11/14/18 US Men plays England in Rooney Finale Thur 2:45 ESPN2, IU Wins Big 10 Tourney, Carmel FC Night at Panera Fri 11/16

US Men Play England and Italy this Week

The US men – still with no word on who the head coach will be (Its Greg Burhalter from Columbus by the way) now that Columbus has lost in the MLS Playoffs I look for the announcement to come as early as this weekend.  England will play tribute to Wayne Rooney at Wembley when they face the US men on ESPN 2 Thursday at 2 pm (anyone want to catch lunch to watch Thursday?).  The US then will face Italy on Tuesday at 2:45 pm.  Of course Nations League soccer continues Thur thru next Tuesday with some huge games on ESPN+, along with some good friendlies on beIN sport including Mexico vs Argentina on Fri 7 pm.  (see full TV Schedule below) 

Champions League

Some unbelievable results in Champions League last week right after the leak that certain huge clubs in Europe might be planning a Super League to replace Champions League (read stories below).  First Liverpool lays an egg at Red Star 2-0 meaning qualification may well come down to the final round as they have 2 difficult games left.  Then Juventus loses to Man United in the last second 2-1 showing just how much they miss Buffon between the pipes. 

The Indiana U Men – won their 2nd Straight Big 10 Tourney – as our own Director of Coaching Juergen Sommer was on hand for the finals Sunday a 3-0 win over Mich.  Of course Juergen won a National Championship and was player of the Year during his years at IU before going on to success in the EPL.  IU hosts a first round NCAA Tourney game Sun in Bloomington! 

IU Wins the Big 10 Tourney with win over Mich at Grand Park –Kevin  Johnston special to Indy Star

Hoosiers Complete Goal 2 of 3 in Big Ten Tourney – Michael Ramirez – The Hoosier Network

4 Teams make NCAA Men’s Soccer Tourney

Carmel FC Night is this Friday night 11/16 4-8 pm at Panera Bread in Greyhound Pass –

20% of proceeds will go to the club – so make plans to drop by and grab dinner at Panera and help the club at the same time – be sure to mention Carmel FC when ordering !  

CARMEL FC PLAYERS Training at Murray 

Our Nov outdoor training sessions for Carmel FC travel players and our Select Players wraps up this week.  

Here are the dates:

  • Thursday (11/15),  5:45pm – 6:45pm  *Goal Keeping Training Only

USA

The Future of US Soccer Tyler Adams and Weston McKennie

Greg Berhalter Silent on Future amid links with US National Team – ESPNFC

US In need of Pulisic’s Creativity

Rooney to return for England farewell vs US at Wembley

Optimistic View of our New US Manager – Greg Berhalter  Stars and Stripes

Pulisic Wants Revenge for US World Cup Failure

Atlanta United’s Martino Never Contacted about US Job before Taking Mexico’s

USA Complete squad:for England and Italy Games Next Week

Goalkeepers (3): Brad Guzan (Atlanta United FC; 59/0), Ethan Horvath (Club Brugge/BEL; 2/0), Klinnsman

 Defenders (10): John Brooks (Wolfsburg/GER; 35/3), Reggie Cannon (FC Dallas; 1/0), Cameron Carter-Vickers (Swansea City/WAL; 6/0), Aaron Long (New York Red Bulls; 1/0), Matt Miazga (Nantes/FRA; 10/1), Shaq Moore (Reus Deportiu/ESP; 3/0), Antonee Robinson (Wigan Athletic/ENG; 6/0), Jorge Villafaña (Portland Timbers; 19/0), DeAndre Yedlin (Newcastle United/ENG; 56/0), Walker Zimmerman (LAFC; 3/1)

 Midfielders (13): Kellyn Acosta (Colorado Rapids; 21/2), Tyler Adams (New York Red Bulls; 7/1), Luca de la Torre (Fulham/ENG; 1/0), Marky Delgado (Toronto FC/CAN; 5/0), Romain Gall (Malmö/SWE; 0/0), Julian Green (Greuther Fürth/GER; 14/4), Sebastian Lletget (LA Galaxy; 3/1), Weston McKennie (Schalke/GER; 6/1), Darlington Nagbe (Atlanta United FC; 25/1), Christian Pulisic (Borussia Dortmund/GER; 21/9), Kenny Saief (Anderlecht/BEL; 3/0), Wil Trapp (Columbus Crew SC; 9/0), Tim Weah (Paris Saint-Germain/FRA; 7/1)

 Forwards (2): Josh Sargent (Werder Bremen/GER; 5/2), Bobby Wood (Hannover 96/GER; 43/13) 

