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Soccer Insider: October 4, 2009 - October 10, 2009

Matchnight: USA-Honduras

We're nearing the end of World Cup qualifying in CONCACAF, and still nothing has been settled heading into tonight's critical matches in Mexico City, San Jose and San Pedro Sula. First up is Mexico-El Salvador (6 p.m. ET, Telemundo). Any doubt El Tri will bury the Salvadorans, who executed the...

By Steve Goff  |  October 10, 2009; 6:03 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (261)
Categories:  2010 World Cup , CONCACAF , U.S. men's national team  
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Saturday Kickaround

*The scene in San Pedro Sula ahead of Saturday night's World Cup qualifier between the USA and Honduras. *Italy, Serbia, Slovakia, Denmark and Switzerland are in position to clinch World Cup berths, while Russia is home with an opportunity to overtake Germany for first place heading into Wednesday's finales. Key...

By Steve Goff  |  October 10, 2009; 1:33 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (16)
Categories:  2010 World Cup , CONCACAF , College Soccer , MLS , TV  
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USA News & Notes

Midfielder Clint Dempsey, sidelined with a shoulder injury, remains in London and hopes to be ready, if needed, for Wednsday's match against Costa Rica at RFK Stadium. Said Bob Bradley: "He has made progress this week and we will address it over the next day or two. At this time,...

By Steve Goff  |  October 9, 2009; 7:03 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (11)
Categories:  2010 World Cup , U.S. men's national team  
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United at Crossroads?

With D.C. United in danger of missing the MLS playoffs for the second straight year and facing a big challenge to advance in the CONCACAF Champions League, chief investor Will Chang might be preparing to shake up things this winter. Remember this open letter to fans after last season? (Who's...

By Steve Goff  |  October 9, 2009; 10:35 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (80)
Categories:  D.C. United  
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Friday Kickaround

Greetings from San Pedro Sula, where the USA team hotel is not surrounded by hostile Honduran supporters, fire alarms are not going off every hour, helicopters are not hovering, tanks do not block the alleys. Actually, it's rather quiet here. Yes, security is tight and vendors were hawking flags to...

By Steve Goff  |  October 9, 2009; 1:40 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (28)
Categories:  2010 World Cup , D.C. United , History , MLS , U.S. men's national team , Youth soccer  
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Weekend TV Listings

I'm off to San Pedro Sula today and probably won't rejoin you until Friday. I leave you with the weekend viewing options..... What are you going to watch? FRIDAY Australia, Melbourne-Sydney 4:30 a.m. ET Fox Soccer Channel NCAA men, West Virginia-Connecticut 8 p.m. FSC SATURDAY U-20 World Cup, Brazil-Germany 10:30...

By Steve Goff  |  October 8, 2009; 12:03 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (36)
Categories:  TV  
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Thursday Kickaround

*Why is the USA-Honduras World Cup qualifier Saturday night available on closed-circuit TV only? Read my front-page story. Meantime, FC Dallas will show the match at its stadium club and the Galaxy has partnered with an establishment near Home Depot Center. *Jeff Cunningham scored his MLS-best 17th goal -- and...

By Steve Goff  |  October 8, 2009; 7:49 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (34)
Categories:  2010 World Cup , College Soccer , D.C. United , Greece , MLS , TV  
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Video: Heading in Wrong Direction

From a Bundesliga match over the weekend, two attempted headed clearances by Hertha Berlin's teenage goalkeeper, Sascha Burchert, result in two almost identical goals for Hamburg in an 88-second span. Burchert had entered for the injured starter just a few minutes earlier. The first score conceded by Hertha -- which...

By Steve Goff  |  October 7, 2009; 11:14 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (21)
Categories:  Bundesliga , Germany  
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Wednesday Kickaround

*Between poor attendance, lackluster results and the sale of Kenny Cooper, we've all had a good chuckle at the expense of FC Dallas this season. But with a victory tonight at San Jose (10 p.m. Direct Kick), FCD (9-12-6, 33 points) can draw even with D.C. United in the overall...

By Steve Goff  |  October 7, 2009; 8:54 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (32)
Categories:  Americans Abroad , Argentina , College Soccer , D.C. United , England , FIFA , MLS , TV  
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Baltimore's Interest in DCU

In response to a Washington Business Journal story that says Baltimore is again interested in exploring a stadium project for D.C. United and other events, the club issued this statement: "D.C. United continues to search for an appropriate, long-term home for our team. Baltimore has demonstrated its ability to work...

