Daily news roundups

Linc to host Gold Cup knockout round game, more league, US, and international news

Photo: Nicolae Stoian

Local

On Tuesday, CONCACAF announced the host cities for the 2015 Gold Cup, which runs July 7-26. On the list of four cities hosting the final knockout rounds of the tournament is Philadelphia and Lincoln Financial Field. Also among the lists of cities hosting knockout round games are Baltimore and East Rutherford, which means many of us are likely to be doing a decent amount of traveling up and down I-95 next summer, even more so when you consider the USMNT’s second Group A game is at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough on July.

The announcement said, “Complete groups and schedule, including selection of dates and assignment of matches for the knockout round and the awarding of the Final, will be announced in early 2015.” You will recall that the Linc was the site of quarterfinal games in 2009, as was Baltimore’s M&T Bank Stadium in 2013, and East Rutherford’s MetLife Stadium hosted the final in 2005 and 2009.

A post at the Union website notes, “Current and future season ticket members of the Union are eligible for an exclusive ticket pre-sale to the knockout round Gold Cup match at Lincoln Financial Field.” For more ticketing information from CONCACAF, click here.

More on the announcement from Philadelphia EaglesPhilly.com, and MLSsoccer.com.

Hopefully, players will organize an effort to force the five Gold Cup host stadiums that have artificial surfaces to bring in temporary grass. While we wait for that news, there’s this:

Philadelphia Union

Brotherly Game considers where CJ Sapong will fit into Jim Curtin’s system.

According to Caught Offsides, the Union has “been touted” as a possible destination for Shaun Wright-Phillips if the forward decides to come to MLS. Also touted are New York Red Bulls, Seattle Sounders, and Orlando City.

Vital Football wonders if Union consultant Renee Meulnsteen “could he be tempted to manage” Reading FC in England. Reading fired manager Nigel Adkins on Monday. If Aston Villa assistant manager Steve Clark takes the Reading job, Metro considers Meulensteen an unlikely candidate to replace him.

MLS

It’s official: Real Salt Lake general manager Garth Lagerwey is leaving the club at the end of the month to take up the same position at Seattle. RSL have named Craig Waibel as technical director, a position he will take up when Lagerwey departs. More on Waibel and his appointment from Salt Lake Tribune (1), Salt Lake Tribune (2), Deseret News, KSL.com, MLSsoccer.com, and RSL Soapbox.

Despite the passing of the Dec. 15 deadline, MLS says it is still negotiating with Erick “Cubo” Torres to remain in the league. “Over the past several weeks, MLS has been engaged in discussions with Erick Torres and Chivas de Guadalajara regarding the league’s option to acquire his contract. Although no agreement has been concluded, these discussions are continuing.”

Kansas City have signed Haitian national team midfielder James Marcelin.

Vancouver have re-signed attacking midfielder Mauro Rosales.

In an appearance on ESPN700, RSL owner Dell Loy Hansen said Kyle Beckeman and Nick Rimando have signed contract extensions. Hansen also said the club now owns the complete rights to Joao Plata and that a new long-term deal with him is almost finalized.

The Washington DC city council will vote today whether to approve the plan for DC United’s proposed stadium at Buzzard Point. More from the New York Times and the AP.

The creation of a STAR bond district has been approved to fund the building of training and development facility for Sporting Kansas City in Garden City.

Is the campaign to secure public funding for the construction of a $200 million soccer stadium in Las Vegas entering extra time as an opponent on the Las Vegas city council works to put the question before a public referendum on the city’s June 2015 ballot? More at KNPR.

US Soccer Players wonders if the playoffs hurt the quality of MLS.

US

The USWNT concludes play at the International Tournament of Brasilia today against Argentina. The US drew 1-1 with China in the first game and lost 3-2 to Brazil in the second.

In Women’s World Cup news, SI reports, “Fox Sports confirmed on Tuesday that it will air 16 matches live on over-the-air Fox next June and July, the most World Cup matches (men or women) ever airing on an over-the-air network. Those matches include one WWC semifinal on either June 30 or July 1, the third-place game on July 4 and the final at BC Place in Vancouver on July 5…It is the first time since 2003 that any Women’s World Cup matches have been scheduled for over-the-air broadcast in the U.S.”

Alexi Lalas is leaving ESPN to join Fox.

