
That run will have to begin on Sunday as the Hammers go on the road to face one of the most
talented teams in the Premiership.
The New York Red Bulls and Los Angeles Galaxy sent clear messages last weekend that they are, in
fact, legitimate championship contenders, and their respective blowout victories were led by four
players who headline this week's SBI MLS Best XI.
Landon Donovan returned to his dominating ways to lead this week's group, while Donovan Ricketts
made some amazing saves to join him.
Giuseppe Rossi and Villarreal will look to do what they can to prevent an all-Portuguese UEFA
Europa League final, as the Spanish side takes on Porto in the first leg of one of two semifinal
ties on Thursday.
Portugal's Benfica and Sporting Braga meet in the other semifinal. Benfica has dominated the
all-time series between the two sides but will be without star striker Eduardo Salvio, who broke
his foot in the quarterfinals.
Colorado Rapids midfielder Brian Mullan has been suspended 10 games and fined $5,000 for his
tackle that broke Steve Zakuani's leg in two places last Friday night.
The Major League Soccer Disciplinary Committee added nine games and $4,750 onto the automatic
punishment for receiving a red card by determining that "Mullan's challenge was reckless,
egregious, and showed utter disregard for the safety of his opponent," according to a statement
released by the league.
The D.C. United faithful can breathe a sigh of relief.
After suffering a knee injury that knocked him out of the closing minutes of United's 3-2 U.S.
Open Cup qualifying loss to New England on Tuesday, midfielder Branko Boskovic underwent an MRI on
Wednesday, and the results were negative, meaning the Montenegro international should be available
The dust is still settling from Real Salt Lake's disappointing loss to Monterrey in the CONCACAF
Champions League final, but that doesn't mean it's too early to look ahead to the 2011-2012 edition
of the tournament.
The draw for this summer's preliminary round will be held May 18, and as many as three Major
League Soccer teams will be involved.
Real Salt Lake had a chance to make history on Wednesday night, but instead of history, RSL
watched another team lift a trophy on its home turf.
Despite a plethora of early chances, and because of a handful of wasted late chances, RSL failed
to score the goal that would make Real Salt Lake the first MLS team to win a CONCACAF Champions
Real Salt Lake stands 90 minutes from history, 90 minutes from lifting a trophy no MLS team has
Standing in the way is defending Mexican League champion Monterrey, which settled for a 2-2 tie
in the first leg in Mexico. The 'Rayados' are struggling in league play, but are still a very
talented team capable of pulling off what just might be considered an upset at this point.
A few weeks after setting the single-season goal record for an American in the Premier League,
Dempsey scored twice in Fulham's 3-0 victory over Bolton Wednesday to become the club's all-time
leading goal scorer in the Premier League era with 33.
Tim Howard's summer tour has another U.S. destination.
The U.S. national team goalkeeper and his club, Everton, will play the Philadelphia Union at PPL
Park on July 20 in a friendly, the MLS side announced on Wednesday. Everton had already signed on
to play a friendly against D.
The biggest game in American club soccer history takes place in Sandy, Utah, tonight, when Real
Salt Lake tries to hold on to or build off of its 2-2 draw at Monterrey in the second leg of the
CONCACAF Champions League final at Rio Tinto Stadium (10 p.m., Fox Soccer Channel/Telefutura).
CONCACAF has submitted its proposal for 2014 World Cup qualifying to FIFA, and under the
proposed set-up, the United States and the five other highest-ranked teams in the region according
to the March FIFA world rankings will begin qualifying in the semifinal round in June, 2012.
With a win at home Wednesday night, where Real Salt Lake hasn't lost in 37 straight matches, the
2010-2011 CONCACAF Champions League trophy will find a home in Sandy, Utah.
It's quite a story. Real Salt Lake has become the darling of soccer in America, with fellow MLS
clubs among the many who've gotten behind the claret-and-blue shield in mass show of support for
Hans Backe's forward selection quandary seems to be working itself out.
After an agonizing start to the season, one that saw the New York Red Bulls manager swap Luke
Rodgers for Juan Agudelo in the starting lineup, the Eastern Conference favorites have scored seven
goals in their last two matches.
Gabriel Ferrari had a shot deflect off Houston defender Eddie Robinson for an own goal, and
Martin Rivas scored twice as the Chicago Fire topped the Houston Dynamo, 3-0, in MLS Reserve League
action on Sunday morning.
Rivas, a 19-year-old Argentine trialist, is hoping to catch on with an MLS club after trialing
Landon Donovan sat out the Los Angeles Galaxy past few matches nursing a sore knee, but he
showed no signs of the knee being a problem last week, scoring two goals and adding an assist in
the Galaxy''s 3-0 win against the Portland Timbers. His performance was good enough to earn him
SBI's MLS Player of the Week honors.
Colorado midfielder Brian Mullan's reckless tackle of Seattle winger Steve Zakuani was the talk
of the weekend in MLS, with Zakuani sidelined with a broken leg and Mullan facing a stiff
There has been plenty of talk about what sort of punishment Mullan should receive. Some believe
it should only merit the usual suspension for a red card, while plenty feel a harsh punishment
(some believing a season-long suspension) is justified.
Real Madrid has been a long shot to overtake Barcelona for the La Liga title for a while now,
but as the Spanish giants reach the midway point of their four-Clasicos-in-17-days stretch, the
Merengues look to have momentum and confidence on their side going into this week's first leg of
the UEFA Champions League semifinals.
