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Soccer Insider: October 25, 2009 - October 31, 2009

Saturday Kickaround

*The MLS playoffs continue today with Real Salt Lake hosting defending champion and two-time Supporters' Shield winner Columbus at Rio Tinto. (6 p.m. ET, Direct Kick). RSL is unbeaten in 10 straight at home, and given its woeful road performance this year, the club will need to keep it going...

By Steve Goff  |  October 31, 2009; 11:47 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (38)
Categories:  Americans Abroad , College Soccer , MLS , Women  
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Video: Inter Milan's Scoring Spree

Watch Inter's goals during a 5-3 victory in Serie A. Cringe at the thought of trying to defend Mario Balotelli, Inter's 6-foot-2, 19-year-old striker (He's No. 45). Practice your rapid-fire Italian. Admire Palermo's all-pink kits....

By Steve Goff  |  October 30, 2009; 12:10 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (24)
Categories:  Italy  
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Friday Kickaround

*The crowd (35,807 on a Thursday?) was sensational. The backdrop (downtown Seattle) was breathtaking. ESPN's presentation gave the feel of a big-time event. The kit colors (emerald green, Dutch orange) were worthy of "Project Runway." The intensity and pace were top-notch. A shot cleared off the line and another off...

By Steve Goff  |  October 30, 2009; 9:42 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (80)
Categories:  Americans Abroad , Beckham , College Soccer , Italy , MLS  
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Blanco to Mexico?

With the Chicago Fire preparing for the start of its MLS playoff campaign this weekend, midfield star Cauhtemoc Blanco says he has agreed to a contract with Mexican second-division club Veracruz. It's complicated, though. After the playoffs, he is set to join Veracruz in January and play through the rest...

By Steve Goff  |  October 29, 2009; 10:43 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (30)
Categories:  MLS , Mexico  
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Weekend TV Listings

What are you going to watch? FRIDAY U-17 World Cup, Mexico-Japan 2 p.m. ET, Galavision NCAA men, Bucknell-Lafayette 8 p.m. Fox Soccer Channel NCAA women, UCLA-USC 10 p.m. FSC SATURDAY Russia, FC Moscow-Zenit 6:55 a.m. Setanta England, Arsenal-Spurs 8:30 a.m. ESPN2 Germany, Stuttgart-Bayern Munich 10:30 a.m. GolTV England, Fulham-Liverpool 10:30...

By Steve Goff  |  October 29, 2009; 7:00 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (38)
Categories:  TV  
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Payne Apologizes

D.C. United President Kevin Payne has issued a written apology for comments he made to the Insider this week that resulted in a $5,000 fine from MLS. "I deeply regret some of the comments I made in an interview published earlier this week. In trying to explain the sometimes unfair...

By Steve Goff  |  October 29, 2009; 4:44 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (33)
Categories:  D.C. United , MLS  
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USA Victories, Wicks Surgery

*Washington Freedom striker Abby Wambach's 35th-minute header led the top-ranked USA women's national team to a 1-0 away victory over No. 2 Germany in a friendly before a sellout crowd of 30,000 in Augsburg. The Americans are now 17-4-4 all-time against Germany and 42-1-4 since the end of the 2007...

By Steve Goff  |  October 29, 2009; 3:15 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (32)
Categories:  D.C. United , Women , Youth soccer  
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Payne Fined $5,000

D.C. United President Kevin Payne has been fined $5,000 by MLS for comments deemed "detrimental to the public image of the league." In an interview with the Insider this week, Payne was critical of the playing styles of Colorado and New England (and, to some extent, Real Salt Lake), expressed...

By Steve Goff  |  October 29, 2009; 2:03 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (47)
Categories:  D.C. United , MLS  
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MLS Coaching Status

We're waiting for D.C. United's decision on Tom Soehn and for the New York Red Bulls to do the right thing by retaining Richie Williams instead of importing a European leader. We're anticipating Peter Vermes (3-6-3 as the interim) to hire himself for the full-time gig in Kansas City and...

By Steve Goff  |  October 29, 2009; 11:05 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (65)
Categories:  D.C. United , MLS  
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Thursday Kickaround

*The MLS playoffs get underway tonight with Seattle, the No. 3 seed in the West, hosting second-seeded Houston in front of another rocking crowd at Qwest Field (10 p.m., ESPN2). *It's No. 1 vs. No. 2 in women's soccer today when the top-ranked USA visits Euro champion Germany in Augsburg,...

By Steve Goff  |  October 29, 2009; 6:02 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (29)
Categories:  Americans Abroad , College Soccer , MLS , TV , U.S. men's national team , Women , Youth soccer  
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Distant Goal by D.C.'s Own

As savvy Web explorers, you have probably already seen the video of this goal from 90-some yards by Southern Methodist University freshman defender Ryan Rosenbaum last week against nationally ranked Tulsa. What you probably didn't know is that Rosenbaum is from Washington, graduated from Wilson High School in Northwest D.C....

By Steve Goff  |  October 28, 2009; 7:42 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (12)
Categories:  College Soccer , Youth soccer  
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Wednesday Kickaround

*In the shadows of a sparkling World Cup stadium, people continue to live in deplorable conditions. Welcome to South Africa. *D.C. United award winners..... Team MVP: Clyde Simms. Defender: Bryan Namoff. Fans' Choice: Chris Pontius. Goal of the Year: Namoff (diving header). Coaches' Award: Rodney Wallace. Humanitarian: Devon McTavish. Golden...