Champions League

Red Star’s Upset of Liverpool a reminder of What a Superleague Would Lose

Man U Stuns @ Juve

Atletico Gets Revenge on Dortmund in 2-0 win at home

– Latest Champions League tables

European Super League Details Leaked? ESPN

European Super League a serious problem for European Leagues ESPNFC    

UEFA President to fight European Super League FC

It’s time to fix — and save — the Champions League  ESPNFC

GAMES ON TV

Thur, Nov 15  

12 noon ESPN+     Poland vs Czech Republic (Nations League)

3 pm ESPN2           England vs USA Men  (Rooney last match)

Fri, Nov 16  

2:45 pm UD/ESPN3 Netherlands vs France  (Nations League)

2:45 pm ESPN3     Wales vs Denmark (Nations League)

3 pm beIN Sport   Brazil vs Uruguay

7 pm Univ Desp   Argentina vs Mexico

7:15 pm beIn Sport Chile vs Costa Rica

Sat, Nov 17 

12 noon FS2          USA U17 vs Korea U17 WWC

12 noon ESPN3     Turkey vs Sweden (Nations League)

2:45 pm UD/ESPN3 Italy vs Portugal (Nations League)

3 pm FS2                Germany U17 vs Cameroon U17 WWC

Sun, Nov 18

9 am ESPN3           England vs Croatia (Nations League)

2:45pm UD/ESPN+Switzerland vs Belgium (Nations League)

Mon, Nov 19

12noon ESPN3      Czech rep vs Slovakia  (Nations League)

2:45 pm Uni Des Germany vs Netherlands (Nations League)

Tues, Nov 20  

2:30 pm beIN Sport Brazil vs Cameroon

2:45 pm FS1           Italy vs USA Men

2:45 pm ESPN+     Portugal vs Poland

2:45 pm ESPN3     Sweden vs Russia

7:30 pm beIN Sport Peru vs Costa Rica

Wed, Nov 21

12 noon FS2          Spain U17 vs Canada U17 WWC

3 pm FS2                Germany u17 vs USA U17 WWC

Saturday, Nov. 24

11 am beIN Sport PSG vs Toulouse

12:30 pm NBCSN Tottenham vs Cheslea

2:45pm beIN Sport Atletico Madrid vs Barcelona

Sunday, Nov. 25

5 pm ESPN           Atlanta United vs NY Red Bulls MLS Con Champ Leg 1

7:30 pm FS1         Portland Timbers vs Sporting KC MLS Con Champ Leg 1

Tues, Nov. 27                Champions League

Weds, Nov. 28              Champions League

Thursday, Nov. 29

7 pm FS1                 NY Red Bulls vs Atlanta United vs MLS Con Champ Leg 2

9:30 pm ESPN       Sporting KC vs Portland Timbers vs MLS Con Champ Leg 2

Saturday, Dec. 8 (8 p.m.): (FOX, UniMas)

UD= Univision Desportes 

IU men’s soccer wins Big Ten tourney title, still has unfinished business at College Cup

Kevin Johnston, Special for IndyStar  Published 4:05 p.m. ET Nov. 11, 2018

WESTFIELD – Following the Indiana men’s soccer team’s victory Friday in the Big Ten conference tournament semifinals, left back Andrew Gutman explained that the second-ranked Hoosiers have three concrete goals this season: hoist the Big Ten regular-season title, win the Big Ten tournament and capture the College Cup.Gutman and his teammates can now cross item No. 2 off the list.ndiana routed Michigan 3-0 to win the Big Ten tournament at Grand Park on Sunday afternoon behind a complete team performance. The Hoosiers jumped out to an early lead before tacking on two more second-half tallies to seal it.

More: IU men’s soccer sinks Maryland in PKs, advances to Big Ten tournament final

