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Report: Dynamo the new frontrunners for ‘Cubo’ Torres (UPDATED)

The Houston Dynamo are reportedly leading the chase to sign Erick “Cubo” Torres after the Seattle Sounders and LA Galaxy passed on signing the Mexican forward.

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D.C. Council approves D.C. United stadium plan

The D.C. Council approved of a 20,000-25,000 seat soccer-specific stadium plan for D.C. United.

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Las Vegas City Council narrowly approves soccer stadium proposal

Las Vegas City Council approved a proposal to jointly finance a soccer-specific stadium in the city for an MLS team with a pair of private developers.

Kljestan on the mark in Anderlecht’s Belgian Cup victory

Sacha Kljestan Anderlecht

By FRANCO PANIZO

It wasn’t pretty by any stretch, but it counted all the same.

Sacha Kljestan found the back of the net on Wednesday to cap the scoring in Anderlecht’s 3-0 win over Zulte-Waregem in the first leg of their Coupe de Belgique quarterfinals series. Kljestan struck two minutes after entering the game, bundling a cross over the goal line with his knee in the 86th minute before celebrating it modestly.

The goal was the 29-year-old midfielder’s first since scoring in a Pro League tilt back on Oct. 29, and his second across all competitions in a season that has seen him struggle for consistent playing time. It came on the same day that fellow American John Brooks scored in a German Bundesliga affair.

Kljestan and Anderlecht will attempt to close out the series and move onto the tournament semifinals when they host Zulte-Waregem in the decisive leg on Jan. 21.

You can see the goal here:

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Posted in Americans Abroad | 2 Comments

Report: Gyau suffers setback as knee struggles with increased workload

Joe Gyau Borussia Dortmund 0

By FRANCO PANIZO

What was looking to be an incredibly quick comeback now appears to be a test of patience and mental fortitude for Joe Gyau.

Gyau was seemingly on his way to making a lightning-fast recovery from the left knee injury he sustained back in October, returning to full training for Borussia Dortmund in mid-November. But the 22-year-old winger suffered a setback during the past week, as his knee struggled to cope with an increased workload.

Gyau had recently been playing games for Dortmund’s second team, making three appearances since Nov. 21. He was left off this past weekend’s roster, however, due to the knee issues.

While it is not clear how much of a setback this is for Gyau, it seems unlikely that he will crack back into the relegation-threatened club’s first team until after the Bundesliga’s winter break. Borussia Dortmund play their final game before the new year this Saturday, and don’t return to action until Jan. 31.

Gyau made one substitute appearance for Dortmund this season before suffering his knee injury in the U.S. Men’s National Team’s 1-1 draw vs. Ecuador on Oct. 10. He had surgery to repair the damage, and U.S. head coach Jurgen Klinsmann stated just before then that the speedy winger would be out of action until at least January.

What do you make of this development? Worried that Gyau might be trying to rush back too soon? What do you think are his chances of making the U.S. Men’s National Team’s 2015 Gold Cup roster?

Share your thoughts below.

Posted in Americans Abroad | 18 Comments

U.S. U-18 tops Germany U-18 in first of two friendlies

JavierPerezUSMNT2-WorldCup2014 (USATodaySports)

Photo by USA TODAY Sports

By DAN KARELL

Goals from Mauricio Pineda and Brooks Lennon gave the U.S. Under-18 Men’s National Team a memorable win midway through their winter training camp in Marbella, Spain.

The U.S. U-18s defeated Germany U-18s, 2-1, in the first of two friendly matches between the two nations. Pineda, the brother of Indy Eleven midfielder and former Chicago Fire Homegrown signing Victor Pineda, volleyed home a goal in the 19th minute to put the Americans ahead.

In the 76th minute, Lennon gave the U.S. a two-goal lead by smashing home a rebound after a shot by Real Salt Lake-AZ teammate Sebastian Saucedo was saved. Germany’s Prince Osei Owusu scored a penalty kick in the fourth minute of second half stoppage time to cut the deficit in half but the German squad ran out of time to tie the score.

The USA and Germany play each other again on Friday.

