5/27/22  Carmel FC Teams Advance to Finals, Champs League Liverpool vs Real Madrid 3 pm Sat CBS at The Pint Room downtown Carmel, USA vs Morocco Thur 7 pm ESPN, Indy 11 500 day Sat 4 pm

Congrats to the U13 2009  Carmel FC Boys Gold team with coaches Jeremy Slivinski and Chris White as they advance to the President Cup Final after a perfect 3-0 mark last weekend at Grand Park. Good luck next weekend in the Finals boys!  Also the 2009 Girls Gold Team coached by Doug Latham and Paul Cullington advanced to the State Cup finals.  I will try to dig up some game times for our teams at State/Prez/Challenge Cup finals next weekend at Grand Park in case you want to come watch.  I hope to be reffing as well. 

Champions League Final Sat 3 pm CBS Liverpool vs Real Madrid,  coverage starts at 1:30 pm.

Wow what a final we have lined up – certainly Liverpool has been dominant in this competition since coach Juergen Klopp arrived – they face the winningest team in Champions League history in Real Madrid.  The Madridistas have been on the edge of their seats as Ballon D Or Leader and #9 Benzema has helped this team pull out some late game dramatics in 2 huge come from behind wins.  The late goals vs Man City – the things legends are made of as they scored 2 goals in the last 5 minutes to force extra time where they won it on a Benzema goal.  I love the match-up and see a hard fought and high scoring affair – both teams like to attack and neither is necessarily the best on the defensive wings especially.  Both teams have great goalkeepers who can win for them in Alisson for Liverpool and Courtios for Madrid.  I see an early goal by Liverpool being the difference and a 3-2 win by the men in Red.  The Reds will fall just 1 pt short of the Quadruple (League Cup/FA Cup/Champs League/EPL title) if they can pull it off.

CARMEL FC COACHES AND FRIENDS – Join us at the PINT ROOM in DOWNTOWN CARMEL 110 W Main St.  2:45 pm Game starts at 3 pm

Finally a Network – CBS Treats Champs League with the respect it deserves

 CBS is going all out with wall to wall coverage live from Paris France– The pregame starts at 1:30 pm with the best in the business Kate Abdo on site with Jamie Carragher, Thierry Henry, and Micah Richards, Peter Schmeichel, Jenny Chui.  Unlike Fox and TBS/TNT (which was a friggin nightmare on Coverage) – CBS is employing real soccer talent to give us the full perspective on the game.  Camilla Cabello – has the pregame concert and my favorite Anthem in all of sports We Are the Champions  will get things started at about 2:45 pm.  Over 400 million (4 times the Superbowl) will be watching Worldwide – a # only matched by the World Cup and the Olympics.  So tune in and enjoy!!   (here’s the intro from the last time these teams played).

USA vs Morocco Wed 7 pm ESPN

The US Men are back in action as we have some huge June Games set to prepare us for World Cup play in Nov.  Returning to the team off a broken foot is Weston McKennie of Juve (though I suspect he may not play more than a half in these 1st 2 games in early June.)  Former German Youth National Malik Tillman (Bayern Munich) -whose dad is an American serviceman has flipped to the US and should get his first game action in the Red. White and Blue most probably at the #9 slot.  Center forward Haji Wright hopes to ride his hot streak of goals at Antalyaspor into a June chance at claiming the unclaimed #9 shirt for the US along with a fairly hot Jesus Ferreira from Dallas FC.  The Backline is looking for a replacement for starter Miles Robinson who is lost to an achilles heel injury for the year. Erik Palmer Brown and Cameron Carter Vickers fresh off his helping Celtic win the league in Ireland will battle with Aaron Long for the spot opposite Penciled in starter and Captain Walker Zimmerman.  Also good to see 19 YO outside back Joe Scally (MGladbach starter) back in the fold and hopefully we’ll see him in action in 1 of the first 2 games.  The other interesting callback is midfielder Mihailovic who has reinvigorated his career in Montreal in MLS I would guess we’ll see him in the Nations League games in late June. Late note that Zack Steffen will miss these summer games so I see I have my starters below in a game which I think we will win 2-1 over Morocco. 

Shane’s Starters for Wed game vs Morocco in Cincy

Haji Wright or Malik Tilman


Luca De La Torre/Yanus Musah



Matt Turner

The 26-man roster for June Games

GOALKEEPERS (3): Ethan Horvath (Nottingham Forest), Zack Steffen (Manchester City), Matt Turner (New England Revolution), Sean Johnson (DC United)

DEFENDERS (9): George Bello (Arminia Bielefeld), Reggie Cannon (Boavista), Cameron Carter-Vickers (Celtic FC), Aaron Long (New York Red Bulls), Erik Palmer-Brown (Troyes), Antonee Robinson (Fulham FC), Joe Scally (Borussia Mönchengladbach), DeAndre Yedlin (Inter Miami), Walker Zimmerman (Nashville SC)

MIDFIELDERS (8): Kellyn Acosta (LAFC), Tyler Adams (RB Leipzig), Luca de la Torre (Heracles), Weston McKennie (Juventus), Djordje Mihailovic (CF Montreal), Yunus Musah (Valencia), Cristian Roldan (Seattle Sounders), Malik Tillman (Bayern Munich)

FORWARDS (7): Brenden Aaronson (Red Bull Salzburg), Paul Arriola (FC Dallas), Jesús Ferreira (FC Dallas), Jordan Morris (Seattle Sounders), Christian Pulisic (Chelsea FC), Tim Weah (Lille), Haji Wright (Antalyaspor)

This is why the EPL is the Best League in the World

The EPL came down to the final minutes on the final day of the final game of the season as Man City had to make up a 2 goal deficit to Aston Villa with 20 minutes to play to pull of the 3-2 victory at home to win their 4th straight league title by 1 point over Liverpool – who also had to come from behind to keep the pressure on Man City (they won 2-1).  Arsenal won but couldn’t make up points on Tottenham who won and had Son Min tie for the Golden Boot with Mo Salah of Liverpool after tallying 1 on Sunday.  Man United tied but still finished in the 6th spot automatic qualifier for Europa League play over West Ham United who lost and will now have to qualify their way in.

American Manager Jesse Marsch Keeps Leeds United in the EPL

Wow – I am going to have to get me a Leeds United America Shirt now – as coach Jesse Marsch pulled a rabbit out of the hat and kept his team alive be winning on the final day in the last minutes of the game (again) to secure their way out of the relegation zone.  Leeds finishes in 17th place – but picked up a solid # of points since Marsch took over to help keep them alive.  Now Marsch and the Club have signed American National Brenden Aaronson (who Marsch coached at Salzburg) for 30 million making him the 2nd highest US signee to Christian Pulisic’s $75 million a couple of years ago. Also on the short list for wants at Leeds – Barca’s Sergino Dest and Tyler Adams from Red Bull.  All the crap about Marsch’s American accent and him being Ted Lasso and he doesn’t belong in the EPL  – well boys if you believe!!

Indy 11 Indy 500 Game 4 pm at the Mike  Promo

Come Downtown, attend the AES 500 FESTIVAL PARADE & then make your way to Carroll Stadium to see Indy Eleven throw their version of a Race Day celebration in partnership with Indianapolis Motor Speedway.  Kickoff is set for 4 pm vs New Mexico with multiple special Indy 500 like celebrations, shirts, and the BYB Little 500 BigWheel Race starting at 1:30 pm.  Preview of Game  Indy Eleven closes out a run of six home games in seven matches with a rare matinee at Carroll Stadium against its practical mirror image from the Western Conference in New Mexico United. Both teams enter Saturday’s match on hot streaks, the Boys in Blue winning five of their last six and the Black-and-Yellow going unbeaten in their last four outings, including two straight wins. After enjoying plenty of home cooking since the beginning of April, Indy Eleven will embark on a June-long, 4-game road trip before returning to “The Mike” on July 2. Indy Eleven will look to stay unbeaten in league play at Carroll Stadium, where its 4W-0L-1D mark in Championship action includes four straight victories. Order your tickets now.


