WHITECAPS FC & MLS NEWS
End of Season Review from Eighty-Six Forever – Eighty-Six Forever
The Vancouver Whitecaps will no doubt remember 2015 as a successful one, considering their second place finish, their first ever home playoff date, and their first Amway Canadian Championship victory. The off-season has started off on the right foot too, with the ‘Caps locking up Matias Laba for at least the next two years. However, before we fully move on from the season that was 2015, the writers at Eighty-Six Forever have a few questions to go over. What did the staff here think of 2015? Find out below.
What should be on Whitecaps’ offseason wish list? – 24 Hours
With another Vancouver Whitecaps FC season now closed, I can switch my focus from watching matches to waiting for Star Wars: The Force Awakens to hit theatres Dec. 18. But first, I will ponder what should be on the Whitecaps off-season wish list.
Rivero reflects on his first season in MLS – Whitecaps FC
It’s been a roller coaster year for Octavio Rivero. The 23-year-old Uruguayan made the move to Vancouver in January to join Whitecaps FC – his first experience playing outside his native South America.
Sounders offer Morris largest Homegrown contract in MLS history – SBI
Sounders general manager Garth Lagerway announced Wednesday that the Sounders have offered the Stanford star the richest Homegrown Player contract in MLS history. As things stand, LA Galaxy star and fellow U.S. Men’s National Team forward Gyasi Zardes is currently the highest paid Homegrown player in the league at $223,000 in guaranteed compensation.
Portland Timbers defender Liam Ridgewell enjoying “buzz” surrounding 1st playoff experience: “Every game is like a cup game” – MLS
For Portland Timbers defender Liam Ridgewell – or anyone who has played an entire career overseas – playoffs are rather unique in the soccer landscape. Ridgewell spent his entire career in the English Premier League before joining the Timbers midway through last season, and the EPL decides its champion based on the final table after 38 league games.
Against New York Red Bulls, Columbus Crew SC expect midfielder Wil Trapp to play big role in breaking press – MLS
When Columbus Crew SC play host to the New York Red Bulls in Sunday’s first leg of the Audi 2015 MLS Cup Playoffs Eastern Conference Championship of the (2 pm PT; MLS LIVE), it will mark the fourth time the teams have met this season.
Top MLS prospects to watch in NCAA Men’s Tournament – Soccer America
As the NCAA Division I Men’s Tournament kicks off with the first round Thursday and second round Sunday, attention moves to the top MLS prospects in the college ranks. Stanford’s Jordan Morris, whom the Seattle Sounders have offered the most lucrative Homegrown contract in MLS history, is the big name, but other players are attracting interest, notably a trio of Ghanaians who came to the United States via the Right to Dream program.
Seattle Sounders Alliance changes rules for general manager retention vote – MLS
The Seattle Sounders’ unique structure of fan evaluation and control of front-office operations has undergone a tweak this offseason. The Sounders and their Alliance Council agreed on a new set of rules for voting on and retaining the team’s general manager, changes that were first announced at the club’s Alliance Annual Business Meeting for season-ticket holders at the Paramount Theater last week.
Story time with Sigi Schmid: The time he snuck into Azteca in the trunk of a car – Seattle Times
The Sounders’ season-end media availability on Wednesday wouldn’t have felt complete without one last Sigi Schmid anecdote for the year. In response to a question about Seattle’s match against Club America in Mexico City next March, he answered with the tale of the first time he ever visited Azteca Stadium — in the trunk of a car.
BC SOCCER NEWS
2015 EA SPORTS BC Soccer Premier League Cup Finals this weekend – Whitecaps FC
The EA SPORTS BC Soccer Premier League, the official high performance partner league of Vancouver Whitecaps FC, are set to kick off their cup finals this weekend. The 2015 BCSPL League Cup Finals are being hosted by Fusion FC on Saturday, November 21 and Sunday, November 22 at Trillium Park in Vancouver. In total, the cup finals will feature 10 boys and eight girls’ teams playing nine matches in five different age divisions.
Soccer stars win gold at World Indigenous Games – Powell River Peak
Two soccer stars have returned with gold medals after representing Tla’amin (Sliammon) First Nation and Canada at the first ever World Indigenous Games in Brazil. Brittany Harry, 17, and Brandy Francis, 22, joined 21 elite First Nations soccer players from across the country as part of the 53-member delegation representing Canada at the indigenous games in Palmas, Brazil, October 23 to November 10.
