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Soccer Insider: December 7, 2008 - December 13, 2008

In Their Wake

With Wake Forest's stunning exit from the College Cup, speculation has begun about the Demon Deacons' outstanding lineup and who has a pro future. How high will forward Marcus Tracy and midfielder Sam Cronin be selected in next month's MLS draft? Are junior forward Cody Arnoux (17 goals) and sophomore...

By Steve Goff  |  December 13, 2008; 2:47 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (12)
Categories:  College Soccer  
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Honduran Candidate?

Another Honduran has been linked with a possible move to D.C. United this winter: Motagua midfielder Marvin Sanchez defender Osman Chavez. He appeared in four qualifiers this year. Expect a million more names to surface in the coming weeks. It's that time of year....

By Steve Goff  |  December 13, 2008; 1:36 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (14)
Categories:  D.C. United  
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DCU's Defensive Status

The Insider has learned that central defender Devon McTavish and D.C. United are close to finalizing a new, multiyear contract. McTavish, who made 25 league starts this year and was third on the team in minutes played, has one year remaining on his current deal. He has been earning the...

By Steve Goff  |  December 13, 2008; 12:18 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (8)
Categories:  D.C. United  
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Qualifying Site Update

I hope you haven't bought your plane tickets to Salt Lake City for the USA-Mexico qualifier just yet. Despite an ESPN report last night that Rio Tinto Stadium will host the Feb. 11 showdown, the USSF is adamant that no final decision has been made. According to sources, at least...

By Steve Goff  |  December 13, 2008; 11:00 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (8)
Categories:  U.S. men's national team  
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Matchnight: College Cup

Greetings from the House of Pizza in Frisco. A TV reminder: The first match between top-seeded Wake Forest and No. 13 North Carolina will kick off at 5:30 p.m. ET on ESPN2. The nightcap pitting No. 2 Maryland and No. 3 St. John's will begin at 8 p.m. on ESPNU....

By Steve Goff  |  December 12, 2008; 4:33 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (28)
Categories:  College Soccer  
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DeRo to Toronto

Houston has dealt star midfielder Dwayne De Rosario to Toronto for young defender Julius James and allocation money, the clubs announced this afternoon. De Rosario, from Ontario, has been marked for a move to TFC for a couple years. The Dynamo must have a foreign player lined up to replace...

By Steve Goff  |  December 12, 2008; 4:08 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (25)
Categories:  MLS  
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Total Toluca

Video from Toluca's 2-0 away victory over Cruz Azul in the first leg of the Mexican Apertura finals:...

By Steve Goff  |  December 12, 2008; 1:50 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (3)
Categories:  Mexico  
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Weekend TV Listings

I am on my way (weather permitting) to Dallas for the College Cup and will not be able to rejoin you until this evening. Meantime, scan these listings and discuss whatever is on your mind. You should be able to access my Maryland feature story and final four preview by...

By Steve Goff  |  December 12, 2008; 9:01 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (18)
Categories:  TV  
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Gooch's Big Move?

For several years, USA defender Oguchi Onyewu has been looking for a permanent move from Belgian club Standard Liege to a big club elsewhere in Europe. And with the winter window opening and Liege needing to move him to collect a transfer fee before his contract expires this summer, it...

By Steve Goff  |  December 11, 2008; 9:31 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (19)
Categories:  U.S. men's national team  
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USA-Mexico Site?

ESPN Deportes reported today that the USA World Cup qualifier against Mexico on Feb. 11 will be played in Seattle or Salt Lake City. I am sure Salt Lake City is under consideration -- it offers a new, medium-sized stadium in a cool setting where the USSF will be able...

By Steve Goff  |  December 11, 2008; 5:07 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (39)
Categories:  U.S. men's national team  
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Tough Ticket in Toronto

Despite missing the playoffs for the second consecutive year, Toronto FC has sold all 16,000 season tickets for 2009. According to the club, 95 percent of ticket holders renewed their full-season packages. TFC leaves about 4,000 seats available for partial season ticket packages and single-game sales. Might we see the...

By Steve Goff  |  December 11, 2008; 2:57 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (24)
Categories:  MLS  
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College Cup Poll

poll by twiigs.com...

By Steve Goff  |  December 11, 2008; 2:26 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (9)
Categories:  College Soccer  
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Thursday Kickaround

I'll be busy much of the day working on College Cup material for Friday's print edition and web site, including a look at Maryland's extraordinary rise since Coach Sasho Cirovski's arrival 15 years ago. Which means I probably won't have much time to contribute to the Insider. So let's start...