A 90th-minute penalty kick prevented Atlanta from earning its first point of the season and
instead handed the Ft. Lauderdale Strikers their first win of 2011. It was the second time in their
first three games that the Silverbacks conceded a winner in the 90th minute.
CARSON, Calif., -- Landon Donovan's return to action after missing time with a knee injury came
just in time as his two goals helped lift the Los Angeles Galaxy past the Portland Timbers, 3-0, at
the Home Depot Center on Saturday night.
Just a day after Seattle Sounders star Steve Zakuani was lost for the season with a broken leg,
reigning MLS MVP David Ferreira joined the list of severely injured stars, suffering a broken ankle
in FC Dallas' 2-1 win vs. Vancouver on Saturday.
Ferreira suffered the broken ankle on a challenge from Vancouver defender Jonathan Leathers.
Tony Tchani's first goal for his new team also got him sent off with a second yellow. His
dismissal helped the Columbus Crew take a point on the road in Saturday's 1-1 draw with Tchani's
side, Toronto FC.
The second-year midfielder guided in a long ball from teammate Julian de Guzman in the 41st
Manchester United is now one step closer to the Premier League title after narrowly beating
Everton today at Old Trafford by a score of 1-0.
True to form, United broke the deadlock on the 84th minute through aÂ 'Chicharito' Hernandez
header past Tim Howard. Â The U.S. National Team keeper had been a rock throughout the match, and
it was a cruel end for Everton, which wasÂ defensively sound until the goal.
Chivas USA will look to earn their first victory as they travel on the road to Northern
California to take on the San Jose Earthquakes. The match is vital for both teams as they look to
avoid falling further back in the Western Conference standings.
Manchester United is marching toward an English Premier League title, but the Red Devils will
have to beat a familiar face to take a step closer.
Former United goalkeeper Tim Howard and Everton will look to upset Manchester United in one of
the day's marquee match-ups. Everton is chasing Liverpool for sixth place in the Premier League,
while United has pulled away from Arsenal in the title race.
The final score, a 1-0 road victory for the Seattle Sounders Friday night, hardly mattered in
the grand scheme of things.Â
Steve Zakuani, one of the up-and-coming talents in MLS known for his ability to make things
happen on offense with blazing speed on the wing, suffered a fractured tibia and fibia (according
to the club) in the third minute of Seattle's match against the Colorado Rapids.
The final score, a 1-0 road victory for the Seattle Sounders Friday night, hardly mattered in
the grand scheme of things.Â
Steve Zakuani, one of the up-and-coming talents in MLS known for his ability to make things
happen on offense with blazing speed on the wing, suffered what looked to be a broken leg or ankle
in the third minute of Seattle's match against the Colorado Rapids.
The Colorado Rapids and Seattle Sounders will look to try and close the gap on Western
Conference leaders Real Salt Lake and Los Angeles when they face off tonight in Colorado (9:30pm,
Fox Soccer Channel).
The Rapids will look to halt their own two-match losing streak as well as Seattle's four-match
unbeaten streak, while the Sounders will look to win with Fredy Montero back in the starting
Although Real Salt Lake has done more than enoughÂ amid its MLS and CONCACAF Champions League
conquestsÂ to establish itself as the team to beat in the Western Conference,Â sorting through the
tier belowÂ is a trickier proposition.
This weekend's slate of MLS action should help clarify things a bit.
An early-season clash between a defending champion and the league leader highlights the fourth
weekend of fixtures in the USL Pro.
The Easter weekend slate of matches kicks off tonight with the resurgent Orlando City welcoming
a Puerto Rico United side that is struggling to find its feet after going winless in its opening
It's been a landmark week for the New England Revolution.
Just days after having U.S. national team midfielder Benny Feilhaber fall to them in the
allocation order, the Revs announced a partnership with United Healthcare that will yield the first
jersey sponsor in team history.
The partnership is of the philanthropic variety, as the Revolution and United Healthcare have
teamed to raise awareness for chronic diseases among children, most notably obesity and
Aston Villa manager Gerard Houllier was hospitalized on Wednesday evening in Birmingham after
suffering chest pains. Â
The Frenchman had undergone serious heart surgery during his managerial stint at Liverpool, but
assistant coach Gary McAllister says that Houllier will only need "medicine and rest" in his road
WASHINGTON - After a modest start to the season, the star-studded New York Red Bulls are
officially living up to the hype.
Striker Thierry Henry notched two goals and an assist, Joel Lindpere and Juan Agudelo added
goals of their own, and New York put together itsÂ second straight emphaticÂ win withÂ aÂ 4-0
triumphÂ at Atlantic Cup rival D.
Now that he's finally on the scoreboard, L.A. Galaxy forward Chad Barrett is hoping for brighter
days in Los Angeles.
Barrett tallied his first goal in a Galaxy uniform on last Sunday's victory against the Chicago
Fire. After starting several matches at the beginning of the season, Barrett has been resigned to
the bench with Argentine Miguel Lopez taking his slot alongside Juan Pablo Angel.
Over the years, the D.C. United-New York Red Bulls rivalry has included some of the biggest
names -- of both players and coaches -- in Major League Soccer history. Names like John Harkes,
Marco Etcheverry, Luciano Emilio, Alecko Eskandarian, Jaime Moreno, Ben Olsen, Eddie Pope, Earnie
Stewart, Mike Petke, Jozy Altidore, Clint Mathis, Juan Pablo Angel, Tab Ramos, Tony Meola, Tim
Howard, Bruce Arena and Bob Bradley.
