USSoccerPlayers Archives for January 2017

The MLS expansion message

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By J Hutcherson (Nov 30, 2017) US Soccer Players - MLS has moved from a dozen to four expansion candidates with two spots available. The league confirmed on Wednesday that they'd pick those two expansion teams probably by the end of the year. It's the conclusion of a compacted process that started with ten cities and added two more.

Is MLS a selling league?

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By Jeff Rueter – SAINT PAUL, MN (Nov 30, 2017) US Soccer Players - On Wednesday, MLS commissioner Don Garber spoke as part of the Sports Business Journal's Dealmakers conference. He covered a wide range of topics. That included confirming a potential, SUM-organized tournament next summer for non-World Cup participants.

Who joins Toronto in the 2017 MLS Cup final?

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The other half of the MLS playoff bracket is an open question for most of Thursday, with the Western Conference final second-leg scheduled for 10:30pm ET on ESPN. The Seattle Sounders are the obvious favorite with a two-goal lead and home field advantage. For the Houston Dynamo, it's another scenario where getting anything out of this game will be a surprise.

Toronto FC advances to the 2017 MLS Cup

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Toronto FC won the Eastern Conference final on Wednesday night at BMO Stadium, knocking out the Columbus Crew 1-0 on aggregate. With the first-leg in Columbus ending scoreless, Toronto welcomed back Seb Giovinco and Jozy Altidore for the home leg. Giovinco missed the opening leg for yellow card accumulation while Altidore served a red card ban.

Soccer TV: Seattle Sounders vs Houston Dynamo

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The MLS playoffs continue on Thursday's soccer TV schedule with Seattle hosting Houston on ESPN. There are also games from the Copa del Rey and the Copa Sudamericana. The Liga MX playoffs move to the semifinal stage on Univision Deportes.

Seattle Sounders vs Houston Dynamo at 10:30pm on ESPN in the second-leg of their Western Conference final series.

Mexico and the 2018 World Cup draw

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By Luis Bueno – RIVERSIDE, CA (Nov 29, 2017) US Soccer Players - Mexico's last important match was in September when El Tri wrapped up a World Cup berth with a 1-0 home win over Panama. The next meaningful match it will play will not be until June, somewhere in Russia at the 2018 World Cup.

However, the most important event Mexico will participate in this year will happen soon.

Anthony Hudson named coach of the Colorado Rapids

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The Colorado Rapids made it official on Wednesday, naming Anthony Hudson as the MLS club's new head coach. Hudson previously coached the New Zealand national team and was strongly linked with the Rapids job. New Zealand failed to qualify for the 2018 World Cup, losing an intercontinental playoff to Peru.

MLS Playoffs: Alex Bono and Toronto’s shot at history

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By Jason Davis – WASHINGTON DC (Nov 29, 2017) US Soccer Players - Toronto FC's 2016 quest for the MLS Cup failed at the last hurdle. The Reds lost to the Seattle Sounders in a penalty shootout in their own stadium. If 2016 had looked like nothing more than a one-off season for the club, a lightning-in-a-bottle campaign of the kind that sometimes happens in MLS, fans in Toronto might have despaired.

MLS has an expansion final four

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There are four teams left in the MLS playoffs and we now know that there are four teams left for the next round of MLS expansion. Unlike the MLS playoffs, expansion will name two winners. At a Soccer Business Journal symposium on Wednesday morning, MLS commissioner Don Garber named Cincinnati, Detroit, Nashville, and Sacramento.

Soccer TV: Toronto FC vs Columbus Crew

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It's the MLS playoffs on Wednesday's soccer TV schedule with the Eastern Conference final second-leg. Toronto regroups at home with their first choice lineup against a streaking Columbus Crew. Also on Wednesday's soccer TV, there's afternoon games from the Premier League.

Toronto FC vs Columbus Crew at 7:20pm on FS1 in the Eastern Conference final second-leg.

Barcelona doubles down on the buyout clause

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Lionel Messi will remain a member of Barcelona. In what isn't at all a surprise, his new contract contains a buyout clause. Also not surprising considering what happened to Barcelona over the summer, it's quite large. €700m euros, with Barcelona doing all it can to keep another Neymar scenario.