Hoosiers striker Griffin Dorsey returned from his under-20 U.S. men’s national team call up and immediately stepped into head coach Todd Yeagley’s starting 11. It didn’t take long at all for him to make his presence felt.Trevor Swartz ripped a shot on target that forced Michigan goalkeeper Henry Mashburn into a difficult diving save, which left the Wolverines net wide open. Dorsey fired again on the rebound and the ball ended up right at the feet of Cory Thomas with no one around. Thomas, whose penalty conversion sent Indiana past Maryland in a shootout in Friday’s semifinal, calmly slotted it home to give the top-seeded Hoosiers an early 1-0 lead.Dorsey also assisted on Indiana’s second goal. His quality service to the head of teammate Jeremiah Gutjahr put the Hoosiers comfortably ahead 2-0 about midway through the second half. Minutes later, Indiana added a third when Austin Panchot connected with Spencer Glass for an easy tap in. “We found out yesterday,” Thomas said of learning about Dorsey’s availability. “Kind of kept it on the low. You don’t want to get the (scouting report) out there too early.”Michigan’s best chance of the match came late in the first half on a dangerous ball whipped in by Jack Hallahan. All alone at the edge six-yard box, Wolverines striker Zakyi Mohammed’s header trickled wide as he failed to make clean contact.Gutman, who was awarded the Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year via a unanimous vote, was held relatively in check. He got forward on a few occasions, but Michigan mostly contained him by keeping an attacker pressed high on the right side and sending extra defensive help when he ventured upfield.“Hallahan is an absolute handful going forward,” Yeagley said. “We knew that if Andrew left spaces a little earlier, that transition potentially could be dangerous for us. Andrew, you know he loves to get forward, but he loves winning games more than getting forward. So, he knew that Hallahan was a handful and I thought he picked and chose his moments really well today.”But the Hoosiers still have some unfinished business to tend to regarding their third and final goal of the season after falling to Stanford in the 2017 national championship match.“Yeah, I think we know the goals,” Gutjahr said. “And I think we’re excited for the selection show tomorrow to see what our path is to get back there and make it happen.”“Honestly, we see it as a failure if we don’t win the next one,” Thomas added.The College Cup, NCAA soccer’s version of the Final Four, will be held Dec. 7-9 in Santa Barbara, Calif.

‘Let’s enjoy this one:’ Indiana soccer completes goal two of three in Big Ten Tournament

MICHAEL RAMIREZ

WESTFIELD, Ind. — Senior midfielder Frankie Moore held the Big Ten Championship trophy high and proud while his teammates rejoiced.The No. 2 Indiana Hoosiers had just completed the second of their three goals they set out to accomplish at the beginning of the season. The Hoosiers defeated Michigan 3-0 to win the Big Ten Tournament — the 13thin program history.Sunday’s result embodied Indiana’s 2018 season — a 3-0 win behind team play and a clean sheet. Sophomore attacker Griffin Dorsey and senior midfielder Cory Thomas were a headache down the sidelines for the Michigan Wolverines, and IU’s midfield controlled possession for most of the 90 minutes. Sophomore goalkeeper Trey Muse earned his 12th clean sheet of the season in a game where the Hoosier back line didn’t give up many chances.

IU’s three goals came from different goal-scorers each time, too. The elflessness displayed throughout the season was once again put on display Sunday afternoon.Thomas opened up the game in the seventh minute after senior midfielder Trevor Swartz fired a shot from the top of the box. The shot was blocked, then rebounded by Dorsey and fired at Michigan goalkeeper Henry Mashburn again. Mashburn was able to deflect Dorsey’s shot, but the ball then fell to Thomas, who tapped the ball into the back of the net.Not even 10 minutes into the Big Ten Championship, and Indiana was already ahead of Michigan. The Hoosiers kept that lead going into the halftime break, and they extended it in the 73rd and 75th minutes courtesy of senior and sophomore midfielders Jeremiah Gutjahr and Spencer Glass.When the final whistle blew, the Hoosiers were crowned Big Ten Champions — something they couldn’t claim at all last season.All of 2018, Indiana had three goals to accomplish throughout the season. The Hoosiers wanted to win both Big Ten titles and the national championship. Now with two under their belt, only the last goal remains left to be completed. “To make this run, and to win today against a good Michigan team, was fantastic,” IU Head Coach Todd Yeagley said. “I’m really proud of the two-for-two, but they know how hard it is to get back to that championship game. This is a confident group that’s really driven.”Thomas was named the Big Ten Offensive Player of the Tournament and senior Andrew Gutman was named Big Ten Defensive Player of the Tournament. Yet, neither seemed too interested in the awards they won. The only thing they wanted to win was the trophy they could hold with the rest of the team.Thomas said winning titles as a team has been the best part of his season.“It’s got to be the titles,” Thomas said. “We’ve got two and, honestly, we see it as a failure if we don’t win the next one.”All year, the Hoosiers haven’t been content with anything they have accomplished thus far. After clinching the Big Ten regular season title, multiple players weren’t satisfied with it. Yeagley said the team has kept its sights on all three goals throughout the year, and they haven’t gotten sidetracked no matter the result of any match.But now, the Hoosiers can enjoy what they have done so far. Yeagley had one message to the huddle of players surrounding the Big ten trophy after the match.“Let’s enjoy this one,” Yeagley said.

