The latest installment of 'El Clasico' kicks off today as Barcelona takes on Real Madrid in the first leg of their Copa Del Rey semifinal series, just one of several quality matches on a loaded Wednesday of soccer action.
Barcelona's dream season has seen them run away with La Liga, and cruise to the Champions League knockout rounds, but Real Madrid is sure to offer a stiff challenge despite the fact the team is mired in controversy amid rumored strife between manager Jose Mourinho and Real Madrid's top players.
The winter MLS exodus is in full swing and Kei Kamara has joined the crop of MLS players heading to Europe this off-season.
Sporting Kansas City has loaned Kamara to Norwich City, with the deal including a purchase option that could see Kamara leave MLS for good. If Norwich City passes on buying Kamara outright, Kamara could return to Sporting KC as early as May 6th.
The on-again, off-again, transfer of Honduran national teamer and D.C. United standout Andy Najar is back on again, with D.C. United and Belgian club Anderlecht agreeing on a transfer for the former MLS Rookie of the Year.
Sources with knowledge of the deal have confirmed to SBI that D.
HOUSTON â€“ In match that will be remembered for failed chances and missed opportunities, Joshua Gatt was one of the closest things to a silver lining for the U.S. Men's National Team after Tuesday's drab showing.
It is probably the last thing you want to do, isn't it? Look back at Tuesday night's horror show of a scoreless draw delivered by the U.S. Men's National Team against a Canada side that had no intention of just laying down and being anybody's punching bag.
It was forgettable, drab and disappointing, at least for a good majority of the very players Jurgen Klinsmann was counting on to show they were ready for future consideration for the national team.
The U.S. Men's National Team kicks off U.S. Soccer's 100th year, and a very important year for a variety of reasons, with tonight's friendly against Canada in Houston (9pm, ESPN2).
An MLS-heavy side will take the field at BBVA Compass Stadium tonight, with players looking to impress Jurgen Klinsmann enough to not only gain ground on the USMNT depth chart, but also to potentially earn a place on the World Cup qualifying squad that will travel to Honduras for the Feb.
One of the brightest story lines so far this season has been the play of American midfielder Michael Bradley at AS Roma. In just his first season at the club, the 25-year-old has carved out a near permanent place in the starting lineup, and has earned plaudits from the Romanisti faithful, as well as the coaching staff, for his play, as well as his never-ending motor.
Sporting Kansas City is being pegged as a serious championship contender after making several major off-season additions, but it is a potential second high-profile departure that could put a serious dent in this championship plans.
The BBC in England is reporting that Sporting KC midfielder Kei Kamara is on the verge of a move to Norwich City, pending the receipt of a work permit.
The New York Red Bulls head into the 2013 season with a head coach who has zero head coaching experience. That doesn't mean the team's coaching staff won't have at least some head coaching experience on it.
The Red Bulls have signed former Chivas USA head coach Robin Fraser to be the team's lead assistant coach, sources within the team told SBI on Tuesday.
By most accounts, the New York Red Bulls have had a dream offseason. They have added a number of veterans with MLS experience, disposed of some big contracts and a malcontent Designated Player, and signed an American to be their head coach.
As if Sepp Blatter and FIFA did not already have enough yolk on their faces regarding the 2022 World Cup bidding process.
France Football magazine, in a 16-page report, has accused FIFA of awarding Qatar the 2022 World Cup on grounds of corruption.In the report titled 'Qatargate', Michel Platini was said to have been present at a secret meeting in the French presidential palace in Paris with Qatari prince Tamin bin Hamad al-Thani and the previous owners of Paris Saint-Germain.
It may just be a friendly, and isn't likely to be played in front of the biggest crowd, but tonight's 2013-opening match for the U.S. Men's National Team carries more weight than any January match in recent memory.
When the USMNT takes on Canada tonight (9pm, ESPN2) they will be playing more than just a friendly.
The long and winding saga that has been Brek Shea's inevitable departure to Europe has taken yet another strange turn as just days after it seemed he might not be heading anywhere during this transfer window now comes word that he is on the verge of a transfer move.
Conor O'Brien may soon be moving up the food chain over in Denmark.
O'Brien is currently in negotiations with Odense BK after becoming a free agent at the end of 2012, according to a report from Danish outlet Bold. O'Brien spent much of the past two years of his career with fellow Danish outfit SonderjyskE, but is poised to make a move to a new club in the coming weeks after choosing not to re-sign with SonderjyskE.
It's hard for any rookie to find their role on a new team, but joining the back-to-back MLS Cup champions is an even tougher hurdle. Luckily for the LA Galaxy's three MLS SuperDraft selections, key personnel changes have opened the door for them to claim a spot in head coach Bruce Arena's squad as full preseason training begins Monday.
Sixteen Premier League teams entered the Fourth Round of the FA Cup at the beginning of this weekend. Five were knocked out of the competition by lower level clubs. Three needed late winners to avoid the dreaded replay.
