Just 1 week short of the International break which features the US National Team returning to the field vs a loaded Brazil squad next Friday night at 7:30 pm on FS1, one of its biggest stars Clint Dempsey has decided to hang up the cleats. He will retire tied with Landon Donovan as the leading scorer in US Mens Soccer History with 57 goals. In my mind Dempsey and Donovan are the greatest American field players to ever lace them up. Of course Dempsey played more years in the EPL so maybe he gets the nod – certainly among the Euro Snobs I know. Dempsey’s story is well known from the trailer parks of Nagoches Texas (outside of Dallas) to the World’s Biggest League – the EPL and Fulham football club where his goal took them to the quarterfinals of the 2nd largest club tourney in the world – the Europa League back in 2010. The next season his 29 goals for Fulham helped him finish 4th in the voting for FA player of the year – YES an American finished 3rd in scoring in the EPL in 2010 – AMAZING. He made me wake up early on weekends to watch the EPL – as he and US Forward Brian McBride, US defender Carlos Bocenegra and GK Kasey Keller formed FulhaAmerica. His exploits took him from MLS as a rookie at New England to the EPL, back to MLS as a super high paid star for the Seattle Sounders. Interestingly despite his goal scoring expertise it was in a year he was injured that Seattle won the MLS Title 2 seasons ago. Good luck You Great American Soccer Player Clint Dempsey – may the fish be always biting in your pond!!
So our Boys and Blue managed back-to-back ties this past week – the first a disappointing 1-1 draw on the Road after dominating Atlanta United 2 -the 2nd one however was spectacular as they scored in the 94th minute to tie the Pittsburg Riverhounds at home last night 2-2. The 11 had 55 % possession and a 6 shots on goal to just 4 for Pittsburg – but it was last second goal by Jack McInerney his 2nd on the night that kept them from dropping down the table in the playoff watch. The 11 stand in 6th place with 41 points just 5 pts off 2nd overall as they did not lose a game in the month of July. Our Boys in Blue return home this Sat night at 7 pm and Wed at 7 pm at the Luke – and of course discount tickets below $15 are available Click here for Discount Tickets for the Game and enter 2018 INDY as the promo code.
So Real Madrid star Luka Modric who carried his team to the World Cup Finals edged Cristiano Renaldo and Mohamed Salah in EUFA Player of the Year voting this year. Classic Sergio Ramos touching Salah’s shoulder on his return to his seat. Of course Renaldo’s bicycle goal for Real vs Juventus in the Final 4 of last year’s Champions League was voted goal of the year. On to the draw – interesting draw for the group stages that will be carried on Tues/Weds this season on TNT at both 1 pm and 3:30 pm. Liverpool got no favors as 2nd place finishers last year as they get PSG and Napoli in their group. TNT’s production has been ah SUBPAR at best so far – but at least they are carrying the games. But the studio show is a joke with Tim Howard, Carlos Bocanegra and Stu Holden along with Hoops star Steve Nash and Fox host Kate Adobe in the most pathetic studio I have seen since my college days at UF.
Nothing like a 3-0 drubbing at home to turn the heat up on the Special One at Manchester United. As a longtime casual Man United fan who has literally stopped cheering for them because I hate Mourino – I think its great. This guy lost his touch 2 jobs ago and has no clue how to manage in 2018 in my opinion. While watching his team has never been fun – his Real Madrid team scored the fewest goals in the Madradista’s history while he was coach – now its just downright ridiculous. Sad times in this once proud franchises history. Time to make a change I think! Meanwhile Liverpool, Tottenham, Chelsea and yes Watford continue to roll on – while Man City, Leicester, Everton and of course Arsenal have all dropped games. This weekend not much to watch as Man City vs New Castle United and US defender Yedlin at 12:30 pm on NBC is the best game to watch. Leicester and Liverpool will start the day Sat with a 7:30 am match on NBCSN as well.
American’s in Germany
So the German Bundesliga started last weekend and man was it fun to watch young Christian Pulisic both start and really have an impact on the game for the winning home side. He really takes guys on with his speed and footwork – reminds me of Landon Donovan (though Landon was stronger on the ball). Especially fun was Pulisic taking the corner kicks where he placed some really nice balls including an assist on a header for goal. Pulisic still needs to get stronger – I still think Dortmund is the place for him as the EPL might just chew him up and spit him out. He’s a technical player who often gets hacked and kicked not always getting the calls as he is so young. Either way it sure was fun to watch an American doing well on a Champions League quality team at home in front of the Great Yellow Wall. If you are a coach looking to get kids excited about soccer – have them start watching Dortmund games on Fox Sports 1 or 2 – the games are high scoring, the crowds ridiculous and Pulisic is something special. Dortmund travels to Hanover at 2:30 pm on Fox Sports 1, where former US left back Steve Cherundolo is coaching the U17 squad. I missed the battle of American’s Sat as US Center Back John Brooks scored the winning header for Wolfsburg vs Schlake and US Mid McKinney who played the entire game. Sat Brooks and Wolfsburg will host Bayern Leverkusen at 9:30 am on FS1, before Stutgart faces Bayern Munich at 12:30 on FS2. Sunday at noon on FS1 McKinney and Schalke travel to Hertha.
Atlanta United’s Martinez broke the record for goals in a MLS season (28 goals) with his sublime strike vs Orlando during a spellbounding Rivalry Week last week. The week of rivalries saw NYCFC and NY Red Bulls tie, LAFC & the LA Galaxy Tie 1-1 and Seattle take a huge victory at Portland on Sunday evening. With the playoffs just a couple weeks away key games like Wayne Rooney and DC United hosting Atlanta United Sunday night at 7 pm on FS1 will count more. ESPN+ gives us games with playoff implications as Columbus hosts NYCFC Sat at 8 pm on ESPN+ with 1st round home field advantage at stake, meanwhile Carmel’s own Matt Hedges will lead Dallas vs Houston on ESPN+ Sat at 8 pm as Dallas looks to stay in the top 3. Finally Zlatan and the LA Galaxy will look to end a 5 game no win streak with their playoff lives on the line Sat night at 10 on ESPN+ vs Real Salt Lake. The US Ladies play Chile a double this week Fri night vs Chile 11 pm on ESPN2 and again vs Chile on Tues at 10 pm on ESPN2.
Coach Bill Spencer’s U15 & U14 Combo Team won the Jerry Yeagly Soccer Classic in Bloomington last weekend.