The future of U.S. soccer? You’re looking at it right here: Tyler Adams and Weston McKennie

Back in August, Tyler Adams wanted to give a special shoutout to U.S. international teammate Weston McKennie for his birthday. He happened across a photo of the two of them when they were both in Bradenton, Florida, training with the U.S. under-17 national team.   “That photo came up and I just lost it,” said Adams via telephone. “I thought it would be hilarious to post.”

And with good reason. At the time, Adams was a good inch or two taller than McKennie, so he placed it side-by-side with a more recent shot, one in which the tables height-wise had definitely been turned.Wes hadn’t hit his growth spurt yet, not even close to it,” Adams said about the older photo. “Now he’s six feet tall.”When Adams posted the photos to Twitter, they had their intended effect.”It was definitely a shock because it was such a long time ago and you can see how far we’ve come,” McKennie said.It’s an understatement: the two boys have become grown men, and the growth hasn’t been just physical. When the first photo was taken, Adams and McKennie were just a pair of young players whose potential was only outdone by their dreams. Now the two midfielders are on the cusp of becoming mainstays with the U.S. national team, part of a generation aiming to blunt the stigma from the team’s failure to qualify for the 2018 World Cup.There is a hope wrapped up in those photos that McKennie and Adams — and the rest of their teammates as well — can grow further and lead the U.S. to greater things.The two are making considerable headway at club level. McKennie has been getting steady minutes with German club Schalke, both in the Champions League and the Bundesliga, while Adams is the heartbeat of a New York Red Bulls side pushing towards a Supporters Shield and MLS Cup double. On top of that, Adams is widely reported to be heading to RB Leipzig this winter. Along the way, McKennie and Adams have forged a friendship that carries onto the field, a bond that began with the U-17s.

The U-17 residency program in Bradenton, Fla. is now one that has now been consigned to history. Starting in 1999, the U.S. Soccer Federation would gather roughly 30 of the top youth players in the country with an eye towards forming the backbone of the U17 national team. But with the advent of MLS academies, as well as the USSF Development Academy, the residency program outlived its usefulness and the program ended in 2017.

Regardless, it’s where the likes of Landon Donovan, DaMarcus Beasley, Jozy Altidore and Christian Pulisic spent some of their formative years; it gave up-and-coming players a taste of international soccer, as well as a glimpse of what life as a professional might look like, all while taking care of their schooling. It also included a competitive environment in which some players were away from home for the first time. That intensity can put a strain on relationships, but also form strong bonds.”Residency isn’t the easiest, because you’re at a time period in your social life where you’re missing out on high school and being back home, but you sacrifice that for being able to play soccer every day,” Adams said.”In my position, and for Weston as well, it was a big sacrifice. It’s so enjoyable because you’re around people that you like and who share the same passion as you. It was good to create such good friends because I feel like a lot of the kids that I went to residency with are still friends to this day. You form these good relationships.”Yet in the case of Adams and McKennie, it was one that took a while to germinate. Both players recalled the physical demands often didn’t lend itself to much hangout time. Initially, Adams wasn’t even a full-time participant in residency, jetting in for a week or two at a time before heading back to his home outside of New York City.”We were more mutual friends but we were always cheering for each other,” McKennie said. “Tyler was the more the chill, laid-back kid. We definitely had our fun times, our fun memories.”That is the way of friendships, be it over the course of a life or even a few years. They ebb and flow; some even vanish. As one’s job or city of residence changes, new relationships are formed and different roots are laid down. Interests can diverge and sever bonds thought to be unbreakable. Yet this was one connection that endured, even as Adams and McKennie took different paths towards becoming professionals.When Adams’ time with the U17s was up, he went back to the New York Red Bulls and began getting professional minutes with their reserve team. McKennie went back and played for FC Dallas’ academy before signing with Schalke. Nick Taitague, McKennie’s teammate at Schalke, proved to be the hub that kept the bond intact. fuel last year when the pair was among those called in for the friendly against Portugal. The match proved to be the international debut for both players, with McKennie scoring the lone U.S. goal in a 1-1 draw. The fact that McKennie wasn’t included in the U17 and U20 World Cup teams, of which Adams was a part, made their initial minutes at the senior level that much sweeter.

“It was just really cool, because we just had the same joy for each other,” Adams said. “You’ve reached another milestone, and to see each other and how we’ve grown is definitely very special.”

