Soccer By Ives Archives for January 2017

Saturday European Rewind: Liverpool tops Leicester, Rangers hold Celtic, and more

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Mohamed Salah has been in the discussion for the best signing in Europe this season, helping Liverpool in all competitions. The Egyptian international continued his stellar campaign, scoring twice in Liverpool's 2-1 win over Leicester City. Jurgen Klopp's men had to fight back from a 1-0 first half deficit after Jamie Vardy gave the Foxes an early lead from a right-footed finish.

MLS Ticker: Danny Hoesen, Chris Duvall, and more

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The San Jose Earthquakes will have forward Danny Hoesen back in 2018. They secured their Dutch forward by turning his one-year loan fromFC Groningen into a permanent transfer using Targeted Allocation Money.

"We're very happy to have come to an agreement with his former club to bring Danny back on a permanent transfer," said Earthquakes general manager Jesse Fioranelli.

European Weekend Preview: Inter hosts Lazio, Rangers travel to Celtic, and more

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2017 may be quickly coming to an end, but that does not mean the domestic action will take a break. Europe will see two of their biggest leagues continue their rapid schedules this weekend, with the must-watch match coming from Serie A.

Inter Milan will look to shake off a Coppa Italia exit as they host Lazio at the San Siro on Saturday.

Christian Pulisic wins Bundesliga Goal of the Month for December

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Christian Pulisic scored an 89th minute winner in Dortmund's last game before the Bundesliga winter break and he is receiving some love for his finish.

The U.S. Soccer Male Player of the Year's third goal of the year won the Bundesliga's Goal of the Month for the month of December.

December gave us dramatic winners and wonderful strikes, but this one was both spectacular and genius @cpulisic_10's 89th-minute winner for @BVB is your Goal of the Month!

This Weekend's Soccer on TV

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It's the last weekend of 2017 and that means most of Europe is taking the time off to recoup for what's sure to be an exciting new year.

However, Italy and England know no such breaks. Both Serie A and the Premier League are in full force this weekend with plenty of games to keep you occupied through the end of the year.

Friday Kickoff: Hazard eyes Real Madrid move; Barcelona pursues Coutinho, Griezmann and more

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Some of the world's best players remain the focus as the transfer window gets set to open.

Eden Hazard's father says the Chelsea star rejected a contract offer from the club because his sights are set on a move to Real Madrid. (REPORT)

Barcelona is reportedly pushing to sign both Antoine Griezmann and Philippe Coutinho in 2018.

Americans Abroad Weekend Preview: Geoff Cameron, DeAndre Yedlin and more

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The focus turns towards England over the weekend for the final round of matches of 2017.

In the Premier League, Geoff Cameron and Stoke City face the big test in the form of a clash with Chelsea. Meanwhile, DeAndre Yedlin and Newcastle look to build on a tough effort against Manchester City in Saturday's matchup with Brighton and Hove, while Danny Williams and Huddersfield Town face off with Burnley on Saturday.

SBI's Top 10 Storylines of 2017

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The 2017 calendar year was a roller coaster, to say the least. There were moments of hope scattered throughout a year headlined by one massive unmistakable drop.

From MLS history to World Cup misery, 2017 had a little bit of everything. We saw stars emerge and falter, teams thrive and collapse and storylines emerge that never seemed possible.

Orlando City acquire Jose Villarreal from LA Galaxy

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Orlando City sent a third round pick in the 2019 MLS Draft to LA Galaxy in exchange for midfielder Jose Villarreal.

Villarreal had been a part time player at the StubHub Center since 2012, when he became the club's second ever Homegrown signing. He made 68 appearances for the club in six seasons, scoring five goals and notching six assists.

Thursday Kickoff: Liverpool add Van Dijk, Di Maria eyeing Barca move and more

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Transfer season continues with some big-name stars linked with big-money moves.

Liverpool finalized the signing of Southampton defender Virgil van Dijk. (REPORT)

Angel di Maria is reportedly edging closer to a move to Barcelona. (REPORT)

Chelsea goalkeeper Thibault Courtois is reportedly interested in a move to Real Madrid.

Report: IFK Goteborg trying to sign Mix Diskerud on permanent deal

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Mix Diskerud's loan move to Sweden could turn into a permanent stay.

According to fotbolltransfers.com, IFK Goteborg is attempting to secure a permanent move for the New York City FC midfielder. Diskerud spent this past season on loan with the Swedish club, appearing 29 times while scoring five goals.

SBI's Top 10 USMNT goals of 2017

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Most involved with the U.S. Men's National Team will be hoping to forget everything about 2017, and for good reason. It's a year that will be forever stained and one that will always be looked upon with scorn and disdain because of how it all went wrong.

Still, 2017 did have its bright spots and it certainly had its share of impressive USMNT goals.

SBI Question of the Day: Who would you vote for in the U.S. Soccer presidential race?

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The new year will bring a new U.S. Soccer president. On Feb. 10, one of eight candidates will replace Sunil Gualti and take charge of U.S. Soccer while ushering in a new era for the federation.

Paul Caligiuri, Kathy Carter, Carlos Cordeiro, Steve Gans, Kyle Martino, Hope Solo, Michael Winograd, and Eric Wynalda are all officially in the running for the upcoming election after completing a background check and receiving a letter of nomination from three organization members.

Report: Edgar Castillo to join Rapids on loan for 2018

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The Colorado Rapids are reportedly set to add former U.S. Men's National Team left back Edgar Castillo on loan for the 2018 season.

BeSoccer is reporting that the Rapids have an agreement in place with the 31 year-old wing back currently under contract with Monterrey in Liga MX.

Castillo became one of the first players to initiate a one-time switch of national affiliation change to play for the USMNT after failing to be called up to the Mexican Men's National Team while playing professionally in Liga MX for Santos Laguna.

Kekuta Manneh signs with Mexican club Pachuca

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Kekuta Manneh has finalized a move to Liga MX.

The winger has signed with Mexican side Pachuca, the club announced on Tuesday evening. The move sees Manneh depart MLS after originally being selected in the 2013 MLS Draft.

¡Welcome @kekuta16!

Wednesday Kickoff: Arsenal set for 'busy' January, Fellaini unsure of Man United future and more

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With January looming, transfer rumors continue for the Premier League's big clubs.

Arsenal is set to offer Jack Wilshere a new contract ahead of what Arsene Wenger expects to be a "busy" January. (REPORT)

Jose Mourinho says Manchester United has not spent the money to compete with a team like Manchester City, who the manager added"buy the full-backs for the price of strikers.

Americans Abroad Tuesday Rewind: Cameron Carter-Vickers, Tim Ream and more

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While one veteran U.S. Men's National Team defender capped Boxing Day with a goal, one young American centerback helped his side earn a holiday clean sheet.

Cameron Carter-Vickers helped protect a shutout on Tuesday as Sheffield United toppled Sunderland by a 3-0 scoreline. Lynden Gooch also featured in the match for Sunderland, but couldn't lead the Black Cats to a goal in his 67 minutes.

Boxing Day Rewind: Man United draws Burnley, Kane makes history, and more

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Boxing Day may be the day after Christmas for some people, but for soccer fans worldwide it means the middle of a thick and fast holiday fixture schedule. The English Premier League saw 16 teams in action in this year's Boxing Day, with four more will play on Wednesday and Thursday respectively.

Manchester United had to dig deep for a point at Old Trafford on Tuesday, drawing against Burnley 2-2.

Fan helps Christian Pulisic reunite with his dog for the holidays

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The Christmas season is a time for both giving and receiving, as friends and family look forward to getting together for the holidays.For Borussia Dortmund and U.S. Men's National Team forward Christian Pulisic, that was surely the case.

Pulisic was reunited with his pet dog thanks the good will of one of his twitter followers and biggest fans.

Tim Ream scores in Fulham win

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Tim Ream isn't known for his goalscoring, but the Fulham defender stepped up for a Boxing Day goal in a Fulham win.

The U.S. Men's National Team defender scored the first of four goals on Tuesday for Fulham in a 4-2 win over Cardiff City. The goal was Ream's second since joining Fulham in in 2015 and the third of his club career.

Americans Abroad Weekend Rewind: Andrija Novakovic, DeAndre Yedlin and more

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While English soccer dominates the holiday period, it was a young American in the Eerste Divisie that took charge over the weekend.

Andrija Novakovic scored a pair of goals over the weekend, leading the way inTelstar's 3-2 win over De Graafschap on Friday. The young forward scored a goal in either half, bringing his league total to nine goals on the season.

Tuesday Kickoff: Mkhitaryan to Dortmund unlikely, Aguero concerned over Man City future and more

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Following rumors of a reunion, a Borussia Dortmund executive stated his doubt that the club could sign one of its former stars.

Borussia Dortmund executiveHans-Joachim Watzke says says a move for Henrikh Mkhitaryan is unlikely and would require a "great deal of imagination". (REPORT)

Sergio Aguero is reportedly concerned regarding his future with Manchester City.

Saturday European Rewind: Barcelona thumps Real Madrid, Juventus edges Roma, and more

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It may be a few days until Christmas, but Barcelona got the sweetest gift on Saturday defeating Real Madrid 3-0 away from home. A trio of second-half goals gave the league leaders another three points in their quest for the La Liga crown. Luis Suarez's opener gave Barca a 1-0 lead after 54 minutes, following a scoreless first-half.

European Weekend Preview: Real Madrid hosts Barcelona, Liverpool faces Arsenal, and more

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Christmas may be a few days away, but the best gift for soccer fans will take place at the Santiago Bernabeu on Saturday. El Clasico takes centerstage this weekend as Real Madrid welcomes league leaders Barcelona to town. Zinedine Zidane's men are coming off a FIFA Club World Cup final win last weekend, which saw them miss out on league play.

Americans Abroad Weekend Preview: DeAndre Yedlin, Matt Miazga and more

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The weekend's action is quality of quantity when it comes to Americans Abroad as we head towards the holidays.