Champions League Specials on CBS Sports Network

Friday, May 27, 2022

CBSSN1981 European Cup Final: Liverpool vs. Real Madrid – 9 p.m.

CBSSH 2018 UCL Final: Real Madrid vs. Liverpool – 11 p.m.

Saturday, May 28, 2022

2019 UCL Finals: Finals Archive – 1 a.m.

2007 & 2012 UCL Finals: Finals Archive – 1:30am ET

1 pm CBS, TUDN        Champions League Pre-Game

3 pm CBS, Univision        Liverpool vs Real Madrid  Final

4 pm ESPN+, WNDY         Indy 11 vs New Mexico United (Indy 500 Day)

8 pm Para+                         Chicago Red Stars vs Portland Thorns NWSL

Sun, June 1

3 pm Para+                         OL Reign vs San Diego Wave NWSL

6 pm Unimas, ESPN+      LA Galaxy vs Austin

9 pm Para+                         Angel City vs NY/NJ Gotham

9:10 pm Univision            Pachuca vs Atlast  Liga MX

9:30 pm Fox Spprts 1      Seattle Sounders vs Charlotte

Monn, June 2

3 pm Para+                         KC vs Racing Louisville NWSL

Wed, June 3

2:45 pm ESPN2           Scotland vs Ukraine WCQ

2:45 pm FS1                        Italy vs Argentina NL

7:30 pm ESPN2           USA vs Morocco in Cincy

Thur, June 2

2:45 pm FS1                Portugal vs Spain NL  

7:30 pm ESPN2           USA vs Morocco in Cincy

Fri, June 3

2:45 pm FS1                        Belgium vs Netherlands

10:30 pm Para+                 Portland Thorns vs Angel City NWSL

Sat, June 4

12 noon ??                          England vs Hungary NL

2:45 pm                                Italy vs Germany NL 

Sun, June 5 

12 noon ESPN2                  Wales vs (Scotland or Ukraine)

2:45 pm                                Sweden vs Norway NL

2:45 pm                                Portugal vs Switzerland NL 

Mon, June 6

2:45 pm FS1                        Croatia vs France NL

Tues, June 7

2 pm Para+                         United Arab Emirates vs Australia WCQ

2:45 pm FS1                        Italy vs Hungary NL

2:45 pm FS1                        Germany vs England NL

Weds, June 8

2:45 pm                                Belgium vs Poland NL

Thurs, June 9

2:45 pm FS1                        Portugal vvs Czechs NL

10:30 pm Para+                 Canada vs Curacao

Fri, June 10

2:45 pm FS1                        Austria vs France NL

10 pm ESPN ?             USA vs Grenada 

Sat, June 11

2:45 pm FS1                        Ireland vs Scotland NL

3 pm ABC                             Charlotte vs NY Red Bulls

10 pm Para+                       Mexico vs Suriname

Sun, June 12

9 am FS1                              Northern Ireland vs Cyprus NL

12 pm FS1                            Norway vs Sweden NL

3 pm ABC                             Charlotte vs NY Red Bulls

10 pm Para+                       Mexico vs Suriname

Indy 11 Schedule

Indy 11 Women’s Schedule

NWSL Women’s Schedule

MLS National TV Schedule

Soccer Saturday’s are every Sat 9-10 am on 93.5 and 107.5 FM with Greg Rakestraw

Carmel Dad’s Club Alumni Soccer  

Mid June – early August –  Games Wed/Sun  Age 18-30  Registration open thru June 16th. Call 317-846-1633 or Click Here

Make your own teams or we can add you to a team.  Cost is just $105 includes Jersey. 

CARMEL FC 2022 Tryouts and Evaluation Information

All evaluations and tryouts will be held at Shelborne Fields. 3451 W 126th St, Carmel, IN 46032.

June 7, 2022 – Players 10u, 9u and 8u (Birth Years 2013 to 2016)

Check-in starts 1/2 hour before evaluations begin.

Evaluations for all age groups: 6pm to 7:30pm


June 13, 2022- Players 11u and older (Birth Years 2004 to 2012)

Check-in starts 1/2 hour before tryouts.

Tryouts for 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012: 5:45pm to 7:15pm

Tryouts for 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2008: 7:30pm to 9pm.
Use this link to register for tryouts.   Visit : carmelfc.teamapp.com   Please email  info@cdccarmelfc.com. with any questions.

 Carmel Dads’ Club Soccer Camp Powered by Indy Eleven – June 13-16

9am-12pm (Rain day reschedule June 17)  Ages 6-13   Shelborne Soccer Fields – 3451 W. 126th St. Carmel, IN 46033 –  REGISTRATION IS LIVE!

Champions League Final Sat 3 pm CBS

Liverpool vs Real Madrid lineups: Projected XI’s, team news, analysis

 10 Years Ago this Week Liverpool came from 3 goals down to win the Final in Instabul

In 2018 it Was Bale who beat Liverpool
Real Madrid’s Ancelotti, the players’ coach, is on the brink of UCL history
  hMark Ogden

Euro glory would make Liverpool the best ever: McManaman

‘One in a million’ Klopp makes Liverpool a European giant again

Harmony reigns as Ancelotti and Real Madrid proves a winning combination

Benzema looks to cap great season with 5th European title

Benzema needs final triumph to make Champions League his own

Real Madrid remain Europe’s most valuable football club: studies

Liverpool’s Diaz from indigenous community that breeds ‘toughness’

Liverpool vs Real Madrid lineups: Projected XI’s, team news, analysis

‘World’s best’ Alisson: The goalkeeper who transformed Liverpool

Klopp confident Thiago will be fit for Champions League final

Which managers have won the most European trophies?

Paris readies for Liverpool fan invasion

Stade de France gets new pitch for Champions League final


US World Cup Video 

Marsch Survives, Mckennie Returns, Weah Has big day on final day of play – American’s Abroad

Milhailovic’s Montreal Renaissance reignites USMNT Interest

Leeds United’s Jesse Marsch Focused on the Future – Yanks Abroad

Leeds United Sign USMNT Brenden Aaronson from Salzburg

US Mailbag – Matt Doyle

3rd Goalie Huge – even if he doesn’t get Playing Time

USWNT World Cup Qualifying begins this Summer

US Youth Teams Women’s team Progress to World Cup  

INDY 11 & MLS & US Open Cup   

New Goalkeeper Meredith from Nashville Sent Down to Indy 11


Asante is Finally Here Ready


W League Team Establishes a New Side of LIPAFC Rivalry

FNT 1:6 Indy 11W

Indy 11 GK Elliot Panicco starts and wins for Nashville in US Open Cup
Galaxy again own bragging rights with U.S. Open Cup win over LAFC

Fantastic LA Galaxy Goal to win the El Traffico – US Open Cup Style

CupSet – Union Omaha beats Minnesota Union in US Open Cup

3rd Tier Team Union Omaha knocks off Minnesota United with Sports Center Top 10 Goal

NWSL & Ladies

 Women’s Champions League final: Lyon (Horan/Macario) are unstoppable, which Barcelona learned the hard way  Sophie Lawson

How the USWNT and USMNT achieved equal pay, rewrote history ESPNFC Jeff Carlisle

Crystal Dunn: ‘Black athletes can’t be put in a box and just be athletic’

NC Courage’s Challenge Cup win shows best and worst NWSL has to offer  ESPNFC Jeff Carlisle

American Lindsay Horan and Caterina Macario help Lyon Win the Champions League over Barcelona

EPL Wrapup

Relive Man City, Liverpool’s final-day title fight
Klopp named Premier League manager of the year

Marsch saves Leeds United, boosts U.S. soccer

Premier League awards for 2021-22 season

Premier League 2021-22 season grades for all 20 clubs

How Man City pulled off title-winning comeback

Erik ten Hag: Manchester United must return to Champions League

Son Heung-min’s ‘joyous’ Golden Boot hailed by S.Korea president

Premier League awards for 2021-22 season

Leeds United Want’s Sergio Dest

Leeds Highlites

Leeds – BELIEVE – TED LASSO – Jesse Marsch

Jesse Marsch from Alexi Lallas


 Jose Mourinho on Roma’s UECL win: ‘We had to write history. We wrote it’
Roma vs Feyenoord final score: Zaniolo, Patricio lead Mourinho’s men

Roma Goal



A record 5 American Refs were selected for the World Cup in Nov
US referee numbers are plunging and aggression is to blame

Legendary EPL Ref – Mike Dean’s Final Final Whistle

Ref Watch: Joe Machnik on calls the rules don’t cover clearly Soccer America

Poor Reffing in NWSL ?

