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Soccer Insider: November 14, 2010 - November 20, 2010

MLS Commissioner Don Garber addresses possible league changes and improving officiating

The MLS board of governors discussed the league's scheduling and playoff formats Saturday, but changes next season are "more than likely [going to be] a tweak to our system but not any major changes," Commissioner Don Garber said. One aspect that he insisted will be phased out is the system...

By Steve Goff  | November 20, 2010; 7:07 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (19)
Categories:  MLS  | Tags:  MLS  
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Andy Najar's contract, D.C. United news & notes

Midfielder Andy Najar, the MLS rookie of the year, is close to finalizing a new contract with D.C. United, his representative told the Insider late Friday. Najar, 17, still has several years remaining on his current deal, but after his sensational first season, the sides decided to restructure it. This...

By Steve Goff  | November 19, 2010; 11:20 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (24)
Categories:  D.C. United  | Tags:  D.C. United  
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How the FIFA World Cup vote will work

We're less than two weeks away from FIFA's decision about the host nations for the 2018 and 2022 World Cups. How will it work? The executive committee will gather at FIFA headquarters in Zurich, listen to final presentations from each of the bidding groups and then vote on Thu., Dec....

By Steve Goff  | November 19, 2010; 6:27 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (4)
Categories:  FIFA, USA World Cup bid  | Tags:  World Cup  
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FC Dallas' Ferreira named MLS MVP

Colombian midfielder David Ferreira, whose attacking prowess guided FC Dallas to its first appearance in the MLS Cup, was named the league's most valuable player Friday in Toronto. Ferreira received 20 percent of the vote, which included players, coaches, general managers and reporters. Los Angeles Galaxy striker Edson Buddle was...

By Steve Goff  | November 19, 2010; 2:51 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (4)
Categories:  MLS  | Tags:  MLS  
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Qatar's World Cup bid concerns FIFA

According to FIFA evaluations, Qatar's bid to host the 2022 World Cup is of "high risk" from an operational standpoint, an assessment that should boost the American efforts to win hosting rights to the tournament. FIFA's executive committee will select the sites of the 2018 and '22 World Cups on...

By Steve Goff  | November 19, 2010; 12:57 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (16)
Categories:  FIFA, USA World Cup bid  | Tags:  FIFA, World Cup  
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Weekend soccer TV listings: MLS, Mexico, Premier League, La Liga, Serie A, Bundesliga, USA women

In addition to TV outlets, espn3.com and foxsoccer.tv will carry numerous matches online. What are you going to watch? (All times are Eastern) SATURDAY England, Spurs-Arsenal 7:30 a.m. ESPN2, ESPN Deportes Germany, Schalke-Werder Bremen 9:30 p.m. GolTV England, Manchester United-Wigan 10 a.m. Fox Soccer Channel England, Birmingham-Chelsea 10 a.m. Fox...

By Steve Goff  | November 18, 2010; 3:54 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (15)
Categories:  TV  | Tags:  TV listings  
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Thursday kickaround: FIFA scandal, MLS, Charlie Davies, NCAA tournament, USA meets Mandela

Greetings from Toronto, where, three days ahead of MLS Cup, the weather is cool and damp. The weekend outlook, however, isn't bad, considering it's November in Canada. For kickoff Sunday night, it should be clear with the temperature in the 30s. MLS Cup is not big enough to grip a...

By Steve Goff  | November 18, 2010; 11:53 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (43)
Categories:  Americans Abroad, College Soccer, FIFA, France, MLS, South Africa, U.S. men's national team, USA World Cup bid  | Tags:  FIFA, MLS  
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Video: ESPN's Agudelo interview, replay

By Steve Goff  | November 17, 2010; 6:47 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (24)
Categories:  South Africa, U.S. men's national team  | Tags:  Juan Agudelo  
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Video: Morocco seizes on Northern Ireland blunder

Morocco's Marouane Chamakh (Arsenal) takes advantage of Northern Ireland keeper Alan Blayney's attempted clearance during a 1-1 draw:...

By Steve Goff  | November 17, 2010; 6:36 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
Categories:  Morocco, Northern Ireland  | Tags:  Northern Ireland  
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USA defeats South Africa, 1-0, on late goal by 17-year-old Juan Agudelo

Juan Agudelo, a 17-year-old reserve forward for the New York Red Bulls, scored late in his debut to provide the United States with a 1-0 victory over South Africa in a friendly in Cape Town. Agudelo, who entered early in the second half, was set up for the 85th-minute goal...

By Steve Goff  | November 17, 2010; 4:52 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (17)
Categories:  Americans Abroad, South Africa, U.S. men's national team  | Tags:  U.S. national soccer team  
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Video: Lionel Messi scores goal in 90th minute as Argentina defeats Brazil, 1-0

In a friendly played in Qatar, Argentina superstar Lionel Messi rescues a drab affair with a 90th-minute goal to provide a 1-0 victory over Brazil:...

By Steve Goff  | November 17, 2010; 2:43 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (5)
Categories:  Argentina, Brazil  | Tags:  Lionel Messi  
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Matchday: USA at South Africa friendly

Bob Bradley and the U.S. national soccer team conclude a busy and productive 2010 schedule with a friendly against South Africa in the Nelson Mandela Challenge in Cape Town. This is the third meeting between the nations following U.S. victories in 2007 in Johannesburg (1-0) and 2000 in Washington (4-0)....

By Steve Goff  | November 17, 2010; 1:26 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (58)
Categories:  South Africa, U.S. men's national team  | Tags:  USA-South Africa  
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FIFA presents summaries of inspection reports on the 2018 and 2022 World Cup bid candidates

With the selection of the 2018 and 2022 World Cup host nations just two weeks away, FIFA has provided general summaries of the inspection reports. Much more will go into the decisions by the 24-member executive committee (unreleased information, politics, etc.), but these evaluations give us some insight into the...