You'd think after lifting the World Cup and European Championship trophies that Sergio Ramos
would have celebration etiquette mastered. The Real Madrid defender dropped the Copa del Rey from
the top of the club's bus during the celebration through the streets of Madrid after Wednesday's
1-0 victory over rival Barcelona.
Like many of the Championship and League One teams, Derby County has two games in a span of
three days this weekend, meaning Conor Doyle is likely to get a chance to score his first goal at
the club level.
The U.S. U-20 national team striker has not played for Derby County since assisting in the March
12 win against Swansea City, but that should change as Derby faces Burnley on Saturday and Norwich
City (and American centerback Zak Whitbread) on Monday.
Real Salt Lake will look to take a major step toward becoming the first MLS team to win the
CONCACAF Champions League title by gaining a favorable result tonight against Monterrey in Mexico
in the first leg of their two-game Championship series (10pm, Fox Soccer Channel)
Monterrey, Mexican champions in two of the past three Mexican seasons, will look to keep RSL
from registering any road goals, while also trying to put some goals past a stingy Real Salt Lake
After 102 minutes of physical play, tremendous goalkeeping and numerous chances both ways,
Cristiano Ronaldo had the final say.
Ronaldo headed home an Angel di Maria cross at the end of the first period of extra time to lift
Real Madrid to a 1-0, extra-time victory over Barcelona in a tense, thrilling final of the Copa del
The New England Revolution has made a number of player acquisitions both in the preseason and
during the 2011 campaign. Between signing the likes of Ousmane Dabo, Didier Domi and Rajko Lekic
and drafting A.J. Soares and Stephen McCarthy, manager Steve Nicol has an intriguing cast of
players to choose from in trying to navigate his team back to the MLS playoffs.
The long-standing rivalry between Celtic and Rangers in the Scottish Premier League has always
been one of the most bitter and dangerous in all of sports but the threat went to a new level
yesterday when it was discovered that the bombs sent to the Celtic manager and two supporters were
Chivas USA has passed on the opportunity to acquire U.S. national team midfielder Benny
Feilhaber, who signed with Major League Soccer on Friday, must go through the league's
allocation order to be delegated to a team. Chivas had the top spot in that order and passed,
citing team needs and high salary concerns as reasons for passing in a statement released by coach
It's that time again. Time for SBI readers to send me soccer questions in an old-school version
of the SBI Live Q&A.
What's the old-school version? You submit your questions in the comments section below, and I'll
post answers at a future date. We do far more Live Q&As these days, but I know not everyone can
make it to those, so if you have a question you'd like to submit, just ask it below.
When I said that New York would have a good match up against San Jose, I was not expecting Luke
Rodgers to be the main beneficiary. Rodgers notched two goals and an assist in NewYork's beating of
San Jose causing many fantasy implications.
When the starting lineups for the game were announced, the many Juan Agudelo fantasy owners were
left scratching their heads.
Four groups down, four to go. Copa Libertadores finally wraps up its group-stage
matches this week as 12 teams battle for the seven remaining spots available in the Round of 16,
with defending champions Internacional of Brazil looking forÂ a win at home against a tough
Ecuadorean side, Emelec, while Mexico's America just needs a draw in Uruguay against Nacional.
It was just one game, but Thierry Henry's performance in New York's 3-0 rout of the San Jose
Earthquakes has Red Bulls fans wondering if their star forward is ready to start dominating as he
was expected to when he was signed last season.
Just days after revealing a nagging Achilles injury that seemed to jeopardize his effectiveness,
Henry trotted out to Red Bull Arena and promptly flashed his old form, looking mobile and
aggressive, attacking the net rather than deferring to teammates.
Showing off quickness, nifty dribbling and sharp passing, Portland Timbers midfielder Khalif
Alhassan has quickly established himself as one of Portland's most dangerous players, and his
performances in the Timbers two victories last week helped earn him SBI MLS Player of the Week
honors for Week five.
The expansion L.A. Blues started off their existence with a couple of victories on the road over
Sevilla FC Puerto Rico and fellow newcomerÂ Antigua Barracuda FC. Â Walter Gaitan is off to a
blistering start with three goals in two games.
(SBI Staff writer Jose M. Romero was one of the thousands of Portland natives who
braved the elements at Jeld-Wen Field last Thursday to take in a historic night for Portland
soccer. Here is his account of that unforgettable night.
The clock continues to tick on Chivas USA as the club decides whether to take Benny Feilhaber,
trade him or pass altogether on the U.S. national team midfielder who signed with MLS last week.Â
Whether you believe Chivas USA might actually consider passing on the chance to select
Feilhaber, and then either keep him or trade him, or you see the rumblings of passing as a ploy to
spark up trade interest, it is clear there are several teams interested in his services.
Saturday's clash between Real Madrid and Barcelona wasn't the most important of the four
Clasicos the clubs will play during this 17-day stretch. Nor was it likely to be the most exciting.
But the 1-1 draw did set an intriguing stage for Wednesday's Copa Del Rey final and the clubs' UEFA
Champions League semifinal matches next week.
Stoke City booked its place in the FA Cup final after thrashing Bolton Wanderers 5-0 today at
Wembley today. Â The final will be the first in the Northwest club's 148-year history as they are
set to clash with Manchester City after Yaya Toure's goal gave the Blues a win over cross-town
rivals Manchester United.