English soccer is still in full swing heading towards Christmas with DeAndre Yedlin and Newcastle looking to battle their way out of a relegation spot against West Ham. Geoff Cameron and Stoke City face West Brom while Danny Williams and Huddersfield Town head into a match with Southampton.

This Weekend's Soccer on TV

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The holiday season may lead to a light weekend in terms of quantity of matches is concerned, but soccer fans around the world get some fantastic early Christmas presents.

Fans can get up early to find the latest edition of El Clasico underneath their Christmas trees to highlight the hail of soccer gifts this weekend.

Jonathan Gonzalez, Monterrey win Copa MX

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Jonathan Gonzalez's breakout season has ended with a trophy in hand.

The young American midfielder went a full 90 minutes on Thursday evening as Monterrey took down Pachuca, 1-0, in the Copa MX final. The game's lone goal was scored in the 57th minute by Aviles Hurtado, who earned a bit of redemption after missing a crucial penalty kick in the Liga MX Apertura finale loss to Tigres.

Friday Kickoff: Ronaldo, Bale fit for El Clasico; Chelsea after new signings and more

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Real Madrid's two big stars will be ready for El Clasico.

Cristiano Ronaldo and Gareth Bale are both fit for this weekend's match against Barcelona. (REPORT)

Chelsea manager Antonio Conte says he expects new signings in January. (REPORT)

Barcelona midfielder Ivan Rakitic says he would be "happy" if Philippe Coutinho came to the club while adding that the door is always open for the Liverpool star.

MLS invites 60 D1 college players to 2018 Player Combine

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Major League Soccer released its list of invitees to this winter's player combine. It includes 60 players from Division I colleges, including the seven MAC Hermann Awards Finalists.

Highlighting the list isStanford University defender Tomas Hilliard-Arce, who helped the Cardinal to their third straight NCAA College Cup title a couple of weeks ago.

USWNT to host third annual SheBelieves Cup in 2018

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The SheBelieves Cup is returning to American soil in 2018 for the third consecutive year.

U.S. Soccer announced on Thursday that the U.S. Women's National Team will participate in the tournament, which is slated to take place March 1 through March 7 this coming year. Three of the nation's top teams will be joining the USWNT in this international soccer competition.

Quakes signing of Magnus Eriksson solidifies unique Swedish identity

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Every MLS outfit has traces of foreign influence on and off the pitch. Certain sides have chosen a domestic-heavy route, but several others have designed winning blueprints that hinge on foreign players and managers.

On Wednesday, the San Jose Earthquakes continued their surge towards that latter path by establishing a heavily Swedish identity with the signing of Magnus Eriksson from Djurgardens IF in the Swedish Allsvenskan.

MLS Ticker: Atlanta's bid for Barco stays at $12 million, Cheyrou retires and more

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Atlanta United's bid for its latest big-name transfer target has remained the same despite recent reports.

According to ESPN, the Five Stripes have stood firm at their $12 million bid for Argentine Ezequiel Barco, who currently plays for Independiente.

The report claims Barco is willing to give $1 million of his part of the deal to Independiente to help solidify the move to MLS.

Veron, Carrasco, Mallace selected in Stage 2 of MLS Re-Entry Draft

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D.C. United poached one of their biggest rival's attacking midfielders in Stage 2 of the MLS Re-Entry Draft on Thursday.

D.C. took Gonzalo Veron with the second selection in the draft. The Black and Red still have to negotiate a contract with the Argentinian midfielder who scored 10 goals during his three years with the New York Red Bulls.

Sacramento MLS expansion bid looking for new investor

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Just a few hours after MLS announced it wouldn't be naming a second expansion franchise until 2018, the Sacramento bid made public its steps to further solidify its bid.

Kevin Nagle, who is the leader of the Sacramento bid, released a three-step process in which he looks to strengthen the California capital's chances of finally being named an MLS franchise after years of work.

Projecting the USMNT January Camp roster

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The annual U.S. Men's National Team January camp has always served a specific purpose. The aim was to find a handful of new players ready to take the leap while keeping the team's core in shape for the year to come. It's certainly not the most important USMNT gathering of the year, but it sets the tone for what is to come.

MLS to name next expansion team in 2018

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Major League Soccer is going to wait until 2018 to decide on the second team in this round of expansion.

After naming Nashville as the league's 24th team on Wednesday, the league released a statement saying they will choose between Cincinnati, Sacramento and Detroit following the turn of the calendar.

Jonathan Gonzalez, Omar Gonzalez push for trophy as Monterrey takes on Pachuca in Copa MX final

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After falling short of a Liga MX crown after all but dominating the regular season, Jonathan Gonzalez and Monterrey have another chance to bring home a trophy in Thursday's Copa MX finale. In their way, though, stands another American that knows a thing or two about playing in cup finals.

Jonathan Gonzalez and Monterrey are set to take on Omar Gonzalez and Pachuca on Thursday evening to close out the calendar year in the Copa MX final.

Americans Abroad Wednesday Rewind: Christian Pulisic, Aron Johannsson and more

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Christian Pulisic was dangerous throughout Wednesday's clash with Bayern Munich, but it wasn't enough for Borussia Dortmund to overcome Germany's top team.

A pair of first half goals lifted Bayern to a 2-1 win over Dortmund in Wednesday's DFB-Pokal third round match. Pulisic was active throughout, generally playing atop the field as Dortmund hoped for counterattacking chances.

Thursday Kickoff: Man City leading chase for Sanchez, Barca still after Coutinho and more

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With January looming, big transfer rumors lead Thursday's news.

Despite interest from PSG, Alexis Sanchez is reportedly in favor of a move to Manchester City during the summer. (REPORT)

Barcelona is reportedly hoping to wrap up a deal for Philippe Coutinho in early January and the club has reportedly finalized contract terms with the Liverpool midfielder.

MLS confirms expansion into Nashville

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Major League Soccer is officially coming to the Music City.

After several days of reports, the league announced on Wednesday that Nashville has been recognized as the league's latest expansion franchise. Nashville is the first of two expansion cities set to be recognized in this round with Sacramento, Cincinnati and Detroit still in the running.

U.S. Soccer formally announces eight presidential candidates

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The field of candidates to replace Sunil Gulati as U.S. Soccer president is eight.

Paul Caligiuri, Kathy Carter, Carlos Cordeiro, Steve Gans, Kyle Martino, Hope Solo, Michael Winograd, and Eric Wynalda are all officially in the running after completing a background check and receiving a letter of nomination from three organization members.

Soccer Wednesday: Your Running Commentary

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The biggest rivalry in Germany puts the German Cup in the spotlight on this busy Wednesday afternoon leading into the Christmas season.

Christian Pulisic, fresh off his 89th minute winner against Hoffenheim last Saturday, will lead Borussia Dortmund into a round of 16 match against Bayern Munich as they look to keep their DFB-Pokal title defense alive.

Julie Ertz names U.S. Soccer Female Player of the Year

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U.S. Women's National Team midfielder Julie Ertz was voted U.S. Soccer'sFemale Player of the Year for 2017.

With the win, the defensive midfielder becomes the only the third player to win both the Young Female Player of the Year award and the Female Player of the Year in her career, joining Lauren Holiday and Tobin Heath.

MLS Ticker: Quakes sign DP forward, RSL makes Lennon move official and more

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The San Jose Earthquakes found a new goalscorer from a part of the world that has been mined by MLS clubs all offseason.

New Quakes manager Mikael Stahre inked fellow Swede Magnus Eriksson as a designated player on Wednesday.

Eriksson led the Allsvenskan in scoring with 14 goals at Djurgardens, who placed third in the Swedish top flight behind Malmo and AIK.

Pulisic, Dortmund face massive test in cup clash with Bayern Munich

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Borussia Dortmund's pursuit of the Bundesliga title is likely all but over. Their Champions League hopes? Those are gone as well. A late Fall dip in form proved all too costly for Dortmund, and it cost Peter Bosz his job.

On Wednesday, though, Christian Pulisic and Dortmund have a chance at revenge in a German Cup clash with the club's fiercest rival.

Americans Abroad Tuesday Rewind: Weston McKennie, Alfredo Morales and more

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Two Americans took the field in German cup action on Tuesday, but only one was able to guide his team out of the third round.

The DFB-Pokal resumed on Tuesday afternoon, and Weston McKennie came on as a late substitute to help Schlake advance past FC Koln. After Maximilian Meyer's 63rd minute goal, McKennie joined the fray in the 79th minute, helping to kill off the match.

Wednesday Kickoff: Ronaldo in doubt for El Clasico, Dortmund after Can and more

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One of the world's biggest stars could miss one of the world's biggest games on Saturday.

Cristiano Ronaldo missed a second day of team training ahead of this weekend's El Clasico. (REPORT)

Borussia Dortmund is reportedly interested in pursuing Liverpool midfielder Emre Can while Juventus has also reportedly registered interest.

Pulisic, three MLS players included in CONCACAF Best XI

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Christian Pulisic continues to earn a ton of recognition for his efforts.

The 19-year-old was included on CONCACAF's Best XI for the 2017 calendar year. He's the third member of theU.S. Men's National Team to be named to the team, which is in its third year. Michael Bradley and Tim Howard were there in 2015.

Emerson Hyndman: I'm on 'right path' to Bournemouth first team

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Playing time has been sparse for Emerson Hyndman since his return to Bournemouth, but the American midfielder still has faith that he's moving closer to the first team.

Hyndman joined Rangers on loan last season and shined in Scottish play. Throughout his 13-match run with the club, he scored four goals while handling the physicality of Scottish soccer fairly well despite his slight frame.

Eastern Conference final rematch headlines MLS home openers

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The Columbus Crew and Toronto FC will renew hostilities on March 3 at BMO Field to kick off the 2018 Major League Soccer season.