INDY 11 GAMES
Sat Sept 1 7 pm Wish TV 8 Indy 11 vs Richmond Kickers
Wed Sept 5 7 pm Wish TV 8 Indy 11 vs NY Red Bulls II
GAMES ON TV
Fri, Aug 31
2:30 pm Fox Sport 1 Hanover (Bobby Woods) vs Dortmund (Pulisic)
2:30 pm ESPN+ Milan vs Roma
2:45 pm beIN Sport Lyonnaise vs Nice
11 pm ESPN2 US Ladies vs Chile (LA)
Sat, Sept 1
7:30 am NBCSN Leicester City vs Liverpool
9:30 am FS 1 Wolfsburg vs Bayern Leverkusen
9:30 am FS2 Frankfurt vs Werder Bremen ( )
10 am NBCSN Chelsea vs Bournemouth
11 am bEIN Sport Nimes vs PSG (Tim Weah)
12:30 pm NBCSN Man City vs New Castle United (Yedlin)
12:30 pm FS 2 Stutgart vs Bayern Munich
2:30 ESPN+? Parma vs Juventus
2:45 pm beIN Sport Real Madrid vs Leganes
7 pm Wish TV8 Indy 11 vs Richmond Kickers
Sun, Sept 2
8 am NBCSN Cardiff City vs Arsenal
9 am Fox Sport 1 RB Leipzig vs dusseldorf
11 am NBCSN Watford vs Tottenham
12n Fox Sports 1 Schalke (McKiney) vs Hertha
12:30 pm beIN Sport Barcelona vs Huesca
2:30 ESPN+ Sampandoria vs Napoli
7 pm Fox Sport1 DC United (Rooney) vs Atlanta United (Martinez)
Tues, Sept 4
10 pm ESPN2 US Ladies vs Chile (San Fran)
Weds, Sept 5
7 pm My Indy TV Indy 11 vs NY Red Bulls II
7 pm Yes Network NYCFC vs New England
Thurs, Sept 6
2:45 pm ESPN2 Germany vs France (Eufa Nations League)
Fri, Sept 7
2:45 pm ESPN2 Italy vs Poland (Eufa Nations League)
2:45 pm FS1? Scotland vs Belgium
7:30 pm FS1 USMNT vs Brazil (Metlife)
10 pm FS1? Mexico vs Uruguay
10 pm Lifetime Portland Thorns v Seattle Riegn (NWSL)
Sat, Sept 8
9 am ESPNews Northern Ireland vs Boznia
12 pm Switzerland vs Iceland (Eufa Nations League)
12 pm Finland vs Hungary (Eufa Nations League)
2:45 pm England vs Spain (Eufa Nations League)
Sun, Sept 9
12 pm ESPN News Bulgaria vs Norway (Eufa Nations League)
2:45 pm France vs Netherlands (Eufa Nations League)
2:45 pm ESPNnews Cypress vs Slovenia (Eufa Nations League)
Mon, Sept 10
2:45 pm Portugal vs Italy (Eufa Nations League)
2:45 pm ESPNews Sweden vs Turkey (Eufa Nations League)
Tues, Sept 11
2:45 pm ESPNews Spain vs Croatia (Eufa Nations League)
3 pm ?? England vs Switzerland
8 pm beIN Sport?? Colombia vs Argentina
8:30 pm ESPN USA vs Mexico in Nashville (anyone want to go?)
Weds, Sept 12
7 pm ESPN+ Penn vs Indy 11
Fri, Sept 14
2:30 pm Fox Sport 1 Dortmund (Pulisic) vs Frankfort
2:45 pm beIN Sport PSG (Weah) vs St Etienne
Sat, Sept 15
7:30 am NBCSN Tottenham vs Liverpool
9:30 am FS 1 Bayern Munich vs Bayern Leverkusen
12:30 pm NBC Watford vs Man United
12:30 pm Fox Soccer Mgladbach (Johnson) vs Schalke (McKinney)
Thurs, Oct 11
7:30 pm FSI USA vs Colombia (Tampa)
Thurs, Nov 15
3 pm ESPN2 England vs USA (Wembley)
Sat, Nov 20
3 pm ESPN2 Italy vs USMNT
Clint Dempsey personified U.S. soccer’s dream: developing creative players with attitude, swagger
The end has finally come for the man they call “Deuce”.Clint Dempsey, arguably the greatest player the U.S. has ever produced, announced on Wednesday that he has retired from professional soccer, effective immediately.”After a lot of thought, my family and I have decided that this is the right time for me to step away from the game,” said Dempsey. “I’d like to thank all of the teammates, coaches and support staff that I’ve worked with throughout my career. It has always been my dream to make it as a pro. I’m grateful to have been on this ride. I would like to thank all of the fans who have supported me throughout my career with the New England Revolution, Fulham, Tottenham, Seattle Sounders and the U.S. men’s national team. Y’all have always made me feel at home, and it is something that I will always remember.”The memories of his exploits will be etched in the minds of those who watched him. Dempsey’s career ends with 57 international goals, tied with Landon Donovan for the most in U.S. men’s national team history. He bagged another 154 at club level.But Dempsey’s legacy will go well beyond numbers. In a country where the hyper-regimented aspects of player development are bemoaned, Dempsey was every bit a product of the pickup games he played in his youth back in his hometown of Nacogdoches, Texas. Whenever Dempsey took the field, he offered the possibility — and at times the reality and pure joy — of the unexpected, a rarity from a U.S. player. As former U.S. manager Bruce Arena so eloquently put it, Dempsey’s had the ability to “try s—.” His delightful chip in the Europa League round of 16 for Fulham against Juventus, a goal that helped propel the Cottagers on their way to the 2010 final, is the most notable example.Sure, other U.S. players have enjoyed stellar careers both at home and abroad, but Dempsey’s ability and style spoke to the broader dreams for the sport in this country: that the U.S. could produce a creative player with attitude and swagger, one who could compete at the highest echelons of the sport. His “Deuce face” that he trotted out during a World Cup qualifying against Jamaica back in 2012 is the stuff of legend.And no matter how many times Dempsey was written off, he would rise up to the top again. For all of the goals Dempsey scored in the Premier League, it’s worth remembering that just about every manager he played for with either Fulham or Tottenham consigned him to the reserves at one point, only for him to prove himself again and again.”I’ve always been a competitive person, wanted to be on the field,” said Dempsey prior to a home World Cup qualifier against Trinidad & Tobago last year. “Yeah, it was frustrating when the managers would change, you’d go to the bench and try to work your way back into the team. But it makes you stronger.”With numerous U.S. players getting chewed up by the meat grinder that is the top leagues in Europe, the fans loved him for that resilience. It allowed the broader U.S. soccer community to puff its chest out a bit, and say, “See? We can produce a player like Clint.”Dempsey showed his fortitude in other ways, as well. The loss of his sister, Jennifer, to a brain aneurysm when he was just 12 fueled his competitive fire, and made him play every game like it was his last. A heart ailment back in 2016 nearly ended his career, yet he returned for both club and country. There was simply no keeping him down.Perhaps the most sobering aspect to Dempsey’s retirement, beyond no longer seeing him on the field, is the realization that he remains very much an outlier, at least in terms of U.S. attackers. He and Landon Donovan — the source of constant comparisons for much of his career — are the only ones in the conversation as the country’s greatest attacking player. Christian Pulisic has accomplished much already with Borussia Dortmund, but he still has a way to go to catch up to the exploits of Dempsey. Otherwise the cupboard of creative U.S. players remains bare.Of course, a big reason why Dempsey is so celebrated is that he was unique. All he wanted to do was score goals, spend time with his family and go fishing. Now he’ll have more time to enjoy the last two on that list.
Is Clint Dempsey the U.S. men’s national team’s greatest player ever?