Eddie Johnson enjoyed a dream 2012, resurrecting his career and re-establishing himself as one of the best American forwards around. He prepares to kick off the new year on Tuesday night when he and the U.S. Men's National Team take on Canada in Houston.
Johnson joined us on the latest episode of The SBI Podcast and shared his thoughts on 2012, the current U.
African minnows Cape Verde, competing in their first ever African Cup of Nations, stunned the continent with a dramatic 2-1 victory over Angola on Sunday, sealing a place in the knockout round of the competition.
The island nation, with a population of 500,000, scored two goals in the final nine minutes of the match, including one in injury time, to secure a historic victory.
If the U.S. Men's National Team forwards play against Honduras on Feb. 6 as well as they did this weekend, Los Catrachos are in trouble.
Three Americans found ways to make impacts for their respective clubs, including Herculez Gomez. A day after his grandmother passed away, Gomez started for Santos Laguna and set up an insurance goal in their 2-0 win over Leon on Friday.
Omar Cummings and Corey Ashe head into the 2013 season as projected starters for the Houston Dynamo, but now both may miss the start of the season after undergoing surgeries to repair some knee issues.
The the procedures are being deemed minor by the Dynamo, the timetable on the returns of Ashe and Cummings is between four to six weeks, which leaves both players for the March 2nd against D.
The early rounds of the FA Cup are always intriguing because of the potential for upsets and the match-ups between English Premier League powers and once-might clubs now struggling in the lower divisions.
Sunday offers just those kind of opportunities, with former EPL side Leeds United taking on Clint Dempsey and Tottenham while Brentford faces Chelsea.
One of the hottest prospects in the English game will be plying his trade up north, starting July 1.
Wilfried Zaha, just 20-years-old, completed his deal with Manchester United yesterday afternoon, signing a five-and-a-half-year contract with the Premier League club for a reported Â£15 million transfer fee.
If Geoff Cameron and Stoke City are going to advance out of the fourth round of the FA Cup this weekend, they will need to avoid a repeat performance of their first match of the new year.
Stoke City and Manchester City are set to do battle at Britannia Stadium on Saturday, and the Potters will be aiming to eliminate the Premiership heavyweights while avenging the 3-0 loss they suffered back on Jan.
Make that 15 Eredivisie goals and 19 across all competitions this season for Jozy Altidore.
Altidore scored his latest goal for AZ Alkmaar on Friday,netting the third goal for the club in a 4-1 victory over VVV Venlo. The U.S. Men's National Team striker put the game out of reach by running onto a through ball played in behind the defense and opening his hips before slotting a shot to the far post.
The New York Red Bulls head coaching search took some serious twists and turns in recent weeks, and for a time it was unclear just what circumstances led to the sudden hiring of Mike Petke has Red Bulls head coach.
Now we have a clearer picture of what went wrong after the New York Post reported on Friday that leading candidate Paulo Sousa had his application for a work permit rejected after agreeing to take the Red Bulls head coaching job.
Martin Bonjour has been suspiciously absent from the start of the Vancouver Whitecaps' preseason camp, and now we know why.
Days after saying that Bonjour was missing because of personal reasons, the Whitecaps waived the Argentine centerback. Bonjour played just one season with the Whitecaps, scoring one goal in 28 appearances in 2012.
The torch of running Real Salt Lake has officially been passed on, as the club announced Thursday that Dave Checketts has sold his majority stake in the club to Dell Loy Hansen, who assumes sole ownership.
Checketts was the driving force behind bringing Major League Soccer to Utah in 2004.
Jozy Altidore didn't waste any time getting off to a great start to 2013, scoring a hat-trick for AZ Alkmaar in his first match of the new year, and as the U.S. Men's National team draws closer to World Cup qualifying, Altidore figures to play a key role in the U.
Millions of football fans around the world cheered last night, not just because Barcelona beat Malaga in the Copa del Rey, but because the win sets up an epic semi-final clash with rivals Real Madrid.
It will be yet another two-legged installment of El Clasico, one of the most watched games in the world, and one that the global audience has had the pleasure of viewing on 12 occasions since the start of 2011.
D.C. United have bolstered their attacking options, signing midfielder Syamsir Alam on loan from Belgium club C.S. Vise.
United announced the addition of the 20-year-old Indonesian on Friday morning, and Alam joins the club after having spent time at SC Heerenveen and Vitesse Arnhem of the Eredivisie, and Uruguayan side Penarol.
It has only been a week since the 2013 MLS Draft wrapped up, and just two days since the Supplemental Draft gave another group to of college players their dream of being selected by a pro team, but MLS scouts are already looking ahead to next year and the players who just might be having their names called when the next draft rolls around.
Could Diego Restrepo be the goalkeeper to push Zac MacMath? He will get his chance to show just that to John Hackworth.
Restrepo told SBI Wednesday that he will make his way to the City of Brotherly Love after a week-long training stint with D.C. United as the former University of Virginia standout is working to find a landing spot in MLS.