Here’s the U.S. U-18 MNT’s starting lineup:

USA: Klinsmann; Duncan, Redding, Pineda, Peleaz; Lindley, Swanson, Yueill; Saucedo, Elney, Mansaray

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What do you think of this result?

Share your thoughts below.

Posted in U.S. Soccer, U.S. Under-18 National Team, U.S. Youth National Teams | 15 Comments

Williams wary of host Honduras after CONCACAF U-17 Championship draw

RichieWilliamsUSU17MNTNikeInternationalFriendlies-2014 (Getty)

By DAN KARELL

The U.S. Under-17 Men’s National Team avoided being grouped with Mexico in the CONCACAF U-17 Championship draw late last week, but U.S. U-17 head coach Richie Williams doesn’t believe that makes his squad favorites to win their group.

“The toughest team will be Honduras, being the host country,” Williams told SBI in a phone interview from Honduras.

Williams certainly won’t have fond memories of Los Catrachos, after the Honduras U-17s knocked the U.S.  U-17s out of World Cup qualification in the quarterfinals of the 2013 CONCACAF U-17 tournament. It was an embarrassing moment for both Williams and U.S. Soccer, as it was the first time since the U-17 World Cup’s conception in 1985 that the U.S. would not be a participant.

Luckily for the USA, this time around, it should be a bit easier to qualify thanks to a new format. Under the new format, the winners of the groups automatically earn two of the four places earmarked for the U-17 World Cup next fall in Chile, while the second and third-place finishers in each group are re-seeded and battle it out for the final two spots available.

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Posted in U.S. Under-17 National Team, U.S. Youth National Teams | Leave a comment

Dwyer warns foreign clubs to “back off” by pledging future to Sporting KC

Dom Dwyer

Photo by Gary Rohman/USA TODAY Sports Images

By TATE STEINLAGE 

Dom Dwyer’s aspirations are lofty. So much, in fact, that the 24-year-old Englishman was disappointed with only scoring 22 goals last season, despite the mark setting a new single-season record at Sporting Kansas City.

Fortunately for him, Sporting KC’s front office was more than pleased with his effort. The club confirmed Wednesday that Dwyer has signed a multiyear contract extension, which will earn Dwyer a “significant raise” from his roughly $92,500 salary in 2014, that according to the Kansas City Star.

“I’m very excited for my future with this club,” Dwyer said over a conference call Wednesday. “It’s a club who first believed in me and drafted me. It’s something I wanted to do, and I’m very excited for it. It’s nice to not be concerned about that stuff so I can focus on what really matters and that’s playing football, getting better and bringing more championships to Kansas City.”

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Posted in Major League Soccer, MLS- Sporting Kansas City | 6 Comments

Report: Dynamo the new frontrunners for ‘Cubo’ Torres (UPDATED)

Torres-USAToday-ChivasUSA

Photo by USA Today Photos

By DAN KARELL

Erick “Cubo” Torres might be staying Major League Soccer, but there’s a good chance that he leaves Southern California all together.

According to a report in Goal USA, the Houston Dynamo are out front in the race to sign the former Chivas USA forward. The report states that while both the Seattle Sounders and LA Galaxy passed on signing Torres, the Dynamo have stepped forward and are willing to trigger the $7.5 million purchase clause in Torres’ loan contract with MLS.

The reason for the delay on Torres’ decision, the report says, is that MLS was waiting for a “suitable buyer” to appear. The Chicago Fire were also at one point in the running, but decided to focus on other targets in their Designated Player search.

An interesting note is that the $7.5 million transfer fee could be lowered if Chivas de Guadalajara decide to bring Torres back for the Clausura season. Chivas just endured another miserable campaign and are in serious danger of being relegated, which would be a travesty for arguably Mexico’s most popular club.

(UPDATE- Chivas Guadalajara announced on Wednesday night that Torres will join the club for the next six months, which suggests an agreement has been reached with MLS. No other details have emerged yet.)

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Posted in Featured, Major League Soccer, Mexican Soccer, MLS- Chivas USA, MLS- Houston Dynamo | 20 Comments