6:53 PM ETESPN
With the news of Clint Dempsey’s retirement from professional soccer, ESPN FC turned to several of its U.S. soccer and MLS writers to ask whether the U.S. men’s national team’s joint-leading goal scorer is also its greatest player ever.
Jeff Carlisle (@JeffreyCarlisle)
Answering the question of whether Dempsey is the greatest U.S. men’s player isn’t as easy as it sounds. There have been a few goalkeepers — Kasey Keller, Brad Friedel, Tim Howard — who have at least been Dempsey’s equal in terms of club career, and they give him a run for his money in terms of U.S. exploits, too. But scoring goals is the hardest part of the game, and for that reason Landon Donovan is the only other player who comes close to Dempsey. I think Dempsey did more with his club career and played at a higher level for longer, so when you look at what he accomplished for both club and country, you have to give him the nod as the greatest U.S. player ever.
Matt Pentz (@mattpentz)
I initially thought about pushing back against the premise of ranking something as inherently subjective as greatness, but what the heck, I’ll bite: Yes, with the qualifier that Dempsey is the greatest U.S. men’s national team outfield player of all time. In that specific conversation, it’s likely to boil down to Dempsey versus Donovan, the man with whom he will forever be tied with on the list of most prodigious American goal scorers. That debate is something of a matter of personal taste, but Dempsey’s time with Fulham in the Premier League — not just holding his own but starring in one of the world’s biggest leagues — edge him to the very top of my list.
Arch Bell (@ArchBell)
I do consider Dempsey to be the greatest U.S. men’s national team player of all time. The biggest stage in all of sport is the World Cup, and no U.S. player has delivered in that tournament like Dempsey did, scoring crucial goals in all three tournaments he played in. He also put the U.S. team on his back during its run to the 2016 Copa America Centenario semifinals with three goals. One must also take into account that he scored fewer goals from the penalty spot than Donovan and achieved that 57-goal mark in fewer games (136 total compared with Donovan’s 157). No doubt, he’s the best U.S. men’s player ever.
Noah Davis (@noahedavis)
Dempsey never seemed to care about our stats or our labels or our narratives. He cared about playing soccer his way, on his terms. That meant scoring goals — both in audacious, seemingly impossible ways and with scrappy efforts. He was a unique force in American soccer history, a creative attacking dynamo who grew up in a low-income family from the Texas hinterlands. Was Dempsey the greatest player in U.S. men’s national team soccer history? Who cares. I doubt he does. The program will never have another player like him — although it should strive as hard as it can to find many, many more. That’s all that matters.
Clint Dempsey’s Career, Legacy Go Well Beyond the Stats and NumberPauseMute
CThere will be no flashy farewell tour for American soccer’s foremost ambassador of confidence, clutch, skill and swagger. And for Clint Dempsey, that’s perfect.By BRIAN STRAUSAugust 29, 2018
The announcement was sudden, brief, and included a short statement of thanks that seemed somewhat boilerplate save for the tell-tale “y’all.” There was no soul-baring, one-on-one with a favorite broadcaster, and no weepy news conference—the sort where fellow greats and VIPs fill the room to enhance the occasion and pay their respects. There will be no farewell tour with gifts and video tributes from the opposition.That means it’s perfect. Leave the sentimentality and self-aggrandizement behind, and leave ‘em wanting more. Clint Dempsey retired Wednesday, effective Wednesday. Unvarnished to the last, the 35-year-old Seattle Sounders forward and U.S. national team icon simply and essentially hung a “gone fishin’” sign in his locker. He’ll let us figure out the rest.
And Dempsey left plenty to sort through as he exits the soccer stage almost as abruptly as he took it as a Revolution rookie back in 2004. His list of achievements is long and historic. Dempsey is a three-time U.S. Soccer player of the year, the co-leading scorer in senior national team history and the only American man to strike at three consecutive World Cups. He set a new standard for Yanks abroad, where he twice was named Fulham’s player of the season en route to becoming the top U.S.-born marksman in Premier League annals.
He won three Concacaf Gold Cups and the Bronze Ball at the ’09 Confederations Cup, where he scored in both the semifinal and final. And he mastered a moment like no player before or since, crafting indelible, viral images that captured the collective imagination, personified American ambition and left press conferences and farewell tours unnecessary.That last part, truly, is where Dempsey excelled. The man who shares the U.S. goal scoring record, Landon Donovan, was a more well-rounded footballer. Donovan was a better athlete and a more effective playmaker, and he could impact or shape a game in a greater number of ways. But while there was a sense for many that Donovan hadn’t plumbed the depths of his talent, that he could be somehow distracted or diverted, Dempsey attacked everything with vigor. For that, he’s more beloved. His story read like a classic American tall tale, in which the will and creativity leading to fame and fortune were forged by those three-hour drives to training, financial challenges, family tragedy and so many pick-up games in the East Texas dust.“There’s a few differences between me and Landon. I didn’t get started until late. I didn’t get started until I was 20. I turned 21 in my first MLS season, in March,” Dempsey said in 2012. “It’s always been a race against time, really, for me. It’s kind of my mentality, to make up for lost time. That hasn’t changed. That’s why I continue to push myself every year. I want to do something really special in my life. Not that we haven’t done special things already, but something really special, you know?”So Dempsey (and his parents) pushed himself to youth games in Dallas, over his sister’s untimely death and through Furman University, to MLS and England, and then past the heart trouble that nearly ended his career in 2016. He did so with unapologetic swagger and ultimate confidence, as each measure of success helped strengthen him for the next step.American soccer yearned for that—someone who refused to accept defeat, someone for whom all things were possible, someone who was resilient and unbowed and cowed by nothing. Dempsey ignored cultural and competitive boundaries. And he confronted every challenge and every defender with the desperation of someone with everything to lose, combined with the fearlessness of someone with nothing. His uncanny knack for finding that balance, along with that legendary swagger, manifested itself in unforgettable images, from “Deuce Face” and that jaw-dropping Europa League chip against Juventus, to his post-goal roar against Ghana in Natal and his assault on a referee’s notebook in Tukwila.He doesn’t need the staged photo-ops now. His whole career was an organic, authentic photo-op. And while he didn’t seek out press or any extra attention, he wasn’t shy about reminding you where he’d been and what he’d accomplished. If there ever was a U.S. forward who could tell you how many goals he’d scored on a Saturday wearing white in the rain, it was Dempsey. He didn’t have to pause and think to recall his honors or stats. They were purchased with blood, sweat and tears, and his pride in past achievements strengthened his resolve and fueled his hunger for more.He bemoaned the headwinds created by managerial turnover abroad, and the perception there of U.S. players. There were times when he grew frustrated by criticism. But he always fought through it, and did so with a blunt, human charisma admired by many. Not everyone could get away with the rap videos, or fishing talk or aloof hustles through the mixed zone. They’d be affectations coming from others. But Dempsey somehow made it work. When he was surly or combative, it was just Clint being Clint. He was still cool. Dempsey was even cool when he missed—he’d have the national team record to himself if he’d converted that penalty in a World Cup qualifier against Mexico in 2013. But, hey, “dos a cero.” A lot of people figured he must’ve missed on purpose.Dempsey, painfully, also would have the U.S. record if his shot in Trinidad hadn’t hit the post last October. Even Deuce wasn’t allowed to fashion his own ending. He missed Seattle’s 2016 MLS Cup triumph with the heart issue and had an eventful 2017, winning the league’s Comeback Player of the Year award, then enjoying a strong playoff run with the Sounders before a poor showing in the final. His national team year featured a Gold Cup triumph and four qualifying goals, but concluded with that stunning setback in Couva. This year, age and injury limited him to nine starts and one goal. He knew it was time.“After a lot of thought, my family and I have decided that this is the right time for me to step away from the game,” Dempsey said in his Wednesday statement. “I’d like to thank all of the teammates, coaches and support staff that I’ve worked with throughout my career. It has always been my dream to make it as a pro. I’m grateful to have been on this ride. I would like to thank all of the fans who have supported me throughout my career with the New England Revolution, Fulham, Tottenham, Seattle Sounders and the U.S. men’s national team. Y’all have always made me feel at home, and it is something that I will always remember.”nd he will always be remembered. Speaking to SI.com on Wednesday, U.S. coach Dave Sarachan said, “If you take the categories of a player—speed, power, agility, endurance—Clint wouldn’t win a lot of those categories. But it didn’t matter, because at the end of the day, he was so clinical in his approach to the game and his finishing ability.“He was his own guy as a striker, as a player, and he offered such a unique skill set. From day one, back when we were looking at him as a prospect for the draft and all the way through his career, the thing you’d always say—and our good friend and former [USA] assistant Mooch Myernick would always say—‘He just tries s-*-*-t.’ He can pull off plays in such a unique way, and his record speaks for itself, whether he’s playing in MLS or overseas. He’ll go down really as one of the best in U.S. soccer history.”Dempsey would remind you of his resume, but his career and charisma clearly added up to a whole lot more than that. He is American soccer’s foremost ambassador of confidence and clutch, skill and swagger, and for the foreseeable future, he’ll be its most compelling story.