After months of searching for the right man to lead the New York Red Bulls, the final decision on a new head coach saw the team turn the very man who has been holding the position since the departure of Hans Backe last fall.
The Red Bulls have named Mike Petke as the team's new head coach, ending weeks of speculation and searching by turning to a candidate with strong ties to the club.
The latest episode of The SBI Podcast is here and Garrett Cleverly and I cover a wide range of American soccer topics including the recent MLS Drafts, Americans Abroad and the U.S. Men's National Team.
Our special guest in Episode 3 is Will Bruin, who made some headlines on Tuesday by scoring a pair of goals in the U.
CONCACAF announced the Gold Cup host venues Wednesday and fans in the Pacific Northwest will be happy with the news. Seattle's CenturyLink Field and Portland's JELD-WEN field will both host matches in the biannual tournament.
The Gold Cup is expanding its US footprint by going to several cities that have never hosted one of its matches, including Portland.
Will Bruin is making the most of his first stint with the U.S. Men's National Team, scoring two goals to help the national team post a 3-0 victory against Club Tijuana's reserves in a closed-door scrimmage at Home Depot Center on Tuesday.
Philadelphia defender Jeff Parke provided the third goal for the Americans, who were playing in their final warm-up before the Jan.
League Two side Bradford City have achieved the near-impossible, beating Aston Villa 4-3 over two legs to make it to the League Cup Final next month at Wembley Stadium.
Despite playing in the fourth division of English football, the team from the north of England took down three Premier League sides on their way to the finals, starting with Wigan, then Arsenal, before finishing with Aston Villa on Tuesday.
In what is becoming a recurring theme with the New York Red Bulls, just when they look like they have their guy, something goes wrong and the team is left scrambling.
Just a week after sources told SBI that the Red Bulls and Paulo Sousa had reached an agreement to make Sousa the team's new head coach, a fresh report out of Portugal states that Sousa has decided to pass on the job after initially leaving his head coaching job with Hungarian side Videoton expressly to take the New York job.
The Portland Timbers have added a number of experienced players this offseason under the guidance of new head coach Caleb Porter, and they might soon add another who has played at some of the biggest clubs in the world.
Timbers owner Merritt Paulson tweeted on Tuesday that former Manchester United and Arsenal defender Mikael Silvestre is set to begin a training stint with Portland.
The Vancouver Whitecaps took the first step to ending their Scottish experiment moving midfielder Barry Robson out of the club.
As SBI reported last week, the Whitecaps were looking to end their relationship with the Scottish international, Monday the club made it official announcing that it has parted ways with the Designated Player.
The U.S. Men's National Team's January camp rolls into its final full week of action and Jurgen Klinsmann will need to start thinking about which player he will plan on giving playing time to when the USMNT takes on Canada on Jan. 29th in Houston.
The Americans have a closed-door scrimmage against Club Tijuana's reserves at Home Depot Center, and while that match should offer some players an opportunity to impress Klinsmann, the training camp itself should ultimately determine who Klinsmann hands starts against the Canadians.
MLS teams began training camp Monday and several notable non-roster invitees began trying to impress their new teams and earn a contract. Among the more notable names were former New England Revolution midfielder Blair Gavin, RSL forward Paulo Jr., Colorado Rapids midfielder Jamie Smith and FC Dallas forward Ruben Luna.
What seemed almost inevitable a few days ago, now looks to be out of reach.
Kaka, the former talisman of the Brazilian national team and A.C. Milan, was all set for a move back to his former club from Real Madrid, before financial issues have forced the transfer to stall, according to reports.
Landon Donovan isn't ready to return from his off-season, but according to Los Angeles Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena, Donovan will be coming back eventually.
The Galaxy opened their training camp on Monday and Donovan's absence quickly made waves, but Arena put to rest any notion that Donovan wasn't returning in 2013, stating that Donovan will come back eventually.
The 2013 MLS Draft was one filled with wheeling and dealing, and plenty of surprises, but the actual draft picks made were, for the most part, fairly reasonable and this year's draft lacked the true head-scratching selections of year's past.
Going undefeated for an entire season is near impossible, but Barcelona looked like they would never be beaten. However, even the greatest teams falter at times and the clock struck midnight on Barca's amazing run this weekend.
Real Sociedad became the first club to beat Barcelona this term.
The long drawn out transfer of Inter Milan midfielder Wesley Sneijder is nearly finished, as Turkish club Galatasaray announced on their club website last night that Sneijder and the club had agreed upon personal terms.
The transfer, for a reported Â£8 million, will become official upon completion of a medical today in Istanbul.
Clint Dempsey is officially a thorn in Manchester United's side.
For the second time this season, Dempsey punished Manchester United by scoring a vital goal for Tottenham on Sunday.Dempsey, who scored the winner the last time these two teams met in September, donned the hero's cape by tucking away a 93rd-minute shot from close range to give Spurs a 1-1 draw inside of a snowy White Hart Lane.
