The US U-20 team picked up a 2-0 win over Jamaica on Sunday (highlights). They just need a win or a tie on Wednesday against Trinidad & Tobago to advance to the playoff round. It was announced during the broadcast that Kellyn Acosta will miss the rest of the tournament due to a knee injury, while Junior Flores came off the bench and played after missing a game with an ankle injury.
Also over the weekend, Herculez Gomez scored his first goal for Puebla since returning to La Franja (highlights).
As MLSE CEO Tim Leiweke explained to the Toronto Sun on Friday, sacrifice for the crest is certainly one of those principles.
The club’s head honcho told me Bradley restructured part of his deal with the Reds to help bring Altidore back to MLS. The prospects of playing alongside Altidore brought back memories that made it an easy decision.
“I think about what it has been like to play on so many big days with Jozy,” Bradley said. “We’d be standing in the tunnel and you’ll look over at him and he’ll give you a little wink.
Now that numerous teams in MLS are interested in Sacha Kljestan, Anderlecht general manager Herman Van Holsbeeckwants Kljestan to stay for at least a couple months since Anderlecht has lost a couple players due to injury and the African Cup of Nations. Greg Seltzer is also hearing that some European teams are interested in him along with various MLS clubs.
We did have some other goals this past weekend that came in some friendlies. Fabian Johnson scored a goal in Borussia Mönchengladbach’s 1-0 win over Rot-Weiss Essen (photo). And Andrew Wooten scored a goal in Sandhausen’s 4-2 win over Jahn Regensburg.
Camp begins January 12 and we should see a roster in the next few days. Jurgen Klinsmann/US Soccer released a video earlier this week to various members of the press where he explained that 2015 will focus a lot of attention on the youth teams, especially the U-23 Olympic team.
“The main task for 2015 is definitely the Olympic team, the U-23 team, to get that off the ground. To identify players, get camps on the agenda, get games on the agenda for that team, and help them to kind of build a core group towards the qualifiers. We want to make sure that what happened with London 2012 is not happening again. We put this on a higher priority level and I think that’s exciting.”
He also confirmed that Brek Shea will be in January’s camp.
Tab Ramos selected his 20-man roster for the 2015 CONCACAF U-20 Championship on Monday. While Ben Spencer is on the roster, apparently CONCACAF’s website had Joel Sonora’s name on the roster at first. It looks like Sonora originally made the team, but was pulled off due to an injury.
With 2014 ending, we have closed off our 2014 goal tracker. Jann George led the way with 20 goals across all competitions in the calendar year. I have already setup the 2015 page as Jon-Paul Pittman scored a goal on January 1 while we were too busy watching the Big Ten beat up on the SEC West.
And finally, we can blame Alex Olshansky for bringing this to my attention, but here is the weird BBC intro for the US/Portugal match from last summer’s World Cup. You can tell even Gary Lineker thought it was odd at the end of the video.
Ventura Alvarado is a champion as America beat Tigres, 3-0, to win Liga MX on aggregate, 3-1. Alvarado started and went 84 minutes. Jose Francisco Torres went 62 minutes in a losing effort for Tigres while Herculez Gomez was an unused substitute.
Here are the highlights.
and since I didn’t post them Thursday/Friday, here is the goal for Tigres in its 1-0 first-leg victory
Steven Goff is reporting that US U-20 goalkeeper Zack Steffen is close to signing with Freiburg in Germany. Freiburg currently have Caleb Stanko on their roster and used to have Eric Lickert until this past season.
Tim Howard was named Fútbol de Primera Player of the Year last week. The award is given to the top USMNT player each year and voted on by various journalists. This was Howard’s first year winning the award.
Haven’t done some links in a while, but here are a bunch of random stuff from recently or two weeks ago (or sometime in the last little bit). Hopefully my workload will ease up after this week and I could do these more often again.
FIFA announced its finalists for the FIFA Ballon d’Or and for the FIFA World Coach of the Year. While no USMNT players made the Ballon d’Or list (how did Alan Gordon not get nominated?!), Jurgen Klinsmann is one of the 10 finalists for the Coach of the Year award.