One Clint Dempsey goal changed the way I thought about American soccer players
When Dempsey announced his retirement, the first thing I thought about was THAT GOAL against Juventus.
It was the second leg of a Europa League competition between Fulham and Juventus, and American star Clint Dempsey — who retired from soccer on Wednesday with a simple Instagram post — had subbed into the game with less than 20 minutes remaining.Fulham and Juventus were miraculously tied on aggregate after a huge Fulham comeback, and with less than 10 minutes remaining, midfielder Dickson Etuhu played a bouncing ball up to the American. Dempsey, who had just substituted in for Fulham, took it out of the air well enough. One touch to settle away from the defense, then one touch on the right edge of the box. He snuck a glance at the net, saw that Juventus keeper Antonio Chimenti had drifted off his line. Then Dempsey chopped down with his right foot, and the ball sailed into the air, toward the back post.Craven Cottage, as one, held its breath. Was he? Could he be?Chimenti looked up and knew there was nothing to be done. The ball touched the post, then fell into the net. The stadium exploded. He had done it.
It feels wildly reductive to try and sum up a career as spectacular as Dempsey’s into one moment, but I promise it is done in good faith. There will be countless words written this week about his upbringing in Texas, the tragic death of his sister — a nationally ranked tennis player — at the age of 16, and how her death both allowed Dempsey to pursue his soccer dream and fueled him to achieve what no other American had ever achieved in the game before.There will be thoughts on his college career at Furman, his breakthrough in MLS with the New England Revolution, his amazing run late in his career with Seattle Sounders, his tenure with Tottenham Hotspur as well as Fulham in the Premier League. There should be books written about what he meant to the USMNT over the years, how he was quietly their most creative player and an important leader for the better part of a decade.But I want to talk about that goal. Let’s talk about that goal.
First, you need to understand the context. It was 2010. Clint Dempsey’s Fulham was playing Juventus in the Europa League. The tournament, the Champions League’s little brother, was a slight step down for a giant Juventus side in a rut and a cosmic leap forward for tiny Fulham, who were playing in their first European competition ever after sneaking into the Europa League thanks to a better-than-average Premier League season the year prior.Juventus were a world class club, and in the first match of the two-leg tie looked like it, winning 3-1 at home. The following game looked like a formality for the Italian side, and when David Trezeguet scored for Juventus in the second minute, it looked over. They had a 4-1 aggregate lead and an away goal. It was done.Then, in the 26th minute, Juventus star defender Fabio Cannavaro was issued a red card for a hard foul on Zoltan Gera. Playing up a man, Fulham scored. Then they scored again. And again. It was 3-1, and Juventus looked lost. Craven Cottage, Fulham’s small, old stadium by the Thames River, was rocking. Then, in the 71st minute, Clint Dempsey subbed on. And 11 minutes later he decided to chip a shot to the back post.
It’s tempting to just remember the goal for how important it was. The fact that it gave Fulham a win and catapulted them on a Europa League run that ended in a 2-1 loss in the final to Atletico Madrid.But we should also just appreciate the goal for what it was. Forget the context. Just watch it. There’s that first touch. Then the audacity. The chip is impressive, yes. But it’s the fact that he tried it, that he even thought to try it, that makes the goal so special.Some say it was an accident. A cross gone awry. To those people I say: Get the hell out of my article. Go on. Git. It wasn’t a cross. It was never a cross. He meant to do that.He meant to do that because that is what Clint Dempsey was. That shot is exactly what made him special, what separated him from so many Americans who came before him.Bruce Arena once said, lovingly, that Clint Dempsey was the type of player who “tries shit.” It sounds silly, but in the soccer world, I promise you it’s high praise. It meant that Dempsey was unafraid. He had vision. He had creativity. He was willing to make a fool of himself, something true of most great artists. He wasn’t content to make the right play. He wanted to make something beautiful.There are precious few American soccer players in our history who have been guys who were unafraid to try shit. Claudio Reyna tried shit. Nowadays, Christian Pulisic will try shit. Darlington Nagbe sometimes will. It’s a short list, something special and rare in this country. Soccer games are often rote affairs, players making the right decision over and over again, or trying to make the right decision and failing to.Sometimes, to break open a game, or to beat a team like Juventus, you need to make the wrong decision. You need to try some shit.
I’ve made the argument before that this goal was a tipping point in how Europeans viewed American soccer players. I’m not so sure that’s true now. Dempsey had been doing good work for Fulham for awhile when he scored that goal. Before him at the club, Brian McBride was a club hero. Americans had succeeded in the Premier League, even outside the goalkeeper position, and plenty of knowledgeable fans knew that.Dempsey’s goal didn’t convince Europeans that Americans could play soccer. Rather, I think it convinced a lot of Americans that Americans could play soccer. Here was one of our own, playing against Italian giants, and he had produced that. It was a moment of validation, of inspiration.Dempsey wasn’t some cliche of a soccer player, either. He was a kid from Texas who liked rap music and fishing and, in this game at least, had a black eye, and he had created a moment of beauty we never thought possible. For me, at least — an American soccer fan and Fulham nut who had grown up watching and playing in thousands of games — it’s the single most memorable and important goal in my life. It re-defined, for me, what I thought an American could do on a soccer field.
