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Thursday kickaround

usamexsnow.jpgAnother U.S.-Mexico match in wintry conditions? This time it was a women's friendly, not a men's qualifier, and the venue was Sandy, Utah, instead of Columbus, Ohio.

In a friendly played on a field glazed with snow, the Americans claimed a 1-0 victory on Abby Wambach's 60th-minute goal, the 105th of her career to tie Michelle Akers for third on the U.S. career list. After the goal, she and her teammates celebrated by creating snow angels. (Photo by Steve Griffin of the Salt Lake Tribune)

*In Denmark, American midfielder Benny Feilhaber returned from a lengthy injury layoff to play 21 minutes in Aarhus' 4-0 victory at Esbjerg. Today, Clint Dempsey and Fulham host Wolfsburg in the first leg of their Europa League quarterfinal.

*Cesc Fabregas' leg might be broken, jeopardizing his World Cup preparations for Spain, while Wayne Rooney has some ligament damage in his ankle.

*With the World Cup a little more than two months away, struggling South Africa gained confidence with a 1-1 draw at Paraguay.

*In a preseason friendly, third-division Real Maryland will host second-division Crystal Palace Baltimore at 6:30 tonight at Richard Montgomery High School in Rockville.

For TV listings and Pumas-Cruz Azul video.....

*Soccer on TV:
Europa League, Valencia-Atletico Madrid 3 p.m. GolTV
Libertadores, Corinthians-Cerro Porteno 6 p.m. Fox Sports Espanol
Europa League, Benfica-Liverpool 8 p.m. GolTV Premiere
Libertadores, Emelec-Deportivo Quito 8:30 p.m. FSE
MLS, Houston-Real Salt Lake 9 p.m. ESPN2
LIbertadores, Once Caldas-Nacional 10:30 p.m. FSE
MLS, Los Angeles-Chivas USA 11 p.m. ESPN2

*In a Mexico City derby, Pumas defeated Cruz Azul, 1-0, in the first leg of their CONCACAF Champions League semifinal:

By Steve Goff  |  April 1, 2010; 9:21 AM ET
Categories:  Americans Abroad , CONCACAF Champions League , England , Euro Champions League , MLS , Mexico , South Africa , TV , Women  
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Next: A few minutes with Will Chang

Comments

I am curious to know the thought process behind the decision to play a USWNT friendly in SLC in MARCH.

Posted by: Ron16 | April 1, 2010 9:32 AM | Report abuse

In case you're looking for Fulham-Wolfsburg at a local bar (or at home on DirecTV)...

3:05 pm Live
Fulham vs Wolfburg
DirectTV 462

Posted by: Kev29 | April 1, 2010 9:33 AM | Report abuse

Boo to not being able to see Fulham vs Wolfsburg.

I always like look at the VW Arena and imagining it along the banks of the Anacostia!

Posted by: VirginiaBlueBlood | April 1, 2010 9:41 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: FrancoNiell | April 1, 2010 9:43 AM | Report abuse

or lack of thought. folks, it snows in Rockies in March, duuhh

Posted by: anti1 | April 1, 2010 9:44 AM | Report abuse

FYI: without pontificating :), a sprain by definition indicates ligament damage

http://catalog.nucleusinc.com/displaymonograph.php?MID=7

Posted by: delantero | April 1, 2010 9:50 AM | Report abuse

Arsenal-Barcelona: What a great game!

I've never seen a team withstand as much pressure as Arsenal did in the initial 15 minutes and not give up a goal. I guess Fabregas must have gotten injured before the PK but his adrenalin didn't let him know it?

Posted by: Joel_M_Lane | April 1, 2010 9:54 AM | Report abuse

Why do people think that VW has anything to do with a new stadium or ownership of the team? Unlike VfL Wolfsburg, Chang owns the team, not VW.

Posted by: rademaar | April 1, 2010 9:55 AM | Report abuse

@rademaar,

The broad sponsorship agreement with VW and DC United included at least the right of first offer or right of first refusal on naming rights to a DC United stadium.

SO - unless VW changes their massive marketing push in North America and with MLS/DC United between now and whenever that mythical venue is built, VW should have first crack at calling it the VW Arena.

Posted by: VirginiaBlueBlood | April 1, 2010 9:59 AM | Report abuse

A number of places will show the Europa league games today. Fado in DC, Summers and Kitty O'Shea's in Arlington. COYW!

Posted by: harkes4ever | April 1, 2010 10:04 AM | Report abuse

rademaar: desperation.

Posted by: Reignking | April 1, 2010 10:07 AM | Report abuse

The link above about new concession stands at RFK must be an April Fools' joke.

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | April 1, 2010 10:15 AM | Report abuse

Nah, old news. But that photo in the article makes me feel like I'm in the top deck of the old Memorial Stadium. I'm getting dizzy looking at it.

Posted by: Reignking | April 1, 2010 10:16 AM | Report abuse

Ben's Chili Half Smokes are the best thing going at Nats park. Would be nice to have at RFK...

Bathrooms are going to get even more disgusting if that's possible...

Posted by: DadRyan | April 1, 2010 10:17 AM | Report abuse

First offer/refusal at naming rights? So the stadium would actually have to be financed and built first before VW is involved in any way?