Greg Vanney wins 2017 MLS Coach of the Year

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Toronto FC coach Greg Vanney is the 2017 MLS Coach of the Year. It's an announcement that shouldn't come as a surprise to anybody paying attention to the 2017 MLS season. Vanney improved on an already impactful Toronto club that came close to winning the 2016 MLS Cup. During the 2017 MLS regular season, Vanney's squad set a new MLS record for points en route to the Supporters' Shield and the top seed in the playoffs.

10 years to now in MLS

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By Clemente Lisi – NEW YORK, NY (Nov 27, 2017) US Soccer Players – Major League Soccer has had its ups and downs over the years. From national TV ratings that have struggled to grow to stadium attendance that has, MLS can point to many failures and successes.

Manchester City’s season

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Manchester City did something rare for them on Sunday, coming back from a goal down at halftime and winning away. Then again, this is the 2017-18 version of Manchester City we're talking about where "rare" would be not winning under any circumstance. Our Premier League leaders have won 12 out of 13 games and lost none.

Liga MX quarterfinals and two goals for Terrence Boyd

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We start the roundup of the USMNT players in Europe and Mexico with the Liga MX playoffs. William Yarbrough was in goal for Leon's 1-1 second-leg draw with Tigres. That series finished 2-2 on aggregate with Tigres advancing on the higher seed tiebreaker.

Jonathan Gonzalez's Monterrey won their series with Atlas 4-1 on the night and 6-2 on aggregate.

Soccer TV: Liverpool vs Chelsea

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It's a big name matchup in the Premier League to highlight the weekend soccer TV schedule. Liverpool hosts Chelsea in a game available nationally on NBC on Saturday. There's plenty from the Bundesliga on FS1 and FS2. Univision Deportes and Univision have Liga MX playoff games on Saturday and Sunday.

Mind the gap- Fixing the MLS playoff’s uneven schedule

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By Jeff Rueter – SAINT PAUL, MN (Nov 23, 2017) US Soccer Players - In world soccer, few scheduling quirks draw more ire than a double-game week. It's standard practice in Europe for teams in the Champions League and Europa League. Add in domestic cup responsibilities, and it stretches even the clubs with massive budgets.

Preview: The 2017 Liga MX Apertura playoffs

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By Luis Bueno – RIVERSIDE, CA (Nov 22, 2017) US Soccer Players - The sprint that is the Liga MX regular season ended over the weekend. That included a derby that determined the regular season winner with Monterrey beating Tigres 2-0. Teams like Atlas and Leon wrapped up playoff births.

Moving on to the second-legs in the MLS Conference semifinals

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By Jason Davis – WASHINGTON DC (Nov 22, 2017) US Soccer Players - The challenge for the Columbus Crew at home in the first-leg of the Eastern Conference final against top-seeded Toronto FC was obvious. The suspensions of Toronto's Jozy Altidore (red card) and Seb Giovinco (yellow card accumulation) sent a clear message to Columbus.

Cristiano Ronaldo scores two, sends a media message

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It was an interesting night for Real Madrid in the Champions League. Spurs beating Borussia Dortmund 2-1 meant the London team wins the group. Real Madrid's 6-0 over APOEL means 2nd-place with a game remaining. Given Real Madrid's issues with their offense weren't an issue for the fifth game in Group H, but what that means for their superstars is still an open question.

Draw in the East, Seattle takes the lead in the West

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The Eastern Conference finals opened with a 0-0 draw between the Columbus Crew and Toronto FC at MAPFRE Stadium. It was Columbus pressing the offense at home, taking 14 shots to Toronto's seven and putting three of them on frame to Toronto's none. The scoreless draw sets things up for Toronto in their home leg on November 29 with the return of Jozy Altidore and Seb Giovinco.

Spurs beat Borussia Dortmund to win Champions League group H

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Spurs beat Borussia Dortmund 2-1 in the Champions League on Tuesday. The result means Spurs wins Group H and Dortmund can finish no higher than 3rd-place. Hanging onto 3rd-place and the Europa League qualifying spot was made a bit easier by APOEL losing 6-0 at home to Real Madrid.