Their chemistry that was limited to time off the field now had more of an on-field component. Of the two, McKennie is the player with more of an attacking edge, though Adams has shown in recent months — last Sunday’s postseason triumph against the Columbus Crew in particular — that he’s making some headway in this regard.There is a stylistic synergy as well.”I think we’re both eager to press,” McKennie said. “We both like pressing and we both have a good set of lungs — we can definitely run for a while. I think that’s one of the things we talk about when we do talk about going into games and game plans. We know we like to press, we know what kind of style we like to play. We’re normally good together on the field. Whenever one guy goes up, the other has the other guy’s back. I think we definitely compliment each other.”Adams added, “I feel like we’re two very dynamic players and I think that’s something that maybe the U.S. hasn’t had in a long time. I think that having two midfielders like ourselves who can play and pivot off of each other is something that would definitely be unique going forward.”The upcoming friendlies against England (Thursday, ESPN2, 3 p.m. ET) and Italy will provide a measure of their progress, though the presence of Pulisic for just the second time this year will no doubt aid their respective causes.But there is also optimism, and Adams’ proposed move to Germany will offer the chance for a deeper connection, something beyond the group video chats now being held by not only McKennie and Adams, but also the likes of Taitague and Pulisic. Then there is the fact that after playing on the same team intermittently over the years, Adams and McKennie will find themselves being combatants instead of teammates.”We’re definitely tight now,” said McKennie of Adams. “He’s one of the few guys on the team that I’ve known since we were 14 years old — Timothy Weah, too, and Pulisic. And with Tyler possibly making a move here, we’ll probably have even more to talk about.”There will be more room for both players to grow as well.

 

LONDON — As Matt Miazga strolls through the U.S. men’s national team hotel near Heathrow Airport outside London, there are no outward signs that he’s going through one of the more difficult spells of his professional career. The American defender has always carried himself with a high level of confidence, and this day is no different. The tone in Miazga’s voice is one of optimism, with one phrase continually coming up in conversation.

“You’ve got to keep pushing,” he told ESPN FC in an exclusive interview.The 23-year-old’s mood is at odds with his current predicament at club level, though in one sense, he has little choice. The native of Clifton, New Jersey, is currently on loan with Ligue 1 side Nantes from Chelsea, but so far, it hasn’t gone as he hoped.Initially, Miazga was a consistent presence in Nantes’ defense, but some poor results saw manager Miguel Cardoso fired just eight games into the season. Miazga then made a poor first impression with new manager Vahid Halilhodzic in a 3-0 loss to Bordeaux, delivering a subpar performance and receiving a yellow card that saw him suspended for the club’s next match.Nantes’ form has improved since, with the club claiming 10 points from its past four league matches, but in the meantime, Miazga’s situation has deteriorated further. He hasn’t been in the matchday squad since the Bordeaux defeat, banished to the reserves instead. There have even been reports that his loan will be cut short in January amid questions about his attitude.But Miazga isn’t thinking about any of those things, and he isn’t about to give up, either.”You’ve got to learn, you’ve got to adapt,” he said. “Obviously you always want to be playing, you always want to be a part of it. I kind of got stuck in a bad-timing situation with the club, getting suspended and with a new coach [coming in]. Right now I’m not playing, so I have to continue to stay fit, control what I can control and be ready for when my chance comes again.”As for the rumors that the loan will be terminated early, Miazga responds with a laugh and a shake of the head.”I don’t know where those rumors came from but they’re obviously not true,” he said. “People saw that I was playing every game and then all of a sudden not playing, so people are going to make assumptions, make up rumors and random things up in their head and I guess publish it.”The reality is that’s not true: I’m on loan with Nantes until the end of the season. I lost my starting spot and I’ve got to earn it back. It’s as simple as that.”Such a comment might come off as spin, but there is some substance behind the statements due to the fact Miazga has been in this position before. Back in 2014 with the New York Red Bulls, he started six times in an eight-game midseason stretch before some costly mistakes saw him benched for the rest of the season. The following year, he rebounded and was an ever-present force in the Red Bulls’ Supporters’ Shield-winning campaign. The next season, his first on loan with Dutch side Vitesse after signing with Chelsea, Miazga also found himself out of the lineup early on only to come back and help the club win its first top-flight trophy in its 125-year history.