Results in the EPL without VAR


 Road to Qatar: Zinchenko wants to make Ukraine ‘proud’ in World Cup playoffs
Ukraine will be ready for World Cup play-off: Scotland boss Clarke

Ibrahimovic endured sleepless nights to deliver Serie A title for Milan

Kylian Mbappe exclusive: ‘I talked to Liverpool, but things were not over for me at PSG’

Final Bundesliga standings, 2021-22

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Check out the BarBQ Ribs, pulled Pork and Chicken, Brisket and more.  Sweet, Tangy or Spicy sauce. Mention you heard about it from the Ole Ballcoach — and Ryan will give you 20% off your next mealhttps://www.rackzbbqindy.com/ Call ahead at 317-688-7290  M-Th 11-8 pm, 11-9 Fri/Sat, 12-8 pm on Sunday.  Pick some up after practice – Its good eatin! You won’t be disappointed and tell ’em the Ole Ballcoach Sent You!  


Liverpool vs Real Madrid lineups: Projected XI’s,

Liverpool lineup (projected 4-3-3)

—– Alisson —–

— Alexander-Arnold — Matip — Van Dijk — Robertson —

—- Henderson —- Fabinho —- Keita —-

—- Salah —- Mane —- Diaz —-

Alisson will obviously start in goal and the back four pretty much picks itself now that Virgil van Dijk is back from his injury scare. Joel Matip will get the nod over Ibrahima Konate but the latter has done absolutely nothing wrong when rotated into the lineup and he’s been very good in the Champions League this season.

In midfield Jordan Henderson is expected to start but then it gets interesting. Fabinho is back in training after his hamstring issue which is a huge boost. But will he be ready to start the final? Klopp told reporters that Fabinho is back training normally, while another huge boost for Liverpool is that Thiago Alcantara is fit. Will he start? He didn’t really do anything too rigorous on the pitch in Liverpool’s final training season before the final and it is tough to see him starting. That leaves one central midfield spot open and it is likely that Naby Keita will start in the midfield three over James Milner and Curtis Jones.

Up top Mohamed Salah will start on the right and Sadio Mane could well start through the middle again with Luis Diaz starting on the left. Roberto Firmino and Diogo Jota are pushing to start but both are very good options off the bench.

Real Madrid lineup (projected, 4-2-3-1)

—- Courtois —–

—- Carvajal —- Militao —- Alaba —- Mendy —-

—- Casemiro —- Kroos —-

—- Valverde —- Modric —- Vinicius Jr. —-

—– Benzema —–

This Real Madrid team is very settled and has an excellent blend of youth and experience.  Veteran left back Marcelo is their only injury concern as Carlo Ancelotti has been able to rest plenty of players in recent weeks after they won the La Liga title with weeks to spare. That means Real will be fully fit, but will their rhythm be impacted by players going in and out of the lineup?

In defense Dani Carvajal is expected to start at right back with Eder Militao and David Alaba at center back and the excellent Ferland Mendy at left back tasked with shutting down Salah.

In midfield the duo of Casemiro and Toni Kroos will start as the holders with Luka Modric pulling all of the strings just ahead of them. In attack Federico Valverde and Vinicius Jr look set to start on the right and left respectively with red-hot Karim Benzema leading the line. Youngsters Rodrygo and Eduardo Camavinga have played extremely well in cameos off the bench and they will have a big part to play in this final.

Liverpool vs Real Madrid live! Champions League final, how to watch, latest news

By Joe Prince-WrightMay 27, 2022, 1:50 PM EDT

Liverpool vs Real Madrid in the UEFA Champions League final in Paris (Saturday, 3pm ET kick off) is the epic showpiece game that this season’s tournament deserved. 

These two teams epitomize this competition as Real have won more European titles (13) than anybody else, while Liverpool sit joint-third in the all-time list of European champions with six.Jurgen Klopp vs Carlo Ancelotti. Virgil van Dijk vs Karim Benzema. Trent Alexander-Arnold vs Vinicius Jr. Mohamed Salah vs David Alaba. The list of epic head-to-head battles goes on and on as these two European giants collide at the Stade de France to be crowned European champions.Given that these teams met in the final in Kiev in 2017-18 (when Real prevailed) and Liverpool won the title in 2018-19, these two Goliath’s continue to dine at the top table of European soccer season-after-season and their fanbases hold this trophy in even greater esteem than winning the domestic title.Below is everything you need to know ahead of the Champions League final, as Liverpool vs Real Madrid will see two heavyweights go all-out to be crowned Champions of Europe once again.

Premier League news

Liverpool have ‘learned to win’ as they prepare for Real Madrid…

Liverpool vs Real Madrid lineups: Projected XI’s, team news, analysis


How to watch Liverpool vs Real Madrid live, stream link and start time

Kick off: 3pm ET, Saturday (May 28)
Venue: Stade de France, Paris
TV Channel: CBS, Univision, TUDN
Live analysis from Stade de France: From Joe Prince-Wright here on NBCSports.com
Online: Stream via Paramount+

Sights and sounds in Paris + Press conferences, live! – By Joe Prince-Wright at Stade de France

Wrapping things up from a sunny Stade de France!Final question of Klopp’s press conference was about the final being moved from St Petersburg to Paris. His response was emotional and her’s what he said.Jurgen Klopp is asked Fabinho and Thiago Alcantara. He says it looks good for both. Great news for Liverpool fans.Robertson and Alexander-Arnold are being asked a lot about Liverpool not winning the title on the final day. They so they have ‘put it behind them’ and say Champions League final is best way to get over it.Andy Robertson and Trent Alexander-Arnold are both batting away questions about Liverpool not being fresh and Real Madrid having a bit of an edge as they’re rested.“It goes without saying we have a world class opponent staying in our way,” Alexander-Arnold says.Trent and Robbo are here…

Welcome to the Stade de France! The Liverpool team have arrived in Paris and we are about to speak to Jurgen Klopp, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Andy Robertson here in the press conference room.

Liverpool team news, injuries, lineup options

Klopp has breathed a huge sigh of relief after Mohamed Salah and Virgil van Dijk were both injured in the FA Cup final but Salah played in the final Premier League game of the season and VVD was on the bench, so they’re fine. His main issue is in midfield. Thiago Alcantara trained with the group on Friday at the Stade de France, while Fabinho has been back in full training for a few days. The latter news is massive as Fabinho’s ability to help cut off the service to Benzema will be huge.

If Thiago isn’t fit to start, expect Naby Keita to start in midfield with Jordan Henderson and Fabinho. Up top Klopp has a huge call to make (he’s been getting it right for months with his rotation of his front five) as Luis Diaz may start on the left with Sadio Mane through the middle and Salah on the right. However, Roberto Firmino and Diogo Jota have consistently shown they can impact the game and it would not be a surprise if either started ahead of Diaz in attack.

Real Madrid team news, injuries, lineup options

Carlo Ancelotti has had the luxury of resting his key players in recent weeks as Real won the La Liga title at a canter. Veteran left back Marcelo is Real’s only injury concern and that leaves Ancelotti with plenty of options in midfield and attack as youngsters Rodrygo and Eduardo Camavinga have pushed hard to try and grab a starting spot in the final.