The beginning of the end of the Champions League group stage

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The Champions League returns later today with six points left up for grabs in the groups. Only in Group B have both teams already advanced to the knockout round. That's PSG with the best record of any team at 12 points and a +17 goal difference and Bayern Munich three points back.

Soccer TV: Columbus Crew vs Toronto and Houston Dynamo vs Seattle Sounders

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It's the conference semifinal first-legs from the MLS playoffs on Tuesday's soccer TV schedule. In the East, Columbus hosts Toronto and Houston plays Seattle in the West. Also on the soccer TV schedule, the Champions League returns.

Columbus Crew vs Toronto FC at 8pm on ESPN in the MLS Eastern Conference semifinals.

Three things for the 2017 MLS conference finals

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By Clemente Lisi – NEW YORK, NY (Nov 20, 2017) US Soccer Players – The MLS playoffs version of the Final Four finally kicks off Tuesday. We're used to the upset story in the MLS playoffs, a competition where the tag of "favorite" seldom counts for much. From the Houston Dynamo knocking out the Portland Timbers and the Columbus Crew getting past NYCFC, 2017 is showing once again that anything can happen.

Atlanta United designated player Miguel Almiron wins 2017 MLS Newcomer of the Year

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MLS award season continued on Monday with Miguel Almiron winning the 2017 MLS Newcomer of the Year. Almiron, a member of Paraguay's national team, joined the expansion Atlanta United squad in 2017 as a designated player. He has nine goals and 14 assists over 30 games in a season where Atlanta qualified for the MLS playoffs.

Liga MX sets the playoff picture for the 2017 Apertura

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It's Liguilla time in Liga MX. The 2017 Apertura season came to a close over the weekend with Monterrey clinching the title with 37 points from 17 games. Tigres finished in 2nd-place with 32, losing to local rivals Monterrey on the final day of the season. Club America took 3rd-place with 30 points.

Assist for Yedlin in loss for Newcastle United

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The USMNT players in Europe and Mexico returned to action over the weekend following the November international break. We start in the Premier League where DeAndre Yedlin and Newcastle United lost 4-1 at Manchester United. Yeldon assisted on Dwight Gayle's opener in the 14th minute.

Soccer TV: Manchester United vs Newcastle

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The club schedule returns following the November international break on the weekend soccer TV schedule . The Madrid derby is on beIN Sport on Saturday. beIN Sport also has the Rome derby. Saturday's Premier League schedule has the North London derby on NBCSN and Manchester United plays Newcastle on NBC.

Is our American soccer culture in worse shape than we thought?

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By Charles Boehm – WASHINGTON, DC (Nov 17, 2017) US Soccer Players - I've experienced a wide range of emotions during USMNT games over the past few years, both as a journalistic observer and from the perspective of a soccer-enamored American. Tuesday's friendly draw with Portugal handed me a new one.

Preview: The 2017 MLS Eastern and Western Conference finals

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By Jason Davis – WASHINGTON DC (Nov 17, 2017) US Soccer Players - The 2017 MLS playoffs lurch back into action on Tuesday. Columbus hosts Toronto and the Seattle Sounders visit Houston in the first-legs of the two conference finals. It will be 16 days since the last playoff game.

Official: Porter resigns as Portland Timbers coach

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The Portland Timbers announced on Friday that Caleb Porter is no longer the club's head coach. Porter leaves after winning the Western Conference in 2017 and the 2015 MLS Cup. He was also the 2013 MLS Coach of the Year.

"I would like to begin by giving special thanks to my owner and friend Merritt Paulson for providing me with the opportunity to lead the Portland Timbers these past five seasons," Porter said in a press statement.

Caleb Porter leaves Portland

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The Portland Timbers unexpectedly landed on the list of MLS teams in search of a coach. The news broke on Thursday night that Caleb Porter is leaving the club. Porter's next stop is an open question, alongside whom the Timbers might hire to replace him. FourFourTwo's Paul Tenorio broke the news of Porter's exit.