Yeah I'm desperate all right...

Posted by: rademaar | April 1, 2010 10:18 AM | Report abuse

Ben's Chili Half Smokes are the best thing going at Nats park. Would be nice to have at RFK...

Posted by: DadRyan | April 1, 2010 10:17 AM

I actually prefer the dogs at Hard Times when I'm at the Park. There's no line and they're always served hot - Ben's always seems to serve up a warmish half smoke with tepid chili. And anything less than piping hot does not flatter Ben's food.

Posted by: Kev29 | April 1, 2010 10:32 AM | Report abuse

First offer/refusal at naming rights? So the stadium would actually have to be financed and built first before VW is involved in any way?

Posted by: rademaar | April 1, 2010 10:18 AM

Yes - that is why it would be nice if VW gave Chang about $500 million well in advance for "naming rights"

Posted by: Kev29 | April 1, 2010 10:34 AM | Report abuse

Name to know for the future -- Lille's Belgian Eden Hazard -- after Zidane called him a crack today.

Posted by: Reignking | April 1, 2010 10:49 AM | Report abuse

If only Five Guys would come to RFK. That's the best thing at Nats Park -- in part because it's out of the way and not everyone finds it.

Posted by: BlackandRedRedDevil | April 1, 2010 11:00 AM | Report abuse

Wow. If Spain carries an injured Cesc and Iniesta into the world cup, their overall attack will be diminished to say the least. They still have Xavi and David Silva, but still.

I also can't see Man U pulling out the tie without Rooney. He's too important for them, and Berbatov is outnumbered in the can score department (Munich has so many proven strikers).

Wow, at least our walking wounded have recovery time.

Posted by: UnitedDemon | April 1, 2010 11:13 AM | Report abuse

If only one could bring outside food into RFK like you can at Nats Park...

Posted by: sitruc | April 1, 2010 11:14 AM | Report abuse

"If only Five Guys would come to RFK."

A well placed source tells me a 5 Guys Jr burger fits nicely into a back pocket and gets through the RFK pat down. Although take care to remember it's there before you sit down in your section, or so I'm told,

Posted by: delantero | April 1, 2010 11:24 AM | Report abuse

If only one could bring outside food into RFK like you can at Nats Park...

Posted by: sitruc | April 1, 2010 11:14 AM
---------------------------------------------------------------

That's especially helpful during Passover. I'll be the guy explaining the Matzah sandwich in the security line for Opening Day at Nationals Park.... Too bad, they won't let me do the same at RFK. The g/f isn't sure she's going to come -- though I think it has less to do with going hungry for a few hours and more to do with sitting through the game without beer...

Posted by: fischy | April 1, 2010 11:25 AM | Report abuse

MLS just announced expansion of the DP rule - no April Fool's joke. 2 per team and luxury tax on 3rd with option to use allocation money to bring down salary cap hit of DP signing. Also DP only counts $335K on cap instead of previous $415K.

Posted by: VercengetorixII | April 1, 2010 11:35 AM | Report abuse

Although take care to remember it's there before you sit down in your section, or so I'm told,

Posted by: delantero | April 1, 2010 11:24 AM
___________________________________________

What is this sitting thing you refer too?

Posted by: boda-united | April 1, 2010 11:50 AM | Report abuse

"MLS just announced expansion of the DP rule - no April Fool's joke. 2 per team"

Super, now we can get Gallardo AND Veron.

Posted by: delantero | April 1, 2010 12:07 PM | Report abuse

Check out what Black and Red are reporting:

http://www.blackandredunited.com/2010/4/1/1400419/olsen-coming-back

If this is true, that would be amazing!!

Posted by: jsm3 | April 1, 2010 12:08 PM | Report abuse

I'm calling BS on the extra DPs solely because of the first paragraph -- which names names:

"NEW YORK — Fans who dream of watching the likes of Thierry Henry, Raúl and Ronaldinho on an MLS field at the same time can wake up. That dream is closer to being a reality."

Posted by: Reignking | April 1, 2010 12:25 PM | Report abuse

Argy Bargy Champions League-ers:

1 Handsome Boys SC Chest Rockwell 53 377

Hate to say I told you so, but I told you so.

Posted by: Chest_Rockwell | April 1, 2010 12:35 PM | Report abuse

WSJ.com article about this Saturday's ManU-Chelsea game getting a potential worldwide audience (it'll be on ESPN2 in the States) of 500 million:

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702304252704575156103456055346.html

. . . Makes one wonder what ratings the Real Madrid-Barcelona game the following week will garner?

Posted by: Juan-John1 | April 1, 2010 12:37 PM | Report abuse

agreed Reignking.

If this new deal is true, its (again) clearly geared toward NY and LA, and I guess now to a larger extent Seattle. Interesting that the League will essentially be reiumbursing NYRB for the second slot they acquired from Chivas, though it hasnt been used in over a season and a half.

Posted by: VTUnited | April 1, 2010 12:38 PM | Report abuse

@jsm3,

It's April 1st, bro. And the phone # on that press release is for the Philadelphia Union. Not that I called it.