By Steve Goff  |  October 6, 2009; 5:36 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (123)
Categories:  D.C. United  
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Hejduk Called Up by USA

Columbus Crew defender Frankie Hejduk, a USA national team veteran who started the first three matches in the final round of World Cup qualifying before being slowed by injuries, has been recalled for Saturday's game at Honduras and next Wednesday's match vs. Costa Rica at RFK Stadium. He replaces Clint...

By Steve Goff  |  October 6, 2009; 2:50 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (32)
Categories:  2010 World Cup , U.S. men's national team  
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Poll: USA in Honduras

Before casting your ballot, consider: -- Honduras is 8-0-0 at home with a 22-3 goals advantage in this World Cup qualifying cycle. -- The Americans did beat an imposing Catrachos squad in San Pedro Sula eight years ago, 2-1, on Clint Mathis's late free kick. Defender Steve Cherundolo is the...

By Steve Goff  |  October 6, 2009; 10:16 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (50)
Categories:  2010 World Cup , Poll , U.S. men's national team  
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Tuesday Kickaround

*At last check, threefour "English" sites in the DC-Maryland-Virginia region have agreed to offer the USA-Honduras match on closed circuit for a cover charge: Molly Malone's near Capitol Hill, Fado Irish Pub in downtown D.C., Summers in Arlington and Slainte Irish Pub in Baltimore. Contact these fine establishments directly for...

By Steve Goff  |  October 6, 2009; 8:59 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (30)
Categories:  2010 World Cup , Americans Abroad , CONCACAF , College Soccer , Costa Rica , D.C. United , MLS , TV , U.S. men's national team , Women  
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Wicks Suspended 5 Games

D.C. United goalkeeper Josh Wicks, who was ejected from the U.S. Open Cup final last month for misconduct, has been suspended an additional four tournament games (five total) by the U.S. Soccer Federation. MLS teams traditionally play a maximum of four games in the annual event, meaning, if the format...

By Steve Goff  |  October 5, 2009; 4:16 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (40)
Categories:  D.C. United , U.S. Open Cup , USSF  
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Dempsey Sidelined

Starting midfielder Clint Dempsey will miss the USA's World Cup qualifier at Honduras on Saturday night and is questionable for the Costa Rica match next Wednesday at RFK Stadium because of a sprained shoulder, the USSF announced this afternoon. Jose Francisco Torres and Stuart Holden are the top candidates to...

By Steve Goff  |  October 5, 2009; 3:08 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (17)
Categories:  2010 World Cup , CONCACAF , MLS , TV , U.S. men's national team  
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Video: Barcelona's Goal

Watch this gem by 22-year-old Pedro Rodriguez during the 1-0 victory over Almeria, a result that kept Barca unbeaten in La Liga and three points ahead of Real Madrid, which lost to Sevilla:...

By Steve Goff  |  October 5, 2009; 1:50 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (11)
Categories:  Spain  
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Monday Kickaround

*USA supporters are understandably upset that Saturday's critical World Cup qualifier at Honduras will be available on closed circuit TV (select bars and restaurants for a cover charge of at least $15), but consider what's happening in England, where the qualifier against Ukraine will be seen on the Internet and...

By Steve Goff  |  October 5, 2009; 8:58 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (44)
Categories:  2010 World Cup , College Soccer , D.C. United , England , TV , U.S. Open Cup , U.S. men's national team , USL , USSF  
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MLS Playoff Race

EASTERN CONFERENCE AUTOMATIC BERTHS Columbus (27) 12-5-10, 46 points (at NE, at DC, vs. NE) Chicago (28) 10-7-11, 41 (at NE, vs. Chivas) WESTERN CONFERENCE AUTOMATIC BERTHS Los Angeles (28) 11-6-11, 44 points (at Houston, vs. SJ) Houston (28) 12-8-8, 44 (vs. LA, at Chivas) WILD-CARD BERTHS Chivas USA (26)...

By Steve Goff  |  October 5, 2009; 7:00 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (35)
Categories:  MLS  
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Americans Abroad

(*Called up for USA's upcoming World Cup qualifiers) GOALKEEPERS Tim Howard* 90 in Everton's 1-1 tie with Stoke City Marcus Hahnemann in 18, didn't play in Wolves' 1-0 loss to Portsmouth David Yelldell 90 in Koblenz's 1-0 loss to Oberhausen Luis Robles in 18, didn't play in Kaiserslautern's 1-1 tie...

By Steve Goff  |  October 4, 2009; 4:04 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (19)
Categories:  Americans Abroad  
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United Rewind

It wasn't just the fact that D.C. United lost. It was the way it lost. No creativity, no improvisation, no chemistry, not enough heart. Yes, United is still very much in the playoff race, but there are few reasons to believe this team will earn another point this season. The...

By Steve Goff  |  October 4, 2009; 12:34 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (69)
Categories:  D.C. United  
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