If you will indulge me, and go back to play the video a second time, I implore you not to watch, but rather to listen to the crowd as Dempsey shoots the ball. The murmur of the crowd goes dead as he puts his right foot through it. Pure silence. It lasts maybe a quarter of a second. Seriously, go listen. I’ve never experienced anything like it before. No one makes a sound.As it sails to the back post, you can hear as part of the crowd begins to understand what is happening. There’s a sharp inhalation. Had he? He couldn’t have … Then the ball hits the post. Another half moment, as a stadium processes it in real time, then the release.Four thousand miles away, in a dingy living room in New Orleans, the replay of the goal was playing on a loop on my laptop, fed from a grainy, illegal stream. There was no one around to watch it, though. I was already a half block away, running down the middle of street, surely freaking out my neighbors as I raised my fists to the sky and screamed the man’s name.
Sigi Schmid reflects on Clint Dempsey’s career: “He was iconic”
August 30, 20186:58PM EDTScott FrenchContributorCARSON, Calif. – Sigi Schmid praised Clint Dempsey’s “phenomenal career” and said it was “a privilege” to coach the American soccer icon with Seattle Sounders FC.Schmid, in charge of the Sounders when Dempsey joined the club in 2013 following eight seasons in England, called Dempsey “a fantastic player” who “deserved all the accolades he’s getting” following the LA Galaxy’s training session Thursday morning at StubHub Center.Dempsey, 35, announced Wednesday he was retiring from the game following a career in which he starred for two MLS clubs, made a massive imprint with Fulham in the English Premier League, and equaled Landon Donovan’s US national team record 57 goals, in 141 caps over 13 years.“He was iconic in the sense of he was the one guy who had really broken through [in Europe],” Schmid said. “Claudio Reyna had sort of broken through, and there’s guys like [Carlos] Bocanegra, but he was the one forward, along with [Brian] McBride, who had sort of broken through in Europe.“I think that was important, because that helped establish that, hey, Americans can play. And I think that opened the door for some other players to get over there later. Fulham, obviously, added some Americans [such as] Eddie Johnson [and brought in] players that played in MLS, like a Simon Elliott.”Dempsey scored 60 goals in 232 games over seven seasons with Fulham, twice winning club MVP honors, and added 12 more in 43 games with Tottenham. He returned to MLS in 2013, and the next year teamed with Obafemi Martins to lead the Sounders to the Supporters’ Shield with the first 20-win MLS season – and just one of two in all – in the post-shootout era.“I think him and Obafemi Martins, the year that they played together, it was magical,” Schmid, who coached Dempsey in Seattle from 2013 until his dismissal during the 2016 season, said. “It was the best two-tandem forwards I had ever coached, because they were just instinctually … it was like watching kids on the playground.”Dempsey, MLS’s Comeback Player of the Year last season after returning from a heart condition that forced him to miss the Sounders’ run to the 2016 MLS Cup title, retires as joint regular-season goals leader for Seattle with Fredy Montero, with 47. He also tallied six times in the playoffs for the Sounders – three last year to lead them into their second successive MLS Cup final – and finishes with 72 regular-season MLS goals in 186 games.He’s the only American male to score in three World Cups and his four World Cup goals for the USMNT are bettered only by Donovan’s five. He also scored three goals to lead the US to the 2009 Confederations Cup final, one of them in the 2-0 semifinal upset of Spain.“When you look at the goals he scored in World Cups and Confederations Cups,” Schmid said, “sometimes we wouldn’t have achieved what we did as a country without his goals.”Dempsey commonly is pitted against Donovan in the debate for the greatest American soccer player, and Schmid said he tries to “avoid those debates.”“For me,” he said, “that’s why Mount Rushmore has more than one face on it.”
USMNT’s Yedlin giveth and taketh away in wild finish to Chelsea’s win over Newcastle
For about 75 minutes, Chelsea’s visit to Newcastle United was as dull as could be. Then things really heated up over the last quarter of an hour — especially for U.S. international DeAndre Yedlin.Yedlin provided the assist that tied the game in the 83rd minute, but his own goal in the 87th ultimately sunk Newcastle and allowed Chelsea to win 2-1, the Blues’ first win at St. James’ Park in nearly seven years.Newcastle set up in a defensive shell, hoping to limit the damage of the more talented visitors. Yedlin in particular had a steep challenge at right back trying to contain superstar Eden Hazard and fullback Marcos Alonso, who loves to bomb forward down the left flank.Alonso drew a penalty in the 76th minute when he blew past Fabian Schär, forcing the Newcastle defender to scissor-tackle him from behind in the box. Hazard buried the ensuing penalty to give Chelsea its breakthrough.It took the Magpies less than 10 minutes to equalize. Yedlin won a ball in the air down the right side and whipped in a cross that Newcastle striker Joselu buzzed off his head and into the back of the net:There was a shout of controversy from Chelsea, as it appeared Yedlin elbowed Olivier Giroud in the face in the process of winning the ball. But no call was given and the goal stood.
Yedlin and Newcastle’s happiness turned to heartbreak shortly after, when Alonso fired a shot across the penalty area that appeared to be going wide before Yedlin’s reflexes betrayed him and he nudged the ball into his own net:Newcastle has a solitary point through three Premier League fixtures so far this season, a scoreless draw at Cardiff City last weekend. The other two games have been against Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur, however, so the schedule has been tough. Yedlin himself escaped what could have been a serious injury in the opener against Spurs.Chelsea, meanwhile, now sits joint-top of the table with Liverpool and Watford, trailing Liverpool only on goal difference. The Blues have varied from impressive to simply resilient thus far under new manager Maurizio Sarri.On Sunday, luck played the determining factor — good luck for Chelsea, and bad luck for one of the USMNT’s best players.Joey Gulino is the editor of FC Yahoo and moonlights as a writer. Follow him on Twitter at @JGulinoYahoo.
All the stars: Brazil call strong squad to face USMNT at MetLife
August 17, 201812:41PM EDTTom BogertContributor
It will not be an easy start to the 2022 World Cup cycle for the US men’s national team. The US will face Brazil at MetLife Stadium on September 7 and after being knocked out in the quarterfinals of the 2018 World Cup, Brazil is bringing all their stars to New Jersey.razil announced their squad and it includes the likes of Neymar, Philippe Coutinho, Roberto Firmino, Casemiro, Thiago Silva and more. Of the players selected, 13 were on Brazil’s World Cup roster.The match against Brazil is the first of the US’ Kickoff Series, intended to prepare the US for the next cycle of World Cup qualifiers. After Brazil, USA will play Mexico on Sept. 11, in Nashville, Tennessee. They then face Colombia on Thursday, Oct. 11, at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa as well as another opponent during October that has yet to be determined. After that, it’s a match against England at Wembley Stadium in London on Thursday, Nov. 15. before visiting Italy on Tuesday, Nov. 20, at a venue still to be determined.The United States are yet to announce their roster for the upcoming friendlies against Brazil and Mexico. All friendlies will take place during FIFA international windows, meaning that the technical staff could call upon their first-choice group of players.
