By RYAN TOLMICH
Down 3-1 entering Sunday night’s second leg, Honduras was going to have to put together a special performance to rekindle the country’s hopes of appearing in this summer’s Gold Cup.
On the back of Andy Najar, a special performance is exactly what Los Catrachos put forth.
Honduras topped French Guiana, 3-0, Sunday and 4-3 on aggregate to claim the 12th and final spot in July’s Gold Cup.
Najar led the way for Los Carachos, who were topped 2-1 in the opening leg in French Guiana. The former D.C. United midfielder scored a pair of goals in a little over two minutes, the first of which came in the 30th minute via a spectacularly hit volley from outside the box. Continue reading
Photo by Jeff Swinger/USA Today Sports
By RYAN TOLMICH
After conceding an equalizer in the 88th minute of play, it would have been easy for Real Salt Lake to hang heads and accept the fate of just one point.
Jordan Allen did no such thing.
The 19-year-old defender, just five games into his MLS career, scored the game-winning goal in the 89th minute, leading RSL to a 2-1 victory over the visiting Toronto FC.
Moments after Olmes Garcia had a chance to push the original lead to two, substitute Jackson brought Toronto FC the goal they so despearately needed with a finish in the 88th minute. That scoreline lasted just over one minute as Allen lit up Rio Tinto with his first professional goal to earn his side all three points.
After conceding a hard-earned lead, Allen provided the spark, as the defender got on the end of a Morales cross to head home from close range. Continue reading
Photo by Mike Dinovo / USA Today Sports
By ADAM TROXTELL
A big sigh of relief breathed out of the cold at Toyota Park.
The Chicago Fire emerged from a clash of winless teams against Philadelphia Union with their first victory of the season, 1-0 on a frigid spring afternoon. Harrison Shipp was again in the middle of the action, leaving only the question of how only one goal was scored in a lively match.
After scoring the Fire’s first goal of the season last weekend against San Jose, Shipp provided the eventual winner in the first half with a cross that was steered home by Adailton. The goal came after a steady build-up by the Fire, who out-shot the Union 16-7 and held the visitors to zero shots on goal.
Philadelphia’s effort was held back by several factors, not least a red card to Fred in the 73rd minute for hitting Shipp in the face. It came just as the Union appeared to be organizing for an equalizer, but they remain winless through four games this season.
By ADAM TROXTELL
In the buildup to this summer’s Copa America, Chile also might have revenge on the mind when facing Brazil in London.
The match held at the Emirates Stadium is the first meeting between the two sides since Brazil’s win on penalty kicks in the round of 16 at last year’s World Cup. Both teams called up the big guns for this friendly match, with Neymar and Alexis Sanchez expected to play.
Qualification continues for next summer’s European Championships, with Germany trying to retake first place in their group against Georgia. It should be an easy time for the Germans, who are currently staring up at Poland in a close Group D.
Ireland hosts Poland later in the day, with just three points separating first from fourth. Third place Scotland plays bottom dwellers Gibraltar.
Portugal can take top spot in Group I with a win against Serbia. Denmark, who currently tops the group, plays France in a friendly match this round.
If you will be watching any of today’s action, feel free to leave your thoughts, opinions and some play-by-play in the comments section below
Enjoy the action (today’s soccer on TV schedule after the jump):
BY MICHAEL PENG
NEW YORK — David Villa had been fighting through it week after week, but the pain from a groin injury that has been nagging him since the preseason finally became too unbearable, forcing the Spanish star to sit out of New York City FC’s match Saturday against Sporting Kansas City.
Without his presence up top, as well as the likes of Khiry Shelton and Adam Nemec, who were both called away on their respective international duties, NYCFC suffered their first loss in club history, dropping the match 1-0 on an early Ike Opara header on a chilly, snowy night at Yankee Stadium.
Patrick Mullins and Javier Calle got the nods to start for NYCFC, and substitute Tony Taylor came on late, but none of them were able to find the goal NYCFC needed to salvage the loss, as the team had just three shots on target on 12 tries.
The club cited “a slight adductor issue” in a statement released just prior to the match and afterward, head coach Jason Kreis admitted this is an issue the team has been monitoring for quite some time. Continue reading
Photo by Stew Milne/USA Today Sports
By CARL SETTERLUND
FOXBOROUGH, Mass. — Darrius Barnes isn’t the first player that comes to mind when most people think of the New England Revolution’s defense, but Barnes is again proving his value.
The versatile 6-foot-1 defender entered the season as a top backup, but has made the most of his early-season opportunities. Barnes patrolled the middle with Andrew Farrell in last weekend’s shutout against the Montreal Impact, and on Saturday he shifted out wide to provide cover for injured right back Kevin Alston.
“Darrius had an excellent week of training, and an excellent game last week, so it was hard to take him off,” said Revs coach Jay Heaps, who moved his Week 3 right back, fill-in Jeremy Hall, to the bench in favor of Barnes. “Again tonight he proves why you put him in there. He’s fighting for everything.”
The 28-year-old Barnes also assisted on the Revs’ eventual winner in the 37th minute. Kelyn Rowe came away with the glory, but it was Barnes who did the dirty work on that one, diving to split San Jose’s Marvell Wynne and J.J. Koval and get on the end of a Chris Tierney free kick.
Photo by Tim Heitman / USA Today Sports
By ADAM TROXTELL
An early FC Dallas red card was not enough to provide a short-handed Seattle Sounders attack with the necessary advantage.
Chance after chance went begging in the second half as the Sounders settled for a 0-0 road draw against the best team in the West though four games. Minus both Clint Dempsey and Obafemi Martins, the Sounders were unable to find a good enough final pass to take advantage of the missing Kellyn Acosta.
FCD’s young defensive back was sent off in just the 18th minute for a high, dangerous tackle on Andy Rose, who was deputizing for the injured Dempsey just behind striker Chad Barrett. Seattle used the extra man to its liking much more in the second half.
But the lack of goals was simply a matter of poor finishing. Neither team recorded a single shot on goal through 90 minutes, though Barrett had at least three golden opportunities before he was subbed off.
Michel sent FCD’s best chance off the cross bar with a 27th minute free kick. The home side constantly looked to attack when possible, using Fabian Castillo to almost maximum effect.
Photo by Brad Mills/USA Today Sports
By CLIFF STARKEY
WASHINGTON– Although D.C. United and the Los Angeles Galaxy are two of the most storied franchises in MLS history, each team needed Saturday night’s game in the nation’s capital to break out of their respective early-season slumps.
In the end — and at the end — it was D.C. United who came away with a vital three points.
As the game entered the final seconds, and both teams looked ready to settle for a disappointing scoreless draw in the cold, Nick DeLeon beat his man down the wing and delivered a cross that Chris Pontius headed home to ensure a late 1-0 victory.
Even though they didn’t come out as ineffectively as they did last week in Harrison, New Jersey, D.C. United once again had a tough start to the game. Defender Steve Birnbaum injured his ankle after a second-minute corner kick. Birnbaum rolled his left ankle after his headed attempt was cleared off the line. Continue reading