Focusing on North America’s other soccer leagues

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By Jeff Rueter – SAINT PAUL, MN (Nov 16, 2017) US Soccer Players - To say that Major League Soccer is in a better place than it was in 2011 would be a massive understatement. MLS has seen its talent pool become far more impressive, with roster rule changes and advanced metrics and scouting partly to thank.

CONCACAF introduces League of Nations

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CONCACAF officially announced the new League of Nations competition, set to begin in September, 2018. The press release confirmed an earlier report that the confederation was set to follow UEFA's example and form a league structure for their national teams.

Though the specifics won't be released until early 2018, CONCACAF confirmed that all 41 nations in the region will play across three leagues with promotion and relegation.

Tim Melia wins 2017 MLS Goalkeeper of the Year

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Sporting Kansas City's Tim Melia is the winner of the 2017 MLS Goalkeeper of the Year award. Melia started 31 games making 91 saves and recording ten shutouts. Those numbers had him well ahead across all voting categories, taking 50.29% of the total vote. Philadelphia's Andre Blake finished in 2nd-place with 10.

Moving past friendlies in UEFA and CONCACAF

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By J Hutcherson (Nov 16, 2017) US Soccer Players - Peru finally gave the World Cup playoffs what it needed, a game worth watching. With all due respect to Australia's win over Honduras much earlier in the day on Wednesday, that game quickly became an obvious conclusion.

MLS is a soccer business

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Major League Soccer isn't likely to make the future of the Columbus Crew clear on anybody's schedule but their own. What the league is willing to do is remind everyone that this is a soccer business operating in a soccer nation and not anything else. That's a single-entity business model reminder to fans that comes at a tough time.

Galaxy first means resisting loan deals in 2018

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By Luis Bueno – RIVERSIDE, CA (Nov 15, 2017) US Soccer Players - The LA Galaxy's disastrous 2017 MLS campaign left much destruction in its wake. Coaches and executives lost their jobs or faced demotions. The club showed players the exit. New faces both on and off the field came and will undoubtedly arrive to help right the wrongs in 2018.

Atlanta United players win 2017 MLS Goal and Save of the Year

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Atlanta United swept the Goal of the Year and Save of the Year categories as the 2017 MLS award season continues. Tito Villalba won the 2017 MLS Goal of the Year and Brad Guzan won Save of the Year. Villalba's award winner came on July 21st against Orlando City.

Guzan's save came against the New York Red Bulls on October 15.

Clint Dempsey wins 2017 MLS Comeback Player of the Year award

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Clint Dempsey's return from a heart ailment that caused him to miss the end of the 2016 season won the Seattle Sounders forward the 2017 MLS Comeback Player of the Year award. Dempsey missed ten regular season games and the playoff run for Seattle, eventually working his way back for club and country.

The USMNT plays a unique friendly

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By Jason Davis – WASHINGTON DC (Nov 15, 2017) US Soccer Players - The last time the USMNT played a game under circumstances similar to those of their 1-1 draw with Portugal in Leiria, no single player on the gameday roster was alive. The last time the USMNT played a game like this, the man who coached the team on Tuesday was a 32-year old assistant coach under Bruce Arena at the University of Virginia.

The USMNT’s draw

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The USMNT didn't lose in Portugal on Tuesday, drawing 1-1 in a game that asked plenty of questions from a transitional roster. For the most part, interim coach Dave Sarachan and the players had answers. CJ Sapong showed he could convert a strong MLS season into quality play at international level.

Portugal 1 – USMNT 1

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The USMNT returned to action on Tuesday, drawing 1-1 with Portugal in Leiria. In a game that served as a fundraiser for victims of the recent forest fires in the region, it was the visitors taking advantage early. Weston McKennie opened the scoring in the 21st minute with CJ Sapong assisting.

Game day for Portugal vs USMNT

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The USMNT is in action later today at Portugal (3:45pm ET - FS1). The pressure on this transitional group of USMNT players may be as much internal as external. All involved know the stakes as the program pushes forward after failing to qualify for the 2018 World Cup. Interim coach Dave Sarachan has made it clear that he understands his situation, looking at this window as an opportunity to put some space between the qualifying campaign and what happens next.