CARSON, Calif. â€“ Houston Dynamo midfielder Brad Davis, 31, says he's relishing his first U.S. men's national team call up under Jurgen Klinsmann. The 2012 MLS MVP finalist earned his last cap under Bob Bradley in a 2010 friendly against El Salvador.
"The older you get the less opportunity that those things are possibly going to happen," Davis said after camp on Thursday.
As each day passes, it seems more likely that the Mario Balotelli experiment at Manchester City will be coming to an end.
A.C. Milan is interested in making a bid for the the 23-year-old Italian, though according to a report from Italian publication Gazzetta Dello Sport, Manchester City are holding out for a Â£31 million transfer fee.
For a team that drops points as rarely as Juventus has in recent years, a two-match winless streak is enough to ring alarm bells. With their lead atop Serie A down to three matches, the Old Lady head into their showdown vs. Udinese knowing they can't afford many more slip-ups.
Udinese currently sit in eight place in Serie A, but consecutive blowout wins to start the new year has them feeling confident heading into today's showdown in Turin.
Early on Friday morning in Indianapolis, the National Women's Soccer League held their first college draft. For four rounds, each team had the opportunity to add players to their rosters before the inagural season commences in April.
The 2013 MLS Draft is in the books and SBI breaks down the action on Episode 2 of The SBI Podcast.
We have No. 10 pick and Seattle Sounders rookie Eriq Zavaleta on the show to discuss joining the Sounders, being drafted in his hometown and playing for Sigi Schmid, who also coached his father and unclue.
CARSON, Calif. With only one year left on his contract, LA Galaxy and current U.S. Men's national team defender Omar Gonzalez refused to close the door on extending his stay in Los Angeles beyond next season. But he said there's been no new contract offer from the club as of yet.
The deal looked all but done just days ago, but sources with knowledge of the New York Red Bulls coaching search tell SBI that Claudio Reyna has turned down the opportunity to be the team's lead assistant coach.
Reyna was pegged as the frontrunner earlier this month to be the assistant for Paulo Sousa, who has been tipped to take over as Red Bulls head coach, but Reyna has apparently made the final decision to pass on the job offer.
The Portland Timbers have parted ways with Scottish forward Kris Boyd, sources confirmed to SBI on Thursday.
The high-priced forward never quite settled in to be the marquee goal-scorer the Timbers were hoping for when they signed him in 2012, but the Timbers have rectified that problem by reaching an agreement with Boyd to buy out his contract and clear his high salary and Designated Player spot from the Timbers' books.
It only took Wayne Rooney nine minutes to make an impact in his return from injury, and his quick goal was all that Manchester United needed to get the FA Cup replay victory over West Ham on Wednesday.
Rooney, who had been out since Christmas Day with a knee injury suffered during training, redirected a pass from Javier Hernandez into a wide-open goal to register his ninth goal of the season.
Maurice Edu knows he needs first-team minutes if he is to continue to play for the U.S. Men's National Team in this important calendar year, and as a result he is heading to a team in Turkey that U.S. fans might be familiar with.
AS Roma are one step closer towards winning some hardware and reaching the 2013-14 UEFA Europa League, and Michael Bradley is a big reason as to why that is.
Roma were locked in a scoreless stalemate with Fiorentina and penalty kicks were looming in their Coppa Italia quarterfinals match on Wednesday, but Bradley stepped up to help give the Giallorossi a 1-0 extra-time victory by playing a part in setting up the winner.
INDIANAPOLIS The 2013 MLS Draft is a day away and teams all over the league are working the phones to try and secure the right trade to potentially move up or down the draft order in search of the right player to boost their roster.
Rumors are flying about nearly every pick at the top of the first round, with only Chivas USA's selection of Carlos Alvarez with the No.
Real Salt Lake and the Portland Timbers have finalized the trade to send Findley's rights to RSL, a trade first reported by SBI. Sources tell SBI that RSL sent $75,000 in allocation money to the Timbers for Findley's rights.
Indianapolis, home of Thursday's MLS SuperDraft, better get used to hosting soccer events.
NASL announced on Wednesday that Indianapolis was the latest city to be awarded an expansion franchise, with the club expected to start play in 2014.The unnamed Indiana team becomes the 12th member of the NASL for the 2014 season, andis owned by president and chief executive officer of Keystone Construction Corporation Ersal Ozdemir.
The Galaxy announced on Wednesday that they re-signed Keane to a multi-year contract extension. The 32-year-old Designated Player enjoyed a strong season in 2012, scoring 16 regular season goals and assisting on nine others while helping the Galaxy repeat as MLS Cup champions.
David Beckham might not be returning to LA Galaxy for the 2013 season, but another big part of their back-to-back championship-winning teams is.