The rematch of the 2017 Eastern Conference Final will be part of a seven-game slate on March 3, while four games will be played on March 4, including LAFC's inaugural match against the Seattle Sounders at CenturyLink Field.

Report: NYCFC loses out on Belmont stadium site

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The search for a soccer-specific stadium is not coming to an end anytime soon for New York City FC.

The franchise entering its fourth season in MLS lost out on its bid to build a stadium at the Belmont Park site to the New York Islanders of the NHL, per Newsday.

NYCFC's proposal for the site included a 26,000-seat stadium in addition to land for retail development and a facility for soccer purposes.

Stadium plan, wealthy owners propel Nashville into MLS

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All signs point to Nashville, Tennessee as the next MLS expansion city. MLS commissioner Don Garber will be in town on Wednesday for "an announcement", which can only mean the city is destined for admission into MLS.

The Music City was considered a dark horse early in the expansion race, but a combination of a cooperative local government working to formulate a stadium plan and the addition of wealthy investors helped propel them to the front of the line and, eventually, into the league.

A look at what happens next in MLS expansion

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The first domino in the MLS expansion process fell on Tuesday as the league announced an event in Nashville for Wednesday that is expected to award the city with a franchise.

Now the tough decision-making has to occur with Sacramento, Cincinnati and Detroit still waiting to hear their names get called.

TFC depth, new format could help MLS achieve CCL glory in 2018

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Major League Soccer has achieved more than many could've imagined over the last five years, but there's still one glaring hole on the league's resume.

Although it will be a tough task for the five MLS clubs entered in the CONCACAF Champions League, the elusive prize the league has searched for could finally end up in the trophy case in April.

Report: Nashville awarded one of two MLS expansion teams

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Nashville will be the latest city to be home to an MLS franchise, according toSports Illustrated.

MLS commissioner Don Garber will be in Nashville to make an announcement on Wednesday afternoon, which will reportedly be to officially award the expansion franchise in front of the city's population.

Americans Abroad Midweek Preview: Christian Pulisic, Jonathan Gonzalez and more

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DFB-Pokal action headlines the week, and all eyes will be fixed on a pair of high-stakes matchups with young Americans leading the way.

In Germany, cup competition continues with the third round, and the headliner is a juicy one. Christian Pulisic and Borussia Dortmund are set to take on Bayern Munich on Wednesday in the game of the week, while Weston McKennie and Schalke face FC Koln and John Brooks' Wolfsburg takes on Nurnberg.

Tuesday Kickoff: Mkhitaryan linked with Dortmund return, English clubs eye Lozano and more

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A big star could join Christian Pulisic in the Borussia Dortmund attack while a Mexican star is drawing Premier League attention.

Henrikh Mkhitaryan is reportedly in line for a return to Borussia Dortmund. (REPORT)

Arsenal and Everton are reportedly interested in signing Mexican star Hirving Lozano.

RSL signs U.S. U-20 defender Aaron Herrera to Homegrown contract

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Real Salt Lake keeps adding to its long list of Homegrown players.

On Friday RSL announced the club's signing of Aaron Herrera, 20, who becomes the Claret and Cobalt's 14th Homegrown Player after three years with the University of New Mexico.

The right back becomes the seventh active player on RSL's roster produced by the club's academy pipeline, joining Danilo Acosta, Justin Glad, Sebastian Saucedo, Brooks Lennon, Jose Hernandez and Jordan Allen.

TFC, Rapids drawn together in CONCACAF Champions League round of 16

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Toronto FC and the Colorado Rapids were drawn against each other for the round of 16 of the 2017-18 CONCACAF Champions League on Monday night.

Although they play in the same league, TFC and the Rapids were allowed to be pitted against each other because they come from two different nations.

MLS Ticker: Galaxy acquire rights to Bingham, FC Dallas signs Maurer and more

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The LA Galaxy appear to have an answer at goalkeeper.

The Galaxy acquired the rights to goalkeeper David Bingham from the San Jose Earthquakes on Monday.

Bingham isn't signed with the Galaxy yet, but the club now has the opportunity to discuss terms without any other contenders in MLS for the out-of-contract American.

Report: Lennon set for permanent move to RSL

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After playing this past season on loan, Brooks Lennon is reportedly set for a permanent move to Real Salt Lake.

Goal USA is reporting that Lennon is set to sign a new deal with Real Salt Lake after spending 2017 on loan with the club from Liverpool. Lennon's contract with the Premier League club is set to expire this summer, although the report states it remains unclear if RSL will need to pay a transfer fee for the winger.

Gulati refutes Blanc claims, denies any formal discussions with USMNT candidates

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Laurent Blanc pushed the vacant U.S. Men's National Team managerial position into the spotlight on Monday, but it turns out the former France boss was apparently not approached by U.S. Soccer.

U.S. Soccer president Sunil Gulati toldSports Illustratedon Monday that the federation hasn't approached Blanc, or any candidate for the job for that matter.

Timbers officially hire Giovanni Savarese as new head coach

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The Portland Timbers have found their replacement for Caleb Porter in the form of the modern NASL's most successful coach.

The team announced the official hiring of former New York Cosmos boss Giovanni Savarese as their new head coach.

"We are excited to bring Gio on board as the club's head coach," said Timbers general manager Gavin Wilkinson.

Jonathan Gonzalez named to Liga MX Apertura Best XI

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Jonathan Gonzalez's breakthrough season has earned him a big honor.

The Monterrey midfielder was recognized on Monday as he was named to the Liga MX Apertura Best XI. The news comes several days after Gonzalez was also recognized in Diario's Best XI team, and the Monterrey midfielder is one of only five players to be recognized on both teams.

TFC signs U.S. U-17 forward Ayo Akinola as Homegrown player

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Another member of the talented U.S. U-17 Men's National Team signed a first-team deal on Monday.

Forward Ayo Akinola, who recorded a goal and an assist at the U-17 World Cup, signed with Toronto FC as a homegrown player.

"Ayo is a versatile player that can play as a number nine or out wide," Toronto FC vice president of soccer operations and general manager Tim Bezbatchenko said.

Report: Bastian Schweinsteiger gaining interest from Bundesliga

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Interest in Bastian Schweinsteiger hasn't gone away just because he's joined Major League Soccer.

The German midfielder, who came over to play with the Chicago Fire in 2017, has interest from other clubs in Europe, primarily the Bundesliga, according to reports out of Germany.

"I only signed once for a year, because I wanted to see how everything is.

Kaka announces retirement from soccer

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It turns out Orlando City was the last stop in Kaka's career.

The Brazilian, who left the option open to play in 2018 away from MLS, announced his retirement on Sunday.

Father,
It was much more than I could ever imagined. Thank you!

Alex Morgan, Keylor Navas named CONCACAF Players of the Year

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Alex Morgan received the CONCACAF Women's Player of the Year award for the third time in five years on Sunday night.

Morgan had yet another successful season playing for Lyon and the Orlando Pride on the club level and for the U.S. Women's National Team. The 28-year-old forward scored 12 goals during her time in France, where she helped Lyon win a treble.

Americans Abroad Weekend Rewind: Keaton Parks, Christian Pulisic and more

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This past weekend was a memorable one for young Americans in Europe.

Keaton Parks made his league debut for Benfica over the weekend, coming on as a late substitute in a 5-1 rout ofTondela. Parks recently features for the club in cup action as he looks to complete the jump towards regular first team minutes.

Laurent Blanc reveals he rejected USMNT approaches

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Laurent Blanc has been linked with the vacant U.S. Men's National Team head coaching job since the role opened up, but theFrench manager says he will not be taking the job.

Speaking to Le Parisien, Blanc says he turned down the chance to succeed Bruce Arena, who departed the USMNT gig after the team failed to reach the World Cup in OctoberL.

Monday Kickoff: Aubameyang extension, Griezmann apologizes and more

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Two star forwards headline Monday's news.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has reportedly signed a secret extension with Borussia Dortmund. (REPORT)

Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu reportedly met with Antoine Griezmann's family in an effort to sign the Atletico Madrid forward. (REPORT)

Griezmann apologized after posting a picture of himself dressed as a black basketball player.

Sunday European Rewind: Lyon edges Marseille, Barcelona routs Deportivo, and more

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Lyon continued their fine campaign on Sunday, defeating Marseille 2-0 at the Parc OL. Bruno Genesio's team used goals in each half to earn their second consecutive league win. Mariano's headed goal in the 51st-minute gave the hosts their insurance goal after Nabil Fekir opened the scoring early. The French midfielder netted his 11th goal in league play, scoring from a left-footed free kick after six minutes.

Ronaldo propels Real Madrid to third FIFA Club World Cup title

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2017 has been a magical year for Real Madrid, winning of four trophies in the span of four different competitions.

Saturday saw Los Blancos add to their trophy-case as they defeated Brazilian outfit Gremio 1-0 in the FIFA Club World Cup final in Abu Dhabi. Cristiano Ronaldo propelled Zinedine Zidane's to their fifth trophy in the year, scoring from a wonderful free-kick.

Saturday European Rewind: Man City downs Tottenham, Dortmund edges Hoffenheim, and more

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Manchester City has been one of Europe's best teams so far this season, rolling to the top of the English Premier League. Pep Guardiola's side extended their league winning streak to 16 matches on Saturday, defeating Tottenham Hotspur 4-1 at the Etihad. Ilkay Gundogan headlined City with a goal and an assist, while Raheem Sterling added a brace in the second-half.

Report: Galaxy closing in on David Bingham

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David Bingham will remain a fixture for California Clasicos to come, but it looks like he will do so sporting a different badge.

The longtime San Jose Earthquakes 'keeper is close to signing with foes down south, the LA Galaxy, per ESPN FC's Jeff Carlisle.

The deal, which is understood to yet be completed, would send between $200,000 and $250,000 in combined General Allocation Money and Target Allocation Money to San Jose for the 28-year-old.