Arsenal will be looking to keep it's title hopes alive while Liverpool will try to stay ahead of
rival Everton in the Premier League standings when the Gunners and Reds face off in today's top
Arsenal can close the gap behind Manchester United to four points with a win tonight against
Liverpool, while Kenny Dalglish's side is now just a point ahead of Everton for sixth place in the
If any doubts remained about the form of D.C. United's Charlie Davies and Chris Pontius after
lengthy injury layoffs, their performances during Saturday's 3-0 win at Toronto FC should clear up
Designated Players Fredy Montero and Alvaro Fernandez came off the bench and connected for the
equalizing goal in second half stoppage time to help the Seattle Sounders to a 1-1 draw against the
Philadelphia Union at PPL Park Saturday afternoon.
The LA Galaxy will be without Landon Donovan yet again.
Donovan won't play in Sunday's match against the Chicago Fire due to knee inflammation, which
will be his third straight match out of the line up for the Galaxy. Donovan's missing the match
with the Fire causes particular trouble for the Galaxy, which will also be missing midfielders
David Beckham, Jovan Kirovski and Juninho due to suspension.
Manchester City spent millions and millions to build a team capable of winning trophies, but the
boys in Blue are down to one last chance for silverware, with the FA Cup being the last trophy the
Citizens are capable of winning.
The only problem is Manchester United stands in the way.
The transfer deadline day has its long-awaited major splash.
According to his agent, Benny Feilhaber has signed with Major League Soccer and will be leaving
AGF Aarhus in Denmark, where he has played since 2008. The representative for the U.S. men's
national team midfielder, Lyle Yorks, said via Twitter, "Congrats to Benny Feilhaber--officially
coming back to MLS!
Revenge will be on the mind in New York this weekend when the Red Bulls host San Jose in a
rematch ofÂ last fall'sÂ Eastern Conference semifinal.Â The second leg of that series saw the
Earthquakes pull off a dramatic 3-1 upset at Red Bull Arena to go through by a single goal on
aggregate, providing a shocking end to star-studded New York's MLS Cup aspirations.
One of the most enticing soccer rivalries in the world revs up Saturday as Lionel Messi and
Barcelona travel to the Bernabeu to take on Real Madrid in a key league match-up that is also part
of a unique stretch of match-ups between the arch-rivals.
Brazil's Cruzeiro grabbed the top seed into the knockout stages after
romping to another win this past week, Ecuador's Liga de Quito took first in its group following an
emphatic home victory and supporters for Uruguay's Penarol unfurled what should be the soccer
world's largest banner as the Copa Libertadores reaches its final week of group-stage play.
The Portland Timbers will make their MLS home debut tonight at Jeld-Wen Field as the Timbers take
on the Chicago Fire (11pm, ESPN2).
The Timbers are still looking for their first win of the season, and will look to do so against
a Fire team that has gotten off to a decent start thanks the impressive play of forwards Diego
Chaves and Gaston Puerari.
It's time for the Los Angeles Galaxy to make some creative decisions.
With David Beckham and Juninho suspended, it is likely that head coach Bruce Arena will need to
inject some fresh blood in the central midfield when the Galaxy face the Chicago Fire at Toyota
Park on Sunday.
Real Salt Lake's Rocky Mountain victory wasn't limited to just Wednesday night's first-team
The RSL reserves topped those of the Colorado Rapids, 2-0, Thursday afternoon in the second
reserve match for both clubs. Former New York Red Bull Conor Chinn and Collen Warner tallied the
goals for RSL, which improved to 1-1 in reserve play.
Thierry Henry is now expected to play against the San Jose Earthquakes this weekend despite his
chronic Achilles injury.
Henry, who has yet to score this season, had been a question mark heading into the weekend, but
manager Hans Backe told reporters on Thursday that he expected his Designated Player to be part of
the starting lineup.
Oguchi Onyewu and FC Twente need a comeback of epic proportions to keep their UEFA Europa League
hopes afloat after being drilled by Giuseppe Rossi and Villarreal in the first leg of their
quarterfinal matchup. Twente managed a late away goal in the opening leg to keep its flame
flickering but still trails its Spanish opponent by four goals.
A year after Gomez led the Mexican Clausura in goals with 10 for Puebla, the American striker is
putting together another strong run of form in the spring, scoring in his second consecutive match
in Pachuca's 4-2 loss to Tigres Wednesday night.
David Beckham's latest comments about Major League Soccer referees will probably attract some
attention from the league office. He knows that, and he doesn't seem to mind.
In the aftermath of the Los Angeles Galaxy's 0-0 draw with Toronto Wednesday night, a match in
which Beckham received his fifth yellow card in six games and Juninho was sent off at the end of
second-half stoppage time for a second yellow card, Beckham shared his feelings about the league's
refereeing with reporters at BMO Field.
Real Salt Lake and Colorado battled tooth and nail for more than 90 minutes without breaking
through, and the past two MLS Cup champions looked destined for a draw, but not before RSL found
magic yet again.
Fabian Espindola scored in the third minute of second half stoppage time when he finished off a
Javier Morales free kick that caromed off the woodwork to help RSL post a 1-0 victory against the
Rapids at Rio Tinto Stadium.
The past two MLS Cup champions square off in Utah in the latest edition of the Rocky Mountain
Unbeaten Real Salt Lake and the defending league champions, the Colorado Rapids, have their
first meeting of the year at Rio Tinto Stadium, where an intense match between bitter rivals is
anticipated (9 p.
