Apr 15, 2015; San Antonio, TX, USA; United States defender Greg Garza (14)  against Mexico in an international friendly at Alamodome. The United States defeated Mexico 2-0. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

USMNT calls in Garza after Davis is ruled out of Gold Cup with knee injury

Brad Davis has been ruled out of the CONCACAF Gold Cup, and Greg Garza has been added to the U.S. Men’s National Team ahead of Friday’s friendly vs. Guatemala.

Jun 14, 2014; Hempstead, NY, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Lloyd Sam (10) fouls New York Cosmos forward Sebastian Guenzatti (13) during the U.S. Open Cup match at Shuart Stadium. The Cosmos defeated the Red Bulls 3-0. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports

Red Bulls seeking Open Cup revenge vs. Cosmos

The New York Red Bulls are looking for some payback against the New York Cosmos in Wednesday’s U.S. Open Cup showdown at Red Bull Arena.

Red Bulls NYCFC Action 1 (USA TODAY Sports)

The SBI Show: Episode 218 (Recapping MLS Rivalry Week, talking U.S. Open Cup, and more)

Co-hosts Garrett Cleverly and Ives Galarcep discuss MLS Week 17, the Women’s World Cup semifinals, U.S. Open Cup, and much more.

Argentina punishes Paraguay, advances to Copa America final

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By AARON CRANFORD

For the third time in the previous four Copa America tournaments, Argentina will take part in the final, as the 14-time winner progressed against Paraguay, 6-1.

The Argentine stars shined in Concepcion, Chile, as Gonzalo Higuain, Angel Di Maria and Sergio Aguero each tallied a goal in its rout of Paraguay. Two goals and an assist from Di Maria led the way for Argentina, who reach the final again after missing out in the 2011 edition of the tournament.

Marcos Rojo gave Argentina the lead in the 15th minute, and Javier Pastore blasted in the second twelve minutes later to give Argentina the quick two-goal advantage.

Paraguay would make the scoreline 2-1 in favor of Argentina at the break, but Di Maria’s brace, made possible by the awe-inspiring play of Lionel Messi and Pastore, a Sergio Aguero header and a late blast from Higuain sent Argentina into the final where it’ll meet host Chile. Continue reading »

Posted in Copa America 2015 | 6 Comments

SBI USWNT Woman of the Match: Carli Lloyd

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Photo by Michael Chow/USA Today Sports

By RYAN TOLMICH 

Just moments after it looked like a Germany penalty kick would be the cause of death for the U.S. Women’s National Team, a spot-kick finish proved to be the moment that the earned the Americans continued life and a spot in the Women’s World Cup final.

Carli Lloyd was the author of that decisive goal, and her cold-blooded finish combined with her late assist led the USWNT to a 2-0 victory over Germany in Tuesday’s Women’s World Cup semifinal. Lloyd’s performance also earner her SBI’s USWNT Woman of the Match award.

Lloyd’s calm demeanor on her penalty kick allowed her to rocket home a shot just minutes after seeing Germany miss in the same situation on the other end of the field. Then, with the USWNT holding onto a slim one-goal lead, Lloyd turned provider and sealed the victory by feeding substitute Kelley O’Hara.

The goal gives Lloyd her third in as many games. She won SBI’s Woman of the Match honors over O’Hara, Alex Morgan and Morgan Brian.

What did you think of Lloyd’s performance? How impressed were you with her penalty kick? Which USWNT player stood out to you the most in Tuesday’s semifinal?

Share your thoughts below.

Posted in 2015 Women's World Cup, U.S. Women's National Team, Women's World Cup 2015 | 3 Comments

USMNT calls in Garza after Davis is ruled out of Gold Cup with knee injury

photo by Kirby Lee/USA Today Sports

By FRANCO PANIZO

One of the surprise inclusions on the U.S. Men’s National Team’s Gold Cup roster will not be participating in the tournament, and he is likely to be replaced by one of the more surprising exclusions.

Houston Dynamo left midfielder Brad Davis has been ruled out of the upcoming Gold Cup because of a knee injury. U.S. Soccer is planning to replace Davis on the 23-man squad, but CONCACAF must receive paperwork from the federation and approve any change before it becomes official.

Despite that, U.S. head coach Jurgen Klinsmann has already brought Atlas defender Greg Garza into camp. Garza will be available to play in Friday’s friendly against Guatemala in Nashville, Tennessee, and could be named as Davis’ replacement if CONCACAF gives the green light.

The Americans begin their Gold Cup title defense on July 7 vs. Honduras.

What do you think of Davis being ruled out of the Gold Cup? Should Garza be Davis’ replacement for the tournament? Would you have preferred to see DaMarcus Beasley get called in?

Share your thoughts below.

Posted in Featured, U.S. Men's National Team | 25 Comments

Jozy Altidore: My best is still to come

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photo by Robert Mayer/USA Today Sports

By FRANCO PANIZO

Jozy Altidore has carved out a good career for himself despite being just 25-years old. He has earned 80 caps for the U.S. Men’s National Team, scored 27 goals, played in two World Cups, and spent a number of years in leagues across Europe.

Altidore believes his best soccer is still to come, however.