Christian Pulisic scores 89th minute winner as Dortmund beats Hoffenheim

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It looked like Borussia Dortmund was going to settle for a 1-1 draw at home against TSG Hoffenheim. A Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang penalty cancelled out Mark Uth's earlier opener, but then a 19-year-old American stepped in.

PULISIC WINS IT!

A magical touch and finish from the USMNT Player of the Year gives Dortmund the winner in the 89th minute!

Darlington Nagbe ready for change, new challenge with Atlanta United

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Throughout his seven years in Portland, Darlington Nagbe was many things. He was a superstar and an enigma, all at the same time. He was a central midfielder at some points and a winger in others, a player sometimes cursed by his rare ability to be good at a variety of things.

Nagbe's time in Portland is over and his time in Atlanta is set to begin.

Grella, Mears chosen in first stage of MLS Re-Entry Draft

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The first stage of the 2017 Major League Soccer Re-Entry Draft took place on Friday afternoon with two teams adding faces to their respective rosters.

Defender Tyrone Mears and forward Mike Grella were the only two names called, being chosen by Minnesota United and the Colorado Rapids, respectively.

MLS Ticker: Moor re-signs in Toronto, Seitz to the Dynamo, and more

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Defender Drew Moor is returning to Toronto for another season with the defending MLS Cup champs. The Dallas native signed a one-year extension with an option for 2019 on Friday afternoon, the club announced.

"Few words can express what it means to me and my family to continue representing Toronto FC.

Sporting KC signs French midfielder Yohan Croizet to a DP contract

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Sporting Kansas City is adding a French midfielder to their ranks.

Yohan Croizet is joining the club on a Designated Player contract fro KV Mechelen in the Belgian Super League.

"We are thrilled to complete the signing of Yohan Croizet, a player who embodies many of the qualities we look for at this club," Sporting KC Manager Peter Vermes said.

This Weekend's Soccer on TV

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The Premier League is heading into its busy holiday season and it keeps giving us plenty of must see television.

This week's offering is Pep Guardiola's Manchester City, fresh off their 15th consecutive Premier League victory, returning home to welcome top four challengers Tottenham to the Etihad Stadium.

Americans Abroad Weekend Preview: Weston McKennie, Omar Gonzalez and more

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As we march towards the holiday period and the end of 2017, several Americans Abroad face intriguing matchups in league play while another takes part in a consolation game.

German soccer is headlined by a clash between Weston McKennie and Timmy Chandler as Schalke takes on Eintracht Frankfurt.

A look at the best available players in the MLS Re-Entry Draft Stage 1

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If you're looking for offseason fireworks, the MLS Re-Entry Draft usually isn't the place to find them.

However, there are a few gems that can be found for the right price in one of the league's many acquisitions mechanisms.

To be eligible for the first stage of the Re-Entry Draft, which occurs on Friday, players have to be at least 23 years old with a minimum of three years MLS experience or players that haven't been offered a bonafide deal and are at least 25 years old with a minimum of four years MLS experience or players 30 or older with a minimum of eight years of MLS experience.

MLS Ticker: Sounders acquire Francis from Crew, Galaxy ink Norwegian defender to deal and more

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It took less than a week for the Seattle Sounders to fill the void left open by Joevin Jones' departure.

The Sounders acquired full back Waylon Francis from the Columbus Crew in exchange for $50,000 in general allocation money.

The 27-year-old left back has played the last four season in Columbus, and he brings needed depth to the position in Seattle after Jones left the club for Darmstadt at the end of the 2017 season.

Friday Kickoff: No Man United offer for Ozil, Donnarumma defends himself and more

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While one Premier League star continues to be linked with a major move, a young Italian star defended himself after recent reports earned the fans' wrath.

Arsene Wenger says Manchester United has yet to approach Arsenal to sign Mesut Ozil. (REPORT)

Gianluigi Donnarumma has denied reports that he's asked to end his AC Milan deal after banners from the club's fans reduced him to tears on Wednesday.

Christian Pulisic named 2017 U.S. Soccer Male Player of the Year

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As if there was any doubt, Christian Pulisic isthe 2017 U.S. Soccer Male Player of the Year.

The 19-year-old Borussia Dortmund star received a whopping 94 percent of the tabulated votes to become theyoungest player to earn the honor in the award's 34-year history. The previous record was held by Landon Donovan, who won it for the first time in 2003 at age 21.

LAFC sign Diego Rossi from Penarol in Uruguay

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Los Angeles FC has itself a new Designated Player from Uruguay.

The expansion club have signed 19-year-old forward Diego Rossi to a Young Designated Player contract. He will arrive on January 1 from Penarol in his native Uruguay. The forward scored ten goals in the Uruguayan Premier Division last season while leading his team to their 51st championship in club history.

Sources: NYCFC to send Shelton to Sporting KC for Abdul-Salaam

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New York City FC and Sporting KC are set to address areas of needs by swapping a pair of 2015 first round picks.

Sources tell SBI that NYCFC is set to send Khiry Shelton to Sporting KC in exchange for fullback Saad Abdul-Salaam.

Shelton was originally drafted by NYCFC second overall in 2015, serving as the club's first ever draft pick.

A look at how Darlington Nagbe fits with Atlanta United

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Atlanta United's attack set the league alight in their expansion season. Gerardo 'Tata' Martino's squad fired a whopping 70 goals, good for second in the league behind only eventual MLS Cup champions Toronto FC. On paper, Atlanta had an attack that paired remarkable talent with unlimited potential.

Americans Abroad Wednesday Rewind: Weston McKennie, DeAndre Yedlin and more

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Wednesday saw many Americans Abroad settle for defeat, but Weston McKennie and Schalke did just enough to earn three points in a Bundesliga shootout.

McKennie started and went all 90 minutes in the midfield for Schalke, who took down Augsburg, 3-2, on Wednesday afternoon. After conceding a two-goal lead on second half scores from Augsburg's Caiuby andMichael Gregoritsch, Schalke finished the job on an 83rd-minute penalty kick fromDaniel Caligiuri.

Report: U.S. Soccer to alter role of federation president

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With U.S. Soccer's presidential race heating up, the federation is reportedly set to alter the role's responsibilities.

According to ESPN, U.S. Soccer hastaken steps towards revamping the responsibilities required of several positions in leadership. The biggest change, according to the report, is that the president is more likely to be held responsible as a chairman of the board like figure and not as a more hands-on executive president.

Midweek European Rewind: Dortmund ends slide, Man City makes history, and more

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Borussia Dortmund had found it tough to do anything right the last few months, failing to win a league match since September 30th. The horrid run saw the firing of manager Peter Bosz, and the ousting of them from the UEFA Champions League. However, Dortmund finally halted their winless run on Tuesday defeating Mainz 2-0 away from home.

Thursday Kickoff: Man City after Van Dijk, Liverpool eye Kovacic and more

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Transfer season continues to heat up with some Premier League teams linked with big January moves.

Manchester City is reportedly interested in signing Virgil van Dijk or Real Sociedad's Inigo Martinez. (REPORT)

Liverpool is reportedly eyeing Mateo Kovacic as a potential replacement for Philippe Coutinho.

Joe Corona joins Club America on loan

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For a second time, U.S. midfielder Joe Corona will be under Miguel Herrera's guidance.

Corona, 27, joined Mexican giant Club America on Wednesday via Liga MX's offseason draft which saw a total of 38 deals completed.

The Los Angeles-born midfielder will joinLasAguilason a one-year loan from Club Tijuana, the border club Corona has been with since his professional debut in 2010.

MLS Ticker: Elis joins Dynamo permanently, Atlanta signs Venezuelan defender and more

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A slew of roster moves occurred on Wednesday as the busy start to the Major League Soccer offseason continued.

Honduran forward Alberth Elis had a terrific season on loan for the Houston Dynamo, scoring 11 goals after joining from Mexican top flight side, C.F. Monterrey. On Wednesday, the Western Conference side agreed to a deal with the 21-year-old, signing him on a full transfer.

Kip Colvey, Clement Diop selected in MLS Waiver Draft

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The 2017 Major League Soccer Waiver Draft took place on Wednesday afternoon, with only two of the 23 teams making selections.

Defender Kip Colvey and goalkeeper Clement Diop were the only two names called, being chosen by the Colorado Rapids and Montreal Impact respectively. Fifty-nine players were eligible for selection in the draft.

Atlanta United officially acquires Darlington Nagbe in record-breaking deal

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The Atlanta United midfield just got that much better.

Atlanta United confirmed on Wednesday that the club has acquired Darlington Nagbe and Gbenga Arokoyo from the Portland Timbers. In exchange, the Timbers received$650,000 in General Allocation Money (GAM) in 2018, $100,000 in GAM in 2019, $300,000 in Targeted Allocation Money (TAM) and a 2018 international roster spot.

A look at players available in Wednesday's Waiver Draft

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The MLS Waiver Draft is a notoriously dull affair, but its certainly worth keeping an eye on several potential selections heading into Wednesday's event.

Last season's Wavier Draft saw zero players selected while the 2015 edition saw just one name taken off the board.The Waiver Draft is made up of players who have been waived by their clubs but don't meet the minimum years of service requirement for the Re-Entry Draft or Free Agency.

Report: LAFC closing in on move for Sacha Kljestan

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One of the league's top playmakers appears to be on the move.

According to Metro, Los Angeles FC is closing in on a deal for New York Red Bulls midfielder Sacha Kljestan. If the move were to come to fruition, it would mark the second consecutive offseason where the Red Bulls dealt their captain following last winter's deal that sent Dax McCarty to the Chicago Fire.

Americans Abroad Tuesday Rewind: Timmy Chandler, Christian Pulisic and more

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Tuesday was a busy day for Americans Abroad, but it was Timmy Chandler that stole the show in his return to action.