Juninho hassigned a multi-year deal with the Galaxy on Wednesday, ending any lingering speculation to where his future lied. The 24-year-old Brazilian midfielder had played for the Galaxy during the last three seasons on loan from Sao Paulo, but has now completed a full transfer that will keep him in Los Angeles for the foreseeable future.
FORT LAUDERDALE- Toronto FC figured to have control of the 2013 MLS Draft as holders of two of the top three picks, and it appears the team is ready to pull off a series of moves to try and maximize that advantageous position.
Multiple sources have confirmed to SBI that TFC is preparing to trade the No.
Pep Guardiola will make his return to the touchline in 2013, and he will do so as head coach of Bayern Munich.
The German heavyweights announced on Wednesday that Guardiola has signed a three-year dealwith the club that will begin following the conclusion of the current Bundesliga campaign and runs through 2016.
The 2013 MLS All-Star game will not be played at Livestrong Sporting Park after all.
No, the game is not being moved out of Kansas City, but the name of the $200 million soccer mecca is slated to change according to ESPN.com as the outlet is reporting that Sporting Kansas City and the stadium's sponsor, the Livestrong Foundation, are severing ties.
It is the words all USMNT fans wanted to hear: Stuart Holden is officially back.
The popular central midfielder returned to first team action for Bolton Tuesday going 16 minutes in a 2-0 win over EPL side Sunderland in an FA Cup replay. The quarter-hour plus was the first time the midfielder has seen since appearing in a League Cup match April 20th, 2012 against Aston Villa, which prompted surgery on his knee just eight days later.
When Toronto FC traded for French striker Eric Hassli, it was believed that the high-priced forward could potentially be a solid long-term solution for TFC.
It appears he has no intention of sticking around long enough to make that happen.
Sources tell SBI that Hassli has requested a move away from Toronto FC, with the club in the unenviable position of trying to offload a big-salary player in a league with few options for him (a move back to Europe would seem to make the most sense).
It is safe to say Robbie Rogers did not plan on it going this way.
A year after signing with Leeds United, the Championship club announced on Tuesday that it had mutually agreed to part ways with Rogers. The 25-year-old midfielder hadrecently been on loan with League One club Stevenage, but failed to break into the lineup on a permanent basis during his five months there before recently returning to Leeds.
Real Madrid manager Jose Mourinho certainly isn't doing himself any favors.
In yet another stunning revelation, Mourinho admitted in a pre-recorded video for the English FA's 150th anniversary celebrations that he would like to go back to England and manage in the future, likely in the Premier League, and maybe once more for his former club Chelsea.
LAUDERHILL, Fla. The final day of the MLS Combine takes place today as MLS coaches and scouts from across the league take their final notes and make their final decisions on the players vying for one of the 38 places in the 2013 MLS Draft on Thursday.
It is a cold (by Florida standards) and cloudy morning at the Combine, meaning easier conditions for the players here to navigate as they try to make some lasting impressions in the third set of games.
LAUDERHILL, Fla. No matter how they perform at the MLS Player Combine, the seven players in this year's Generation adidas class are safe bets to all be snagged in the first round when the MLS SuperDraft takes place on Thursday.
Playing next to familiar faces is nothing new at the MLS Combine. Former college and club teammates cross paths all the time, but for Kyle Bekker and Emery Welshman, the chance to play together one more time has provided an even more special experience.
With the exception Germany's Bundesliga, all the top leagues in Europe were back in action this weekend. The fixture lineup did not disappoint, pitting English giants against each other while providing a couple top teams in Italy with a wake up call.
Sunday in the English Premier League featured Manchester United's 2-1 win over Liverpool and Manchester City's 2-0 victory over 10-men Arsenal.
It has been 22 long months on the road of recovery for Stuart Holden, but the finish line is finally in sight.
Holden was named to Bolton Wanderer's game-day roster for the club's FA Cup replay against Sunderland on Tuesday, marking the first time he will be in uniform for Bolton's first team since suffering a broken leg in March 2011.
LAUDERHILL, Fla. MLS teams attending the Combine in hopes of finding a centerback or two to try and grab for depth have been treated to a pleasant surprise. What they have found is an impressive pool of centerbacks that
The general consensus is that Andrew Farrell is the top talent in this draft and he has done nothing to disprove that theory in Ft.
The New York Red Bulls are the final team in MLS with a coaching vacancy to fill this off-season, but sources tell SBI they have settled on the top two men in their staff and it is two coaches recently linked to the club.
The Red Bulls will name Paulo Sousa head coach as early as this week, sources confirmed to SBI on Monday.
LAUDERHILL, Fla. Carlos Alvarez and Chivas USA might just be a match made in heaven.
A day after new Chivas USA head coach Jose 'Chelis' Sanchez tweeted how he hopes to select Mexican-Americans in the upcoming MLS SuperDraft, Alvarez revealed to SBI that his preferred destination would be with the Goats.
LAUDERHILL, Fla. The second match day of the 2013 MLS Combine featured two very different matches. The first was a goal-fest that provided plenty of action for MLS scouts to consider when weighing the quality of the draft pool, while the second match was a far less impressive goal-less draw that did few favors for the players who participated.