Luka Modric named UEFA Player of the Year ahead of Cristiano Ronaldo, Mohamed Salah
1:38 PM ETESPN
Real Madrid’s Luka Modric has edged out Cristiano Ronaldo and Mohamed Salah to win the 2017-18 UEFA Player of the Year award.Modric’s excellent season at the Bernabeu was recognised at the Champions League draw in Monaco on Thursday, with UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin on hand to present the prize to the Croatia international.Thursday’s win caps off a stellar 12 months for the 32-year-old, who also won the Golden Ball for his performances in helping Croatia finish as runners-up at the World Cup in Russia.Modric’s was one of many for Real Madrid on a trophy-laden night, with Blancos custodian Keylor Navas named as UEFA Champions League Goalkeeper of the Season ahead of Gigi Buffon and Alisson, Sergio Ramos recognised as the Defender of the Season over teammates Marcelo and Raphael Varane, Modric winning Midfielder of the Season ahead of Kevin De Bruyne and Toni Kroos, and Ronaldo pipping Lionel Messi and Salah to the Forward of the Season award.UEFA also named the Women’s Player of the Year at the ceremony, with Wolfsburg’s Pernille Harder beating Lyon duo Ada Hegerberg and Amandine Henry to the top prize.David Beckham was also recognised on the night, receiving the 2018 UEFA President’s Award from Ceferin for his “outstanding achievements, professional excellence and exemplary personal qualities,” while San Jose Earthquakes defender Guram Kashia won the inaugural #EqualGame award for his support of the LGBTQ community last season.
What you need to know about the UEFA Champions League group stage draw
Cristiano Ronaldo gets to play Manchester United again, Liverpool got screwed, and Group A is a hipster paradise.
32 teams learned their fate in the UEFA Champions League group stage draw on Thursday, and some are happier with their path to the knockout stage than others. The likes of Bayern Munich, Manchester City and Real Madrid will be thrilled that they have simple paths to a top seed and a quarterfinal appearance. Barcelona, Paris Saint-Germain, Liverpool, Juventus and Manchester United will be less thrilled.
Here’s how the draw shook out and what you need to know.
Must watch: Ronaldo vs. United
Cristiano Ronaldo has faced off against his former club just once in the UEFA Champions League, in the Round of 16 in 2013. He knocked them out of the competition too, scoring in both legs. It’ll be exciting to see him grace the Old Trafford pitch again, and just like in 2013, he’ll be expected to get the better of the club where he became a star. Juventus and United will play twice, with the exact dates still TBA.
Toughest: Group C
Paris Saint-Germain and Liverpool might have both been strongly favored to win their groups in a different draw. 538 has both rated as top-7 teams in the world. They’ll not only have to deal with each other, but also with Napoli, who retained all of its key players after giving Juventus a run for its money in Serie A last season. Someone is going to be very bitter when they get knocked out, and will become the instant favorite to win the Europa League.
Runner up: Group B
While not as top-heavy as Group C, Group B does not have a weak link like Red Star. Instead, all three of the teams below Barcelona will feel like they can fight for second place. Tottenham Hotspur is the favorite, but Inter Milan added big names like Radja Nainggolan, Stefan de Vrij, Sime Vrsaljko and Keita Balde this summer. PSV held onto “Chucky” Hirving Lozano despite interest from bigger clubs, and he’s scoring at will in the Netherlands. No one will have an easy game in this group.
Hipster’s choice: Group A
If you’re more interested in up-and-coming stars and fun games than big names, Group A is where it’s at. Atlético Madrid might have its strongest squad ever, Christian Pulisic is still balling for Borussia Dortmund, and AS Monaco has reinvested the Kylian Mbappe money into a slew of entertaining young talents.
LOL: Group D
A couple years ago, UEFA changed the draw rules to give automatic Pot 1 placements to the champions of the top seven leagues. The seventh best league in Europe is the Russian Premier League, and its champion is Lokomotiv Moscow, who doesn’t have an impressive recent history in this competition. They got lucky in the draw too, so two of Lokomotiv, Porto, Schalke and Galatasaray are guaranteed to make the round of 16. If none of those teams makes the quarterfinals, expect increased calls for serious changes to the Champions League group stage.
UEFA Champions League groups
Manchester United face difficult task; Liverpool may have to settle for second finds it tough to choose Man United to advance from Group H, noting the current negative climate of the club. (1:44)
3:15 PM ETMark OgdenSenior Writer, ESPN FC
The 2018-19 Champions League group stage, which begins next month, will more than a few several eye-catching games after Thursday’s draw pitted some of Europe’s biggest clubs against each other.Group H sees a reunion for Cristiano Ronaldo and Paul Pogba with Manchester United and Juventus respectively, while last season’s finalists Liverpool face a difficult task against Paris Saint-Germain, Napoli and Red Star Belgrade. Barcelona, meanwhile, have been drawn with Tottenham and Inter.ERTISEMENT
Elsewhere, holders Real Madrid — aiming for a fourth successive title — will be happy with their draw, as will English champions Manchester City and German title holders Bayern.With the group stage mapped out, who will make it through and keep alive their dream of lifting the European Cup in Madrid’s Wanda Metropolitano Stadium next June?
Group A: Atletico Madrid, Borussia Dortmund, Monaco, Brugge
Who will go through? 1. Atletico Madrid; 2. Borussia Dortmund
Europa League holders Atletico Madrid will be desperate to win this season’s Champions League due to the final being staged at their stadium in the Spanish capital, but Diego Simeone’s team have been handed a tough start.
Atletico, who have reached three finals and lost each time, won the UEFA Super Cup earlier this month and will be favourites to top the group and expect to leave the rest fighting for runners-up spot.
However, Borussia Dortmund have a strong European pedigree, while Monaco’s recent Champions League performances make them a dangerous opponent. Brugge’s best hope will be to snatch third and a place in the Europa League.
Group B: Barcelona, Tottenham, PSV Eindhoven, Inter
Who will go through? 1. Barcelona; 2. Tottenham
The group has serious pedigree, but beyond the names and history of the clubs involved, should ultimately see both Barcelona and Tottenham progress comfortably.
Barca will be favourites to qualify as winners — Ernesto Valverde’s team still possess awesome firepower in the form of Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez, Philippe Coutinho and Ousmane Dembele — but Spurs showed last season, when topping their group ahead of Real Madrid and Borussia Dortmund, that they can beat the best on the big stage.
Dutch champions PSV will do well to finish in the top two under new coach Mark van Bommel. Inter are some distance from repeating their 2010 Champions League success and are likely to find life tough under Despite Group C consisting of PSG, Napoli and Red Star Belgrade, Paul Mariner feels Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool have enough to finish atop the group.
Group C: Paris Saint-Germain, Napoli, Liverpool, Red Star Belgrade
Who will go through? 1. Paris Saint-Germain; 2. Liverpool
Liverpool were fearful of a tough group after being placed in Pot Three and their nightmare became reality as Jurgen Klopp’s men were paired with PSG and Napoli.