In his first match back since an extended injury layoff, Chandler provided two assists to lead Eintracht Frankfurt to a win over Hamburg on Tuesday. In other Bundesliga action, meanwhile, Christian Pulisic and Borussia Dortmund got back to their winning ways in the club's first match under new coach Peter Stoger.

Report: Beckham ownership group undergoes shake-up

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With uncertainty still looming large, David Beckham's Miami MLS bid has undergone a big shake-up within the ownership group.

According to the Miami Herald,majority partner Todd Boehly is officially out while Miami moguls Jorge and Jose Mas have joined the venture. Boehly, the co-owner of the Los Angeles Dodgers, was set to be the majority owner and controlling partner.

LAFC sends Edwards, Raitala to Impact in exchange for Ciman

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Following Tuesday's Expansion Draft, LAFC did some wheeling and dealing after all.

LAFC send Expansion Draft selections Raheem Edwards and Jukka Raitala to the Montreal Impact in exchange for Laurent Ciman on Tuesday afternoon. The move sees the club add a second starting-caliber centerback in a matter of days after previously trading for FC Dallas' Walker Zimmerman.

Report: Timbers set to hire Giovanni Savarese

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The Portland Timbers coaching search appears to be near its end as the club is reportedly set to hire one of the most successful coaches in American soccer.

According to ESPN, the Timbers are set to hire former New York Cosmos boss Giovanni Savarese. The move comes following the departure of Caleb Porter, who resigned last month.

Wednesday Kickoff: Dortmund not selling Aubameyang, Willian happy at Chelsea and more

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With January looming, transfer rumors are beginning to fly.

Borussia Dortmund reportedly will not sell Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang in the January window. (REPORT)

Despite links to Manchester United, Willian insists he's happy to remain at Chelsea. (REPORT)

Bayern Munich defender Jerome Boateng says a transfer abroad is something that is "in the back of my mind".

Gonzalez, Pachuca fall to Gremio in Club World Cup semifinal

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Omar Gonzalez and Pachuca kept Gremio off the board for over 90 minutes on Tuesday, but it was what came after that doomed the Liga MX club to defeat in the Club World Cup semifinal clash.

Pachuca fell, 1-0, to the Copa Libertadores champions in Tuesday's semifinal matchup thanks to a 95th-minute goal fromforward Everton.

Blessing, Urena, Edwards headline LAFC Expansion Draft picks

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It remains to be seen how Los Angeles FC handles Tuesday's Expansion Draft choices, but the club selected five players spread all over the field to start the construction of their MLS roster.

With the first overall pick of the draft, LAFC selected Seattle Sounders goalkeeper Tyler Miller. The 24-year-old goalkeeper, whose cap-hit is $70,000 had made two career MLS appearances and generally served as backup to Stefan Frei.

Timmy Chandler nearing return from injury

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A long injury layoff for U.S. Men's National Team right back Timothy Chandler could end before the holidays.

The Eintracht Frankfurt player could return to the side ahead of the Bundesliga's winter break according to manager Niko Kovac.

"Timmy can still play before the winter," Kovac said.

NYCFC unveils Belmont Stadium proposal, still active with other venues

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On May 21, 2013, New York City FC was christened by Major League Soccer with an agreement to play their home matches at Yankee Stadium, the home of Major League Baseball's New York Yankees, with a mandate to secure a soccer specific stadium in the future.

Over four and a half years later, NYCFC has unveiled its first detailed stadium proposal on the grounds at Belmont Park in Elmont, New York just outside the New York City limits on Long Island.

Americans Abroad Midweek Preview: Omar Gonzalez, Christian Pulisic and more

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While the Bundesliga and Premier League boast a full slate of games, this week's headliner comes from the Club World Cup.

Omar Gonzalez and Pachuca face off with Gremio in Tuesday's Club World Cup semifinal with a likely final clash with Real Madrid on the line. Pachuca took down Moroccan clubWydad Casablanca, 1-0, in the quarterfinal round, booking a spot against the Copa Libertadores champions on Tuesday.

A look at five potential picks for LAFC in Tuesday's Expansion Draft

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At 2 p.m. on Tuesday, Los Angeles FC will have the chance to poach players off MLS rosters as they continue to build their inaugural roster. They will get five selections and cannot take more than one player from any other club.

Last year, we saw Atlanta United and Minnesota United take ten players, six of which would be traded away at some point.

Tuesday Kickoff: Arsenal make one final offer to Ozil, Real Madrid interested in Salah and more

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While one Premier League star's contract situation remains up in the air, one of the league's top players is drawing interest from Real Madrid.

Arsenal is reportedly set to make one final offer to try and re-sign Mesut Ozil. (REPORT)

Real Madrid is reportedly interested in making a move for Mohammed Salah.

Report: Atlanta United nearing move for Darlington Nagbe

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One of the league's elite attacks appears to be close to adding a U.S. Men's National Team midfielder.

ESPN reported Monday that Atlanta United is close to signing acquiring Darlington Nagbe from the Portland Timbers. According to the report, the Timbers would receive$750,000 in general allocation money, $300,000 in targeted allocation money, and an additional $500,000-$600,000 in incentive-based compensation.

NYCFC To Sign Sweden's Top Tier Defender of the Year

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According to Swedish outlet Expressen and reported locally by NYCFC Nation, New York City FC has agreed to a contract with the Defender-of-the-Year in the Swedish top tier, Anton Tinnerholm.

Eyebrows were raised when NYCFC failed to execute the options with every member of their entire right back fraternity from a season ago including Andraz Struna, RJ Allen, Ethan White and Mikey Lopez.

Alonso, Ibarra headline list of players left unprotected ahead of Expansion Draft

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The MLS Expansion Draft is right around the corner, and clubs have released their lists of players left unprotected and eligible to be picked by Los Angeles FC.

LAFC will select five players on Tuesday, adding to their roster ahead of their 2018 debut. Each current MLS teamwas allowed to protect 11 players with Homegrown and Generation Adidas players automatically protected.

SBI Question of the Day: Which traded player will make the biggest impact with new team?

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Just hours after the final kick of the MLS season, the league saw a flurry of movement via the half-day trade window as some big names were on the move.

In total, eight trades were completed on Sunday afternoon as several teams brought in some intriguing pieces before the 2017 year even came to an end.

MLS Cup 2017: A Look Back

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The MLS season is officially over following Saturday's MLS Cup as Toronto FC solidified its place among the league's best ever teams.

Toronto FC completed a historic treble over the weekend by knockout off the Seattle Sounders, 2-0, at BMO Field. The win saw TFC earn the club's first MLS Cup while also locking down a treble that includes a Canadian Championship and a Supporters Shield.

Americans Abroad Weekend Rewind: Jonathan Gonzalez, John Brooks and more

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It wasn't the best weekend for Americans Abroad as several endured tough matches spread throughout Europe and Mexico.

Jonathan Gonzalez and Monterrey missed a chance to claim a trophy over the weekend in a 2-1 loss to Jose Torres and Tigres. After storming through a majority of the Liga MX season, Gonzalez and co.

Monday Kickoff: Neuer expects to be ready for World Cup, Giroud open to move and more

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While one star looks to return in time for the World Cup, a French striker is hoping to make a late push towards his own team's roster.

As he continues to recover from a broken bone in his foot, Manuel Neuer says he is confident that he will be back in time to join Germany for the World Cup.

Gonzalez, Monterrey fall to Torres, Tigres in Liga MX final

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After running through Liga MX for a majority of the season, Jonathan Gonzalez and Monterrey fell short of a trophy on Sunday night.

Top-seeded Monterrey fell in Sunday's Liga MX final as Tigres emerged as Mexican champions via a 2-1 (3-2 aggregate) victory. Gonzalez started and played 80 minutes for Monterrey in the losing effort.

Real Madrid-PSG, Chelsea-Barcelona highlight UCL Round of 16 draw

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The 2017-18 UEFA Champions League Round of 16 is set.

Following six matchdays of group stage action, the knockout stage of Europe's top club competition is set to begin in February.

Monday's Round of 16 draw in Nyon saw the eight matchups for the next round of the competition, which will feature several mouth-watering fixtures featuring past European Cup winners.

Sunday European Rewind: Man City defeats Man United, Barcelona edges Villarreal, and more

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The 176th Manchester Derby took place on Sunday at Old Trafford as the Red Devils looked to remain in the hunt for top spot. Their opponents Manchester City, have rolled their way to an unbeaten start in league play and showed no signs of stopping on Sunday. Pep Guardiola's men used pair of goals, one in each half to down Jose Mourinho's side 2-1.

MLS Half-Day Trade Window Roundup: Kei Kamara, Walker Zimmerman, and more

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Only hours after Toronto FC lifted the 2017 MLS Cup, MLS opened a brief trade window Sunday morning. Teams could conduct player trades for four short hours between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. and several teams took advantage.

Here's a closer look at all of the day's action:

Whitecaps acquire Kei Kamara from Revs

New England Revolution striker Kei Kamara is headed to western Canada as the Vancouver Whitecaps acquired his services.

Stanford edges Indiana 1-0 to claim third consecutive College Cup title

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The 2017 NCAA Men's Soccer College Cup took centerstage on Sunday afternoon as two of the nation's best sides squared off at the Philadelphia Union's Talen Energy Stadium.

The Stanford Cardinal Men's Soccer team has been a recent juggernaut in Division 1 sports, winning the last two College Cups over Clemson and Wake Forest respectively.

Sounders admit not playing best soccer, look for motivation from MLS Cup loss

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TORONTO You couldn't help but notice the similarities between the 2016 and 2017 MLS Cups in the first half of Saturday's contest at BMO Field.

However, what followed was the continuation of an onslaught that never stopped, and eventually broke down the brick wall that Stefan Frei erected in front of the Seattle goal for 66 minutes.

