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Soccer Insider: March 1, 2009 - March 7, 2009

Matchnight: DCU-RSL

United opens play in the Carolina Challenge Cup at 5 p.m. today against Real Salt Lake. The Charleston Battery hosts Toronto in the later match. The DCU starters: Crayton; Namoff, Janicki, Jakovic, Burch; Olsen, Simms, Fred, Quaranta; Doe, Emilio. Follow the action on United's twitter feed and share your thoughts...

By Steve Goff  |  March 7, 2009; 3:16 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (39)
Categories:  D.C. United  
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Video: Youth Goal of the Year

Marcus Curaca, from the U-16 Arlington Venom in Virginia, was honored by U.S. Youth Soccer for the 2008 goal of the year. Curaca is a sophomore at Yorktown High School....

By Steve Goff  |  March 7, 2009; 1:44 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (15)
Categories:  Preps  
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Crayton and the Stadium

Read my front-page profile of D.C. United goalkeeper Louis Crayton. Read the Metro section's story about United narrowing its possible stadium sites and Maryland political skepticism about the financing for the project. "We're crying broke and making funds for an entertainment venue. It's bad timing, no matter how you try...

By Steve Goff  |  March 6, 2009; 10:24 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (20)
Categories:  D.C. United  
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MLS Salaries!

Much earlier than usual, the MLS salaries have been made public by the players' union. The DCU list: Marc Burch 60,000 (base), 62,500 (guaranteed) Fred 225,000/257,000 Louis Crayton 171,000/179,000 Francis Doe 80,000/80,000 Luciano Emilio 720,000/759,000 Christian Gomez 385,000/430,000 Andrew Jacobson 34,000/34,000 Greg Janicki 34,000/34,000 Thabiso Khumalo 34,650/34,650 Devon McTavish 52,000/52,500...

By Steve Goff  |  March 6, 2009; 9:59 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (16)
Categories:  D.C. United , MLS  
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A Letter From Victor and Will

D.C. United bosses MacFarlane and Chang address the stadium situation, the team and the new season. Read it here....

By Steve Goff  |  March 6, 2009; 5:12 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (13)
Categories:  D.C. United  
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Video: USA Women's Victory

Natasha Kai's late game-winner against Iceland at the Algarve Cup in Portugal today:...

By Steve Goff  |  March 6, 2009; 4:54 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (16)
Categories:  Women  
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Gold Cup Update

On Monday, CONCACAF will name the venues for this summer's Gold Cup regional championship. RFK Stadium is tentatively set to host a July 8 doubleheader. Perhaps a dozen sites will be utilized for the 12-team, three-group tournament that runs July 3 through July 26. I'm hearing that the Dallas Cowboys'...

By Steve Goff  |  March 6, 2009; 12:37 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (36)
Categories:  CONCACAF  
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Weekend TV Listings

I'll be tied up much of the day working on a lengthy Louis Crayton story before heading out of town on a college basketball assignment. Unless something urgent surfaces, I probably won't join you again until tomorrow. Just to keep you updated on MLS matters we've been following long before...

By Steve Goff  |  March 6, 2009; 11:33 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (11)
Categories:  MLS , TV  
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For a Good Cause

The effort to find a bone marrow match for Marcia Williams, wife of Real Salt Lake veteran Andy Williams, comes to Washington on Sun., March 15 for a drive at RFK Stadium from noon to 5 p.m. Former MLS star Eddie Pope will make an appearance for the first hour...

By Steve Goff  |  March 6, 2009; 10:28 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (3)
Categories:  D.C. United , MLS  
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Friday Kickaround

*I went to sleep last night with Montreal and Santos tied at 2 and the Mexican club needing three late goals to win the CONCACAF Champions League quarterfinal series on aggregate. They scored three goals, including two in added time, for a 5-2 victory (5-4 overall). So the semis are...

By Steve Goff  |  March 6, 2009; 8:43 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (39)
Categories:  CONCACAF , MLS , USSF , Women  
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Donovan to Return

No surprise..... After spending much of the winter with Bayern Munich, Galaxy forward Landon Donovan will return to Los Angeles and begin MLS training camp next Tuesday. Bayern did not make an official formal offer to extend the loan into a full transfer. "He is a very important part of...

By Steve Goff  |  March 5, 2009; 3:22 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (55)
Categories:  MLS  
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MLS Plans and Beckham Status

*We were hoping to receive official word on the MLS Cup venue (Seattle?) and All-Star Game visitor (Valencia?) this week, but because of legal details pertaining to the contracts, it now looks as though those announcements won't come until next week. After reading this Reuters story, one has to wonder...

By Steve Goff  |  March 5, 2009; 2:28 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (19)
Categories:  Beckham , MLS  
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Ronaldo's Postgame Injury

Brazilian striker Ronaldo, the greatest scorer in World Cup history, returned from a 13-month layoff last night to play the final 22 minutes for Corinthians. His damaged knee held up just fine. After the match, amid the media scrum, he was whacked in the eye with a microphone. We couldn't...

