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By RYAN TOLMICH
Since assuming the role of Real Salt Lake head coach in 2007, success hasn’t been too hard to come by for Jason Kreis. Having led RSL to an MLS Cup in 2009, Kreis has reached the pinnacle of MLS success while becoming the youngest head coach in history to claim an MLS crown.
However, despite all of his previous successes, positives have been hard to come by in Kreis’ first handful of games in charge of NYCFC.
Through the first nine games of the club’s inaugural season, NYCFC have collected just six points, opening Kreis’ eyes to just how difficult it is to build a team from scratch in the current MLS landscape.
“Not well,” Kreis said when asked how he’s handling the team’s slow start. “It just doesn’t sit well with me. I guess I didn’t realize it would be this difficult. Maybe I forgot how hard it is to build a team in this league and have success on a continuous basis, a consistent basis.
“A lot of sleepless nights now to think of ways to get this team to improve, to stay positive, because if you think there are a lot of positive things to look to, and to have some patience, and that’s probably my biggest downfall in my character is that I have very little patience.” Continue reading
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BY MICHAEL PENG
NEW YORK — It was the usual suspects again for Seattle, but when Clint Dempsey and Obafemi Martins have been so splendid all season, it’s a formula the Sounders will gladly take game after game to get positive results.
Martins’ first of two goals on the night opened the scoring in the 23rd minute and Dempsey added a go-ahead score in the 58th as the Sounders defeated host New York City FC, 3-1, in front of a crowd of 25,384 at Yankee Stadium on Sunday.
Martins tacked on another goal in the 67th mark to put the game away and subsequently extended the expansion club’s winless streak to an MLS-long seven matches.
With the three scores in the contest, Dempsey and Martins have now combined to be responsible for 11 of the Sounders’ 13 goals on the season so far.
“Nothing surprises me with those two guys,” Seattle head coach Sigi Schmid said. “They are able to conjure up magical stuff and they are unique and special.”
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By ADAM TROXTELL
A day after his team was victorious in a friendly outing against Ponte Preta, Orlando City SC midfielder Kevin Molino shared some bad news.
Molino has been ruled out for the rest of the season with a torn ACL, Orlando City announced on Sunday night.
Molino was subbed out of Saturday night’s friendly in the 18th minute and replaced by Eric Avila. Molino has started all seven of Orlando City’s games this season, recording one assist.
The injury will also rule Molino out of this summer’s CONCACAF Gold Cup, where he was expected to be one of Trinidad & Tobago’s key players.
Here are some more MLS news and notes:
Photo by Matt Polster / USA TODAY Sports Images
By TATE STEINLAGE
KANSAS CITY, Kan. — The 50th meeting between Sporting Kansas City and the Chicago Fire was a breath of fresh air. The two sides traded what has been sluggish, defensive-minded play in recent years for pace and a flurry of chances.
In the end Sunday, it was Sporting KC who benefitted. Paulo Nagamura’s 75th-minute header was buried in the back of the net as the home side grabbed three points for the first time in nearly a month with a 1-0 victory. The win also snapped the Fire’s three-match winning streak.
Nagamura made quick work with his first chance after coming on in the 64th minute. The midfielder got on the end of a perfect cross from defender Jalil Anibaba on the right flank. Fire goalkeeper Sean Johnson extended to make a play but the ball was out of reach and en route to the back of the net.
By FRANCO PANIZO
It was not the result Greg Garza or Club Tijuana wanted, but the U.S. Men’s National Team defender ended a personal drought this weekend that dated back more than two years..
Garza found the back of the net for the first time since Nov. 16, 2012, on Friday, scoring Club Tijuana’s lone goal in a 2-1 loss to fellow American Edgar Castillo and Atlas. The tally came via a close-range finish following a cross from the right and put Tijuana ahead just before halftime. Unfortunately for the Xolos, they allowed the lead to slip away and now hold a slim one-point advantage for one of Liga MX’s playoff spots.
A pair of Americans squared off in Germany, as John Brooks and Fabian Johnson both started for their respective clubs in Hertha Berlin’s 2-1 home loss to Borussia Moenchengladbach. Brooks went the distance for Hertha in the match, and Johnson lasted until the 79th minute before being replaced. The win kept third-placed Moenchengladbach in control of the Bundesliga’s final guaranteed UEFA Champions League spot.
It was not all good news this weekend, however. Brad Guzan was surprisingly not given the nod for Aston Villa on Saturday, and instead demoted to the bench while Shay Given started in between the pipes in a 3-2 win over Everton. It marked the first time this season that Guzan did not start in league play for the Villans, snapping his streak at 34 games.
Here is how the Americans Abroad fared this weekend:
By ADAM TROXTELL
For the first time in five years, Chelsea will finish as the top team in the English Premier League.
The Blues sealed their fourth Premier League title on Sunday with a 1-0 win against Crystal Palace. Eden Hazard scored the lone goal by rebounding his own penalty kick in the 45th minute.
Though Palace attempted to offer some form of opposition, Chelsea went on to dominate the game and celebrate at the final whistle. It is the first time since the 2009-10 season, then under Carlo Ancelotti, since the Blues have lifted the top prize in English soccer. Three of the club’s four titles have been secured with Jose Mourinho at the helm.
Chelsea spent the first half just waiting for the goal to come, and it finally did as halftime approached. James McArthur and Adrian Mariappa were unable to keep up with Hazard as he darted into the box, both taking part in bringing down the Belgian.
The penalty was taken poorly by Hazard’s standards and saved by Speroni. But he could do nothing about the resulting header that sailed inside the far right post to finally make Chelsea’s title claim official.
Elsewhere, Roma put a serious dent in Genoa’s UEFA Champions League hopes in Serie A, and Borussia Monchengladbach took a step toward the Bundesliga’s European spots while forcing Hertha Berlin to work to avoid the drop.
Here are more recaps from Sunday’s action across Europe’s top leagues:
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By AARON CRANFORD
Minnesota United FC had no answer for the play of FC Edmonton winger Lance Laing in their 2-2 draw with the Canadian club.
Laing added a goal and an assist to his tally on the year, and due to his performance, the Loons remain winless five weeks into the NASL Spring Season.
Tomi Ameobi claimed the second for the Eddies in the 71st minute, but it was all set up by the play of Laing. He sped with the ball down the left, and instead of blasting a shot at a tight angle, coolly passed the ball across the goal where the Eddies striker was there to meet it.
Miguel Ibarra celebrated the opening goal and his first of the season in the second minute of play, but it was Laing who started the comeback with a beautifully-struck free kick and looked to have finished the game off with his assist.
However, Jamie Watson had the last laugh after slotting in a penalty kick for the Loons late in the game. Continue reading
By IVES GALARCEP
There may have only been one U.S. Men’s National Team friendly in the month of April, but that isn’t stopping us from seriously shaking up our projection for the USMNT Gold Cup roster.
No, this isn’t an overreaction to Jordan Morris’ impressive showings against Mexico (for senior team and the U-23s), but rather an acknowledgment that Jurgen Klinsmann can make several roster changes within the Gold Cup (after the group stage) which will give him even more options beyond the initial roster he must name.
That means we can see more players given chances this summer than we had been projecting earlier.
Does that mean everybody who is worthy of a look will get one? Not quite. There is still plenty of depth all over, and there will be some good players left out.
With that in mind, here is the April projection of the USMNT Gold Cup roster (the squad we see Klinsmann taking):