Toronto FC satisfies its MLS Cup obsession with dominant victory

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Toronto FC set out with one goal in the 2017 season: win the MLS Cup the team was so close to capturing in 2016. With Saturday's 2-0 win over the Seattle Sounders, they did just that, and capped off one of the greatest seasons MLS has ever seen.

"Lifting this trophy has been an obsession for the last 364 days," said captain Michael Bradley.

Jozy Altidore provides taste of greatness with MLS Cup-winning goal

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TORONTO Throughout his decade in the spotlight, Jozy Altidore has been an American soccer star, a pariah and everything in between. He's been a punching bag for criticism and a beacon of hope, sometimes all at the same time. The forward has experienced great highs and great lows throughout his career, and there's little doubt that the past 365 days have likely been the lowest of those lows.

Michael Bradley's focus, dedication lead TFC to first MLS Cup

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Michael Bradley didn't win the MLS Cup MVP, but he was quietly one of the best players on the pitch.

His passing was clinical. His defense was responsible, quick, and impenetrable. He was the leader for Toronto FC when they needed it the most.

"Tonight, I think just his overall awareness and his positioning and where he needs to be," praised head coach Greg Vanney after the match.

Greg Vanney's tactical shift pays off for 'bold' TFC in MLS Cup win

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Greg Vanney took a risk on Saturday. It was a calculated risk, sure, but it was a risk nonetheless. After spending the better part of two seasons riding a five-at-the-back set to MLS dominance, Vanney unleashed a major tactical wrinkle with an MLS Cup on the line.

Facing off with a tough Seattle Sounders team, Vanney surprised many when his lineup was announced as a 4-4-2 diamond.

Sounders squander epic Stefan Frei performance

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TORONTO For one of the few times in their nine-year playoff history, the Seattle Sounders were outworked, outplayed, and simply outclassed on Saturday afternoon.

Oh, and outscored.

The history books will show they suffered a 2-0 loss in the 2017 MLS Cup to host Toronto FC at a raucous BMO Field (once again packed and surging after so many lean years).

Goals from Altidore, Vazquez push Toronto FC past Sounders to win first MLS Cup

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From the moment Toronto FC stepped off the field following the 2016 MLS Cup final, the focus has been on redemption. They got it on Saturday while sealing a place among the best teams in MLS history by claiming the club's first MLS Cup and winning a historic treble.

Jozy Altidore fired the opening goal before Victor Vazquez added another in stoppage time to cap off a historic 2017 with a 2-0 MLS Cup victory over the Seattle Sounders on Saturday at BMO Field.

SBI MLS Cup Man of the Match: Michael Bradley

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He didn't score a goal, provide any assists in the MLS Cup Final but Michael Bradley was the best player on the pitch on a chilly night at BMO Field.

Bradley was the responsible player at the back of the TFC midfield, breaking up any Seattle attacks before they could get started. He was the primary passer in a midfield dominated by red shirts.

Saturday European Rewind: Juve draws Inter, West Ham upsets Chelsea, and more

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The premier match on Saturday in Europe saw two of Italy's historic clubs duke it out. Juventus welcomed league leaders Inter Milan to Turin as the two played out a 0-0 draw. The Old Lady had the bulk of the chances, creating eight shots on goal. The best effort fell to Juventus forward Mario Mandzukic who headed off the bar in first half stoppage time.

MLS Cup: Your Live Commentary

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The MLS Cup rematch we've all been waiting for is upon us on Saturday afternoon.

The defending MLS Cup champion Seattle Sounders will take on Toronto FC at BMO Field for the second consecutive season in the championship match.

Seattle hasn't allowed a goal since October 1 and enters the match with more attacking firepower than it did in 2016, especially with a healthy Clint Dempsey leading the line.

SBI's 2017 MLS Cup Predictions

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MLS Cup is upon us, and it's widely viewed as a match that can go either way.

After claiming the Supporters' Shield and Canadian Championship, Toronto FC has earned the right to host MLS Cup and the chance to pursue a historic treble. In the way is last year's champion, the Seattle Sounders, who made it out of the Western Conference in dominant fashion.

Unified 2026 World Cup bid targeting 15-18 cities as bid process continues

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There are roughly three months remaining before the unified 2026 World Cup bid is officially submitted by the U.S., Canada and Mexico. Throughout those three months, the bid team will have to dot plenty of I's and cross a series of T's, but there are still some big decisions to be made in the years to come.

MLS Cup: The Pregame Tailgate

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The wait is over for the MLS Cup rematch between Toronto FC and the Seattle Sounders at BMO Field.

Before Saturday afternoon's clash in Toronto, catch up on anything you may have missed from the days leading into the championship contest:

After 2016 MLS Cup heartbreak, TFC expecting different game in 2017 finale

Sounders sense history coming, but they're focusing on Saturday's final

Brian Schmetzer leads Sounders towards history, second MLS Cup

Following tip from Matt Miazga, Kelvin Leerdam becoming rock in Sounders defense

Experienced approach helping Sounders' Will Bruin thrive in postseason

After 2016 heartbreak, Justin Morrow thankful for second chance at MLS Cup.

Gulati not surprised by U.S Soccer presidential race, undecided on candidate endorsement

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In the days since Sunil Gulati announced he will not seek reelection as U.S. Soccer president, the race has continued to evolve and expand in a variety of ways.

Speaking to reporters on Saturday at a presentation for the World Cup 2026 bid, Gulati said he expects the list of candidates to be narrowed down before this February's election.

MLS announces significant increase in TAM

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With two of the league's big spenders set to compete in the MLS Cup final on Saturday, MLS announced a game-changing increase in money at teams' disposal heading into 2018.

MLS announced on Friday that the Board of Governors has approved an increase in Targeted Allocation Money ahead of the 2018 season.

Garber cites Columbus issues as relocation debate rages on

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Major League Soccer commissioner Don Garber struck a match and added more fuel to the fire in Columbus, a blaze that could burn 10,000 Mapfre Stadium scoreboards and still rage on for days.

During his State of the League address on Friday in Toronto, Garber made it clear that the failings of Columbus are the main reason why Anthony Precourt has looked at Austin as a potential relocation destination for the Columbus Crew.

Don Garber: 'Conceivable' other expansion teams could leapfrog Miami

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As the process of bringing MLS to Miami continues to drag on, MLS commissioner Don Garber understands the continued delays could alter the timeline a bit.

Speaking at a State of the League address in Toronto on Friday, Garber admitted that there's a possibility that Miami could be pushed behind several other expansion teams.

Veterans Drew Moor, Chad Marshall bring perspective to MLS Cup

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TORONTO When Chad Marshall played in his first MLS Cup, he was one of three goal-scorers for the Columbus Crew along with Alejandro Moreno and Frankie Hejduk.

When Drew Moor made his MLS Cup debut in 2010, he earned a championship medal thanks to a George John own goal in extra time.

In both instances, the Marshall and Moor played against teams from their own conferences.

After 2016 heartbreak, Justin Morrow thankful for second chance at MLS Cup

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Justin Morrow's big moment in the 2016 MLS Cup went horribly wrong. As all eyes were fixed on him in the sixth round of penalty kicks, Morrow looked up, fired, and watched his shot clang off the crossbar. Less than a minute later, Roman Torres stepped up and Seattle Sounders were MLS Cup champions.

Jordan Morris happy to be ready for MLS Cup after "frustrating" injury layoff

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TORONTO Jordan Morris has been faced with one of the biggest challenges a young player could face over the last three months.

Thanks to the experience around him in the Seattle Sounders' locker room, the U.S. Men's National Team forward has been able to recover from his hamstring injury with patience to be available for Saturday's MLS Cup against Toronto FC.

Americans Abroad Weekend Preview: Christian Pulisic, Aron Johannsson and more

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As the European leagues churn onward, two young Americans will duke it out for a title in Mexico.

After a first leg draw, Jonathan Gonzalez and Monterrey will head into the home leg of the Liga MX Apertura Liguilla final against Tigres UANL on Sunday evening with the title on the line. Jose Torres of Tigres didn't feature in the first leg, but Gonzalez started and went the full 90 minutes for Monterrey.

This Weekend's Soccer on TV

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Two storied English rivalries are the main attracting this weekend among the soccering world.

Sunday afternoon treats us fans to two of the biggest rivalries in the Premier League as Everton takes on Liverpool before the all important Manchester Derby puts leaders Manchester City against second place Manchester United.

With history on the horizon, TFC, Sounders collide yet again in MLS Cup

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It's not easy to make it to an MLS Cup. There are so many pitfalls along the way in a league defined by parity and the unexpected. In truth, the best teams rarely survive a viciously long playoff cycle that follows a rugged regular season campaign. It's just the way things are.

The Seattle Sounders and Toronto FC have made it to MLS Cup twice in a row now, finalizing a championship rematch between two of the league's marquee clubs.

Jonathan Gonzalez, Monterrey earn draw with Tigres in opening leg of Liga MX final

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American midfield phenom Jonathan Gonzalez started and played 90 minutes for Monterrey in the first leg of the Apertura final on Thursday night.

The 18-year-old, who continues to garner attention for his exploits on the field, played the full 90 in the 1-1 draw at Tigres.

Nicolas Sanchez scored the opener for Monterrey in the ninth and Enner Valencia leveled the contest in the 26th minute on a penalty kick.

Following tip from Matt Miazga, Kelvin Leerdam becoming rock in Sounders defense

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TORONTO When the Seattle Sounders declared serious interest in signing Kelvin Leerdam, a familiar face to American soccer fans helped put in a good word about the defending MLS Cup champions.

The 27-year-old joined the Sounders from Dutch side Vitesse in July and has settled into a role in the starting lineup.

Jonathan Klinsmann makes penalty kick save to preserve tie in Hertha Berlin debut

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Jonathan Klinsmann earned his Hertha Berlin senior debut on Thursday, and he provided quite the exclamation point.