By Steve Goff  | November 17, 2010; 9:46 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (32)
Categories:  FIFA, USA World Cup bid  | Tags:  World Cup  
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MLS: Best XI, expansion outlook, playoff format, MVP hint, roster size, reserve division, other notes

MLS Best XI Goalkeeper: Donovan Ricketts, Los Angeles. Defenders: Jamison Olave, Real Salt Lake; Omar Gonzalez, Los Angeles; Nat Borchers, Real Salt Lake. Midfielders: David Ferreira, Dallas; Dwayne De Rosario, Toronto; Sebastien Le Toux, Philadelphia; Javier Morales, Real Salt Lake; Landon Donovan, Los Angeles. Forwards: Edson Buddle, Los Angeles; Chris...

By Steve Goff  | November 16, 2010; 4:46 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (51)
Categories:  MLS  | Tags:  MLS  
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WPS loses another team, but Freedom returns

Gold Pride FC, the Bay Area club that won the Women's Professional Soccer championship this season and featured the world's best female player, has become the third team in less than a year to fold. Despite the on-field results and the presence of Brazilian superstar Marta, Gold Pride met the...

By Steve Goff  | November 16, 2010; 1:22 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (39)
Categories:  Women  | Tags:  WPS  
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Woman pleads guilty to two felonies in Charlie Davies case; sentencing in February

The woman driving the vehicle that crashed on the George Washington Memorial Parkway in October 2009, killing one passenger and severely injuring U.S. national soccer team player Charlie Davies, pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter and DWI maiming Tuesday morning in U.S. District Court in Alexandria, The Post's Spencer Hsu reports....

By Steve Goff  | November 16, 2010; 10:55 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (7)
Categories:  U.S. men's national team  | Tags:  Charlie Davies  
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Live video for Wednesday international matches

Wednesday is a FIFA international fixture date, and many of the friendlies, plus two Euro qualifiers, are available on TV or through streaming online video: (All times are Eastern) Russia-Belgium 11 a.m. Foxsoccer.tv Slovakia-Bosnia 11 a.m. Foxsoccer.tv Euro qualifier, Croatia-Malta 11:30 a.m. ESPN3.com Euro qualifier, Finland-San Marino 11:30 a.m. Foxsoccer.tv...

By Steve Goff  | November 15, 2010; 11:50 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (4)
Categories:  TV  | Tags:  international friendlies  
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Maryland Terrapins are No. 2 seed in NCAA men's soccer tournament; Louisville is top seed

ACC champion Maryland, which has won 13 consecutive matches, is the No. 2 seed in the 48-team NCAA men's soccer tournament and will play Bucknell or Penn on Sunday in College Park. Louisville (16-0-3) is the top seed in the tournament, which begins Thursday with 16 first-round matches. The Terrapins...

By Steve Goff  | November 15, 2010; 4:50 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
Categories:  College Soccer  | Tags:  college soccer  
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D.C. United, Danny Allsopp part ways

As expected, D.C. United and Australian forward Danny Allsopp have agreed to terminate his contract after one season in MLS. Allsopp, 32, shared the club lead in league goals with five but didn't materialize into the scoring threat that United envisioned. He seemed frustrated by inconsistent playing time (18 starts),...

By Steve Goff  | November 15, 2010; 11:06 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (34)
Categories:  D.C. United  | Tags:  D.C. United  
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Monday kickaround: MLS coaches, Champions League, Don Garber, vuvuzelas, NCAA tournaments

*Chivas USA has shown interest in Real Salt Lake assistant Robin Fraser for its head coaching position, multiple sources told the Insider. Several other candidates are being considered as well. Is former Chicago Fire boss Denis Hamlett in the mix for any of the three openings in MLS (Chivas, D.C....

By Steve Goff  | November 15, 2010; 10:14 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (6)
Categories:  2010 World Cup, CONCACAF Champions League, College Soccer, MLS  | Tags:  MLS  
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MLS Cup: Rapids vs. FC Dallas, poll, video

Way back in March, when the season commenced, not one card-carrying member of the human race (6.8 billion and counting) predicted an MLS Cup showdown between the Colorado Rapids and FC Dallas. Not one. Really. I asked around. The fact that the clubs play in the same conference had something...

By Steve Goff  | November 15, 2010; 1:12 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (37)
Categories:  MLS  | Tags:  MLS Cup  
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Maryland Terrapins win ACC men's soccer championship, defeating top seed North Carolina

Matt Kassel converted an early penalty kick and Maryland held off severe pressure in the second half to defeat top-seeded North Carolina, 1-0, in the ACC men's soccer championship match Sunday in Cary, N.C. In claiming their fourth conference title, the second-seeded Terrapins (17-2-1) extended their winning streak to 13...

By Steve Goff  | November 14, 2010; 3:23 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
Categories:  College Soccer  | Tags:  Maryland Terrapins  
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American soccer players abroad: Stuart Holden, Michael Bradley, Benny Feilhaber score

How select Americans playing abroad fared this weekend: GOALKEEPERS Tim Howard 90 minutes in Everton's 2-1 loss to Arsenal Brad Friedel 90 in Aston Villa's 2-2 draw with Manchester United Marcus Hahnemann 90 in Wolves' 3-2 loss to Bolton Brad Guzan in the 18, didn't play for Aston Villa Dom...

By Steve Goff  | November 14, 2010; 2:43 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (6)
Categories:  Americans Abroad  | Tags:  Americans abroad  
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