Preview: USMNT vs Portugal

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We're all well aware of the circumstances. Not qualifying for the 2017 World Cup. USMNT coach Bruce Arena resigning. His assistant Dave Sarachan taking over on an interim basis. The US Soccer presidential election cyle delaying a quick decision. Availability of coaching candidates perhaps carrying that into this World Cup summer.

Dave Sarachan takes a familiar role for the USMNT

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By Clemente Lisi – NEW YORK, NY (Nov 13, 2017) US Soccer Players – "Interim" is a tag no coach likes to have. It means the job is temporary. There is nothing about it that says you will get the job. That's not a lot of motivation when trying to guide a team. That goes for either club or country.

Italy’s issue

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Italy plays Sweden in Milan later today trailing 1-0 in their World Cup qualifying playoff. Italy is the latest team facing an uphill scenario for this summer's tournament. For some, think Argentina, it worked out. For others, think the USMNT, it didn't. For fans of the tournament, and there are plenty all over the world, Italy belongs in every World Cup.

Soccer TV: Portugal vs USMNT

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The USMNT returns to action against Portugal in an international friendly on Tuesday's soccer TV schedule. ESPN2 has Germany playing France, England vs Brazil is on Fox Deportes, and there are World Cup qualifiers in Africa and Europe.

Portugal vs USMNT at 3:45pm on FS1. A transitional version of the USMNT under interim coach Dave Sarachan have spent just over a week training in Lisbon.

Soccer TV: SF Deltas vs NY Cosmos

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The NASL season concludes on Sunday when the SF Deltas host the NY Cosmos for the championship. The league's courtroom battle to maintain their second division status is paramount to their future, but there's still the 2017 champion to decide. There's also plenty of World Cup qualifying options from CAF and UEFA on the weekend schedule along with the US Women in action.

A beginning, and an end, for the USMNT in Portugal

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By Charles Boehm – WASHINGTON, DC (Nov 10, 2017) US Soccer Players - Fifteen years and five months after the shock World Cup win over Portugal that launched the program into a bold new century, a dramatically revamped USMNT squad has gathered in Lisbon this week ahead of a rematch that marks both the beginning and end of an era.

Austin making plans for the Crew

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Friday's soccer news starts with the Austin, Texas city council passing a resolution to help find a city-owned site for a relocated Columbus Crew. The Austin American-Statesman's Kevin Lyttle has the details. Key to what Austin is doing is not committing city money to building a stadium and not limiting the potential relocated club to only the Crew.

Ike Opara wins 2017 MLS Defender of the Year

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Sporting Kansas City's Ike Opara is the 2017 MLS Defender of the Year, the league announced on Thursday. When Opara was on the field, Sporting Kansas City gave up 23 goals in 30 games and recorded 11 shutouts. He led the voting across all categories, taking the Player Vote with 31.

Who helped their MLS stocks most on eliminated teams?

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By Jeff Rueter – SAINT PAUL, MN (Nov 9, 2017) US Soccer Players - This international break is always a bit of a strange one for Major League Soccer. The two-week layoff occurs right in the thick of the postseason, as we've pared the field down to the final four teams. There are plenty of questions to ask moving forward.

New England hires Brad Friedel as coach

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Former USMNT goalkeeper and TV pundit Brad Friedel is now the coach of the New England Revolution. Friedel holds a UEFA Pro license and coached the USMNT U-19 squad. New England announced the hire on Thursday. Friedel brings with him assistant coaches Mike Lapper and Marcelo Neveleff.

The USMNT in Portugal

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The new look version of the USMNT currently training in Lisbon has plenty of time before playing Portugal on November 14. That's a luxury for a group that needs to get to know each other quickly.

"So each day we'll be out training, trying to build up a little bit more in terms of the team aspect of things," USMNT interim coach Dave Sarachan said in a video US Soccer provided to the media.

