MLS: Vancouver Whitecaps FC at Seattle Sounders FC

SBI MLS Player of the Week: Pa Madou Kah

Pa Madou Kah found the back of the net early in both halves for the Whitecaps, tripling his MLS total for goals scored and earning him SBI MLS Player of the Week honors.

Jul 25, 2015; Chester, PA, USA; United States forward Aron Johannsson (9) controls the ball up field against Panama during the CONCACAF Gold Cup third place match at PPL Park. Panama wins on penalty kicks after a 1-1 draw. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Reports: Werder Bremen in pursuit of Aron Johannsson

German Bundesliga club Werder Bremen is reportedly in talks with AZ Alkmaar over U.S. Men’s National Team forward Aron Johannsson.

SeppBlatter3-Belfast2015 (Getty)

Monday Kickoff: Blatter won’t run for IOC reelection; Di Maria set for PSG medical; and more

Sepp Blatter will not pursue reelection with the International Olympic Committee, while Angel Di Maria is set for a medical with Paris Saint-Germain.

SBI MLS Player of the Week: Pa Madou Kah

MLS: Vancouver Whitecaps FC at Seattle Sounders FC

Photo by Jennifer Buchanan/USA TODAY Sports

By AARON CRANFORD

The Seattle Sounders had a chance to clinch the Cascadia Cup vs. the Vancouver Whitecaps Saturday, but a brace from an unlikely source helped the latter to a dominant 3-0 road win.

Veteran centerback Pa Madou Kah found the back of the net early in both halves for the Whitecaps, tripling his MLS total for goals scored and earning him SBI MLS Player of the Week honors.

Kah tallied his second career MLS goal in just the sixth minute in front of 53,125 at CenturyLink Field, volleying a short effort into the back of the net after a deflection in the box. Four minutes into the second half, the Norwegian international flashed a bit of skill not often seen by defenders to score, backheeling an effort after receiving a pass from Cristian Techera near the six-yard box.

With his two-goal performance, along with helping his backline secure a clean sheet, Kah won the SBI MLS Player of the Week, as voted on by the SBI staff. He just edged out D.C. United forward Chris Rolfe and Montreal Impact playmaker Ignacio Piatti.

What did you think of Kah’s performance? Which MLS Player impressed you the most this past weekend?

Share your thoughts below.

Posted in Featured, MLS- Vancouver Whitecaps, SBI MLS Player of the Week | Leave a comment

The Mexico Corner: Pizzi’s commanding Leon to a great start in the Apertura

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By NAYIB MORAN

Last December when Juan Antonio Pizzi arrived in Leon, there were plenty of expectations.

Pizzi, a coach who had just managed Valencia in La Liga, was seduced by the idea to come to Liga MX and coach Leon, a club that not long ago won two consecutive championships. But in his first season in Mexico, Pizzi’s numbers didn’t captivate – Leon only recorded four wins and its defense was second to last after conceding 32 goals.

The tradition in Mexico is that if a coach can’t give immediate results, more than likely, that coach will be removed from his seat. In Liga MX, the annual year of football is split into two seasons, which demands the coaches to compete within a limited time span.

Nevertheless, Leon respected Pizzi’s projects, and at the end of the Clausura 2015, which finished with an emphatic 6-2 win over Xolos, the club president Jesus Martinez Murguia demonstrated all of his support to a coach that led San Lorenzo to an Argentine league title. Continue reading »

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SBI MLS Rookie of the Week: Cyle Larin

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Photo by Kim Klement/USA Today Sports

By RYAN TOLMICH

Cyle Larin just can’t stop scoring.

The Orlando City forward provided two more goals Saturday, leading the way in a 5-2 defeat of Columbus Crew that earned Larin honors as SBI MLS Rookie of the Week.

The Canadian international proved to be quite the handful for an overmatched Crew backline. After smashing in a Corey Ashe cross from close range for his first, Larin repeated the feat for Orlando City’s third goal, firing home another Ashe ball in from the penalty spot. Larin’s finishes, five in two games, bring the UConn product’s tally up to 11 on the season, equaling the rookie record currently held by former Chicago Fire forward Damani Ralph.

With the goals, Larin now sits fourth in the league in scoring, behind only Kei Kamara, David Villa and Sebastian Giovinco. In addition, Larin earns this week’s Rookie of the Week recognition, beating out Matt Polster and Fatai Alashe for the honors.