Tim Ream and Bolton Wanderers were in a hole nine minutes into their game against Millwall, but rather than crumble the Trotters fought back to earn a draw in a subpar weekend for the Americans Abroad contingent.
Bolton earned a 1-1 draw versus Millwall on Saturday despite a poor start that saw Millwall go up early after a Ream turnover led to Zat Knight committing a foul in the penalty area.
Roberto Mancini might want to invest some of his club's money into migraine medicine, after Vincent Kompany's red card in Manchester City's 2-0 win over Arsenal on Sunday earned the defender a three-match ban, according to reports.
The Belgian international joins the likes of regular first-team players Sergio Aguero, Micah Richards, Samir Nasri, and the brothers Toure that are unavailable to play for the Citizens.
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. The second day of the 2013 MLS Combine will be an extremely important one for several top players. Some will be looking to build on strong first-day showings, while others will be trying desperately to erase the memory of poor opening match performances.
SBI will be providing live commentary on today's Combine matches so please feel free to follow along with the action here.
After several exciting FA Cup matches last week, the Premier League returned to action this weekend, and today's schedule does not disappoint.
League leaders Manchester United will look to improve their lead to 10 points as they welcome Liverpool to Old Trafford. With two wins to kick off 2013, the Reds hope to continue their turnaround to a tumultuous 2012.
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. Today was an off day at the MLS Combine, but only in the sense that there are no games being played. There is still plenty of activity going on, with players being interviewed by interested teams and team officials engaging in trade talk.
LAUDERHILL, Fla. Cohesion and comfortability are words not usually associated with the first day of an MLS combine, but you would have had a hard time coming to that conclusion after seeing how some of the midfielders stole the show on Day 1 of the 2013 MLS Player Combine.
There was some predictable first-day rustiness, and nobody is going to be archiving the video of Friday's matches for any how-to seminars, but there was still plenty for MLS scouts to chew on as they evaluate the talent pool.
What should be noted about the first day of any combine is that while you don't want to be starting off with a poor first day, it isn't the end of the world if you have one.
Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich, known for his lavish spending on the club's players, as well as his quick trigger-finger when something goes wrong, has made an offer to Pep Guardiola that would make him the richest manager in the world, according to reports in the Spanish publication Marca.
The 2013 MLS Draft is now less than a week away, and while the MLS Combine could do a lot to impact the ranking of some players, MLS teams have a pretty good sense of which players they like and which positions they think they can address at the draft.
Plenty could, and will change in the eyes of scouts over the course of the next five days at the Combine, but if you were wondering how the MLS Draft would play out without the Combine, we will offer you a glimpse of what that might look like.
FC Barcelona continued their great run in Spanish competition on Wednesday, defeating second division side Cordoba 5-0 (7-0 aggregate) in Copa del Rey action. The club now has won 15 straight matches in domestic play.
Lionel Messi watched from the bench as teammates David Villa and Alexis Sanchez netted two goals apiece.
A week from today Chivas USA will have an important decision to make at the 2013 MLS Draft, with the club boasting the No. 2 overall pick in the draft.
The man who has spearheaded preparations for that selection, and has handled running the team's technical side since the firing of former head coach Robin Fraser, has now also been given his walking papers.
Peruvian Under-20 national team goalkeeper Angelo Campos helped turn one bad decision into a pair of world class saves on Thursday in South American Under-20 Championships.
Campos raced off his line to try and clear away a ball from an attacking Uruguayan forward, but when he was beaten to the ball and watched a weak shot rolling toward his goal, Campos turned on the jets.
Mario Balotelli's days with Manchester City appear to be numbered, and now word has surfaced of the English Premier League champions putting a specific price tag on the enigmatic striker.
Inter Milan has the first option to buy Balotelli, but Man City has let AC Milan know that the Italian national team striker can be had forâ‚¬30 million, the same total Manchester City paid for Balotelli in 2010.
The Portland Timbers were looking for a playmaker to spearhead their attack, and after a lengthy search, they landed an exciting option in Argentine Diego Valeri, who joins the Timbers on loan for the 2013 season as a Designated Player.
Major League Soccer is taking the 2013 All-Star game to Kansas City as the league announced Thursday that Livestrong Sporting Park will host the summer showcase July 30.
The game will be broadcast on ESPN, Univision, TSN and RDS at 8:30 p.m. ET but an opponent has yet to be announced as the league is slated to take on an international opponent for the 10th time in its history.
Teams looking for a dynamic forward in the MLS Super Draft have two more options. Thursday Major League Soccer announced the addition of forwards Kekuta Manneh and University of Central Florida's Deshorn Brown as the sixth and seventh members of the 2013 Generation Adidas class.
If you think D.C. United's signing of Brazilian 20-year-old Rafael is a move for the future, think again. Not only does the one-year loan suggest the 6-footer will get a real look, head coach Ben Olsen thinks he may have found his true, physical center forward to head his attacking formation.