Liverpool vs Real Madrid head-to-head record

Liverpool wins: 3
Real Madrid wins: 4
Draw: 1

Liverpool record in European Cup finals

Title won: 6
Runners up: 3
Seasons they’ve won the European Cup: 1977, 1978, 1981, 1984, 2005, 2019

Real Madrid record in European Cup finals

Title won: 13
Runners up: 3
Seasons they’ve won the European Cup: 1956, 1957, 1958, 1959, 1960, 1966, 1998, 2000, 2002, 2014, 2016, 2017, 2018

Liverpool vs Real Madrid odds 

(-105) Liverpool vs Real Madrid (+260). Draw: +270

Champions League final: Liverpool vs. Real Madrid will be box office

May 25, 2022   Gabriele MarcottiSenior Writer, ESPN FC

PARIS — If the Champions League final is the European game’s answer to the Super Bowl — and there are some powerbrokers who ould love to make it even more so — then most will be more than happy with Saturday’s contenders. Liverpool versus Real Madrid ticks many of the hype boxes so dear to sponsors and broadcasters, but also likely reflects the current pecking in order in Europe.There’s no fairytale here. There’s merit and savvy, quality and confidence, experience and grit. Most observers would rank Liverpool, runners-up in the Premier League and winners of the League Cup and FA Cup, and Real Madrid, winners of LaLiga, as two of the top three club sides in Europe this season. (In case you’re wondering, the third member of this season’s dominant trinity is Premier League champions Manchester City, who were beaten by Real Madrid in a dramatic semifinal comeback).Those three were the elite among Europe’s already elite super clubs as the others fell to the wayside. Paris Saint-Germain, despite the NeymarKylian MbappeLionel Messi frontline, and Chelsea, the reigning European champions, were felled by, yes, Madrid, whose run to the final has seen them knockout multiple potential winners with late comebacks. Bayern Munich and Juventus fell to giant-slaying upstarts Villarreal (themselves beaten by Liverpool, after giving them a scare). Fellow blue-bloods Barcelona and Manchester United also made early exits, burdened respectively by the fallout of a near financial meltdown and the ongoing chaos and psychodrama that is Old Trafford.

So you have two more-than-legitimate finalists. We’ll let marketing folk with their consumer surveys work out where they rank, but it’s safe to say that in terms of global fan base and brand strength, both Real Madrid and Liverpool are in the top five. Part of the reason why the City of Light’s tricolor may as well ditch the blue for the next few days and leave just Madrid’s white and Liverpool’s red, because that’s all you’ll see on the streets.Nobody can question their history, both past and present. Nobody has been European champions more than Real Madrid, who have won it 13 times, dating back to the days when it was called the European Cup (same trophy, by the way, just rebranded as Champions League) in the mid-1950s. But Liverpool have won it six times and victory on Saturday will see them match AC Milan‘s seven victories in second place. And we’re talking recent success, too. This is Liverpool’s third trip to the final in the past five years; Real Madrid have won it four times in the past eight campaigns.But you also have a delicious tasting menu of subplots and backstories.For a start, in some ways it’s a grudge match following the 2017-18 Champions League final in Kyiv. That night, Real Madrid beat Liverpool 3-1, but, for many Reds, the way the game unfolded still smarts. Goalkeeper Loris Karius made two colossal blunders and star forward Mohamed Salah had to be substituted after half an hour following a clash with Sergio Ramos. Salah will be there on Saturday night, along with 18 others from both teams who were involved in Kyiv. Ramos, the sort of player loathed by opponents and adored by supporters, might be temped to be there too, and not just for trolling purposes: after all, he spent 16 years at Real Madrid and now plays for PSG, just a short trip around the Peripherique from the Stade de France.

Then there’s the fact that Real Madrid arrive with the ego somewhat bruised. Not the players mind you — if there’s one thing this season’s comeback run to the final has taught us is that few can match them for resilience, unflappability and sheer self-belief — but Madridismo, that great collective (part-philosophy, part-flesh and blood) of supporters and club members itself.After months in which it appeared dead certain that they were signing star striker Mbappe, one of the two heirs apparent to the Messi-Cristiano Ronaldo duopoly, as a free agent, the French superstar said “non” and instead opted to stay at PSG.It was a shock to many and even prompted Mbappe to personally reach out to Real Madrid president Florentino Perez and give long interviews to explain his decision. It’s not just the fact that it throws Madrid’s summer transfer plans into disarray, it’s the fact that this is a club unaccustomed to not getting its way. Mbappe, who was born and raised just a few miles away, will hang over Madrid fans on Saturday; in spirit, if not in body. playhere’s more to ratchet up the hype meter and the star power. Real Madrid have the presumptive Ballon d’Or winner (Karim Benzema) and a pixieish turn-back-the-clock floppy-haired genius who, even at 36, sees and hits passes others can only draw on whiteboards (Luka Modric).

Liverpool have Salah, the Premier League’s top scorer, and Sadio Mane: bitter rivals on another continent — Mane’s Senegal outlasted Salah’s Egypt in the final of the Africa Cup of Nations — brothers in goals on the pitch. The goalkeepers, Madrid’s Thibaut Courtois and Liverpool’s Alisson, are arguably the best in the world, capable of the sort of stand-on-your-head performance that can single-handedly win you a final. Both coaches are wildly popular and quick with a smile, albeit all business in the 90 minutes in their own way: Jurgen Klopp maniacally waving his arms and roving the sideline, Carlo Ancelotti intensely chewing gum and huddling with his assistant, Davide, who also happens to be his son. Klopp is looking for his second Champions League title; Ancelotti his fourth, more than any other manger in the history of the game.

They arrive at the final having taken different paths. Real Madrid wrapped up the Liga title some three weeks ago and spent their final games recuperating and resting their battle-weary stars; Liverpool, who reached the final in every competition they entered, played an FA Cup final and contested a Premier League title right up until the dying minutes of the last day of the season, less than a week ago. (That’s another age-old question to be resolved: better to be well-rested, or better to keep the competitive juices flowing until the very end?)The scene is set and it could not shape up any better: for the supporters, for the neutrals, for the lucky 80,000 in the ground and the hundreds of millions watching around the globe, for the organizers and for the sponsors, for the storytellers and for the dreamers.All that’s left is for the two teams to take the pitch and deliver. Do not let us down.

Zack Steffen to miss U.S. World Cup prep matches; Sean Johnson added

12:42 PM ETAssociated Press

Manchester City‘s Zack Steffen will miss the United States‘ four World Cup prep matches next month for what the team said was family reasons, and he was replaced on the roster Friday by D.C.’s Sean Johnson.

The 27-year-old Steffen was considered the top American goalkeeper going into qualifying last September but was sidelined at times by a back injury and started six of 14 qualifiers. New England‘s Matt Turner, who joins Arsenal in July, started eight.

Steffen has 29 international appearances.He played in just nine matches this season for Manchester City, where he is Ederson’s backup. He appeared in just one Premier League game along with four in the FA Cup, two in League Cup, and one each in Champions League and the Community Shield.Johnson, 32, joins Turner and Nottingham Forest‘s Ethan Horvath on the roster. Johnson debuted for the U.S. in 2011 and has nine international appearances.Forest faces Huddersfield on Sunday in the Championship promotion playoff final for a place in next season’s Premier League.The U.S. plays exhibitions against Morocco on Wednesday in Cincinnati and against Uruguay on June 5 at Kansas City, Kansas, then has CONCACAF Nations League matches against Grenada on June 10 in Austin, Texas, and at El Salvador four days later.The Americans have just two more World Cup prep matches after, a pair of friendlies in Europe in September. They open the World Cup in Qatar on Nov. 21 against WalesScotland or Ukraine. They play England four days later and close group play against Iran on Nov. 29.

USMNT analysis

Analysis: A deep dive into Berhalter’s 27-man USMNT roster for June

The roster is out, Gregg Berhalter has named a 27-player roster for the upcoming friendlies against Morocco on June 1, Uruguay on June 5, followed by the start of the Nations League against Grenada on June 10 and El Salvador on June 14. ASN’s Brian Sciaretta breaks down the roster with his thoughts and analysis. 