What did you think of Larin’s performance? Which rookie stood out to you this past week?

Share your thoughts below.

Posted in MLS- Orlando City, SBI MLS Rookie of the Week | 3 Comments

EA Sports confirms addition of CenturyLink Field in FIFA 16

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By FRANCO PANIZO

Make it two playable MLS stadiums in EA Sports’ FIFA series.

After years of having only the Vancouver Whitecaps’ B.C. Place in the popular soccer video game, EA Sports will include CenturyLink Field, home of the Seattle Sounders, for the first time in its upcoming title, FIFA16.

EA Sports made the announcement on Monday morning while unveiling the list of stadiums, both old and new, in the video game. The news confirms the suspicions of many MLS fans and gamers, who identified CenturyLink Field as a possible addition to FIFA 16 during its first released trailer earlier this summer.

The only other MLS venue that is playable in FIFA currently is B.C. Place, which is located in Vancouver, the same city where EA Sports has a studio that develops the annual video game and other hit titles.

Continue reading »

Posted in Gaming, Major League Soccer, MLS- Seattle Sounders | 7 Comments

Video: Giovani dos Santos welcomed by LA Galaxy fans at airport

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Posted in MLS- LA Galaxy | 27 Comments

Reports: Werder Bremen in pursuit of Aron Johannsson

photo by Bill Streicher/USA Today Sports

By FRANCO PANIZO

The summer may be nearing its conclusion, but that does not mean that the movement on the Americans Abroad front is close to being done.

Aron Johannsson is the latest U.S. Men’s National Team player linked with a change of addresses this summer, as German Bundesliga club Werder Bremen is reportedly in hot pursuit of his services. Bremen has allegedly already begun negotiations with the 24-year-old forward’s current team, AZ Alkmaar, in an effort to replace the recently-departed Franco Di Santo.

One report out of German outlet Bild claims that Johannsson has come to personal terms with Bremen, agreeing to a four-year deal.

Johannsson, who recently admitted he’d like to play in MLS some day, has spent the past two-and-a-half seasons with AZ Alkmaar in the Eredivisie. There, he has scored 29 league goals in 60 appearances.

Johannsson is fresh off of playing for the U.S. in the CONCACAF Gold Cup. He earned four starts in five appearances in the tournament, and scored one goal.

What do you think about Johannsson possibly moving to Werder Bremen? Would the club be a good move for him or should he stick at AZ Alkmaar for another year? Wishing MLS would make a serious attempt to sign him?

Share your thoughts below.

Posted in Americans Abroad, Featured | 33 Comments

NASL Week 5: A Look Back

Photo by Ottawa Fury FC

BY COLE KELLOGG

Just when it looked like FC Edmonton had done enough to draw the league-leaders at home, a late strike extended the Ottawa Fury’s lead atop the table to six points.

Marc Dos Santos’ side, which finished ninth in the spring season, has now managed five wins and one draw this fall.

The result was disappointing for FC Edmonton, who fought hard for 90 minutes but just couldn’t see out the result. The Eddies dropped from second to fourth place in the table.

Minnesota United brought its firepower along to Jacksonville on Friday, as the side struck late twice to draw on the Armada’s home turf. Meanwhile, Indy Eleven lost the team’s second out of three games after giving up an early goal to the Atlanta Silverbacks.

Elsewhere, the Tampa Bay Rowdies drew with the Carolina RailHawks on the road, and the New York Cosmos put up its first win this fall against the Fort Lauderdale Strikers.

Here is a closer look at this weekend’s results: Continue reading »

Posted in NASL, New York Cosmos | Leave a comment

Monday Kickoff: Blatter won’t run for IOC reelection; Di Maria set for PSG medical; and more

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By RYAN TOLMICH

After 16 years, Sepp Blatter is set to depart the International Olympic Committee.

Up for reelection, Blatter informed IOC president Thomas Bach that he will not pursue another term with the organization.Due to age constrictions, Blatter, who has been a part of the organization since 1999, would have had to step down next year regardless.

“He does not deem it to be appropriate to stand for re-election for eight years knowing that after seven months his term would come to an end,” Bach said.

Blatter, who will see his presidency with FIFA come to an end with a February election, was not in attendance for the IOC’s general assembly in Kuala Lumpur.

Here are some more news and notes to kick off your Monday morning: Continue reading »

Posted in European Soccer, Featured, FIFA, International Soccer | 3 Comments