Miazga said that his benching in New York left a deep impression, and he watched how veterans like Kosuke Kimura conducted themselves when they were out of the lineup. It’s why he’s confident he’ll be able to work his way back this time as well.”Kimura was very helpful in terms of always working extra, always pushing yourself to your limits,” Miazga said. “Work hard and be ready for your chance. Every time [I’ve been benched] I’ve gotten out of the situation, so I’ve got to keep pushing. It’s as simple as that.”I’ve seen [bad attitudes] before in the past. You see different scenarios, different sports as well — a guy with a bad attitude can be a cancer to the team or can be a distraction to the team. You don’t want to be that. You want to continue to be positive, help the team any way you can, and continue to train hard and be ready for your chance. I made sure I stayed fit for an opportunity like this, to get called up again.”Without question, Ligue 1 is a considerable step up in quality from the Eredivisie, and even before France’s World Cup triumph last summer, Ligue 1 clubs have been lauded for the way they develop players. But there is more to a move than just dealing with matters on the field. There is a new culture to adapt to and, most crucially of all, a new language to pick up. The coaching change, one in which Cardoso’s staff spoke English but Halilhodzic’s is more limited, drove home that necessity, though it’s one that Miazga is well aware of.”I feel like when you’re in a different country, you have to really strive to learn their language and show your intent to immerse yourself,” he said. “They’re not coming to America to speak English, you’re going to France to play football in France. You should learn their language to be able to speak with people, your teammates, the physios.”Miazga said that he’s eschewing social media and texting in favor of more time practicing his French. He hopes to get his French to the level where he can “hold a decent conversation” by the end of the season, but in the meantime, he’s enjoying what his new surroundings have to offer.”Every day, you’re so excited to see something new, you’re always doing something new, meeting new people, seeing new things, new places, ideas,” he said. “Constantly in my head I’m always learning, just processing everything I see.”Miazga’s immediate focus is Thursday’s friendly against England, and it’s unlikely the defender will be overawed by the occasion. After all, he was on the field when the U.S. tied France 1-1 just before the World Cup. But given the immense talent at England manager Gareth Southgate’s disposal, the test should be immense even amid the hubbub caused by Wayne Rooney’s inclusion.”England has obviously evolved as a nation, making the semifinal of the World Cup this past [summer], and obviously they have world-class players playing at big, big clubs,” Miazga said. “It’s going to be a good challenge for us, and something that we’re all looking forward to, to be able to showcase ourselves in a top international game like this.”A good performance from Miazga might also serve another purpose: reminding his club coach of his potential. If that’s the case, then it gives Miazga another reason to keep pushing.

Columbus Crew’s Gregg Berhalter silent on future amid links to USMNT job

Nov 11, 2018ESPN

Columbus Crew SC coach Gregg Berhalter declined to speak about his future or the United States national team’s coaching vacancy after his team was eliminated from the MLS playoffs on Sunday night.Berhalter, who for months has been widely considered the favorite to become the next U.S. coach, watched Columbus let a slim first-leg lead slip away in a 3-0 defeat to the New York Red Bulls in the Eastern Conference semifinals. But asked after the game if he wanted to comment on his future plans, Berhalter said simply, “No.”However, Berhalter later wiped his eyes when asked how he would want his tenure as Crew SC coach to be remembered if Sunday did his mark his final game in charge after five years.”I don’t think we need to talk about that right now,” he said after a beat. “What’s in Columbus is identity, the way they’re playing. We’ve given the players belief and made them better, and that’s what we’ve done for a long time.”The job of permanent U.S. coach has been vacant since October 2017, when Bruce Arena resigned following the team’s World Cup qualifying failure. Since then, Dave Sarachan has managed the team on a caretaker basis.U.S. general manger Earnie Stewart said in September that he hoped to fill the position by the end of the year, and the end of Columbus’ season could lead to some movement.Stewart has said he a specific profile in mind for the next manager.”It’s somebody that has to have a ‘We’ mentality, who wants to work together,” Stewart said in September. “That’s important. In this day and age I don’t think one person can do the whole job, especially a country as big as this.”Stewart and Berhalter played on the U.S. team together, though Stewart has cautioned that their relationship is more professional than overly friendly.

