Daily news roundups / Featured

Pfeffer & Steffen called up, USA comes back to draw, that Zlatan goal, more

Photo: Earl Gardner

Philadelphia Union

Zach Pfeffer and academy goalkeeper Zack Steffen have been called up for the USMNT U-18 camp in Carson, Calif. that will be held Nov. 17-24. The team will face the Canadian U-18s on Nov. 21 and Nov. 23.

Pfeffer said in a press release, “Anytime you get a chance to represent your country regardless of the level it’s a big honor. I am excited for the opportunity and always take a lot from those training sessions.”

US U-18 head coach Javier Perez discusses the upcoming camp here.

Pfeffer and Steffens were part of the September overseas camp that faced Feyenoord Rotterdam, the Netherland’s U-18s, Borussia Dortmund and Club Brugge for a 3–1–0 record. Steffen was also part of the 19-player U-20 roster that participated in the Marbella Cup tournament in Spain in October.

The Union have said they are looking for a veteran goalkeeper to mentor Zac MacMath. Could Matt Reis be an option?

Sheanon Williams is in the discussion at Union Dues about five defenders who could factor into the US team for the 2014 World Cup (should they qualify, knock on wood).

Friendlies

Carlos Valdes said before Wednesday’s thrilling match between Colombia and Brazil that playing for his country is “the highest honor.” The game ended as a 1–1 draw with Brazil’s Neymar scoring a lovely strike only to follow that up with one of the most comically missed penalty kicks in recent memory. Neither Valdes nor Faryd Mondragon entered the game for Colombia.

Colombia goalkeeper David Ospina joined Kaka in blaming the state of the pitch for Neymar’s miss.

Kaka reiterated his interest in one day plaing in MLS, but not now. “I like it. I have some friends that are playing here now so they say a lot of good stuff about the MLS. One day I hope I can play here.”

You can view a collection of highlight videos from the game here.

Down in Panama City, Spain waltzed through Panama to win 5–1. Gabriel Gomez scored the consolation goal with a cheekily chipped PK three minutes from time. You can see the goal here (starts at 4:37).

Local

The Drexel men’s team will host Brown today in the first round of the NCAA championship tournament. Kickoff is at 4pm at Vidas Field.

Penn’s Duke Lacroix and Travis Cantrell have been selected for All-Ivy second team honors. Jonny Dolezal and Stephen Baker received honorable mentions.

MLS

That uncalled foul in the first leg of the Eastern Conference championship that DC believed should have resulted in a penalty kick? Upon further review, Peter Walton, the head of the Professional Referee Organization, believes it should have been a red. DC must feel so much better now.

Sticking with DC, the league disciplinary committee has fined Bill Hamid “for failure to leave the field in an orderly manner” after he received a red card against New York. Lionard “Who Knew I Was a Raving Loon” Pajoy was also fined “for putting the game in disrepute by deliberately marring the penalty mark” in the same game. So players get fines for a few moments of passionate stupidity while a ref affecting the course of a title game results in a clarification statement. Makes sense.

DC are “very optimistic” that Dwayne De Rosario will be back from what was thought to be a season ending injury for Sunday’s second leg game against Houston.

Former Union man Brad Knighton started the 2012 season on the bench for Vancouver and ended it as their starting keeper. “From my perspective, finishing the year the way that I did, I feel like it’s my shirt to lose,” Knighton says. “If I continue to do the things that I do well, they’re going to have to take the shirt off my back.”

US

With Tim Howard keeping the team in the game, brilliant strikes from Michael Bradley and Mix Diskerud saw the US comeback twice to finish with a 2–2 draw with Russia on Wednesday. Recaps and reaction from PSP, ESPN, SI, SI (player ratings), Soccer America, Sporting News, MLSsoccer.com, Goal.com, ProSoccerTalk, and SBI.

Jurgen Klinsmann said after the game, “The way our team fought back twice after being down a goal was great. It showed a lot of personality. It showed a lot of character. This is a young team, and a team that is growing. We are pleased with the game overall, and to score in the last minute was great.”

Quote sheet here.

The German football federation announced on Wednesday that they will play two games in the US in 2013 as part of the 100th anniversary celebrations of the US Soccer Federation. (German-language statement here.)

Additional reports indicate that the US will play Germany on June 2 in DC with Germany to play a yet to be determined opponent somewhere else on May 29 “either in New York City, Boston or Miami.”

Hope Solo and Jerramy Stevens were reportedly married on Tuesday. Stevens was arrested early Monday morning on domestic violence assault charges but released after a judge ruled there was no evidence that he was connected with an assault. Nevertheless, local police say the domestic abuse case is “an open investigation.”

Elsewhere

From the Department of WTF comes this from Zlatan Ibrahimovic:

Ibrahimovic was already on a hat trick when he delivered that stunner in Sweden’s 4–2 win over England. Steven Gerrard, who had earned his 100th cap for England in the game, said, “It was the best goal I have ever seen.”

Erik Hamren, the manager of the Sweden team, said, “Sometimes, when he does these things in training or in a match, you don’t think it’s possible. Sometimes you feel you’re looking at a computer game where you can do all these incredible things, because that’s not possible to do that, that fourth goal.”

Ibrahimovic said,  It was a good try, that is all.”

2 Comments

  1. Reis would be an excellent addition. And that Ibra goal… Stunning.

  2. Another great Ibra goal (from his Ajax days): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZgqsaDnsEq8
    Funny thing is that the English supporters ridiculed Ibra when England went up 2-1. Always better to keep your mouth shut!

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