PSG, with Kylian Mbappe, Neymar and Edinson Cavani in their ranks, will be favourites for first place and Napoli, under Carlo Ancelotti, have the ability to beat anyone. As such, while Liverpool’s run to the final last season will give them belief, it will be tough for the five-time European champions to make the knockout stages.
Red Star Belgrade, European Cup winners way back in 1991, have qualified for the Champions League group stage for the first time, but the Serbian champions can expect to be left behind in a three-way battle for qualification.
Group D: Lokomotiv Moscow, Porto, Schalke, Galatasaray
Who will go through? 1. Schalke; 2. Porto
This group might lack box-office glamour, but it gives each participant a clear route into the knockout stages.
Porto are the only former Champions League winners among the four teams, but their meek surrender against Liverpool in last season’s Round of 16 — Jurgen Klopp’s team won 5-0 at Estadio do Dragao — will give Lokomotiv, Schalke and Galatasaray confidence that they can overcome the Portuguese champions.
Schalke, runners-up to Bayern Munich in last season’s Bundesliga, will be favourites to top the group, but this one is wide open.
Group E: Bayern Munich, Benfica, Ajax, AEK Athens
Who will go through? 1. Bayern Munich; 2. AEK Athens
Bayern will expect to cruise into the Round of 16 and it will take a momentous shock for the German champions to miss out. They remain a formidable force under new coach Nico Kovac, but the battle for second ensures Group E will be one of the most unpredictable.
Benfica’s Champions League experience will count in their favour, but Ajax’s squad retains several of the players who were part of the club’s run to the 2017 Europa League final, so Erik ten Hag’s men cannot be discounted.
And AEK Athens, having won their domestic title for the first time last season since 1993-94, have displayed durability by overcoming Celtic and Videoton to reach the group stages; they go yet go further.
Group F: Manchester City, Shakhtar Donetsk, Lyon, Hoffenheim
Who will go through? 1. Manchester City; 2. Shakhtar Donetsk
Manchester City’s ambition to win the Champions League will not have been dented by this draw, which has handed Pep Guardiola’s team a straightforward route through.
Although Shakhtar Donetsk inflicted City’s first defeat last season, the Premier League champions will not fear any of their opponents. Lyon and Hoffenheim, making their first appearance at this stage, will be difficult opponents, but City have the ability to finish top with a 100 percent record.
If you are looking for drama, the race for the runners-up spot is likely to be the only source of excitement, with Shakhtar’s recent pedigree giving them the edge.
Group G: Real Madrid, Roma, CSKA Moscow, Viktoria Plzen
Who will go through? 1. Real Madrid; 2. Roma
With two of last season’s semifinalists — Real Madrid and Roma — the battle for top spot and the race for third are likely to be the tale of this group.
Real will be strong favourites to finish first, but Roma’s incredible quarterfinal elimination of Barcelona last term ensures that the Madrid giants will be wary of their trip to the Stadio Olimpico. However, neither club should fear elimination at this stage with CSKA Moscow and Viktoria Plzen making up the numbers in the group.
The big question from the Real vs. Roma games will focus upon how much the reigning European champions will miss the goals of Cristiano Ronaldo, following his summer sale to Juventus. Even without him, though, Real should cruise.
Group H: Juventus, Manchester United, Valencia, Young Boys
Who will go through? 1. Juventus; 2. Valencia
Cristiano Ronaldo facing Manchester United with Juventus, for whom United’s Paul Pogba used to play, will be the main draw, but the reality is that the two clubs and Valencia will be locked in a three-way fight for qualification.
Juventus, serial Italian champions and beaten finalists in two of the last four Champions League deciders, will be the team to beat, while United’s unpredictability under Jose Mourinho means the three-time European champions will be vulnerable vs. Valencia. United’s record against Spanish opposition is historically poor: Sevilla eliminated them in the Round of 16 last season.
Making up the numbers are Swiss outfit Young Boys, who have the ability to take points off their rivals and could take advantage of any complacency by snatching third spot. This, though, is a tough group to call.
Americans Abroad Weekend Rewind: Romain Gall, John Brooks, and more
By: Larry Henry Jr. | August 26, 2018 11:55 pm ET
American midfielder Romain Gall needed four matches to etch his name on Malmo’s scoresheet, as the 23-year-old bagged two goals on Sunday for the club.Gall helped Malmo to a 5-0 demolition against Sirius at Swedbank Stadion which propelled the team to fourth in the Allsvenskan. His first goal came in the 66th-minute as he slid home to double his side’s lead. Gall would double his tally on the afternoon, scoring from a tough angle in the 72nd-minute. Malmo would add a pair of late goals to ice the strong performance in front of their home fans. As for Gall, he will hope to put in similar shifts for his side, who are next in action this week in Europa League qualifying.Elsewhere, John Brooks registered a goal in his 100th Bundesliga appearance as Wolfsburg downed Schalke. Weston McKennie started and played 90 minutes on the other end of that match. Christian Pulisic started and helped Borussia Dortmund to a dominant opening day win at home.DeAndre Yedlin registered an assist for Newcastle, but saw an own-goal go off his leg in the Magpies loss to Chelsea. Mix Diskerud scored his first goal for South Korean side Ulsan Hyundai in their lopsided win over FC Seoul. Brendan Hines-Ike also registered his first point for Belgium outfit Kortrijk in their road success.Here’s a closer look at this weekend’s Americans Abroad:
Matt Miazga started and played 90 minutes in Nantes 1-1 draw with Caen on Saturday.
Timothy Weah did not dress in PSG 3-1 win over Angers on Saturday.
Theoson-Jordon Siebatcheu came off the bench and played 21 minutes in Rennes 2-2 draw with Marseille on Sunday.
Tim Ream did not dress in Fulham’s 4-2 win over Burnley on Sunday.
Danny Williams did not dress in Huddersfield Town’s 0-0 draw with Cardiff City on Saturday.
DeAndre Yedlin started, registered ONE assist, conceded ONE own goal, and played 90 minutes in Newcastle United’s 2-1 loss to Chelsea on Sunday.
Antonee Robinson started and played 90 minutes in Wigan Athletic’s 1-0 loss to QPR on Saturday.
Gboly Ariyibi did not dress in Nottingham Forest’s 2-2 draw with Birmingham City on Saturday.
Eric Lichaj started and played 90 minutes in Hull City’s 2-0 loss to Stoke City on Saturday.
Geoff Cameron did not dress for Stoke City.
Duane Holmes did not dress in Derby County’s 2-0 win over Preston North End on Saturday.
EFL LEAGUE ONE
Lynden Gooch started, registered ONE assist, and played 90 minutes in Sunderland’s 2-1 win over AFC Wimbledon on Saturday.
Chris Richards did not dress in Bayern Munich’s 3-1 win over Hoffenheim on Friday.
John Brooks started, scored ONE goal, and played 90 minutes in Wolfsburg’s 2-1 win over Schalke on Saturday.
Weston McKennie started and played 90 minutes for Schalke.
Aron Johannsson did not dress in Werder Bremen;s 1-1 draw with Hannover on Saturday.
Bobby Wood did not dress for Hannover.
Timmy Chandler did not dress in Eintracht Frankfurt’s 2-0 win over Freiburg on Saturday.