Christian Pulisic returns to U.S. squad for England, Italy friendlies

Nov 6, 2018Jeff CarlisleU.S. soccer correspondent

Christian Pulisic headlines the 28-man squad named by United States caretaker manager Dave Sarachan for upcoming friendlies against England and Italy.The U.S. will take on England at the famed Wembley on Nov. 15, and will then play Italy in Genk, Belgium five days later.”These last two matches provide a fantastic set of challenges and experiences, so we’re excited to bring in this group of players for another huge opportunity,” said Sarachan. “We continue to build with a core group that has developed throughout the last year, while including some players who we haven’t seen in some time.”Injuries and club commitments have limited Pulisic to just one U.S. appearance this calendar year, a May 28 match against Bolivia. But now the Borussia Dortmund midfielder appears to be healthy enough to take part in the last two U.S. matches of 2018. The squad is weighted slightly in favor of foreign-based players, with 16 of the 28 invitees playing abroad. Of the 12 MLS-based players, seven belong to teams still competing in the MLS Cup playoffs. This could explain the reason for the slightly greater squad numbers compared to previous camps, as those seven will arrive at camp later than others given that the second leg of the conference finals will take place this weekend.”These are important matches and we only have so many opportunities every year to bring our players together,” said Sarachan, speaking about the decision to include players involved in the MLS playoffs. “This is a FIFA window and we are one of many countries playing matches during this time, so you want to include players that you feel are vital to your program. There are other leagues around the world that have games right before and after these windows, but I feel when the national team calls, there is still an importance to bringing players that we feel will be significant to the team now and in the future.”Sarachan will also use the expanded squad to take a look at more Europe-based players. There are no specific plans to release players in between games, though circumstances could dictate otherwise.One notable absence is Toronto FC midfielder Michael Bradley. Two reasons were given by Sarachan for his exclusion: that the younger midfielders on the squad are in greater need of minutes at international level, and that Bradley hasn’t had much rest in two years due to his involvement in MLS Cups and the CONCACAF Champions League.”At this stage, it made sense to give [Bradley] some extra time off and also allow these games to be a platform for players that lack that kind of experience,” he said.Otherwise, Sarachan has continued to call in the core group of young players he’s developed over the past year. This includes Columbus Crew goalkeeper Zack Steffen, Nantes defender Matt Miazga, New York Red Bulls midfielder Tyler Adams, Schalke midfielder Weston McKennie, and Paris Saint-Germain forward Tim Weah.All told, 17 of those named in the squad took part in the previous national team camp back in October. The average age of the squad is 23 years, 241 days, with the average number of caps 13.Four players on the squad play in the U.K. They are Wigan Athletic defender Antonee Robinson, Swansea defender Cameron Carter-Vickers, Fulham midfielder Luca De La Torre, and Newcastle United defender DeAndre Yedlin.Midfielder Romain Gall is the lone first-time call-up on the squad. Gall, 23, has recorded 15 goals in 27 league and cup matches for Swedish sides Sundsvall and Malmo in 2018.

Complete squad:

Goalkeepers (3): Brad Guzan (Atlanta United FC; 59/0), Ethan Horvath (Club Brugge/BEL; 2/0), Zack Steffen (Columbus Crew; 6/0)

Defenders (10): John Brooks (Wolfsburg/GER; 35/3), Reggie Cannon (FC Dallas; 1/0), Cameron Carter-Vickers (Swansea City/WAL; 6/0), Aaron Long (New York Red Bulls; 1/0), Matt Miazga (Nantes/FRA; 10/1), Shaq Moore (Reus Deportiu/ESP; 3/0), Antonee Robinson (Wigan Athletic/ENG; 6/0), Jorge Villafaña (Portland Timbers; 19/0), DeAndre Yedlin (Newcastle United/ENG; 56/0), Walker Zimmerman (LAFC; 3/1)

Midfielders (13): Kellyn Acosta (Colorado Rapids; 21/2), Tyler Adams (New York Red Bulls; 7/1), Luca de la Torre (Fulham/ENG; 1/0), Marky Delgado (Toronto FC/CAN; 5/0), Romain Gall (Malmö/SWE; 0/0), Julian Green (Greuther Fürth/GER; 14/4), Sebastian Lletget (LA Galaxy; 3/1), Weston McKennie (Schalke/GER; 6/1), Darlington Nagbe (Atlanta United FC; 25/1), Christian Pulisic (Borussia Dortmund/GER; 21/9), Kenny Saief (Anderlecht/BEL; 3/0), Wil Trapp (Columbus Crew SC; 9/0), Tim Weah (Paris Saint-Germain/FRA; 7/1)

Forwards (2): Josh Sargent (Werder Bremen/GER; 5/2), Bobby Wood (Hannover 96/GER; 43/13)