By Steve Goff  |  October 28, 2009; 9:36 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (58)
Categories:  2010 World Cup , Americans Abroad , College Soccer , D.C. United , Germany , South Africa , Spain , TV , Women  
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TFC, FCD, Revs, Champions, Abroad

*No surprise: Toronto FC interim coach Chris Cummins, who replaced John Carver early this season, will not be retained, the club announced. With a chance to clinch its first playoff berth Saturday, TFC was embarrassed at last-place New York, 5-0. *No surprise: Michael Hitchcock is out at FC Dallas' general...

By Steve Goff  |  October 27, 2009; 7:05 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (28)
Categories:  Americans Abroad , CONCACAF Champions League , MLS  
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A Few Minutes With Tom Soehn

As you read on the Insider last night, D.C. United will decide in the next few weeks whether to offer Coach Tom Soehn a new contract. If that were to happen, Soehn would become the longest-serving head coach in club history (a fourth season). Bruce Arena, Thomas Rongen and Peter...

By Steve Goff  |  October 27, 2009; 1:29 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (53)
Categories:  D.C. United  
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United Wrap-Up

*D.C. United captain Jaime Moreno, MLS's career scoring leader who has been in the league since the 1996 inaugural season, says he wants to play again next year. "I don't know where, but I feel like I still have it. I've been pretty healthy this year. I'm actually feeling better...

By Steve Goff  |  October 27, 2009; 12:41 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (23)
Categories:  D.C. United  
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Tuesday Kickaround

*D.C. United is in the market for a veteran defender. "We had a fairly young group in the back and in goal," GM Dave Kasper said. "Through the course of the year, we had nine or 10 games where we scored the first goal or were ahead and we gave...

By Steve Goff  |  October 27, 2009; 10:28 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (33)
Categories:  Americans Abroad , D.C. United , MLS , TV  
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DCU's Style Council

No matter who is coaching D.C. United next season -- whether it's Tom Soehn, Dave Sarachan, Richie Williams or Sir Alex Ferguson -- club president Kevin Payne says United will, for the betterment of his product, the league and the sport, maintain a progressive attacking style. "We don't want to...

By Steve Goff  |  October 27, 2009; 5:51 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (99)
Categories:  D.C. United , MLS  
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United Stadium Update

D.C. United has engaged in serious talks with a Virginia jurisdiction about a new stadium, club president Kevin Payne told the Insider. He declined to identify the city or county but said -- no surprise -- that the stadium site would be outside the Capital Beltway. "Where are we going...

By Steve Goff  |  October 26, 2009; 10:35 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (43)
Categories:  D.C. United  
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Soehn, Kasper Status

D.C. United President Kevin Payne told the Insider that the club has begun evaluating Coach Tom Soehn and plans to decide within a month whether to offer him a new contract. Soehn is in the final year of a three-year deal. "We have to determine whether we believe, for the...

By Steve Goff  |  October 26, 2009; 8:26 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (52)
Categories:  D.C. United  
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Monday Kickaround

*Politics and soccer cross paths again in Honduras. Meantime, Catrachos defender Maynor Figueroa is sidelined. *The USA begins play at the U-17 World Cup today in Nigeria against Spain (2 p.m. ET, ESPNU, Galavision). *Soccer America college rankings Men 1. Akron (15-0-0); 2. Wake Forest (11-2-2); 3. North Carolina (10-2-2);...

By Steve Goff  |  October 26, 2009; 8:55 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (64)
Categories:  CONCACAF , College Soccer , MLS , Youth soccer  
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MLS Playoff Race

After a seven-month regular season, the final breakdown..... EASTERN CONFERENCE AUTOMATIC BERTHS Columbus 13-7-10, 49 points Chicago 11-7-12, 45 WESTERN CONFERENCE AUTOMATIC BERTHS Los Angeles 12-6-12, 48 points Houston 13-8-9, 48 WILD-CARD BERTHS Seattle 11-7-11, 47 points Chivas USA 13-11-6, 45 New England 11-10-9, 42 Real Salt Lake 11-12-7, 40...

By Steve Goff  |  October 25, 2009; 7:59 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (49)
Categories:  MLS  
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Americans Abroad

GOALKEEPERS Tim Howard 90 in Everton's 3-2 loss at Bolton Brad Friedel 90 in Aston Villa's 1-1 tie at Wolves Brad Guzan in 18, didn't play for Aston Villa Troy Perkins 90 in Valerenga's 2-1 loss to Sandefjord Marcus Hahnemann in 18, didn't play in Wolves' 1-1 tie vs. Aston...

By Steve Goff  |  October 25, 2009; 4:07 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (12)
Categories:  Americans Abroad  
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United's season officially over

Well, that sure was an up-and-down game for D.C. United and its fans. So much so that I ended up writing four versions of the story, at least the top, throughout the contest as the trajectory changed time and time again. The most important news, though, is that about two...

By Paul Tenorio  |  October 25, 2009; 1:35 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (97)
Categories:  D.C. United  
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