Currently in his third cycle with the U.S., Altidore has already developed into one of the figureheads of the team. He is not only a leader on the field due to his abilities and wealth of experience, but also off of it for how he sets an example for the next generation of youngsters coming through the pipeline.

Altidore has spearheaded the Americans’ attack almost immediately from the moment he was introduced to the full U.S. side in 2008. He has found the back of the net in big games, like in the 2009 Confederations Cup upset over Spain, and honed his craft in Europe and MLS to become more than just a goal-scoring threat.

He’s matured a lot both as a person and a player since the start of his career, but the veteran striker still thinks there is plenty of more room to grow.

“I still feel like my best football is yet to come,” Altidore told FIFA.com. “I understand the game in a way that I didn’t before. I’m excited for the next five or six years. I’m getting better with every game and I want to see where that goes.”

Continue reading »

Posted in MLS- Toronto FC, U.S. Men's National Team, Uncategorized | 83 Comments

Red Bulls seeking Open Cup revenge vs. Cosmos

photo by Andy Marlin/USA Today Sports

By FRANCO PANIZO

HANOVER, N.J. — The New York Red Bulls are making no secret about it: They want to exact revenge on the New York Cosmos.

A year removed from an embarrassing 3-0 defeat to the Cosmos in U.S. Open Cup play, the Red Bulls are set for a rematch with the NASL club in the fifth round of the tournament on Wednesday. The Red Bulls will have the homefield advantage this time and are expected to field a lineup that more closely resembles their starting group.

Last year, then-head coach Mike Petke went with a reserve-filled unit against the Cosmos due to a combination of international absences, injuries and preferred approach. The result was an apathetic and humiliating loss at Shuart Stadium that infuriated the Red Bulls’ fan base and left the players with pain and a sour taste in their mouths.

“There’s a sense of revenge, that we need to win this game,” said centerback Matt Miazga, who started in last year’s fourth round match. “Obviously, at the start of the season (head coach Jesse Marsch) really made it a commitment to win this Open Cup, and that’s one of our goals. Now, the Cosmos are in our way, and we’re going to give it our all.

“I played in that game last year, and it did suck losing, 3-0, away at their place. Now, we’re back at home, and we’re going to look to win at home.”

Continue reading »

Posted in Featured, MLS- New York Red Bulls, New York Cosmos, U.S. Open Cup | 3 Comments

The SBI Show: Episode 218 (Recapping MLS Rivalry Week, talking U.S. Open Cup, and more)

Red Bulls NYCFC Action 1 (USA TODAY Sports)

 

By IVES GALARCEP

MLS Rivalry lived up to the billing this past weekend, with packed stadiums from coast to coast showcasing some juicy matches that delivered some memorable moments.

Episode 218 of The SBI Show takes a look back at MLS Week 17, which featured many of the league’s top rivalries, including Portland’s romp over Seattle and the New York Red Bulls’ humbling of New York City FC.

Co-host Garrett Cleverly and I also discuss the U.S. Open Cup, which resumes this week with even more top rivalry clashes on tap, including Red Bulls-Cosmos and another serving of the California Clasico between the LA Galaxy and San Jose Earthquakes.

We also discuss the U.S. Women’s National Team’s World Cup semifinal against Germany, the controversy surrounding American youth clubs seeking training compensation, and much more.

Give Episode 218 of The SBI Show a listen after the jump:

Continue reading »

Posted in Featured, Major League Soccer, Podcasts, U.S. Open Cup, U.S. Women's National Team, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Lloyd leads USWNT to win over Germany to seal spot in World Cup final

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Photo by Michael Chow/USA Today Sports

By RYAN TOLMICH

After limping through a majority of the Women’s World Cup, the U.S. Women’s National Team saved its best performance of the tournament for the semifinal showdown against the world’s No. 1 team.

Carli Lloyd provided a finish from the penalty spot before Kelly O’Hara added insurance, as the U.S. grabbed a 2-0 victory over top-ranked Germany in Tuesday night’s Women’s World Cup semifinal at Olympic Stadium in Montreal.

Lloyd’s winner, which marked her third straight game with a goal, came just moments after seeing a Germany penalty kick go wide.

With the victory, the U.S. advances to Sunday’s tournament final. The Americans will meet the winner of Wednesday’s semifinal match-up between Japan and England.

Continue reading »

Posted in 2015 Women's World Cup, Featured, Women's World Cup 2015 | 28 Comments

NYCFC website features Andrea Pirlo player page

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By FRANCO PANIZO

NYCFC has yet to announce the signing of Andrea Pirlo, but the team’s website is ready for his arrival.

NYCFC published a player profile of Pirlo on its website late on Tuesday that said the legendary midfielder had signed with the club on June 30. Pirlo, who has been heavily linked with a move to the expansion MLS club in recent weeks and days, was listed as wearing his trademark No. 21.

The 36-year-old Italian has been seen in New York City in recent weeks, and was shown on the big screen at Yankee Stadium in NYCFC’s 3-1 loss to the New York Red Bulls on Sunday. Recent reports have stated that Pirlo would be announced as the club’s third Designated Player as early as this week, which seems to be the case judging from the profile that is up on NYCFC.com.

Here is a screenshot of the webpage:

Continue reading »

Posted in Featured, MLS- New York City FC | 8 Comments