Stuart Holden is naturally a bubbly person, but his latest positive comments are likely to be music to U.S. fans' ears.
Holden started and played 65 minutes for Bolton's reserves in a 3-0 win over Oldham on Tuesday in what was his longest performance since recovering from the troublesome knee injury that has kept him out of action since March 2011.
D.C. United has added to their young attacking core, announcing the signing of Brazilian forward Rafael Wednesday morning. The 20-year-old striker will join the club on a one-year loan from Brazilian top flight side Bahia as a designated player, the youngest DP currently on the books in MLS.
American midfielder Alejandro Bedoya might have taken a gamble moving to Sweden on a short-term deal a year ago, but now that gamble is paying off.
A strong season at Helsingborg has not only helped him get back on the U.S. Men's National Team radar, it also put him on the radar of several club teams who are now interested in his services as a free agent.
Stuart Holden will take the latest step towards completing his comeback on Tuesday.
Bolton announced on their Facebook page on Tuesday morning that Holden will play in their development squad game against Oldham Athletic. The match will mark the latest bit of progress for the 27-year-old Holden, who recently played in an indoor game for Bolton.
The Portland Timbers and Real Salt Lake may be Western Conference rivals, but that isn't stopping them from becoming familiar trade partners.
A month after completing the deal to send Will Johnson to Portland, the Timbers and RSL have made another deal, with Real Salt Lake acquiring the rights to forward Robbie Findley from Portland, sources confirmed to SBI on Tuesday.
When Mix Diskerud signed a six-month deal with Rosenborg BK last August as a free agent, many believed he was simply finding a short-term solution for a club before moving on to greener pastures during the 2013 winter transfer window.
During the month of January, the eyes of the American pro soccer world will be focused in on the state of Florida. Graduating collegiate seniors and a handful of impressive underclassmen will be hitting the field trying to impress future bosses, while a good part of the country will bedigging themselves out of the recent snowstorms.
What started out as an idea for a small clinic for children of Newtown, Connecticut wound up culminating in a successful event featuring a who's-who of soccer stars who gathered to bring joy to a community that is still recovering from a tragedy.
Landon Donovan, Brad Davis, Brian Ching and Kenny Cooper were just some of the players who took part in Monday's Soccer Night in Newtown, an event designed to help lift the spirits of those that were affected by the massacre that took place at Sandy Hook Elementary School last month.
When Toronto FC hired Kevin Payne to be the team's new president, it was clear that the Canadian club was going to be handing full power over to the man who helped lead D.C. United to four MLS Cup titles. Now we are about to find out just what Payne has in store for his new club.
With a few of Europe's top leagues still on holiday, Italy and Spain got back to league action, while England had it's third round of the FA Cup. Although there were a few surprises, most matches ended with the expected result.
In Italy, Napoli climbed their way back into a UCL spot with a 4-1 win over Roma.
The Montreal Impact always figured to hire a European coach to lead the team as Jesse Marsch's replacement, but few would have pegged the Impact's next hire to be a journeyman who hasn't coached a team in almost four years.
The Impact have hired Swiss manager Marco SchÃ¤llibaum to be the team's new head coach, the club announced on Monday morning.
Herculez Gomez could not have asked for a much better start to 2013.
Gomez began the new year by scoring a goal for Santos Laguna in their season-opening 1-1 draw against San Luis on Saturday. The U.S. Men's National Team striker netted with a textbook header in the first half, leaping up to meet a cross from the left flank and nodding it over San Luis goalkeeper Oscar Perez.
After a lengthy wait to find out just where the U.S. Men's National Team would play the first home qualifier of the CONCACAF Hexagonal, it now appears we will find out this week just where that March 22nd match against Costa Rica will be played.
Jurgen Klinsmann has called in 25 players ahead of the January camp roster, a squad heavy on MLS talent.
Eddie Johnson and Graham Zusi headline a squad with 21 MLS players.The Houston Dynamo trio of Will Bruin, Brad Davis and Tally Hall were among the players called in, as were USMNT veterans Benny Feilhaber and young playmaker Mix Diskerud.
When the USMNT roster for January's training camp was announced on Sunday, Landon Donovan's name wasn't on the list. That wasn't really all that much of a surprise, but Jurgen Klinsmann's comments about his absence provided some insight into where things stand now.
Young American defender Will Packwood has had his promising first season with Birmingham City cut short after suffering a horrific leg break during the club's FA Cup third-round loss to Leeds United on Saturday.
Packwood, 19, suffered a broken tibia and fibula after a collision with Leeds striker Luciano Becchio.
For all the success Manchester United has had in the past decade, one sore spot for the English club has been the team's inability to win an FA Cup.
The Red Devils have gone nine years since last lifting the FA Cup, a streak they will look to move toward snapping when they face West Ham United today in a match airing on national television (Noon, FOX).