BY BRIAN SCIARETTA    MAY 20, 202211:30 AM

UNITED STATES NATIONAL team head coach Gregg Berhalter today announced his 27-player roster for the upcoming friendlies against Morocco and Uruguay along with the start of the CONCACACF Nations League. The roster is most important, obviously, because it is one of the final opportunities Berhalter will have with his players prior to the start of the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.Many of the top stories on the roster have already been leaked over the past few weeks.Haji Wright and Cameron Carter-Vickers were going to get a chance.Sergino Dest, Gio Reyna, Jordan Pefok, Chris Richards, and Josh Sargent have all been carrying injuries.As announced by the German U-21 head coach, Malik Tilman will switch to play for the United States. Regardless of most of the surprises being known ahead of time, here are my thoughts on it all.


GOALKEEPERS (3): Ethan Horvath (Nottingham Forest/ENG; 7/0), Zack Steffen (Manchester City/ENG; 29/0), Matt Turner (New England Revolution; 16/0)

DEFENDERS (9): George Bello (Arminia Bielefeld/GER; 6/0), Reggie Cannon (Boavista/POR; 24/1), Cameron Carter-Vickers (Celtic/SCO; 8/0), Aaron Long (New York Red Bulls; 23/3), Erik Palmer-Brown (Troyes/FRA; 3/0), Antonee Robinson (Fulham/ENG; 25/2), Joe Scally (Borussia Mönchengladbach/GER; 0/0), DeAndre Yedlin (Inter Miami; 73/0), Walker Zimmerman (Nashville SC; 28/3)

MIDFIELDERS (8): Kellyn Acosta (LAFC; 51/2), Tyler Adams (RB Leipzig/GER; 27/1), Luca de la Torre (Heracles/NED; 7/0), Weston McKennie (Juventus/ITA; 31/9), Djordje Mihailovic (CF Montreal/CAN; 6/1), Yunus Musah (Valencia/ESP; 16/0), Cristian Roldan (Seattle Sounders; 31/0), Malik Tillman (Bayern Munich/GER; 0/0)

FORWARDS (7): Brenden Aaronson (Red Bull Salzburg/AUT; 18/5), Paul Arriola (FC Dallas; 44/9), Jesús Ferreira (FC Dallas; 9/3), Jordan Morris (Seattle Sounders; 46/10), Christian Pulisic (Chelsea/ENG; 48/21), Tim Weah (Lille/FRA; 22/2), Haji Wright (Antalyaspor/TUR; 0/0)


 Weston McKennie was named to the roster and at a time when many key American players are injured, McKennie looks ready to go. He’s an important part of the team and it was obvious in the loss to Costa Rica in March that the team needs grit in the midfield in the form of a two-way midfielder who can do the dirty work, win balls, disrupt the opposition, and get the ball forward into the attack.McKennie has been out since suffering a broken metatarsal in his foot while playing for Juventus in March. For that, Berhalter tempered enthusiasm as to what he can accomplish in this camp.  “I wouldn’t be expecting him to play major minutes in these in the first couple of games,” Berhalter said of McKennie. “Hopefully, and this is hopefully, we can get to a point where he can start one of the Nations League games, but that’s not guaranteed. He’s been doing a great job and getting back and for us it’s just great to have him back in camp and hopefully get him some playing time throughout the camp.”


On Thursday, German U-21 national team head coach Antonio Di Salvo announced that Bayern Munich attacker Malik Tillman would no longer represent Germany and would instead represent the United States moving forward. Di Salvo admitted to being surprised by the decision.We regret Malik’s decision and it surprised us very much,” said Di Salvo. “We encouraged him as a younger player with the U-21s, placed a lot of trust in him, and gave him playing time. In addition, we were in intensive exchange regarding his prospects on a path to the senior national team.”After that, Tillman’s addition to the U.S. roster was expected although his change of association has not been completed. He will not be eligible to play until it is completed.The United States needs more attackers across the board and more goal scoring threats. Right now, there are still a lot of players who haven’t been scoring enough goals for their club teams – whether it be on the wings or in midfield. Players such as Luca de la Torre, Yunus Musah, and Tim Weah, have all has seasons that haven’t produced goals. Those players all have something to offer, but the question is where are the goals going to come from? Tillman is certainly a useful player to add to the mix.”He’s an attacking midfielder in a 3-4-2-1,” Berhalter said. “He could be a pocket winger in a 4-3-3. He could be a center mid in a 4-3-3 depending on if we can get his defensive work up to where it needs to be. But he’s really talented between the lines, he really has a knack for scoring goals, good and calm around the penalty box, good technique scoring both feet – both footed. So, he’s an interesting player.”Expectations should be tempered. It’s not wise to start posting him into key roles for Qatar until it is seen how he can do with the team. He is young, at age 19, and has shown glimpses of great promise and potentially a high ceiling. But until first team minutes establish a benchmark, it is tough to tell. Even with German youth national teams or dominating at the reserve level, it can be hit and miss. Shawn Parker, Gedion Zelalem, Julian Green, Terrence Boyd never materialized into full national team quality for any length of time. On the other hand, John Brooks and Fabian Johnson did.We won’t really know until he settles into a first team level. Next season, it appears as if he will head out on loan and that will be a good thing.Berhalter also opened up about Tillman’s recruting. “It started maybe about a year ago,” Berhalter said. “He was he was a player that was actually in a U15 camp with Gio Reyna and George Bello. And so he’s been in our youth program before. We saw him progressing and getting feedback from from his performance. It was something that became interesting to us, although he was only 18 years old. And so when we started speaking to him and his representative, it was just about painting the vision of our program and where we potentially see him fitting in…We had some good conversations a couple of weeks ago in Munich and was happy to see him commit to us and looking forward to working with him in camp.”
Still, adding a promising prospect to the mix is always a good thing. It continues to be a numbers game and a program can have all its hopes in a limited number of players. When you see the U.S. U-20 team struggle to find a number of forwards for a second straight cycle (2023 and 2021) and the once promising forwards of 2019 in Sebastian Soto struggling, finding more players helps and is good forward thinking.



We know Antonee Robinson is the starting left back for the United States national team when healthy. Gregg Berhalter has been praiseworthy over the Fulham left back.The backup left back position, however, is wide open and that is mainly because no one has stepped up to take the chance. George Bello has been the most used left-back but his positioning has been up and down for both the U.S. and with his club team Arminia Bielefeld, which was relegated from the Bundesliga.The other left-back on this roster is Joe Scally, who is a right-footed option but will get the opportunity to make a case for him as the team’s back-up left back. Scally enjoyed a terrific start to the season in the Bundesliga but the second half the season has mostly seen him play off the bench.This will be an interesting competition and development to watch because neither option has been convincing and if they don’t convince here, perhaps Berhalter decides to change again late in the game and go with Sam Vines – who was ahead of Bello at the Gold Cup last year, or a player like DeJuan Jones who has the athleticism in droves that would not require the team to change the way it plays.



Berhalter named four central defenders to the mix. It was noted that Richards was not named because of injury.Walker Zimmerman, Cameron Carter-Vickers, Erik Palmer-Brown, and Aaron Long will make up the foursome this camp. What is striking about this is that none of these four players were on the team at the start of World Cup qualifying in September.Zimmerman only played his way onto the team in October. Palmer-Brown was riding the bench at the time in France. Carter-Vickers wasn’t completely rated at the time. Aaron Long was injured.It’s actually stunning to think about how much central defense can change. Miles Robinson is, of course, out unil 2023 Tim Ream has probably aged out, James Sands’ position isn’t set, John Brooks has a situation where he just off the team, Chris Richards is hurt, and Mark McKenzie also hasn’t had a great season.Now Berhalter will be looking to hope what is a late-emerging core can develop chemistry. Yes, Zimmerman has been with Berhalter for a while, Long also has familiarity before his injury, and Chris Richards will be back after he heals ( although he has missed a lot of time dating to last season).It will be interesting to see how the pairings go. He has two physical defenders in Zimmerman and Carter-Vickers (who isn’t tall but is strong), and two more mobile defenders in Long and Palmer-Brown. In Palmer-Brown’s one appearance in qualifying, he was a more of a wing-back.One other factor to consider is that Berhalter said he wants to look at a three central defender formation, Reggie Cannon has been playing that role. Regardless of who plays there, the idea of the formation is to get the fullbacks forward. If that doesn’t happen, the benefits of the formation are neutralized. 