A day before the Portland Timbers host the first home game in their Major League Soccer history,
the club has signed its first Designated Player.
The Timbers signed Colombian playmaking midfielder Diego Chara to a DP deal on Wednesday. Chara,
25, was formerly with Deportes Tolima in his native Colombia, where he was a key component of his
league's most-potent attack.
Schalke and Real Madrid each took giant steps toward the UEFA Champions League semifinals after
their respective first-leg routs over Inter Milan and Tottenham. Now all that's left to do is
finish the job against two desperate, sure-to-be-attack-minded opponents.
Inter and Tottenham each face daunting tasks in order to keep their European dreams alive.
The increasingly prominent fear among New York Red BullsÂ supporters that Thierry Henry's tenure
in New York will ultimately end up being an injury-laden bust was given a littleÂ more credence
Tuesday when coach Hans Backe told the New York Post that Henry's chronic Achilles injury is
causing "so much pain, so we just have to take it day-by-day.
Tuesday, it looked fairly certain that American sports tycoon Stan Kroenke's takeover bid for
English side Arsenal was likely to succeed, but today's headlines tell a different story. Â
Alisher Usmanov, who still holds a sizeable chunk of the London-based side's shares at 27
percent, refuses to sell his shares to Kroenke, as he says he "loves" Arsenal â€” despite the
club's insistence that the remaining shareholders accept the American's offer of Â£11,750 per
David Beckham's contract with the Los Angeles Galaxy expires at the end of this season, but that
doesn't necessarily mean that his stint in Major League Soccer is over.
Beckham and the Galaxy are in Toronto for tonight's match with Toronto FC at BMO Field, and when
asked by reporters on Tuesday if he would return to MLS next season, Beckham replied, "Yeah,
there's a chance.
Week Four in MLS had its share of drama, and its share of telling results, controversy and
You had the Philadelphia Union posting a third shutout in four matches, and opening its lead
atop the East to four points in the process. You had the Los Angeles Galaxy denied three points by
a phantom penalty call, and you had FC Dallas dismantle previously unbeaten Colorado, earning its
own first win of the season in the process.
Chelsea's dream of being the first London club to win the Champions League will have to wait
another year as Manchester United held serve at Old Trafford with a 2-1 victory to advance to the
Champions League semifinals 3-1 on aggregate.
It's the fourth time United has reached the semifinals in the past five seasons, winning it all
If you've been wondering when we'd have our next night-time edition of the SBI Live Q&A, tonight
is that night.
If you can't make the day-time Q&As, then this is your chance to join us to discuss all things
soccer. We'll have plenty to discuss, from today's big UEFA Champions League matches (on Fox Soccer
Channel), to Wednesday's big Real Salt Lake-Colorado clash.
Manchester United and Chelsea square off today with a place in the UEFA Champions League
semifinals on the line (2:45pm, Fox Soccer Channel).
The Red Devils posted a vital 1-0 win at Stamford Bridge in the first leg of their quarterfinal
series, putting all of the pressure on Chelsea to have to produce a result at Old Trafford, where
Manchester United has been largely unbeatable this season.
It's time to pick a winner for the most recent edition of You Write the Caption. We received nearly
200 entries, though the quality of comedy wasn't up to the standard of past YWTC. We'll chalk that
up to rust from not having had a You Write the Caption in months.
The Copa Libertadores group phase winds down over the next week as the final matchday
approaches. With six sides through and 20 teams still battling for the 10 available spots into the
knockout round, this has become one of the more exciting conclusions to the group stage in recent
Juan Agudelo is just 18 years old, and has one professional goal to his credit, but he has
already shown enough to have foreign clubs keeping tabs on him.
According to Spanish publication Marca, Atletico Madrid is one of those clubs.
A key Atletico Madrid official attended the Philadelphia Union-New York Red Bulls match, but it
should also be noted that the official is in the United States in search of new strategic alliances
for the Spanish club.
When selecting this week's SBI MLS Best XI, one spot was easy to fill. David Ferreira was Player
of the Week by a good margin, leaving ten other spots up for grabs and a boatload of worthy
candidates for those positions.
Ferreira wasn't alone among FC Dallas players to make this week's squad, with Ugo Ihemelu being
honored for helping shut down a normally dangerous Colorado Rapids attack.
In one of the tighter races to date, Houston Dynamo striker Will Bruin edged out D.C. United
defender Ethan White for this week's SBI MLS Rookie of the Week honors.
Bruin opened his professional scoring account on Sunday, delivering a beautiful finish after
racing onto a Brad Davis pass and beating Jay Nolly to the ball before slotting him Houston's third
goal in a 3-1 win against Vancouver.
Everyone expecting the Philadelphia Union to revert back to the mean is in for a rude awakening.
Just ask the New York Red Bulls.
In its second season as a franchise, the Union has the look of a winner after gutting out a home
result against New York, maintaining its spot atop the Eastern Conference standings and climbing
into the top three of the SBI MLS Power Rankings.
American sports mogul, Stan Kroenke, is on the verge of a complete takeoverÂ at Arsenal after
reports are confirming that after reaching deals with Danny Fiszman and Lady Nina Bracewell-Smith
for control of 16.1% owned by Fiszman and 15.9% owned by Bracewell-Smith. Â
Reigning MLS MVP David Ferreira needed a few games to get going, but he finally flashed the form
that won him league honors in 2010 by scoring two goals in FC Dallas' first win of the season last
Friday. His performance in the 3-0 win against the Colorado Rapids earned Ferreira SBI MLS Player
of the Week honors.