The November friendlies count for Mexico

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By Luis Bueno – RIVERSIDE, CA (Nov 8, 2017) US Soccer Players - The windy and tumultuous path known as World Cup qualifying yielded positive results for Mexico as El Tricolor will play in its seventh consecutive World Cup next summer in Russia. Now that the dust has settled on qualifying, El Tri will start the next phase of its journey as preparations for Russia begin in earnest.

Julian Gressel is the 2017 MLS Rookie of the Year

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Atlanta United's Julian Gressel is the 2017 MLS Rookie of the Year, the league announced on Wednesday. Gressel received 48.97% of the player vote, 55.67% of the media vote, and 55.95% of the club vote. No other candidate received more than 18% of the vote in any category.

"It's a great honor," Gressel said.

The Nations League concept spreads

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We start the soccer news with Reuters' Simon Evans reporting that CONCACAF is planning for their version of a Nations League potentially starting in the September international window. The Nations League is a UEFA concept, put in place to replace friendlies with games that count. It's a multiple league structure for national teams with promotion and relegation and playoffs for a champion.

DaMarcus Beasley wins 2017 MLS Fair Play Award

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Houston Dynamo and USMNT defender DaMarcus Beasley won the 2017 MLS Fair Play Award, the league announced on Tuesday. Beasley made it through the 2017 season with the league's lowest fouls per game mark at .54 over 1.985 minutes played. Over 24 games, Beasley never saw a card. Those stats go along with sportsmanship to determine a winner, with Beasley getting the nod over the San Jose Earthquakes Jahmir Hyka and the LA Galaxy's Dave Romney.

FIFA sets the stage for the 2026 World Cup

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On Tuesday, FIFA released the Guide to the Bidding Process for the 2026 FIFA World Cup. That's the official title for the document that walks potential bidders through the requirements and expectations for staging the tournament. We already know that there are two bidders, a three-country North American bid and Morocco.

Robbie Rogers announces retirement

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LA Galaxy and USMNT midfielder Robbie Rogers announced his retirement on Tuesday. The 30-year-old joined the Galaxy in 2013 after returning from England where he was a member of Leeds United. Rogers was part of the 2008 MLS Cup winning Columbus Crew, lifting the trophy again with the Galaxy in 2014.

West Ham hires David Moyes

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West Ham United joined fellow London club Crystal Palace in making a coaching change early in the Premier League season. Like Palace, West Ham is in the relegation zone. Like Palace, they went with a known quantity in English soccer.

David Moyes takes the job with West Ham in 18th place on nine points.

Interim coach Dave Sarachan calls in 21 USMNT players

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Interim USMNT coach Dave Sarachan released his roster for the international friendly against Portugal on November 14 (3:45pm ET - FS1). Sarachan called in a mix of European-based and MLS players, focusing on a younger team. This is the only game scheduled for the USMNT during the November international window.

The same questions for MLS in New York

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By Clemente Lisi – NEW YORK, NY (Nov 6, 2017) US Soccer Players – NYCFC has come a long way. A team that struggled under the popularity and modest success of its rival the Red Bulls in recent years, New York City FC has used its success on the field over the past seven months to market itself to fans across the city.

The tunnel and the clock in the MLS playoffs

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Monday's soccer news starts with more questions about how MLS is managing games. Toronto and the New York Red Bulls asked a significant one at halftime of their Eastern Conference semifinal second-leg. Namely, why were their so many people in the tunnel during the altercation between the two teams?

Bayern Munich gets the better of Borussia Dortmund

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The USMNT players in Europe and Mexico starts in Germany with Christian Pulisic's Borussia Dortmund losing 3-1 at home to Bayern Munich. Bayern opened the scoring in the 16th minute, doubling the lead in the 37th. They were up 3-0 in the 67th. Marc Bartra pulled a goal back for Dortmund in the 88th minute.

2017 MLS Conference finals are set

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The Eastern and Western conference semifinals concluded in the MLS playoffs on Sunday. The schedule started in Toronto with the home side advancing on goal difference 2-2 on aggregate over the New York Red Bulls. Both teams played a man down in the second-half. Toronto's Jozy Altidore and the Red Bulls' Sacha Kljestan carried an on-field disagreement into the tunnel at halftime that resulted in a skirmish involving multiple players.