Christian Pulisic’s return is sorely needed for U.S. side lacking creativity

Nov 6, 2018Jeff CarlisleU.S. soccer correspondent

The year of discontent for the U.S. men’s national team is almost over.Caretaker manager Dave Sarachan named his 28-player roster for friendlies against England on Nov. 15 (3 p.m. ET, ESPN2) and against Italy five days later. It figures to be the last time Sarachan engages in this exercise for the U.S.To be fair, Sarachan was handed a thankless job last year, and he’s conducted himself with aplomb. His decisions to go with mostly young players have induced a collective nodding of heads. A total of 50 players have been used during Sarachan’s tenure, with 19 making their international debuts. The team has gotten some decent results along the way, although it’s clear that there is a long way to go for many of these players. For these two games, it will help to have Christian Pulisic, Weston McKennie and Tyler Adams all back in the fold. The trio, which figures to form the core of the U.S. midfield for the next cycle, missed the last round of games in October due to injury. That they will (hopefully) be back ought to give U.S. fans a glimpse of what is to come.Pulisic’s return is undoubtedly the most welcome, although McKennie and Adams will be critical as well. The U.S. has shown a distinct lack of creativity for much of this calendar year, and with Pulisic limited to just one U.S. appearance in 2018, that burden has been left to others with predictable results. With the Borussia Dortmund attacker back, it will be interesting to see what the knock-on effect will be on the offensive contributions of McKennie and Adams, who have both shown an ability to score from late runs into the box.There are other attack-minded players who will be worth a look. It seems like every month there’s a new player brought into the fold with an eye-catching skill set. Last month it was Jonathan Amon. This time around it’s Malmo’s Romain Gall, whose numbers — 14 goals in 30 matches across two teams in 2018 — have piqued some interest. Gall’s career had seemed to stall during a two-season stint with the Columbus Crew, but his game has been reborn in Sweden, and his ability to run at defenses and strike at goal makes him intriguing.Sebastian Lletget, a player whose slick passing has always made him an interesting option, is back in the frame as well. The tendency has always been to look at him as a purely attacking option, but the last few months of the MLS season with the LA Galaxy saw him perform well in a deeper role beside Jonathan dos Santos, giving the U.S. added versatility.

Darlington Nagbe is another player returning to the fold, but he remains something of an enigma, a player who everyone wants to be a No. 10 but is more of a linker instead.Then there’s Werder Bremen’s Josh Sargent and Paris Saint-Germain’s Tim Weah. Sargent has been getting steady playing time with the team’s reserves, although his promotion to Bremen’s first team has been teased for some time now. Of late, Weah hasn’t been even getting time with PSG’s reserve team, but both players figure to get extended minutes for the U.S.One player who won’t be joining up with the U.S. is Toronto FC’s Michael Bradley. The reasons given for his exclusion centered around giving minutes to younger players and allowing Bradley to take some time off. The second of those explanations is the one more grounded in logic. If playing time for younger players was a concern, why call him back in during the October window? But it’s clear that after playing virtually nonstop for the past two years, Bradley could use a rest.The concerns for Sarachan — and whoever succeeds him — are a bit different on the defensive side of the ball. Matt Miazga has been a mainstay for Sarachan ever since he took over, but poor form and change of coach at Nantes have consigned the center-back to the team’s reserves, leading to speculation that his loan from Chelsea might be terminated early. A couple of respectable performances for the U.S. might catch the eye of another team if his way at Nantes remains blocked. At minimum, he should get the chance to get some more reps with Wolfsburg center-back John Brooks.

Wayne Rooney to return for England farewell vs. U.S. at Wembley

Mark OgdenSenior Writer, ESPN FC

Wayne Rooney will win his 120th England cap later this month after Gareth Southgate sanctioned a farewell appearance for the DC United forward against the United States at Wembley on Nov. 15, the English Football Association (FA) has announced.The former Manchester United and Everton captain — England’s all-time leading scorer with 53 goals — has not represented his country since lining up against Scotland at Wembley in November 2016.

– Rooney’s record-breaking England career in numbers

Rooney, 33, who had by that stage lost his regular starting spot at United under Jose Mourinho, was then omitted from a series of squads by manager Southgate before announcing his international retirement in August 2017, having initially targeted this year’s World Cup in Russia as his swansong.But with Rooney ending his England career having made more appearances than any other outfield player, as well as eclipsing Sir Bobby Charlton’s record of England goals, Southgate and the FA have agreed to give Rooney the honour of a farewell appearance, at the same time as handing supporters the opportunity to show their appreciation of the former England captain.The game against the U.S. — three days before the decisive Nations League clash with Croatia at Wembley — has been designated as a charity fundraiser by the FA. Some of the monies raised will go towards the Wayne Rooney Foundation.

Despite Rooney’s impressive form in the MLS since moving to DC United in July, where he helped the team into the playoffs after scoring 12 goals in 21 games, his return to the England set-up is purely on a one-off basis, sources have told ESPN FC.Rooney will be presented with an award in recognition of his contribution before the game, but sources have told ESPN FC that he will not play the full 90 minutes and that he will not be considered for the game against Croatia.Rooney’s MLS season is now over after the team’s defeat in the knockout round against Columbus Crew last week, but he told ESPN last month that he will not seek a loan move back to Europe during the closed season, opting instead to focus on the start of the 2019 MLS season next March.

 

Indiana University 2018 Big 10 Champions 

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