The Houston Dynamo offense enjoyed its best day of the young season, rattling off three goals to
knock off the Vancouver Whitecaps, 3-1, on Sunday at Robertson Stadium.
Cam Weaver, Bobby Boswell and Will Bruin scored goals on a night when Vancouver's defense
struggled badly, particularly after the departure of veteran centerback Jay DeMerit at halftime
with a groin injury.
CARSON, Calif. â€“ The Columbus CrewÂ traveled to Sothern California in hopes of breaking a
five-year winless streak against Chivas USA at the Home Depot Center. Ninety minutes of scoreless
soccer later, the Crew still hadn't figured out how to beat the Rojiblancos.
With Barcelona and Real Madrid running away with the top two places in the Spanish Primera, the
real battle in La Liga is for third place and the automatic Champions League Group Stage place that
comes with it.
Valencia has put together a surprisingly strong season after losing stars David Villa and David
Silva, but Villarreal rides the red-hot form of Giuseppe Rossi into a match that could help
Villarreal catch Valencia for third place.
For the second time in four days, the New England Revolution wound up in a three-red-card match.
Unfortunately for the Revs, this week they were unable to salvage a result,Â falling to a largely
reserve Real Salt Lake squad at Gillette Stadium Saturday night.
The New York Red Bulls came away from Saturday night's match against the Philadelphia Union
feeling like the better team lost, with a dominating display of possession producing no goals and
leaving the struggling Red Bulls wondering how Philadelphia came away with another shutout
Two of Major League Soccer's most-storied franchises square off in the nation's capital (7:30 p.m.,
MLS Direct Kick/Matchday Live) in an East-vs.-West battle.
There are plenty surprises in both lineups, everything from Landon Donovan and Perry Kitchen
being held out of their respective 18s altogether, to Sean Franklin playing midfield, to Ethan
White getting his first-career MLS start, to D.
The New York Red Bulls have made the trip down I-95 today to take on the Philadelphia Union in
the first meeting between the rivals in 2011.
The Union enter the match in first place in the East, but the Red Bulls are the favorites to win
the division and will feature newly-acquired playmaker Dwayne DeRosario in the starting lineup for
the first time.
Clint Dempsey and Fulham won't be given much of a chance to slow down first-place Manchester
United today, but with Wayne Rooney suspended and Manchester United facing a vital Champions League
match next week, the Cottagers just might be in position to pull the upset.
The match could also offer us a preview of this summer's Gold Cup, where Dempsey and United
striker Javier Hernandez could also face off.
FC Dallas headed into Friday's MLS Cup Final rematch with the Colorado winless and in dire need
of three points against an undefeated Rapids side. By the end of the night, Dallas reminded us how
good it can be.
Reigning MLS MVP David Ferreira scored a pair of goals while the FC Dallas defense posted its
first shutout of the season in an impressive 3-0 thrashing of the Rapids on Friday night at Pizza
The 2010 MLS Cup Final was an All-Western Conference affair and now the teams that squared off
in that memorable final meet again for the first time.
Colorado rolls into tonight's showdown (9pm, Fox Soccer Channel) with FC Dallas undefeated,
while Dallas enters still searching for its first win of the season after suffering a pair of
losses that included red cards.
Liverpool's topsy turvy season continues as word has emerged that captain Steven Gerrard looks
to be out for the season.
The Reds' captain suffered another injury set back in training after only returning a week ago,
and manager Kenny Dalglish's outlook is grim.
The loss of Gerrard will put increased pressure on the Reds already thin central midfield of
Christian Poulson, Lucas Leiva and Jonjo Shelvey, who is due to return in the near future from his
own injury struggles.
Apologies for the delay, but now that we're up and running, let's get started with the newest
edition of SBI Live Q&A. If you have some soccer questions (or pop culture questions), feel free to
send them my way.
It's that time again. Time for us to talk all things soccer in the latest installment of the SBI
Live Q&A, set for 1pm today.
There are plenty of topics to discuss, from Real Salt Lake's recent CONCACAF Champions League
triumph, to the U.S. Under-20 national team's failed World Cup bid. Want to talk UEFA Champions
League, or perhaps this weekend's MLS schedule.
Villarreal took a giant step toward the UEFA Europa League semifinals with a sound thumping of
FC Twente in the first leg of their quarterfinal series. Nilmar scored twice and Giuseppe Rossi
added a beautiful strike to put Oguchi Onyewu and his teammates in a giant hole heading into the
Clint Dempsey has made a habit of coming up big in marquee games, and Fulham will be hoping he
does so again as the club faces league-leading Manchester United on Saturday.
Having played to a 2-2 home draw in the second week of the season, Fulham will travel to Old
Trafford looking to pull out a result against a Manchester United side that just played in a UEFA
Champions League quarterfinal.
It's been almost 27 years since the North American Soccer League last saw a game, but that will
change this Saturday when the storied league returns to action under the USSF umbrella with eight
The NASL was scheduled to begin last April, but a bitter and protracted feud with the United
Soccer Leagues, from which the NASL drew a handful of its teams, led to a denial of sanctioning by
the USSF and the formation of a temporary USSF Division 2 league.