FIFA also plans to show off its new logo for the 2018 World Cup later today.
It looks like the USMNT might play Switzerland in a friendly in Zurich in March.
Congrats to the US Women’s National Team for winning the CONCACAF Women’s Championship and clinching a spot in next summer’s World Cup. Since 1990, the US is one of three countries to qualify for every men’s and women’s World Cup (also Germany and Brazil).
Michael Bradley is going to have surgery this week to correct a lingering nerve issue in his foot. This is an injury that has been bugging him for most of the season. Jeff Carlisle asked him if it was an issue prior to the World Cup, which he said no, but I guess it got worse as the season wore on.
Jake Keegan went 90 minutes yesterday in Galway FC’s 2-1 win over UCD in the first leg of the Irish Premier Division promotion/relegation playoffs. Galway FC scored two late goals to steal the road win and now host UCD on Friday for a chance at promotion.
After scoring 12 goals in 14 games with the U-23 team, Jann George finally saw some first team action with Greuther Furth’s senior team in their 5-2 loss to FSV Frankfurt.
We had some goals this weekend. Matt Taylor scored twice in Saarbrücken’s 4-1 win over Pirmasens. Christian King scored twice in Ararat’s 3-2 loss to Ulisses in Armenian Premier League action. Jerome Kiesewetter scored his second goal of the season on Saturday in Stuttgart II’s 1-0 win over Unterhaching. And over Tigres’ last two games, we have had goals by Jose Torres and Herculez Gomez.
I saw a Clint Dempsey rumor (loan deal back to the Premier League) has been circulating the interwebs in the last 48 hours, but it all came from a short “story” from the Daily Mirror with no quotes (except for an out of context quote from Klinsmann). Come on people, I thought we were better than that.
And finally, no matter what happens with the rest of his career, Stuart Holden is still awesome.
The USMNT will have a second friendly next month in Europe as they will take on Colombia at Craven Cottage in London.
The latest FIFA rankings came out earlier this week and the US dropped six places to No. 23. They are still the third-highest ranked team in CONCACAF as Costa Rica comes in at No. 16 and Mexico at No. 17.
Mix Diskerud had to be subbed out after 36 minutes in last weekend’s game due to an injury, but he just missed a couple practices this week and returned to training yesterday. Sounds like a good chance he plays on Sunday.
Also in the injury department, Aron Johannsson is expected to dress with AZ Alkmaar this weekend. Johannsson played with AZ’s reserves earlier this week and will get a chance to play in his first game with the senior team against Groningen on Saturday.
While we are learning about some new dual-national players, Tom Marshall introduces us to Leones Negros midfielder Jesus Vazquez.
Aleks Gogic signed with Reading last year, but it looks like the 18-year-old goalkeeper must be on loan with Southern League Premier Division (seventh tier!) side Slough Town F.C. as he played in a game with them last Saturday.
Here are a bunch of things from the last couple of days.
Joe Gyau made his first team debut with Borussia Dortmund on Wednesday. He came off the bench and played the last 16 minutes. Here are some highlights and an every touch video of his performance. As for that hugging photo with Jurgen Klopp, that came right after Dortmund scored their first goal right as Gyau was about to sub into the game.
Robbie Keane thinks Robbie Rogers should get a look at left back for the USMNT (No Gregory, I am not posting this as a shot at Timmy Chandler. Just wanted to get that out there in advance. ).
MLSsoccer.com posted their Top 24 players under 24 yesterday. A few USMNT players (DeAndre Yedlin, Bill Hamid, Luis Gil) on there as well as some possible USMNT hopefuls in the near future (Gyasi Zardes, Wil Trapp).
It might be tough for some of the MLS players to play for the USMNT in the October 10 friendly due to the MLS schedule that week.
And finally, we are nearly out of our OT/Sacha Mustache t-shirts, but here is your last chance to get your hands on one. Some of the ones listed in that post have already been claimed, waiting to hear back from some others, but send me an e-mail if you are interested.