By Steve Goff  |  December 11, 2008; 9:09 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (21)
Categories:  Club World Cup , Euro Champions League , FIFA , TV , USL  
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Terps Prospects (Continued)

Maryland junior Jeremy Hall, a left-sided midfielder with speed and attacking prowess, has been on MLS's radar since early in the college season, and after scoring a team-best 14 goals for the surging Terrapins heading into this weekend's College Cup, his stock continues to rise. But will the former U-17...

By Steve Goff  |  December 10, 2008; 5:33 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (10)
Categories:  College Soccer , MLS , Mexico  
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Moment of Silence

Terrible news from D.C. United: Midfielder Fred's father died in an automobile accident in Brazil. Fred has left New Zealand, where he was on loan with the Wellington Phoenix in the Australian league, and will rejoin his family in Belo Horizonte....

By Steve Goff  |  December 10, 2008; 2:55 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (19)
Categories:  D.C. United  
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CONCACAF Champions League Pairings

Results of today's draw: Quarterfinals Feb. 24-26 and March 3-5 Atlante vs. Houston Dynamo* Santos Laguna vs. Montreal Impact* Marathon vs. Puerto Rico Islanders* Pumas vs. Cruz Azul* *hosts first leg Semifinals March 17-19 and April 7-9 Atlante-Houston winner vs. Santos-Montreal winner Marathon-Puerto Rico winner vs. Pumas-Cruz Azul winner Finals:...

By Steve Goff  |  December 10, 2008; 2:45 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (20)
Categories:  CONCACAF , MLS , USL  
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MLS Combine List Announced

Maryland midfielder Graham Zusi and defender A.J. Delagarza were among an initial group of 65 players invited to the MLS scouting combine Jan. 9-13 at Lockhart Stadium in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. All 15 MLS teams will be represented at the annual event, which will end two days before the draft...

By Steve Goff  |  December 10, 2008; 2:13 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (15)
Categories:  College Soccer , MLS  
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Olsen Speculation

Everyone in the D.C. United community wants to see veteran midfielder Ben Olsen back to his old self and in the lineup next season. The reality is, however, that he has a long way to go in his comeback from recurring ankle problems. Retirement, sadly, is a distinct possibility. The...

By Steve Goff  |  December 10, 2008; 1:58 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (19)
Categories:  D.C. United  
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Cuban Updates

Two MLS clubs submitted discovery claims on Cuban forward Reinier Alcantara, who sought asylum during the national team's stay in Washington for a World Cup qualifier in October. The league is determining who will hold his rights, based on the teams' 2008 finish. Two other teams expressed interest, but apparently...

By Steve Goff  |  December 10, 2008; 12:50 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (5)
Categories:  MLS  
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Sassano Recovering

As you may recall, New York Red Bulls midfielder Luke Sassano injured an ankle in the MLS first-round playoff series with Houston. Nonetheless, he endured and ended up playing 83 minutes in the Western Conference final at RSL and 78 minutes against Columbus in MLS Cup. Turns out, he suffered...

By Steve Goff  |  December 10, 2008; 12:20 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  MLS  
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Schmid to Sounders

Sigi Schmid, the MLS coach of the year who guided Columbus to its first league championship, is off to Seattle to lead the expansion Sounders. Read about it here. Not a big surprise, for Schmid had wanted to return to the West Coast. (Though, as of two days ago, one...

By Steve Goff  |  December 10, 2008; 9:37 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (23)
Categories:  MLS  
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Wednesday Kickaround

*A successful day for three English Championship clubs employing Americans, but two players had to leave with injuries. Reading goalkeeper Marcus Hahnemann, reportedly being pursued by Spurs, departed the 1-0 victory over Blackpool in the second half with a calf injury and might miss a few weeks. Compatriot Bobby Convey...

By Steve Goff  |  December 10, 2008; 7:08 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (17)
Categories:  Argentina , CONCACAF , D.C. United , TV , U.S. men's national team  
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Discovery Channels

D.C. United secured the discovery rights to Honduran forward Walter Martinez and presumably will enter into serious talks soon. As we explained yesterday, a discovery claim provides a club with exclusive MLS rights to negotiate with a non-league pro player (foreign, USL, etc.) for the remainder of the calendar year...

By Steve Goff  |  December 9, 2008; 5:29 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (16)
Categories:  D.C. United  
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A Year to Forget

You voted on the best aspects of 2008. Now, sound off on the worst. poll by twiigs.com...