 There are a number of different players who are on this roster who come in either red hot form or who are struggling. It will be interesting to see how they perform and it could be a sign that they are either peaking heading into the World Cup or could be in spot playing their way off the team. Here’s just a list.

Djordje Mihailovic: The former Chicago midfielder played with the U.S team early in Berhalter’s cycle but faded out. He took his game to another level in Montreal. This season he has seven goals and four assists between MLS and CCL games. Over the last 50 games between both competitions, he has 11 goals and 18 assists. Bottom line is that he played his way onto the roster.

Haji Wright: The Antalyaspor forward, 24, has been in the form of his life. Entering into Friday’s game, he has 13 goals on the season and nine goals in his last nine games (goals in each of his last seven games. Like Mihailovic, he played his way onto the team.

Jesus Ferreira: Ferreira has essentially played his way onto the team. He’s not a traditional No. 9 but he is skillful and can pass to help elevate his teammates. He’s is more of a “false nine” but his goalscoring has been impressive as he leads MLS in goals with nine.

Cristian Roldan: Roldan has taken on more of a late-game sub role for the national team and he rarely starts. Even last summer in the Gold Cup when it wasn’t the full selection of players, he rarely started. He can bring life into the game. But for Seattle, he’s been in terrific form and was one of the best players in the entire CONCACAF Champions League. In that winning effort, he won a huge majority of his duels, drew key penalties, and assisted. It truly is a unique form for him.

Luca De la Torre: Until recently, de la Torre had been having a nice season. But the end of the season has been a nosedive. Everyone on Heracles has been playing poorly and de la Torre hasn’t helped. The team finished the season with three straight losses against bottom-third Eredivisie teams. Having fallen into the relegation playoff position, Heracles was thoroughly outplayed in the first leg 3-0 by Excelsior of the second tier. De la Torre was defensively partially responsible for the first goal and his turnover directly resulted in the third goal. Barring a miracle in the second leg, he will be entering into camp in a very tough spot.”I’ve been in the exact situation he’s in right now,” Berhalter said. “Your team is going into the relegation area. You have to play playoffs. You’re ending the season on a down note, you’re exhausted because you’ve been playing all these games and the team collectively is in a funk.””My team ended up getting relegated in Holland in the same conditions that he’s under,” Berhalter added. “The warning to him is don’t take any of these teams lightly and you’ve got to get recovered. You got to get your group up with that same energy because these teams are coming up from the second division and they’re motivated and if you’re not up for it, you’re going to get beat. So that’s a concern.”

George Bello: Similar to de la Torre, it has been a tough five months for George Bello since moving to Arminia Bielefeld in the Bundesliga. In the second-to-last game of the season, Bello lost his man and converted a own-goal to essentially seal his club’s relegation. Bello hasn’t made a compelling case yet to be Antonee Robinson’s back-up at left back and if he doesn’t play well this camp, it might cost him a chance to go to Qatar.



The number of No. 9 options Berhalter has tried over the past year makes for a long list: Josh Sargent, Daryl Dike, Jordan Pefok, Ricardo Pepi, Matthew Hoppe, Jesus Ferreira, Gyasi Zardes, and now Haji Wright. What is particularly impressive about the length of this list is that all of this came not during experimental friendlies but rather World Cup qualifying and the Gold Cup. A list that long shows that not much has been working.
Now it will be up to Jesus Ferreira and Haji Wright this camp. That is fair and the correct choice to call both of them. They are the two hottest American forwards who are healthy. It is an enormous camp for both of them. If they both can play well, it could give the U.S. team stability heading into the World Cup. On Monday, Berhalter spoke at length about Wright’s rapid rise in recent months.”He’ll get the opportunity to play in this camp,” Berhalter said. “We only have two true strikers on the roster, so he will get an opportunity. In terms of his path. It’s been really interesting to follow. He’s been bouncing around at clubs and hasn’t really stuck at any club and hasn’t really outperformed anywhere yet. But this year, I think it’s an exception. And speaking to their coaching staff, they’ve been really pleased with his progress. They’ve been really pleased with how he started slow but then picked up momentum, really changed his mindset, changed his mentality and was able to start dominating in games. And I’ve watched a lot of his games and he’s doing an excellent job. So I think now is the perfect time. We always talk about form and trying to capitalize on guys form. I think now is the perfect time to get him back into the group.  


As with any roster, there are notable absences. So, let’s discuss them.

The injuries need no further explanation: Gio Reyna, Sergino Dest, Josh Sargent, Jordan Pefok, and Chris Richards were all listed as injured. U.S. Soccer also announced that Dayl Dike was given the chance to continue his rehab progress after missing the second half of the season for West Brom Albion.
“There are a number of players that started their first season in Europe and had very little rest coming off and MLS season and we’re really thrown into it, notably Ricardo Pepi, Gianluca Busio, James Sands,” Berhalter said. “It doesn’t mean that any of these players that I mentioned don’t have a chance to participate in the World Cup. Ricardo Pepi: his absence was known in advance. It has been a struggle for him since moving to Germany with Augsburg and U.S. Soccer felt it was in his interest to regroup. That is a smart decision and it also allows the more in-form forwards to make a case.

John Brooks: will certainly get a lot of talk when supporters digest the roster. But Berhalter is has been consistent with not calling Brooks up. Is it a personality difference, is it a lack of chemistry, is it due to his performance with the team prior to the start of his exclusion last year? Possibly a combination of everything. Berhalter said the fact that Brooks is switching clubs could help him.”Trust me, he’s not out permanently,” Berhalter said of Brooks. “That’s not our idea. The idea is we want players that can fit our game model, that can that can play in our game or can make us better.””We’re going to be able to see him now in his new environment, hopefully doing things that are similar to what we need him to do,” he added of Brooks. “And that could help him, you know, make a case to be on the roster.”

Gianluca Busio: the former Sporting Kansas City midfielder was regularly in the plans, when healthy, dating back to last fall after he moved to Venezia in Serie A. Initially his time in Serie A was promising but the last few months have been a tough time. He’s struggled with the physical side of the game in Italy and didn’t play much down the stretch as Venezia were relegated to Serie B. Berhalter said his absence was due to giving him a break after his first full European season and not having an off-season since early 2021.

Mark McKenzie: has been in and out of Genk’s starting rotation all season and Genk has had a subpar season overall. It was building this way although he could easily be an injury alternate – which isn’t out of the range of possibilities.

DeJuan Jones: even without any caps, this was a bit of a surprise to me as he is a right-footed left back but also brings a lot of athleticism to the position and more closely matches the style of Robinson.

Duane Holmes: Seemed a possibility as he has played quite a bit for a Huddersfield team that is off to Wembley for the promotional final. He seemed worthy to be in consideration and in the mix.  

Sebastian Lletget: has fallen out of favor since last October when his minutes dried up and eventually stopped getting called up. At one point he deserved to be in the mix and was playing well. But Berhalter seems to have moved on.

Alan Sonora: the Independiente midfielder has been a consistent starter in Argentina and was in contact with Berhalter as recently as January (as he told ASN). He’s done well in Argentina and there are questions about his ability to handle the physical side of the game despite his crafty playmaking ability.

James Sands: The Rangers midfielder/central defender potentially gives Berhalter cover in several positions. His minutes for Rangers has been inconsistent since January but he did play in the Premiership season finale as well as the Europa Cup final. 