Caleb Stanko did not dress for Freiburg.
Fabian Johnson started, scored ONE goal, and played 83 minutes in Borussia Monchengladbach’s 2-0 win over Bayer Leverkusen on Saturday.
Alfredo Morales started and played 90 minutes in Fortuna Dusseldorf’s 2-1 loss to Augsburg on Saturday.
Christian Pulisic started and played 77 minutes in Borussia Dortmund’s 4-1 win over RB Leipzig on Sunday.
Terrence Boyd dressed but did not play in Darmstadt’s 3-0 win over Duisburg on Friday.
McKinze Gaines did not dress for Darmstadt.
Joe Gyau came off the bench and played 21 minutes for Duisburg.
Andrew Wooten came off the bench and played 24 minutes in Sandhausen’s 1-0 loss to Bochum on Friday.
Brady Scott did not dress in Koln’s 3-1 win over Erzgebirge Aue on Saturday.
Julian Green started and played 88 minutes in Greuther Furth’s 2-2 draw with Paderborn on Saturday.
Josh Sargent started, scored ONE goal, and played 90 minutes in Werder Bremen II’s 2-0 win over Drochtersen/Assel on Sunday.
Jonathan Klinsmann did not dress in Hertha Berlin II’s 4-2 win over Viktoria Berlin on Sunday.
Omar Gonzalez started and played 90 minutes in Atlas’ 1-0 loss to Guadalajara on Friday.
Jose Torres came off the bench and played 27 minutes in Puebla’s 2-0 loss to Pachuca on Saturday.
Alejandro Guido, Rubio Rubin dressed but did not play in Club Tijuana’s 1-0 loss to Veracruz on Saturday.
Ventura Alvarado started and played 90 minutes in Necaxa’s 1-1 draw with Tigres on Saturday.
Eduardo Fernandez did not dress for Tigres.
Joe Corona dressed but did not play in Club America’s 2-2 draw with Pumas on Saturday.
Michael Orozco started and played 90 minutes in Lobos’ 2-0 loss to Queretaro on Sunday.
William Yarborough dressed but did not play in Club Leon’s 2-1 win over Toluca on Sunday.
RECAP | INDY ELEVEN BREAK EVEN IN LATE DRAW AGAINST PITTSBURGH RIVERHOUNDS SC, 2-2
By James Higdon, 08/30/18, 12:15AM EDT
The “Boys in Blue” extend unbeaten streak to seven
Indy Eleven extend its unbeaten streak to seven matches in a late draw versus a 10-man Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC, 2-2. A brace from “Boys in Blue” forward Jack McInerney brings his goal count to nine on the season and a 3W-0L-4D record in the last seven fixtures.
Indy captured the lead in the fourth minute of play. Eleven midfielder Matt Watson bullied the ball from Riverhouds defender Andrew Lubahn in Indy’s defensive half to lob the ball forward. McInerney masterfully brought down the high ball 20 yards out from goal and beat Riverhounds goalkeeper Michael Kirk off his line for a shot at the open goal. McInerney almost caught Kirk off his line again two minutes later with a shot near the center line, but the ball bounced wide of the far post for an opposition goal kick.
“I think one of the things we forget with Jack McInerney is that by the age of about 23, he had scored around 50 goals in the MLS, or Concacaf, or Open Cup,” said Indy Eleven head coach Martin Rennie. “He had a spell where he didn’t get to play too much. He was behind some fantastic player, not anything he was doing wrong. So when he came here it was a little bit of a rebuilding job for him and for us. Now, he’s doing what I think we all know he can do, which is score goals.”Riverhouds continued a highly possessive game in the midfield in an attempt to open up Indy’s backline, but it was a stoppage-time goal that brought the evening level for the first time. Riverhounds were awarded a free kick in the 47th minute at the edge of Indy’s 18-yard box following a heavy tackle by defender Karl Ouimette. A minute later, Pittsburgh midfielder Christiano Francois played an in-swinging ball for defender Joe Greenspan to head down past Eleven keeper Owain Fon Williams. The goal was Greenspan’s first of 2018.Riverhounds took the lead 14 minutes after the break. In similar fashion to Indy’s opening goal, Francois beat Fon Williams’ off his line almost 20 yards out from goal after gaining possession of the loose ball.The scoreline could’ve been vastly different for either team if not to impressive saves by both keepers. Kirk kept the ball from the back of his team’s net with saves in the 56th, 72nd and 77th minute. “Indiana’s Team’s” man between the post also recorded saves in the 67th and 77th minute to keep the scoring gap to a single goal.A night that could’ve easily been soured by a loss, McInerney managed to pull one more back for the “Boys in Blue” in the 96th minute. Eleven midfielder Ben Speas flicked a pass nearly 20 yards forward into Riverhounds’ penalty box. McInerney settled the ball around around Kirk as he charged out of goal and fired an angled shot on his second touch for the last-minute equalizer.The draw concludes game five of seven in 22 days for Indy Eleven, having yet to pick up a loss in that timespan.“I’m really, really happy with the ‘never say die’ attitude because we’re in a run of playing quite a bit of games at the moment but we’re now seven games unbeaten.” said Rennie. “In a game like that tonight when it’s kind of not going our way in the sense that we had good chances but the goalkeeper made great saves. Sometimes in those games you have to dig in and show your character and I thought we did that.”Indy Eleven are back at home this Saturday, September 1 for Public Safety Night. The “Boys in Blue” will kick off against Richmond Kickers at 7:00 p.m. Fans can get tickets to the upcoming match for as low as $15 by visiting IndyEleven.com/Tickets or by calling (317)685-1100.
Indy Eleven 2:2 Pittsburgh Riverhounds
Wednesday, August 29, 2018 – 7:00 p.m. Lucas Oil Stadium – Indianapolis, IN
IND – Jack McInerney (Matt Watson) 4′
PGH – Joe Greenspan (Christiano Francois) 45+3′
PGH – Christiano Francois – 59′
IND – Jack McInerney (Ben Speas) 90+4′
Indy Eleven lineup (4-3-3, L–>R): Owain Fôn Williams (GK); Reiner Ferreira, Ayoze, Carlyle Mitchell, Karl Ouimette; Dylan Mares, Nico Matern (Brad Ring 79′), Matt Watson (C) (Juan Guerra 79′), Eugene Starikov (Soony Saad 61′), Ben Speas, Jack McInerneyIndy Eleven bench: Ben Lundgaard (GK); Brad Rusin, Kevin Venegas, Brad Ring, Juan Guerra, Soony Saad, Nathan Lewis
Pittsburgh Riverhounds lineup (1-5-4-1, L–>R): Michael Kirk (GK); Andrew Lubahn (Ray Lee 71′), Hugh Roberts, Joe Greenspan, Todd Pratzner, Jordan Dover; Christiano Francois, Ben Zemanski, Mo Dabo, Noah Franke (Kenardo Forbes 45′); Neco Brett (Tobi Adewole 85′)Pittsburgh Riverhounds bench: Nate Ingham (GK); Tobi Adewole, Ray Lee, Kenardo Forbes, Ben Fitzpatrick, Kay Banjo, Romeo Parkes