Admit it. If you are a U.S. Men's National Team fan who likes traveling for big national team matches you have probably spent an irrational amount of time scouring flight prices and checking Twitter and your email repeatedly for any sort of word on just where the five home World Cup qualifiers for the USMNT will be this year.
Leagues in Spain, Italy and Mexico return to action this weekend to give us a quality blend of viewing options for all soccer fans.
In Serie A, Michael Bradley and AS Roma take on Napoli in a match-up of teams with Champions League aspirations. Napoli currently sit just one point out of third place and the Champions League place that goes with it, while Roma sits two points further back.
Queens Park Rangers defender Ryan Nelsen is widely-regarded as one of the best defenders to ever come out of Major League Soccer, and now, some eight years after he left D.C. United to play in England, Nelsen could be heading back to MLS.
The Daily Mail got the ball rolling on a rumored Nelsen return to MLS, stating that Nelsen would come back to join the D.
Italy's Seria A and Spain's La Liga take center stage this weekend as the rest of Europe remains onholiday. The second half of the season marks the beginning of the home stretch and is where seasonsare either made or broken. Can Madrid catch Barcelona? Will Juventus repeat?
In the aftermath of yet another embarrassing off-the-field moment involving Mario Balotelli, manager Roberto Mancini, directly involved in the incident, has backed the young striker to stay in the Manchester City squad.
Pictures surfaced yesterday afternoon of an altercation between Mancini and Balotelli during the morning training.
The celebration is officially over and the focus for reigning Liga MX champions Club Tijuana is to start off their Clausura campaign with a win, but they will need to knock off an American and his team in order to make that happen.
Xolos are set to visit Puebla on Sunday and their Clausura opener should pit the Tijuana trio of Edgar Casitllo, Joe Corona and Greg Garza against DaMarcus Beasley.
Major League Soccer took its time, but finally got around to announcing the first four members of the 2013 Generation adidas draft class on Thursday, several weeks after reaching agreements with the bulk of the class.
Andrew Farrell, Walker Zimmerman, Mikey Lopez and Jason Johnson were all announced as members of the Generation adidas class.
Tim Howard and Everton started 2013 just the way they had hoped for: with three points.
The Toffees moved into fifth place in the Premiership table with 36 points after defeating Newcastle United, 2-1, on Wednesday. Everton went down after just two minutes, but responded with a goal on each side of halftime to grab a big road victory.
AS Roma are a team in mid-season form, and Orlando City found that out the hard way on Wednesday.
Roma defeated the USL Pro club, 5-0, at Barker Family Stadium in Winter Park, Fla. in a friendly on Wednesday afternoon that capped off their brief U.S. winter stop in Central Florida. Erik Lamela scored the winner two minutes into the friendly and added a second in the 13th.
It may have been an unofficial friendly, but Nigeria started 2013 with a 1-1 draw against Catalonia thanks to a goal from Portland Timbers forward Bright Dike.
Dike netted the equalizer against a Catalonia side that included Barcelona players Carles Puyol, Gerard Pique, Xavi and Sergio Busquets on Wednesday, racing to a pass played in behind the defense before executing a nifty cutback and firing it in off the near post in the second half of the match.
Alfredo Morales may not be sniffing the field at Hertha Berlin this season, but that apparently has not stopped U.S. Men's National Team head coach Jurgen Klinsmann from wanting to take a closer look at him.
Morales has been summoned into the upcoming January camp that will conclude with a friendly against Canada, according to a report from German outlet Bild.
Thierry Henry will not be returning to Arsenal for a third time. At least not this winter.
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger made that clear on Tuesday, after the Gunners finished a 1-1 draw against Southampton. His revelation put to bed the notion that Henry might spend a second straight winter loan spell with Arsenal.
American star Clint Dempsey has worked his way back from a groin injury, and today he showed that he is back healthy after scoring his first home goal for Tottenham, helping Spurs post a 3-1 victory against Reading on Tuesday.
Dempsey's deflected goal, which came just three minutes after he entered the match, gives him four league goals on the season, and marked his first goal for Tottenham at White Hart Lane.
Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson is 71 years old, and in his 26th year in charge, but he isn't quite ready to give up his job just yet, even as rumors of potential successors make the rounds.
"I'm hoping to stay on for a bit of time," Ferguson told the Abu Dhabi Sports Channel.
American soccer has had no shortage of players who have failed to live up to high expectations. Young players with exciting ability who never quite managed to live up to the promise and potential they showed early on in their careers.
Gale Agbossoumonde readily admits that, at the moment, he falls into that category, but age is on his side.
Manchester City begins the new year with a seven-point deficit to try and erase against current English Premier League leader Manchester United, and their first step toward trying to climb back to the top pits them against a tough team on a good run.
Stoke City is riding a 10-match unbeaten streak, and will be welcoming back Geoff Cameron from suspension as the Potters take on the Citizens and the Etihad in one of the top New Year's chases of the day.