By Steve Goff  |  December 9, 2008; 1:06 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (38)
Categories:  Poll  
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Tuesday Kickaround

*The Michael Parkhurst deal to Denmark we've been telling you about has finally gone public. An Insider contact with ties to Denmark believes Parkhurst will have a base salary as much as $250,000, plus bonuses and incentives. He was guaranteed $148,000 in MLS this past season and probably could've garnered...

By Steve Goff  |  December 9, 2008; 10:54 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (31)
Categories:  MLS , Spain , TV , U.S. men's national team  
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A Year of Memories

poll by twiigs.com Still to come: The worst storylines in 2008....

By Steve Goff  |  December 8, 2008; 8:17 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (27)
Categories:  Poll  
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United Updates

*D.C. United midfielder Clyde Simms is awaiting the formality of league approval on his new contract. Terms were agreed upon by club officials and his representatives at Wasserman Media Group. UPDATE: The deal is now official. *As expected, captain Jaime Moreno underwent sports hernia surgery in Munich. He also had...

By Steve Goff  |  December 8, 2008; 4:18 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (16)
Categories:  D.C. United  
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Marshall in Germany

Michael Parkhurst is gone. Will Chad Marshall be the next out-of-contract center back to head overseas? The MLS defender of the year who helped Columbus win its first league championship has turned up at German club Mainz for a trial....

By Steve Goff  |  December 8, 2008; 2:24 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (7)
Categories:  Germany , MLS  
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College Cup TV and Times

The NCAA has set the kickoff times for the men's College Cup at Pizza Hut Park in Frisco, Tex., this Friday. Wake Forest was rewarded as the top seed with the first match, against Tobacco Road rival North Carolina, an early start that would give the Demon Deacons a little...

By Steve Goff  |  December 8, 2008; 1:43 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (8)
Categories:  College Soccer  
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Morgan's Goal

Alex Morgan's sweet build-up and finish for a two-goal lead in the USA's 2-1 victory over North Korea at the U-20 Women's World Cup final:...

By Steve Goff  |  December 8, 2008; 1:05 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (10)
Categories:  Women  
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Parkhurst's Danish Deal

After four excellent seasons in MLS with the New England Revolution, out-of-contract central defender Michael Parkhurst is off to Denmark. His representatives told the Insider this morning that Nordsjaelland will announce the signing at a news conference Tuesday. The Insider told you exclusively eight days ago that Parkhurst, who turns...

By Steve Goff  |  December 8, 2008; 11:15 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (31)
Categories:  MLS , U.S. men's national team  
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Come Monday

Before we get to Jimmy Buffett in concert at the Hong Kong Football Club, a few items to share: *The MLS discovery period opens today, which means clubs will submit claims on players outside the league (foreigners and USL) who they are hoping to sign. Essentially, it gives them exclusive...

By Steve Goff  |  December 8, 2008; 10:51 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (13)
Categories:  D.C. United , MLS  
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Americans Abroad

GOALKEEPERS Brad Friedel 90 in Aston Villa's 3-2 win at Everton Tim Howard 90 in Everton's 3-2 loss to Aston Villa Marcus Hahnemann 90 in Reading's 1-0 win at Barnsley Luis Robles 90 minutes in Kaiserslautern's 0-0 tie at Duisburg DEFENDERS Oguchi Onyewu 90 in Standard Liege's 2-1 loss to...

By Steve Goff  |  December 7, 2008; 11:45 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (6)
Categories:  U.S. men's national team  
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USA, UNC Win Championships

First-half goals by Sydney Leroux (UCLA) and Alex Morgan (Cal) lifted the United States to a 2-1 victory over North Korea in the Under-20 Women's World Cup final today in Santiago, Chile. The Koreans scored in second-half added time. Meantime in Cary, N.C., North Carolina overcame a deficit 16 seconds...

By Steve Goff  |  December 7, 2008; 6:39 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (16)
Categories:  College Soccer , Women  
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Sunday Open House

Lots of Euro action today, including a matchup of American keepers as Aston Villa (Friedel) visits Everton (Howard). NCAA women's final, North Carolina-Notre Dame 2 p.m. ET, ESPN2. U-20 Women's World Cup final, USA-North Korea 4:30, ESPN2, Galavision. For your reading entertainment, enjoy the stories about the Maryland victory from...

By Steve Goff  |  December 7, 2008; 10:00 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (14)
Categories:  Women  
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