MLS referee Baldomero Toldeo might be notoriously red-card happy, but Vancouver striker and
Designated Player Eric Hassli has to know better than to celebrate a goal by taking his shirt off
while carrying a yellow card, right?
Monterrey will join Real Salt Lake in the CONCACAF Champions League final.
Humberto Suazo's 81st-minute penalty kick sealed a 1-1 draw at Estadio Azul Wednesday night,
lifting Monterrey past Cruz Azul, 3-2 on aggregate in their CCL semifinal.
Cruz Azul, looking to reach the CCL final for the third consecutive year, looked to be on its
way after Cesar Villaluz scored in the 24th minute to level the aggregate score and give Cruz Azul
the edge because of its away goal in the first leg.
The U.S. U-20 men's national had its chances, but lackluster finishing and defending saw its
CONCACAF U-20 Championship campaign end with no World Cup ticket to claim.
The United States was eliminated from the regional tournament and failed to qualify for the
World Cup with a 2-1 loss to Guatemala in the quarterfinalsÂ at Estadio Mateo Flores in Guatemala
City on Wednesday night.
Those are the stakes tonight as the United States takes on Guatemala tonight in the U.S.
Under-20 CONCACAF quarterfinals in Guatemala (10pm, ESPN3.com/ESPN Deportes). Beat the host team
tonight and the Americans punch their ticket to the Under-20 World Cup on Colombia this summer.
Fifteen years ago today, the San Jose Clash and D.C. United played the first game in something
called "Major League Soccer." Considering RSL's result in the CONCACAF Champions League last night
and the overall progress over the years, it's safe to say the league has made some headway since
English rivals. A rematch of the 2008 UEFA Champions League final. Must-see TV.
Chelsea and Manchester United take their domestic rivalry back to the European stage in
Wednesday's UCL first-leg quarterfinal match at Stamford Bridge (2:45 p.m., Fox Soccer Channel).
United is plenty clear of Chelsea in the Premier League race, but the Blues won their last matchup
and will look to take the edge in the confines of their home stadium.
There was no champagne popped or any wild celebrations last night at Estadio Saprissa after Real
Salt Lake pulled off a historic CONCACAF Champions League semifinal series victory. Instead, there
was a sense of pride, as well as relief, after a dramatic and draining match against Deportivo
Schalke, a much-maligned side domestically, but a very in-form one continentally, tallied five
away goals at the San Siro to take a commanding 5-2 lead after the first leg of the UEFA Champions
League quarterfinals over defending-champion Inter on Tuesday.
This is Alan Ledbetter, and I will be the SBI Fantasy MLS guru for the rest of the year. Why me
you ask? I have been the SBI Fantasy MLS championÂ the past two seasonsÂ (once in MFLS and once in
the old MLSnet.com).
Last year, my first year of MFLS, I finished fourth in the entire game in addition to my SBI
League title, and I look to build on that performance this year.
Real Salt Lake will look to make history night by defeating Deportivo Saprissa in their CONCACAF
Champions League semifinal series. After winning the first leg, 2-0, RSL heads into Estadio
Saprissa with a two goal lead and a chance to make its mark in MLS lore.
A hostile and capacity crowd is expected at Estadio Saprissa tonight, with cool breezes
replacing rain drops for now.
Emmanuel Adebayor notched a brace, and Angel Di Maria and Cristiano Ronaldo tallied goals late
to lead Real Madrid to a 4-0 thumping of 10-man Tottenham in the first leg of their UEFA Champions
League quarterfinal. Tottenham was down a man for the final 75 minutes of the match after Peter
Crouch was sent off.
A trio of two-goal scorers leads the way for SBI's MLS Week 3 Best XI selections.
Colorado's Caleb Folan, Sporting Kansas City's Teal Bunbury and Vancouver's Camilo Sanvezzo each
notched braces over the weekend. Folan led Colorado to a 4-1 dismantling of D.C. United, while
Bunbury and Sanvezzo scored their goals in the same match, a 3-3 thriller in which the Whitecaps
came from three goals down to earn the point.
Ending much speculation, D.C. United midfielder Andy Najar announced that will play
internationally for his native Honduras.
At a brief press conference at RFK Stadium, Najar, 18, read a prepared statement in Spanish and
then met with reporters, relaying his thought process and explaining that he wanted to wait until
he thought he was ready to play international soccer before making any decision.
The quest for the UEFA Champions League semifinals kicks off on Tuesday, with Real Madrid
hosting Tottenham at Estadio Santiago Bernabeu (2:45 p.m., Fox Soccer Channel) and Inter Milan
welcoming Schalke to the San Siro (2:45 p.m., FoxSoccer.tv) in two first-leg matches.
Real Madrid is coming off a shocking home loss to Sporting Gijon, which was manager Jose
Mourinho's first home loss in league play in nine years.
There were several worthy nominees for MLS Player of the Week this week, but no player showed
off a more impressive display of skill than Sporting Kansas City's Teal Bunbury, who earned SBI's
MLS Player of the Week honors after scoring a pair of amazing goals.
Facing the Vancouver Whitecaps in front of a hostile crowd still angry at his decision to play
for the United States instead of Canada, Bunbury silenced the boos with a pair of stunning strikes
that helped SKC jump out to a 3-0 lead.
When Real Madrid and Tottenham take to the pitch for the first leg of their UEFA Champions
League quarterfinal tie at Santiago Bernabeu Stadium (2:45 p.m., Fox Soccer Channel), both teams
should have their respective stars in tow.