With the German club already eliminated heading into Thursday's Europa League group stage finale, Klinsmann made a late penalty kick save to preserve a 1-1 draw with Swedish side Ostersund.

Hope Solo joins U.S. Soccer presidential race

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The race to become the next president of U.S. Soccer has grown yet again.

Former U.S. Women's National Team goalkeeper Hope Solo has thrown her name onto the ever-swelling list of potential successors to Sunil Gulati.

Solo had a distinguished career with the USWNT. She had 202 caps with the senior team between 2000 and 2016.

Experienced approach helping Sounders' Will Bruin thrive in postseason

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When Will Bruin entered Major League Soccer in 2011, he was immediately thrust into the MLS Cup experience.

The 28-year-old forward played in back-to-back MLS Cups with the Houston Dynamo in 2011 and 2012, but he wasn't sure how to approach the championship contest.

"I was like ‘It's my first year, this isn't bad.

TFC confident in attacking group against in-form Sounders defense

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Throughout the postseason, the Seattle Sounders have been essentially perfect on the defensive side of the ball. The Sounders defense has allowed zero goals through four playoff games en route to a second-straight MLS Cup appearance.

Toronto FC knows the challenge well. They faced it last year and fell short in a scoreless MLS Cup.

Brian Schmetzer leads Sounders towards history, second MLS Cup

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TORONTO Roughly 18 months ago, Brian Schmetzer was all but anonymous outside of Seattle. His playing and coaching career had largely kept him Washington-based and, after managing the USL version of the Seattle Sounders, Schmetzer became one of Sigi Schmid's top assistants with the MLS club. He wasn't pegged as an up-and-coming head coach or a top coaching prospect.

Meghan Cameron breaking barriers after being named to Sporting KC front office

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In soccer, the prospects for women in positions of authority at the highest levels have been rare. Kathy Carter has announced her intentions to run for the vacant U.S. Soccer president's seat. At the moment, she is the only female amid the eight candidates. Among the 211 countries affiliated with FIFA, only four women have ever presided over a soccer federation.

Quakes sign JT Marcinkowksi to Homegrown deal

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The San Jose Earthquakes goalkeeping core keeps getting younger.

JT Marcinkowski, who is leaving Georgetown after three years, becomes the Black and Blue's third Homegrown signing in the team's history, the club announced on Wednesday.

"JT has emerged as one of the brightest goalkeeper prospects in the nation," Quakes general manager Jesse Fioranelli said in the club's statement.

USMNT scheduled to face France in summer friendly

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The U.S. Men's National Team's summer plans are starting to come together.

According to a tweet from the French national team, the USMNT are in line to take on France in Lyon on June 9.

Et voil les 5 prochains matchs des Bleus avant la Coupe du Monde 2018!

Thursday Kickoff: Coutinho future in doubt, Cahill leaves Melbourne City and more

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While one star's future is up in the air, a veteran forward is on the hunt for a new club.

Philippe Coutinho says he will continue to try his best for Liverpool while adding he was unsure of his future in January. (REPORT)

Tim Cahill has left Melbourne City as he looks to prepare for the upcoming World Cup for Australia.

Expansion finalists make their final sales pitches to MLS

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MLS has heard all it needs to hear in order to make its decision on its next two franchises.

Representatives of the four finalists for MLS expansion were in New York on Tuesday to make their final presentations to Don Garber and the MLS expansion committee. Each of the bids had several hours to impress the league with stadium plans, market sizes, and anything else they could present to strengthen their case.

Keaton Parks renews contract with Benfica

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Keaton Parks has extended his contract with Portuguese giant Benfica an additional year, keeping the Texas-born midfielder in Lisbon until 2022.

Parks, 20, first put pen to paper with the Aguias back in July, but has flourished with Benfica B since, earning him a senior-team debut.

Keaton Parks renova até 2022!

UCL Wednesday Rewind: Real Madrid defeats Dortmund, Liverpool thumps Spartak, and more

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Wednesday saw the conclusion of the UEFA Champions League group stage with several spots still remaining in the knockout round.

A pair of familiar faces squared off in Madrid as Real Madrid welcomed Borussia Dortmund to the Santiago Bernabeu. Los Blancos defeated Dortmund 3-1 back in September and was looking to do the same this time around.

UEFA Champions League Wednesday: Your Running Commentary

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Christian Pulisic's Champions League campaign comes to a close this afternoon when Borussia Dortmund heads to the Santiago Bernabeu to face Real Madrid in their group stage finale. While they are eliminated from the Champions League, Dortmund do still have something to play for. They currently sit in third place in Group H, which would net them a Europa League knockout round spot should they hang onto it.

Jonathan Klinsmann set to make debut for Hertha Berlin

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Jonathan Klinsmann, son of former U.S, Men's National Team head coach Jurgen Klinsmann, is slated to make his senior team debut with Hertha Berlin this week when they take on Ostersunds FK in the Europa League. Manager Pal Dardai announced the move on Wednesday afternoon:

#Dardai: "There will be some surprises in the starting line-up.

Meg Whitman rejoins Sacramento MLS expansion bid

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A key investor has rejoined the fold in Sacramento's bid to join MLS.

Hewlett Packard CEO Meg Whitman and her husband Griffith Harsh have rejoined the bid's investment group after initially appearing to back out, This news comes at a key time as Sacramento, and the other three MLS expansion finalists, are making their final presentation to Don Garber and the MLS expansion committee this afternoon in New York.

Sargent, Adams, Weah, up for U.S. Soccer Young Male Player of the Year

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American soccer has a lot of exciting young prospects coming down the pipeline. Several of them are playing at high levels in Europe, as well as coming through American youth clubs and MLS academy systems. Several are already plying their trade at the professional ranks.

U.S. Soccer released its finalists for it's Young Male Player of the Year on Tuesday, and the list is highlighted by 17-year-old forward Josh Sargent.

Sounders sense history coming, but they're focusing on Saturday's final

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The Seattle Sounders have a chance to do something few MLS clubs have been able to accomplish. They can become the fourth back-to-back MLS Cup champions with a win over Toronto FC on Saturday evening, joining D.C. United, the Houston Dynamo, and the LA Galaxy as the only teams to accomplish that feat.

Morgan, Rapinoe, Horan headline candidates for U.S. Soccer Female Player of the Year

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U.S. Soccer announced five finalists for the 2017 Female Player of the Year on Tuesday.

Headlining the field is the U.S. Women's National Team's leading scorer of the year, Alex Morgan. She scored seven goals for her country while also helping Olympique Lyonnais win their League, the League Cup, and the UEFA Women's Champions League, becoming only the third American to win the highest club competition in European women's football.

After 2016 MLS Cup heartbreak, TFC expecting different game in 2017 finale

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A lot can change in a year, especially in MLS. When it comes to the league's elite, though, it appears plenty has stayed the same.

For the second consecutive season, Toronto FC is set to host the Seattle Sounders in the MLS Cup finale. For the second straight year, the Sounders and TFC stand far ahead of the competition in more ways than one and, because of that fact, they stand alone.

Pulisic, Bradley, Altidore headline nominees for U.S. Soccer Male Player of the Year award

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The 2017 campaign was one of doom and gloom for the U.S. Men's National Team thanks to a missed World Cup. However, with the season coming to a close, several individuals have been recognized for their 2017 seasons.

Christian Pulisic, Michael Bradley, Jozy Altidore, Clint Dempsey and Jordan Morris have been unveiled as nominees for the 2017 U.

UEFA Champions League Wednesday Preview: Real Madrid hosts Dortmund, Spartak travels to Liverpool, and more

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The UEFA Champions League group stage concludes on Wednesday with only four spots remaining in the Round of 16.

The must-watch fixture comes from the Santiago Bernabeu as Real Madrid faces off with struggling Borussia Dortmund. Los Blancos thumped Dortmund 3-1 back in September, and will look to do so for a second time.

UCL Tuesday Rewind: Bayern defeats PSG, Atletico draws Chelsea, and more

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The final match day in 2017-18 UEFA Champions League group stage kicked off on Tuesday with several sides looking to claim spots in the next round.

The top fixture saw Bayern Munich host PSG knowing a lopsided win would see the Germans claim top spot in their group. PSG thumped Bayern 3-0 earlier in the competition, and was looking to bounce back from a weekend loss in Ligue 1.

Jozy Altidore ready for MLS Cup despite recent ankle injury

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Early in the second half of Toronto FC's Eastern Conference Final clash with the Columbus Crew, Jozy Altidore was left hobbled. The forward's ankle suffered an injury on a hard tackle in the box and, after several looks from team doctors, Altidore continued on for a few minutes while a substitute was prepared.

MLS Ticker: Atlanta reportedly on verge of big signings; NYCFC extends Matarrita; and more

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Gerardo "Tata" Martinez's heavy South American influence helped guide Atlanta United FC to a successful inaugural season. Now, the manager may be bringing in more talent from the region to bolster the squad in itssecond campaign.

According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution,Atlanta United FC is on the verge of adding two Argentine players in midfielder Ezequiel Barco from Independiente and defender Franco Escobar from Newell's Old Boys.

UEFA Champions League Tuesday: Your Running Commentary

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Four Champions League groups come to a close this afternoon with several spots in the group stages still up for grabs.

Manchester United needs at least a point against CSKA Moscow to get through. Juventus, meanwhile, also needs to get a result when they travel to Greece to take on Olympiakos.

Diego Valeri cements Timbers, MLS legacy with MVP award

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It's hard to remember a time where Diego Valeri wasn't synonymous with the Portland Timbers. Throughout his MLS career, Valeri has emerged as the premier Timber, a face for a franchise and a city with a long history and a passionate fervor for the game. Even so, it's been just five short seasons since Valeri made the move to Portland from Lanus, even if those five short seasons have been jam-packed in more ways than one.

Gedion Zelalem begins running following May ACL injury

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Gedion Zelalem has been sidelined for an extended period of time, but it appears the U.S. Under-20 Men's National Team midfielder is getting closer and close to a return.