Richard Ledezma: Ledezma came back at the end of the season to score a goal for PSV in the season finale. But he had just 33 minutes of first team action this year, most of which was fighting his way back from ACL surgery. 
“He feels and I agree with him that based on the entire season being extremely taxing for him mentally and physically taxing, getting back from injury, getting injured again,” Berhalter said of Ledezma. “He feels like he needs this time to recover and prepare for the next preseason.”



Just before the roster was announced, Chicago Fire goalkeeper Gabriel Slonina announced that he wanted to represent the United States moving forward as opposed to Poland.lonina, 17, was announced to be on Poland’s roster for its upcoming Nation’s League games.Like many prospects, it’s tough to gauge just how good he will be. He has done well up until recently but the last two games have seen him really struggle. He’s admits that and owns it – which is a good approach for a player his age.The U.S. program needs young goalkeepers who are playing minutes, so adding him to the pool is good.Berhalter opened up about his discussions with Slonina.”I’ve been really impressed with Gaga and just his mindset,” Berhalter said. “If you could imagine a 17-year-old being that determined. I think the danger was and this is just an honest conversation I had with him, I said: listen, I can’t bring you into this camp because of your form – I just can’t do it. We have guys at a really high levels and experienced guys that played for us before, and your form hasn’t been good enough. And I can understand if you’re going to go take a look at Poland because you’re disappointed with this.”His response was great,” Berhalter continued. “He understands where he’s at. He’s going to work to get out of where he’s at. But he said he’s still committed to us. You make relationships with players. You welcome players as a group. Guys make them feel welcome. And you hope that’s enough that in the end of the day, they decide. But in Gaga’s case, also, his heart was telling him where to go. That’s a really an important part of the equation.”

Marsch survives, McKennie returns, Weah’s big day, two Yanks debut, LDLT relegated & much more

For 95% of Americans abroad, the season is over. The ending over the weekend brought about some mixed emotions. Jesse Marsch was the brightest start his survival silenced critics. There was also Tyler Adams winning the German Cup, Tim Weah scoring a brace, and two young Americans making debuts in Europe’s Big Five. ASN’s Brian Sciaretta breaks it all down in his final piece of the season with this thoughts and analysis over the past few days. 


IT WAS THE FINAL weekend for most of the Americans abroad season and while this season wasn’t as good as previous season, it ended on a high note – for the most part. Jesse Marsch, Tim Weah, Weston Mckennie’s return, as well as some rewarding debuts were made by some young American players.The season was flawed by injuries, relegations, and runs of poor form. Many of the players took smaller roles within their teams. So, while metrics such as the overall number of American players in the high levels of Europe remained high, the quality of output wasn’t as strong.But the end of the season was nice, and hopefully this will provide a boost as preseason for most of the top five European leagues is only about a month away.Here were the weekend’s highlights.


When Jesse Marsch replaced Marco Bielsa on February 28, it was viewed skeptically by a lot of people. Ted Lasso jokes became popular, and people did not know what to expect. But Leeds United had a lot of problems leading up to Marsch’s hire. The team conceded 21 goals over the six games prior to Marsch’s first game and it had just one point from that run.Marsch had to shore up the defense and get points. That wasn’t easy given that just before the end of the season, Leeds had its toughest stretch of the season in a three-game run against Manchester City, Arsenal and Chelsea.But Marsch got it done. Yes, it was close but in a relegation battle the verdict is on a pass/fail basis. What proved to be the difference for Leeds was a five-game unbeaten run from March 14-April 24 where Leeds posted three wins and two draws. That allowed them to have a chance on the last day of the season.What had to happen is that Leeds United needed a better result than Burnley. The two teams entered the final day even on points, but Burnley had a far superior goal differential. While it was close, in the end Leeds United got it after a 2-1 win over Barnsley combined with Burnley losing at home to Newcastle United.The Leeds United winner came from Jack Harrison, the former New York City winger whom Marsch coached against when he was at the New York Red Bulls.This was great news all around for American soccer. The only way to stop the jokes and the negative stereotypes is to win. That’s it. Winning silences critics and it opens doors for others also looking to get into the English game.Now Marsch will have the ability to start building a Leeds United team with two things Bob Bradley never had in England – a transfer window and a preseason.One more final note, it was a terrific month for the two American coaches in the top five leagues of Europe. Pellegrino Matarazzo led Stuttgart to survival on a dramatic final day of the Bundesliga. There are some similarities of their situations. Both Leeds United and Stuttgart are huge clubs that had fallen on tough times.They’re both trailblazers but I think the one difference is Marsch carries the American label more. Matarazzo has been in Germany so long and his Italian name sometimes has him referred to as an Italian coach. That is partly true as he is an Italian citizen, but he was born and raised in New Jersey. He lived in the United States until he was 22 years old.As for Marsch, he deals with the stereotypes head on and silenced them, for now, at least.


 Adding to the list of Americans who won silverware, Tyler Adams and RB Leipzig won the German Cup on Saturday following a shootout win over Freiburg after a 1-1 draw.Adams came into the game in the 99th minute with the score 1-1 and Leipzig having played down a man since the 54th minute (and then reduced again in the 118th minute). For Adams, his role was primarily defensive. One moment he received the ball and had the chance to make a dangerous play, but the referee stopped the game for a Freiburg foul. Adams protested as he wanted the advantage call.

Leipzig thought it had a penalty call late in the game, but it was not awarded. In the shootout, Leipzig converted all four of its kicks while Freiburg missed two.Adams might be on the move this summer as his playing time diminished the past few months. If this was his last game for Leipzig, he will end lifting a trophy.


 Up until 10 days ago, Tim Weah’s season at Lille was rather lackluster. He had no goals and four assists in Ligue 1 and most had concluded that the production just wasn’t there this season.Then last weekend, Weah had a goal and an assist in a 3-1 win over Nice. The season finale on Saturday meant little for Lille but it meant a world for its opponent, Rennes, which was pushing for a Champions League spot.Weah ended up putting on a MOTM performance in a 2-2 draw where he scored both goals.His first goal was fortunate. In the 11th minute, Rennes goalkeeper Alfred Gomis spilled an easy shot and Weah was there to put in the rebound. With the score 1-1 in the 88th minute, Weah headed home a Mehmet Celik cross for a 2-1 lead. Rennes equalized at the end of the game and ended up finishing fourth and a spot in the Europa League, short of their Champions League goal.As for Weah, ending the season on a high note was huge. Lille must get better offensively next season and it will be harder given that Jonathan David is probably going to get sold for a fortune. Lille will have money to spend but it remains to be seen if they will spend it wisely.Weah will now rejoin the United States national team will a lot of momentum. Given that the team needs more goal-scoring options with the No. 9 position so unsettled and Christian Pulisic not finishing well, he is in a position to be a go-to guy.

 DJordje Mihailovic’s Montreal renaissance reignites USMNT ambitions and interest from Europe

May 24, 2022Jeff CarlisleU.S. soccer correspondent

Djordje Mihailovic is trying not to get carried away.

The CF Montreal midfielder is enjoying the best form of his career. His tally of seven goals has almost doubled his previous single-season career high of four and, 13 games into the Major League Soccer campaign, Montreal is firmly inside the playoff places. The personal accolades are coming his way, too. The interest from European clubs is heating up, as is talk about Mihailovic being the league MVP. He’s also been called into the United States men’s national team training camp and will be hoping to make his first international appearance since December 2020.There is a part of Mihailovic eager to let the good times roll, the better to allow him to play with the joy that is present when he’s performing at his best. He’s pleased to have left some tough spells behind as well, including a torn anterior cruciate ligament in 2017, but right now there is also a wariness about the heights his career has recently reached.