By Steve Goff  |  March 5, 2009; 9:03 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (25)
Categories:  Brazil  
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Early Thursday Kickaround

*Would you believe the Puerto Rico Islanders have advanced to the CONCACAF Champions League semifinals? The second-tier club won at Marathon, 1-0, to claim the series on a 3-1 aggregate. Former D.C. United forward Nicholas Addlery scored in the closing minutes, his second goal in two matches against the Honduran...

By Steve Goff  |  March 5, 2009; 12:35 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (55)
Categories:  CONCACAF , Italy , MLS , TV , USL  
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Americans Abroad

GK Brad Friedel 90 minutes in Aston Villa's 2-0 loss at Manchester City GK Tim Howard 90 in Everton's 0-0 tie at Blackburn MF Clint Dempsey 90 in Fulham's 1-0 loss to Hull City D Jonathan Spector 12 in West Ham's 1-0 win at Wigan MF Maurice Edu 64 in...

By Steve Goff  |  March 4, 2009; 6:17 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (9)
Categories:  U.S. men's national team  
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United-Freedom RFK Dates Set

Sat., MAY 23 Freedom-Sky Blue FC, 5 p.m. United-Real Salt Lake, 7:30 Sat., JUNE 13 Freedom-Chicago Red Stars, 5 p.m. United-Chicago Fire, 7:30 Sat., JULY 18 Freedom-St. Louis Athletica, 5:30 United-Colorado Rapids, 8 A ticket for the doubleheader costs the same as a ticket for a single United game. On...

By Steve Goff  |  March 4, 2009; 3:23 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (16)
Categories:  D.C. United , Women  
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D.C. United Updates

*Newly acquired defenders Dejan Jakovic is on his way to Washington from Canada today. With his arrival and the signing of Anthony Peters this week, United's four center backs are: Jakovic (age 23): 6 feet 2, 178 pounds Peters (25): 6 feet 5, 205 pounds Devon McTavish (24): 6 feet,...

By Steve Goff  |  March 4, 2009; 1:01 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (44)
Categories:  D.C. United  
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Sweet Home Chicago

Home for Washington's soccer teams, that is. The Insider has learned that a D.C.-Chicago doubleheader is planned for Sat., June 13 at RFK Stadium: Freedom vs. Red Stars United vs. Fire The Freedom was scheduled to play Chicago on June 14 at Maryland SoccerPlex, but because a doubleheader late in...

By Steve Goff  |  March 4, 2009; 10:27 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (32)
Categories:  D.C. United , Women  
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Wednesday Kickaround

*The USA women began play in the prestigious Algarve Cup in Portugal today with a 2-0 victory over Denmark on first-half goals by St. Louis Athletica's Angie Woznuk, 23, and UCLA's Tina DiMartino, 22. Hope Solo made five saves. The Americans will play Iceland on Friday. *The Miami Herald's take...

By Steve Goff  |  March 4, 2009; 9:05 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (23)
Categories:  Libertadores , MLS , TV , Women  
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SoHo: So Long Houston

And so ends another dreary year for MLS in the CONCACAF Champions League. The last hope, Houston, dropped a 3-0 result to Atlante in Cancun and lost the quarterfinal series on a 4-1 aggregate. The we're-at-a-disadvantage-because-it's-preseason excuse has become tiresome. American, er, Canadian/Puerto Rico hopes now rest with the USL1's...

By Steve Goff  |  March 3, 2009; 11:56 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (34)
Categories:  CONCACAF , MLS , USL  
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Kocic to Sign With DCU

The Insider has learned that Milos Kocic, the rookie goalkeeper from Loyola College in Baltimore who turned down an offer in his native Serbia and was weighing an option in Sweden, has decided to sign a developmental contract with D.C. United. An agreement is expected to be finalized this week....

By Steve Goff  |  March 3, 2009; 10:20 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (25)
Categories:  D.C. United  
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Americans Abroad

Today F Eddie Johnson goes 90 minutes in Cardiff City's 3-1 win over Barnsley (The club's official site proclaimed Johnson the man of the match, but you should also read this other story because, sadly, you just don't see the term "argy-bargy" used very often these days) D Jay DeMerit...

By Steve Goff  |  March 3, 2009; 6:20 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (18)
Categories:  U.S. men's national team  
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Miami? No Dice

There will not be an MLS team in Miami anytime soon. FC Barcelona and its partners determined the time isn't right to invest in the league. Read the MLS-issued info here. What do you think? Wise move? Given the economic climate and the league's slow-growth policy, is expansion necessary at...