At the Guardian, Lalas says of recent moves by European clubs to open academies in the US, “Make no mistake. This is a gold rush. This is a land grab…certainly while American coaches can learn from their curriculum and methods, I don’t think they have a magic bullet, or anything completely revolutionary. It’s a pretty simple game, and we often complicate it…This is about, at some point, being the best in the world…the real end game is that players will want to go to the Colorado Rapids instead of FC Barcelona.”

Rest easy, dear reader, Tim Howard and Brad Friedel have reached an accord.

More ratings numbers from the Liga MX Apertura final. The second leg of the final averaged 3 million viewers on Univision, “more than double the most-viewed EPL match ever on NBC or NBCSN,” making it “the most-viewed club soccer match on any U.S. network in 2014.”

Elsewhere

Reuters reports that, according to FIFA executive committee member Theo Zwanziger, “Qatar must meet a March deadline for specific labour reforms or it could risk losing the 2022 World Cup finals.” Yeah right.

Occupying a murky place between a press release and actual journalism is this AP report: “What Soccer Fans Can Expect From The Qatar World Cup.”

It seems the government of Qatar is interested in buying a Premier League team, possibly Tottenham. The state-founded Qatar Investment Authority’s Qatar Sports Investments bought Paris Saint-Germain in 2012. More here.

The AP reports, “The international players’ union wants FIFA to investigate why a Club World Cup match was played on a potentially dangerous rain-soaked field in Morocco.” Click here for FIFPro’s statement on the game between Cruz Azul and Western Sydney Wanderers.

The AP reports, “Dozens of football fans who took part in last year’s mass anti-government protests went on trial on Tuesday accused of an attempted coup, in a case seen as the latest example of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s crackdown on dissent.”

Inside World Football reports on match-fixing allegations filed by Spain’s anti-corruption prosecutor on Monday regarding Real Zaragoza’s 2-1 win at Levante on the final day of the 2010-11 season that ensured Zaragoza would not be relegated. Among the 40 people named in the allegations is midfielder Ander Herrera, now with Manchester United.

21 Comments

  1. The only reason Shaun Wright-Phillips is being linked to the Union is because we’ve publicly stated we’re searching for an impact forward. Seattle, NY, and Orlando all have deeper pockets and would spend us under the table. 0% chance he comes to Philly… Which is yet another reason why having small-market ownership in a big-market sports city is driving me nuts. Full marks to Sugarman for honesty, but doesn’t make me feel any better about our chances to actually win a cup when the arms race in MLS is becoming real and we can’t keep up.

    • Ronald Reagan destroyed an entire culture and way of life by outspending the Soviets. Took Russia 20 years to recover. Families lived on cabbage for 10 years.
      .
      Only money makes a difference in professional sport. Or more importantly— the proper allocation of well spent lots of money.
      .
      We are and will continue to be mid table bottom dwellers until that changes. Think about it. Haven’t played one game yet and already —New York: Lampard, Silva, rumors of Xavi.
      Orlando: Beckham, Kaka, insert name here_____.
      .
      What’s next for The U? At least we have Maurice Edu I suppose.

      • Go ahead and give a read to Ken Sweda’s, The Grand Conceit of American Soccer, to get a smack in the face look at MLS and the direction of the game in this country.
        .
        I read the article about year ago and have let it ruminate in the gut for awhile and watched what has happened with our team and when I see the Union by the light of that article, it leaves me despondent and devoid of hope until the ownership changes.

      • Excellent Article, although now I’m depressed…

      • Sorry G.O.
        .
        Leaves one to question everything though and questioning everything is important.

      • Truth. And this is why I pray that MLS tries their hardest to maintain parity.

    • As a long time City supporter and SWP fan . . . I can objectively say he’s not the answer to our forward problems. Love the guy, but our money would be better spent elsewhere.

  2. I wonder how the league is gonna pull off getting Cubo Torres to the Galaxy in a CBA year.

    • Didn’t you know about the North American, dissolved player rule, where said player has no choice but to sign with the closest geographic club?

      • I’ve give pretty good odds that this becomes a rule. Genius.

      • That’s brilliant, Great One. It sounds like a real MLS HQ ruling as they would rationalize it saying that Torres is in the LAG catchment area.

  3. I just realized a problem I’ve had for the last week and a half. What should I be doing with my Amobi Okugo bobblehead that is sitting on my desk at work?

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