“In my opinion, the good times can actually be more detrimental to someone’s mental aspect versus the negative,” Mihailovic told ESPN. “I think a lot of players, when you start to succeed, you get a little bit too ahead of yourself, a little bit too high and overwhelmed with things. You expect a lot more from yourself because you’re doing a lot of good things. So it’s a lot easier to fall down a wrong path when things get too high.”Mihailovic quipped that he blames teammate Alistair Johnston for the MVP chatter, claiming that “he started the ywhole snowball.” Now the midfielder is the butt of jokes inside the Montreal locker room.”I try to keep a steady state and I don’t tr to think too much about all this talk,” he said. “I have to do it for 34 games and not just the first [13], so that’s kind of where my mind is.”Starting on Sunday, Mihailovic’s mind will be on the U.S. and trying to make a late push to make the World Cup roster. It’s not unheard of for a player who didn’t play a part in qualifying to make a World Cup squad, whether it was Pablo Mastroeni in 2002 or Herculez Gomez in 2010 or Julian Green in 2014. Mihailovic is holding out hope he can follow in those footsteps, even if the mountain he has to climb is steep.It’s exciting, something that I’ve been working towards,” he said about the call-up. “On the field, it’s something that a lot of my mind has been thinking about, doing the most I can to be called back in, and I’d love to make the most of this opportunity.”Mihailovic has long caught the eye of U.S. manager Gregg Berhalter, who admired the player’s ability to play “between the lines,” be good technically and be a difference-maker in the attacking third. Berhalter calls Mihailovic a “Day One-er,” as one of the invitees to his first U.S. camp. The player in fact is the answer to a trivia question, having scored the first goal of the Berhalter era in a 3-0 win over Panama in January 2019. The expectation from Berhalter and the national team staff was that Mihailovic would kick on from there, but struggles at club level saw him called in only in spurts.”There were glimpses of it, but the consistency wasn’t there,” Berhalter said. Now that Mihailovic is playing an advanced attacking position in Montreal that suits him, Berhalter has liked what he has seen this season, although questions remain.The coach said of Mihailovic, “If he’s a winger, can he press with the intensity that we need, with the speed and with the quickness that we need to press to cause turnovers? And the second thing is, as a midfielder defensively, can he have the work rate to be winning the ball back and have that defensive work rate, to get it done?”The coming weeks will see the extent to which Mihailovic can close that gap. He certainly has some players to leap over if he’s even to get a sniff of the World Cup, but he knows his recent play has him back in the reckoning. His dream can be visualized again, and that is due to some pointers from Montreal manager Wilfried Nancy.Mihailovic was already coming off an impressive 2021 season, a campaign in which his 16 assists ranked second in the league behind New England‘s Carles Gil‘s 18. But Nancy wanted his protégé to be more goal-dangerous, and he zeroed in on what was going on in the midfielder’s head, namely more “emotional control.””In the past, [Mihailovic] was rushing all the time in terms of internal decision-making in the final third,” Nancy told ESPN. “This year, when he takes his shots, it’s better, because in the past, he wanted to score, but he wanted to score from 50 yards, you know what I mean?”Now he’s able to recognize the moment when it’s a good moment to place the ball, or to kick it hard or to make the pass. For me this is a big, big, big improvement.”The numbers bear this out beyond just the number of goals Mihailovic has scored. According to ESPN Stats & Information data, Mihailovic has hit the target on 63.6% of his shots, tops in the league among players with at least 15 shots on goal for the season. That is more than double the 25.4% he recorded last season.Mihailovic noted that the timing of his runs has improved, but he’s also playing with a freedom given to him by Nancy that allows him to crash the box when the time is right. The increase in goals is also down to an accumulation of experience that comes from being in his sixth professional season. The more he finds himself in certain situations in front of goal, the cooler he is.”When you get in these moments, you have a lot more time than you think,” he said. “It’s no different than when I receive a ball in the middle of the field, and I’m able to pick a pass. I’m always in that situation for the last six years. I’m always receiving the ball in the middle and just repeating that action. It’s the same thing when I’m in and around the goal, having that calm head and executing.”It makes the $1 million in allocation funds that Montreal sent to the Chicago Fire look like money well spent, even if the move at the time seemed fraught with risk. Raised in the Chicago suburb of Lemont, Mihailovic was comfortable around friends, family and the club he had been with since his academy days. But after the 2020 season, there was also a sense that it was time to move on. Mihailovic wanted to be the player, but the Fire didn’t want to hand him the keys to the attack.”I’m just thinking, ‘I’m playing in the, with the club that I grew up watching,’ and you hope to be an important player for that team going forward,” Mihailovic said. “When it’s suddenly your time to go, it’s tough.”It was then that Montreal sporting director Olivier Renard pounced. Mihailovic had been on Renard’s radar for years dating back to the executive’s time with Standard Liege. With Montreal, he was looking for a player to replace Bojan Krkic as one of the team’s attacking midfielders.”I thought that Djordje can be an important player for us, and that’s why we give a lot of money to Chicago,” Renard said. “He’s a guy who also mentally is working every day, in the fitness before the training, after the training. He’s not a complicated guy. He is a special character.”The move also forced Mihailovic to grow up. He didn’t have any family with him. All he had was soccer. That focus led to more consistency, and increased talk of a move to Europe.

Renard chuckles when asked about inquiries from abroad, noting that when a player gets 16 assists, as Mihailovic did last season, such calls are inevitable.”For me the most important thing is the mind of the player and to know Djordje is very happy,” Renard said. “He never called me to tell me [he wanted to leave]. We never spoke about that, but if he tells me wants to leave for [Europe], we will find a solution every time.”Mihailovic said his World Cup quest wouldn’t influence his decision on whether to head to Europe, where a source with knowledge of the situation said that clubs in Germany and Belgium are interested. He noted that a World Cup, while a dream of his, happens every four years. A club is more of a long-term decision.”I do have to keep in mind that the World Cup is at the end of the year, and I have to make sure I’m at a club where I’m playing and playing while I’m happy,” he said. “I can’t just leave Montreal, for thinking that it’s gonna help me get to the World Cup. I don’t think like that. So if I leave Montreal, I have to make sure it’s the best thing for my career.”One gets the sense that Mihailovic feels he’s ready. He spent part of last offseason training with Serie A side — and Montreal’s sister club — Bologna, and his growth is evident when he compares that time with another training stint, with Nurnberg in 2019. On that occasion, he admitted to being overwhelmed by the speed of play and the physicality.With Bologna he said he felt “comfortable,” although there was plenty to learn, especially in terms of how players dealt with the pressure from supporters and the club.”Just to see how players on these teams handle themselves, it was always good to see,” he said.Granted, staying in Montreal might be the best for Mihailovic in the short term. He’s getting on the field and contributing consistently. And he is valued by Montreal.”They didn’t really overshadow me. They didn’t lock me up in any way,” he said about Montreal. “They allowed me to express myself with my emotions, and I’m a player that plays with a lot of emotions. I think that’s one of my biggest strengths in the sport. So they allow me to play free and to do what I know how to do.”

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CARMEL FC 2022 Tryouts and Evaluation Information

All evaluations and tryouts will be held at Shelborne Fields. 3451 W 126th St, Carmel, IN 46032.

June 7, 2022 – Players 10u, 9u and 8u (Birth Years 2013 to 2016)

Check-in starts 1/2 hour before evaluations begin.

Evaluations for all age groups: 6pm to 7:30pm


June 13, 2022- Players 11u and older (Birth Years 2004 to 2012)

Check-in starts 1/2 hour before tryouts.

Tryouts for 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012: 5:45pm to 7:15pm

Tryouts for 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2008: 7:30pm to 9pm.
Use this link to register for tryouts. Please email  info@cdccarmelfc.com. with any questions.


Carmel Dads’ Club Soccer Camp Powered by Indy Eleven – June 13-16

9am-12pm (Rain day reschedule June 17)  Ages 6-13   Shelborne Soccer Fields – 3451 W. 126th St. Carmel, IN 46033 –  REGISTRATION IS LIVE!


CHS Boys -2022 Hounds Soccer Camp –July 11-14, 2022  9 am to 11 am $95 per Boys/Girls 8-14 

Carmel High School Girls – 2022 Middle School Camp – 6/7/8th Graders  $90 (includes T-shirt) July 18-21  Murray Stadium  2:30 to 4:30 pm


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