By Steve Goff  |  March 3, 2009; 4:37 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (31)
Categories:  MLS  
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United's Roster and Schedule

*The Insider has learned that D.C. United rookie midfielder Brandon Barklage (Saint Louis University) has agreed to a developmental contract. He joins rookie defender Rodney Wallace (Generation Adidas) and second-year defender Ryan Miller. The final developmental slot will go to one of two goalkeepers: incumbent James Thorpe or rookie Milos...

By Steve Goff  |  March 3, 2009; 4:19 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (11)
Categories:  D.C. United  
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DCU Update

*With the imminent singing of central defender Anthony Peters, trialist Mamadou "Futty" Danso has been let go. No surprise. *DCU has reached agreement with Comcast SportsNet for 15 regular season matches to be shown, starting with the March 22 season opener at Los Angeles (also available on Telefutura). Home games...

By Steve Goff  |  March 3, 2009; 2:29 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (50)
Categories:  D.C. United  
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Greetings From the Warehouse

Actually, it's a Fairfax County indoor facility -- unheated, buzzing lights, small turf field. D.C. United is here because the RFK training grounds were buried by a rare March snowstorm and because they're not leaving for Charleston until Thursday. All four goalkeepers are here: Crayton, Platter, Thorpe and Kocic. Unless...

By Steve Goff  |  March 3, 2009; 1:29 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (11)
Categories:  D.C. United  
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MLS, World Cup, WPS Updates

*MLS will conduct a waiver draft at 3 p.m. today. Not much in the pool and some of the players have already headed to the USL. Stephen Wondolowski, Nik Besagno, John Cunliffe, Ned Grabavoy, Pat Carroll, Jamie Watson are among those on the list. The top five picks belong to...

By Steve Goff  |  March 3, 2009; 11:27 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (21)
Categories:  2010 World Cup , MLS , Women  
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Tuesday Kickaround

*It's a critical night for the only MLS team in the CONCACAF Champions League quarterfinals, the Houston Dynamo, which needs a victory or multi-goal tie at Atlante to win the two-leg series. The first game, at Houston, ended in a 1-1 tie. Away goals count. *Americans Abroad: Yesterday F Mike...

By Steve Goff  |  March 3, 2009; 9:01 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (14)
Categories:  MLS , TV , U.S. men's national team , USL , Women  
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MLS Late Night

*The Insider has learned that Valencia, currently in sixth place in Spanish La Liga, is now the top candidate to be the opponent against the MLS select squad at this year's All-Star Game in Salt Lake City on July 29. A final decision is expected this week. *Chivas USA's Raphael...

By Steve Goff  |  March 2, 2009; 10:08 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (28)
Categories:  MLS  
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Beckham, All-Stars, DCU

*It's looking as if David Beckham will return to MLS.....in July. Read about the complex arrangement here. *The Insider has confirmed that the MLS All-Star Game opponent in Salt Lake City is, indeed, a Spanish club, but apparently not Barcelona or Real Madrid -- too expensive. *D.C. United is finalizing...

By Steve Goff  |  March 2, 2009; 4:12 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (47)
Categories:  Beckham , D.C. United , MLS , Spain  
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Afternoon Kickaround

*Because of the weather, D.C. United's friendly against the University of Maryland tomorrow night in College Park has been cancelled. No word on whether the sides will be able to find a date to reschedule before the MLS season begins. United is off to Charleston on Thursday. *Read the full...

By Steve Goff  |  March 2, 2009; 12:50 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (29)
Categories:  College Soccer , D.C. United , England , MLS , Poll  
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Snow Patrol

The storm that left 4-10 inches of snow in the Washington area last night/this morning and is now bearing down on New York and New England has stirred Insider memories of soccer played in wintry conditions. First to come to mind is the 1997 Euro Cup Winners' Cup match between...

By Steve Goff  |  March 2, 2009; 11:03 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (22)
Categories:  History , Misc.  
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Video: La Liga

Barca's lead atop La Liga is down to four points..... Barcelona falls to Atletico Madrid: Real Madrid subdues Espanyol:...

By Steve Goff  |  March 2, 2009; 9:23 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (11)
Categories:  Spain  
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Early Monday Kickaround

*MLS is hoping to finalize contracts this week for the All-Star Game opponent in Salt Lake City in late July and the MLS Cup venue in November. The league has talked to Inter Milan about facing the MLS select squad (let's face it, it's the all-star game but not really...

By Steve Goff  |  March 2, 2009; 12:01 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (39)
Categories:  D.C. United , MLS  
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Americans Abroad

GOALKEEPERS Tim Howard 90 minutes in Everton's 2-0 win over West Brom Brad Friedel 90 in Aston Villa's 2-2 tie with Stoke City (Stoke scores in the 87th and 90th) Luis Robles 90 in Kaiserslautern's 2-1 loss to Greuther Fuerth Marcus Hahnemann in 18 but didn't play in Reading's 1-0...

By Steve Goff  |  March 1, 2009; 6:50 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (19)
Categories:  U.S. men's national team  
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