According to reports, Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo, Kaka and Tottenham's Gareth Bale are all
expected to be fit and play in the match after battling fitness issues recently.
SAN JOSE, Costa Rica-- A relaxed Real Salt Lake squad went through the paces at Estadio Ricardo
Saprissa on Monday in preparation for its CONCACAF Champions League decider against Deportivo
Saprissa on Tuesday night (10pm, Fox Soccer Channel).
RSL comes in healthy and in good form, playing the most attractive soccer in MLS and looking
every bit like a club capable of posting a win in the hostile environment at Estadio Saprissa.
Andy Najar will apparently end the mystery Tuesday afternoon.
D.C. United has scheduled a press conference for 2:30 p.m. on Tuesday during which Najar will
discuss his national team future and presumably pick which country he will represent, either his
native Honduras or the United States.
Camilo's late-game heroics against Sporting Kansas City can now be called award-winning
The Vancouver Whitecaps' 22-year-old Brazilian striker was named Major League Soccer's Player of
the Week after his goals in the second and third minutes of stoppage time helped his team earn an
improbable 3-3 draw with SKC on Saturday.
Last season, the Philadelphia Union's defense was a comedy of errors, unable to stay organized
and a sure bet to have a few cataclysmic mistakes every match.
Enter Faryd Mondragon into the fold.
The veteran Colombian goalkeeper has made quite the impact in his first few matches with the
Union, earning the captain's armband and guiding the club to two 1-0 shutouts in March en route to
earning SBI's Player of the Month honors.
It was a good weekend for the leaders of Europe's top five leagues. Each of the table-topping
clubs either maintained or extended its lead with a victory this weekend, and no club helped itself
more than AC Milan.
The Rossoneri asserted their dominance over derby rivals Inter in less than a minute with the
first of Alexandre Pato's two goals in the match, and even though the visitors had their chances to
pull back into the game, Milan was able to pull off a convincing 3-0 win.
The U.S. U-20 men's national team is one win away from reaching this summer's World Cup, and one
player who could be on the team that isn't right now is Joshua Gatt. The 19-year-old attacker made
that more likely with another start for Molde FK this weekend.
A pair of top Serie A clashes and key tilts in Portugal and Brazil headline a strong Sunday of
soccer on TV today.
Napoli and Lazio are kicking things off this morning, while Roma and Juventus face off in an
entertaining match. FC Porto and Benfica battle in a match-up of the top teams in Portugal, while
Palmeiras and Santos meet in a clash of top Brazilian sides.
Dwayne DeRosario's New York Red Bulls debut started as well as he and his new team could have
hoped, with a skillful assist on his first touch. Unfortunately for the Red Bulls, that moment of
brilliance was one of the few the Red Bulls could muster.
The Seattle Sounders' search for a win continues, but they appeared to take a step closer to
doing so Saturday night at Buck Shaw Stadium.
Seattle played physical, maybe even too physical in taking a couple of liberties without much
consequence from the officials, but lost a chance for its first win of the 2011 MLS season thanks
to a wonder-strike by Earthquakes midfielder Khari Stephenson in the 52nd minute that tied the
score at 2.
When Kei Kamara put Sporting Kansas City ahead of the Vancouver Whitecaps, 3-0, midway through
the second half, things looked pretty bleak for the expansion side, playing in front of its home
fans for the second time this season.
Two impactful substitutions and three clutch goals later, the Whitecaps earned the wildest point
of the MLS season to date.
The season is still in its infancy, but the Philadelphia Union and LA Galaxy already have a
great deal to prove as they face off at the Home Depot Center.
The Galaxy dropped a major result last week being on business end of a 4-1 defeat against Real
Salt Lake. Expect a different attitude from the Galaxy on Saturday with Landon Donovan back from
Jeff Cunningham got the perfect opportunity for an historic goal.
His close-range open shot, off a brilliant back flick from teammate Emilio Renteria in the 61st
minute, missed wide. A goal would have put Cunningham into a tie with Jaime Moreno for first place
all-time in goals in MLS history, and would have tied him for the Columbus Crew franchise record
The Columbus Crew and FC Dallas are both searching for their first victories of the season and
will look to knock each other off when they face off tonight at Crew Stadium in Columbus (7:30pm,
Fox Soccer Channel).
The Crew comes in off a disappointing 0-0 draw against a severely short-handed New York Red
Bulls squad, while FC Dallas enters having lost at San Jose.
Two weeks into the MLS season, the Philadelphia Union stands alone atop the Eastern Conference
as one of only three teams in the leagueÂ with an unblemished record. Philadelphia will face its
sternest test yet this weekend when it travels to the West Coast for a Saturday night clash with
last year's Supporters' Shield winner, the Los Angeles Galaxy.
The proposed trade that would have sent Dwayne DeRosario to the New York Red Bulls has been put
on hold due to a snag in the trade process.
Toronto FC had agreed to a trade sending DeRosario to New York for Tony Tchani, Danleigh Borman
and a first-round pick in 2012, but a legal issue involving one of the players in the trade has
halted the deal.
You'd be hard-pressed to find a match with more storylines heading into it than this weekend's
installment of the Milan Derby.
As if the rivalry didn't have enough history, you also have AC Milan and Inter Milan squaring
off in a battle for first place in Serie A, as well as Leonardo leading his new team against the
same AC Milan side he managed last year.