The Arsenal midfielder posted a video to Instagram on Monday showing that he has returned to running just months following an ACL tear.

UEFA Champions League Tuesday Preview: Bayern hosts PSG, Atletico travels to Chelsea, and more

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The UEFA Champions League group stage concludes this week with several teams looking to clinch a spot in the knockout round.

A pair of Europe's top teams square off in Munich as hosts Bayern Munich face off with Paris Saint-Germain. Both teams have clinched a spot in the next round, and PSG defeated Bayern 3-0 back in September.

Americans Abroad Midweek Preview: Jonathan Gonzalez, Christian Pulisic and more

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While two Americans kick off a league final in Mexico, several others will up the group stages of European competition.

The Liga MX final kicks off on Thursday with the opening leg of a clash between Monterrey and Tigres. Jonathan Gonzalez and Monterrey enter as the favorites after dispatching Atlas and Morelia by a combined 11-2 scoreline, but Jose Torres' Tigres cruised to a 4-0 win over Club America in the semifinal round to book their spot in the finale.

Tuesday Kickoff: Pogba suspended, Man United interested in Rose and more

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Manchester United headlines Tuesday's news for a big suspension and a potential big transfer deal.

Paul Pogba will serve a three-game ban for his red card against Arsenal, as Manchester United will not appeal the suspension. (REPORT)

Manchester United is reportedly interested in a big-money move for Danny Rose.

U.S. Soccer president Sunil Gulati will not run for re-election

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Sunil Gulati has been the head of U.S. Soccer since 2006, and is currently in his fourth term as president. After 12 years of service and a missed World Cup, Gulati has decided not to run for re-election and will step down at the end of his term, according to ESPN on Monday.

"I spent a lot of time thinking about it, and talking about it with many people in many different positions many of whom told me I should run," Gulati said on Monday.

Diego Valeri named MLS MVP

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Diego Valeri's spectacular season has been rewarded with recognition as Most Valuable Player.

MLS announced on Monday that the Portland Timbers midfielder has been voted league MVP for the 2017 season. Valeri finished with an overwhelming 45 percent of the player vote, 51 percent of the club vote and 55 percent of the media vote for a total of 50.

Giuseppe Rossi signs with Genoa

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Giuseppe Rossi is nearing his return to full fitness and a return to Serie A.

Genoa announced on Monday that the club has signed the American-born striker. The 30-year-old is set to be presented at a news conference on Tuesday.

Il Genoa Cfc comunica che domani, martedì 5 dicembre, presso la Sala 1893 del #GenoaMuseum , è prevista la presentazione ai media dell'attaccante @GiuseppeRossi22 https://t.

Stanford, Akron, UNC, Indiana advance to College Cup

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Four of the most prestigious programs in men's college soccer will converge on Talen Energy Stadium on Friday for the College Cup.

Stanford, Akron, North Carolina and Indiana are the final four in the NCAA Men's Soccer Tournament. The semifinals will be played on Friday with the National Championship on Sunday at the home of the Philadelphia Union.

U.S. U17s close out Nike friendlies in last place with draw against Brazil

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The U.S. U17s made sure they wouldn't leave the Nike friendlies tournament without a point on Sunday.

After losing their first two games to the Netherlands and England, the U17s tied tournament champion Brazil, 1-1, in Florida.

Diego Lopez scored a 53rd-minute equalizer for the U.S. to cancel out a 15th-minute tally from Alysson.

MLS Contract Decision Roundup

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With the MLS offseason in full swing for all but two teams, each club began the 2018 season by moving on from the 2017 campaign.

That process began last Monday as each eliminated team released contract decisions while playoff teams joined in following their postseason elimination.

Here's the roundup for each of the teams that have announced so far.

Americans Abroad Weekend Rewind: Jonathan Gonzalez, John Brooks and more

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Jonathan Gonzalez and Monterrey advanced to the Liga MX final on Sunday with yet another resounding win, booking a match against a fellow American with a trophy on the line.

After narrowly taking the first leg against Morelia, Gonzalez and Monterrey stormed to a 4-0 second leg win in Sunday's semifinal clash.

This Week's Soccer on TV

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The Champions League group stage comes to a close this week with several team still fighting for a place in the knockout rounds.

Manchester United is perhaps the biggest club still vying for a spot n the round of 16. They face a big match against CSKA Moscow at Old Trafford, where the winner will have a leg up on qualification.

SUM president Kathy Carter considering running for U.S. Soccer presidency

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Another candidate could join the field for the upcoming U.S. Soccer presidential election.

Soccer United Marketing president Kathy Carter told ESPN that she is considering running for the presidency of U.S. Soccer. According to ESPN, Carter is in "the final stages" of finalizing her bid with her chances of running at "95 percent.

Monday Kickoff: Ozil linked with move, Ancelotti turns down Italy and more

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While one Premier League star continues to spark frequent transfer rumors, one star manager turned down one of the world's big jobs.

Reports say Arsenal is becoming "increasingly resigned" to losing Mesut Ozil with Manchester United serving as one of the favorites to sign the German star. (REPORT)

Carlo Ancelotti has rejected the Italy job as the manger prefers to look for a job on the club level.

Sunday European Rewind: Man City downs West Ham, Inter moves to first place, and more

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Manchester City had to dig deep for the second straight match, defeating West Ham 2-1 at the Etihad. Angelo Ogbonna's first-half header gave the Hammers a 1-0 lead going into halftime. Nicolas Otamendi bundled home City's equalizer from a cross to make it 1-1. David Silva's close range finish in the 83rd minute have Pep Guardiola's men another three points.

Saturday European Rewind: Man United downs Arsenal, Juventus tops Napoli, and more

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In preparation for next weekend's Manchester Derby, Manchester United downed Arsenal 3-1 at the Emirates on Saturday. Jesse Lingard led the Red Devils with a brace while United moved to five points of their city rivals ahead of their match tomorrow. Antonio Valencia's opener came in the fourth minute as the Ecuadorian slotted home Paul Pogba's assist.

This Weekend's Soccer on TV

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An age old managerial rivalry is the cornerstone of this weekend's televised soccer action as Arsene Wenger's Arsenal hosts Jose Mourinho's Manchester United. This match between Premier League giants has been controlled mostly by United lately, but the Gunners did take four points off their northwestern top four rivals last year, and they are hoping to continue their hot run of form this week.

Sounders finally hitting stride as MLS Cup looms

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SEATTLE The defending champion Seattle Sounders did not storm out of the gate in 2017.

Not like Toronto FC did.

"We had some dark days," said Sounders head coach Brian Schmetzer after Thursday night's 3-0 (5-0 aggregate) romp over the Houston Dynamo in the Western Conference finals of the MLS playoffs.

An early look at the eight World Cup groups

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The draw for the 2018 World Cup presented us with plenty of mouth-watering showdowns between the giants of world soccer along with a handful of intriguing groups that could produce shocking results.

Group F featuring Germany, Mexico, Sweden and South Korea can be looked at as the most difficult on paper, but don't sleep on Group D that includes Argentina, Iceland, Croatia and Nigeria.

Mexico draws Germany, Costa Rica matched with Brazil at World Cup

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Mexico was handed no favors during the 2018 World Cup draw, as it was drawn in one of the toughest groups alongside Germany, Sweden and South Korea in Group F.

Costa Rica's biggest test in Group E will come against Brazil in the second game of group play. The Ticos will also take on Switzerland and Serbia.

Americans Abroad Weekend Preview: Jonathan Gonzalez, DeAndre Yedlin and more

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While European leagues head towards the busy holiday period, the Liga MX title picture heats up with the second legs of the semifinal round.

Jonathan Gonzalez and Monterrey enter their match with Morelia with a major advantage having earned a 1-0 opening leg win on the road. Now, they return home with a chance to seal a spot in the finale against either Jose Torres and Tigres or Club America following a 1-0 win for the former in their opener.

Giovinco, Almiron, Valeri headline MLS Best XI

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With MLS Cup right around the corner, the league has announced the 11 players that make up the 2017 Best XI.

Sebastian Giovinco, Miguel Almiron and Diego Valeri headline the MLS Best XI determined by media, MLS players and MLS technical staff. Toronto FC leads the way with three representatives as Giovinco is joined by Justin Morrow and Victor Vasquez while Atlanta United and Sporting KC each see two players named to the squad.

Friday Kickoff: Bale injured again, Valverde dismissed Coutinho talk and more

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One La Liga star is set for the sidelines once again while one of the league's top managers dismissed ongoing transfer talk.

Gareth Bale is set to miss more time after suffering another calf injury during Tuesday's Copa del Rey draw against third-tier side Fuenlabrada. (REPORT)

Barcelona bossErnesto Valverde says he is not interested in discussing the speculation that the club will sign Philippe Coutinho because he "is not one of my players".

Seattle Sounders vs. Houston Dynamo: Your Running Commentary

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Toronto FC is already set to host MLS Cup Final. On Thursday, one team will join them in the 2017 finale.

The Seattle Sounders have one foot in the door following a 2-0 first leg in win in Houston, but the reigning MLS Cup champions still have work to do at CenturyLink Field. They'll have to take down a tough Dynamo squad without the suspended Roman Torres, who is replaced by first leg goalscorer Gustav Svensson at centerback.

Sounders dominate Dynamo to return to MLS Cup

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SEATTLE Talk about peaking at the right time. After a trying, injury-riddled season, the defending champion Seattle Sounders punched their ticket back to MLS Cup with a bravura performance in front of 45,298 at CenturyLink Field on Thursday night.

Entering the second match of the two-legged, aggregate-goal Western Conference finals with a commanding 2-0 lead, the Sounders outplayed the Houston Dynamo from the start, scoring early and often and never looking seriously troubled on their way to a 3-0 (5-0 aggregate) victory.