Posted by: benonthehill | April 1, 2010 12:53 PM | Report abuse

Interesting about the DP thing, because in some ways it reads like an April Fools. NY is getting allocation money to compensate for the "extra" DP slot they had, and Donovan now deemed a DP? Would MLS really take these steps to create parity? It seems written to get those who have harped on these things for years.

That said, Garber's been dropping hints for awhile that this announcement would come within weeks after a new CBA. It's a curious thing -- For the teams that use it, the DP rule doesn't work very well with only one per team. For the rest, it doesn't work well because they can't get DPs.

Read the "Puebla Conundrum" @ soccer365. Herculez Gomez attributes his success at Puebla in large part to playing with better players that actually get him the ball when he makes a run.

http://soccer365.com/americans_abroad/story_30310173245.php

I don't know if this is a serious announcement. I suspect it is. If it isn't, it should be. It does exactly what I've expected and argued for. It lowers the salary cap hit for a DP, so signing a DP doesn't mean you can no longer afford to have talent throughout the rest of the roster. The added slots mean it may be easier to bring in DPs, knowing they will have other talented players around them. The real question is whether teams like Colorado, Salt Lake, Portland and KC will be able to sign DP-worthy foreign players.

Based on the half-season numbers, I think DC United could easily afford to add 3 half-season DPs this season. If my cap estimates are in the ballpark, they could even sign one before the April 15th deadline, and still be able to bring in 2 more after the World Cup. A central midfielder now, and a striker and attacking mid after July 15.

Posted by: fischy | April 1, 2010 12:54 PM | Report abuse

@VTUnited -- NY was going to use that slot this summer. The compensation comes in because now NY doesn't have an "extra" slot. As for LA, in the long run, they will use this, but if Donovan is now a DP, I'm not sure they'll get to use it this year. As for Seattle, though details were scarce, I suspect they've already given up the second DP slot to sign Nkufo. In the short run, this actually just ratifies what was already in place for those 3 teams.

Posted by: fischy | April 1, 2010 12:59 PM | Report abuse

i thought the philly union number was pretty funny too

Posted by: jsm3 | April 1, 2010 1:03 PM | Report abuse

It was actually one of the more plausible 4/1 spoofs I've seen today. That's what a joke our central midfield is right now.

Posted by: benonthehill | April 1, 2010 1:15 PM | Report abuse

Ben's Chili Half Smokes are the best thing going at Nats park. Would be nice to have at RFK...

Posted by: DadRyan | April 1, 2010 10:17 AM
--------------

Sorry, the best thing about Nats Park is whenever the Orioles come into town and play in it.

The Orioles, the best thing about Nats Park.

Posted by: Poopy_McPoop | April 1, 2010 1:19 PM | Report abuse

Re: Fantasy . . what are the chances of Barklage playing Sat?

I'm hosed with CMB and Dallas not playing this weekend and need a replacement.

Posted by: delantero | April 1, 2010 1:33 PM | Report abuse

re Matzah/Passover friendly food

Not sure how much grief the security guards would give you, but you could try to claim a food "allergy"

http://www.dcunited.com/stadium/policies/foodbeverage
Outside food and beverages is prohibited inside RFK Stadium however special exceptions will be made for small children or individuals with specific food allergies. One (1) clear, plastic factory sealed water bottle per person is permitted during heat advisories ONLY.

Posted by: emanon13 | April 1, 2010 1:48 PM | Report abuse

@Poopy -- The best thing about Nats Park is Ryan Zimmerman. If you're a baseball fan, you have to marvel at this guy. I call him "The Natural" because I've never seen a smoother-looking baseball player. What Jeter is to shortstops, Zimmerman is to third basemen, except he hits with much more power than Jeter and he's got way more range in the field.

Posted by: fischy | April 1, 2010 2:00 PM | Report abuse

PS. Good to see Benny back... We might need him more than we think IF we end up playing Dempsey on top with Jozy and Davies and Holden don't recover in time. It's not his natural postiton but, the other options aren't much better.

http://tiny.cc/ggvpq

Posted by: dwreck1971 | April 1, 2010 3:45 PM | Report abuse

Reignking: Hazard has been a known commodity for a few years. He's always one of the first youngsters I buy when I start a new game on Football Manager 2008.

Posted by: alecw81 | April 1, 2010 3:46 PM | Report abuse

If you have been watching the Ligue 1 weekly highlights, then Hazard is a known commodity.

I hope we sign a quality DP player and not just some guy who makes a lot of $ in Europe but comes here because no one is willing to pay him that any longer in Europe.

Posted by: Charisma_Man | April 1, 2010 6:37 PM | Report abuse

Kev29, there are smaller carts around the stadium that sell Ben's Chili Dogs and unless I dreamed that, the lines were always small at those and the dogs were fine.

@Chest, Dude, we're all right on your heels brah. Argy Bargy ain't over till the fat lady sings that anthem one last time in May.

@fischy, I agree with you about Zimmerman. If my brother in law can get me some of his companie's tickets on the third baseline within spitting distance of Zimmerman this year you wanna go?

Posted by: DadRyan | April 1, 2010 11:14 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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