Should pro soccer in America be business first?

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By Charles Boehm – WASHINGTON, DC (Nov 3, 2017) US Soccer Players - Anthony Precourt's confounding machinations about the present and future location of the Columbus Crew. The NASL's momentous antitrust suit against the US Soccer Federation. We find ourselves talking and thinking a lot about the business of the beautiful game this fall.

Soccer TV: Borussia Dortmund vs Bayern Munich

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The weekend soccer TV schedule features the biggest game in German soccer with Borussia Dortmund hosting bayern Munich. There's also the MLS playoffs on the schedule, with three games on Sunday. The national Premier League game is West Ham vs Liverpool on Saturday on NBC. NBCSN has the better matchups on Sunday with Manchester City hosting Arsenal and Manchester United at Chelsea.

Playing to win in DC, New England, and Philadelphia

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By Jason Davis – WASHINGTON DC (Nov 3, 2017) US Soccer Players - We're in the midst of the 2017 MLS Cup playoffs. The best teams in the league battle it out for supremacy on fields from Cascadia to New York City. Meanwhile, a quieter, much less fun process is unfolding in all of the cities left out of the postseason party.

Seattle knocks out Vancouver

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Seattle advanced to the Western Conference finals and it was Clint Dempsey making the difference in a 2-0 win over Vancouver. After a scoreless first-leg, Seattle returned home knowing that they needed a scoreless draw in regulation to send the series to overtime or an outright win. Dempsey took care of that in regulation.

Portugal roster for USMNT friendly

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Portugal coach Fernando Santos announced his roster for the friendlies against Saudi Arabia on November 10 and the USMNT on November 14 (1:45pm ET - TBD). Both games are serving as fundraisers for the recent wildfires in the country, but Santos was clear that he is using these games as part of his long-term planning for the World Cup.

How East overtook West in MLS

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By Jeff Rueter – SAINT PAUL, MN (Nov 2, 2017) US Soccer Players - There are very few things that can both Major League Soccer pundits and fans alike can agree upon. From new signings to the merits of the Supporters Shield to a desire for promotion and relegation, everyone seems to have a stark difference of opinions.

Real Madrid and Borussia Dortmund have Group H issues

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It's easy enough to pile on when a super club isn't winning. Real Madrid was in obvious trouble prior to losing 3-1 to Spurs in the Champions League. Their tough trip to Wembley only compounds the issues that have them struggling domestically.

"There are times in the season when you score goals from very few chances, and others when you struggle to do that," Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane said.

Soccer TV: Seattle Sounders vs Vancouver Whitecaps

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The Europa League is on Thursday's soccer TV schedule with Arsenal in action on FS1. Everton is at Lyon on FS2. The conference semifinal second-legs begin in the MLS playoffs with Seattle hosting Vancouver.

Seattle Sounders vs Vancouver Whitecaps at 10:30pm on FS1. With the first-leg ending scoreless and drawing criticism for both teams, this needs to be a game that doesn't do the same.

How to overhaul an MLS team

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By Luis Bueno – RIVERSIDE, CA (Nov 1, 2017) US Soccer Players - The MLS Cup Playoffs are in full swing this week as each of the conference semifinal series have completed their first legs. The round before produced some dramatic moments while the coming days promise to have some riveting action as teams try and extend or salvage their respective seasons.

Will we get to see Portland vs Seattle?

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By Jason Davis – WASHINGTON DC (Nov 1, 2017) US Soccer Players - With apologies to the Vancouver Whitecaps and the Houston Dynamo, there's really no argument that the most intriguing possible matchup for the Western Conference final in this year's Major League Soccer playoffs is of the Cascadia rivalry variety.

Columbus takes advantage

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We start with Columbus taking advantage of a red card in their 4-1 win over NYCFC in the Eastern Conference semifinals. Ola Kamara put the Crew up in the 6th minute in front of 14,416 fans at MAPFRE Stadium. NYCFC's Alexander Callens saw red for violent conduct in the 52nd minute.

Columbus took full advantage with Artur scoring in the 58th and Justin Meram adding a goal in the 69th.