Homebred goalie wins top keeper award – Powell River Peak
A soccer player who got her start in Powell River was recently named Top Goalkeeper at the 2015 PACWEST Soccer Provincials.
McMath wins Mainland AA title to secure provincial berth – Richmond News
McMath Wildcats have booked their ticket to next week’s B.C. AA Boys Soccer Championships in Burnaby. The Wildcats captured last week’s Lower Mainland AA playoffs by slipping past league rival McNair in the championship game. The game was scoreless through regulation and overtime. McMath prevailed 4-1 on penalty kicks.
Chad Bush focussed on his education but his clean sheet numbers will have clubs watching with interest – AFTN
Bush came to UBC for his rookie CIS season from NASL side Ottawa Fury, having been named USL PDL goalkeeper of the year in 2013 and after signing his first pro deal with the Fury for their debut NASL season in 2014, although he didn’t see any first team minutes.
Second Villa game in a row cancelled – Powell River Peak
Powell River Villa soccer team might be a little rusty when it gets back to play after two cancelled matches in a row. Villa’s game against Cowichan United 2H in Cowichan Bay, scheduled for Saturday, November 14, was cancelled due to field conditions after heavy rain throughout last week on Vancouver Island.
NASL & USL NEWS
Talented Group of Players Returning to WFC2 for 2016 – Eighty-Six Forever
Days after news that five Vancouver Whitecaps residency graduates will be on the 2016 WFC2 roster, the club announced on Tuesday that eight players from the 2015 WFC2 USL roster will also return for next year.
Meola lead candidate for vacant Jacksonville Armada head coach job – Empire of Soccer
NASL newcomers Jacksonville Armada enjoyed a promising season off the field, but their on-field product was erratic at best. Now, the sophomore side is looking towards one of the most recognizable faces in U.S. soccer to shore up their operations.
The Lives and Deaths of the Austin Aztex – Howler Magazine
Having lost their latest home to flood damage, the Austin Aztex are hoping that Nancy Sinatra was wrong and soccer clubs don’t only live twice.
Successes and missteps define 2015 NASL season; League growth undeniable – WRAL
Last weekend, the Cosmos won their second neo-NASL Championship, a 3-2 victory over the Ottawa Fury. New York’s victory reinforces the growing league-wide reality that spending more on player talent is the most reliable way to perennially challenge for the championship of a league that has full free agency and no salary cap. New York, Minnesota and Tampa Bay continue to expend large sums on players. Meanwhile, the owners of Indy Eleven, Jacksonville, Carolina and an incoming expansion club in Miami have signaled intentions to ramp up their player budgets, even if they won’t—or can’t—keep up with the Cosmos.
WOMEN’S SOCCER NEWS
Fury Players Recognized at Year End Gala – Ottawa Fury
Following Tuesday afternoon end of season press conference, Fury FC players and staff gather at Otto’s Club at TD Place to celebrate a remarkable 2015 season that saw the second year club reach the NASL Championship Final.
Rochester Rhinos Re-Sign Head Coach Bob Lilley – Empire of Soccer
Bob Lilley signed a three-year extension with the Rochester Rhinos, the club revealed on Wednesday. Through 28 games, the Rhinos posted an impressive 17-1-10 record with 61 points, the most in the league. They also held home field advantage and, after a competitive game, defeated the LA Galaxy II to win the 2015 USL Championship — the team’s fourth trophy.
Canadian ‘keeper Labbé staying sharp through FC Edmonton Academy – FC Edmonton
Canadian women’s goalkeeper Stephanie Labbé has been staying game fit during a break in her playing schedule by participating with FC Edmonton Academy before heading back on the road with the national team.
Champion’s League: Frankfurt survive with Wolfsburg, Lyon, Paris – UEFA
Holders FFC Frankfurt needed penalties to get past LSK Kvinner on a night when Wolfsburg, Lyon, Paris Saint-Germain, Barcelona and Brescia also claimed quarter-final berths.
American DiBernardo immediately finds glory – Westfield W-League
The new Perth Glory signing scored with a sweet strike just eight minutes into her debut at Brisbane Roar last Sunday, only to outdo that effort with a remarkable long-range lobbed shot on the turn late in the game. It is a goal that is likely to feature heavily on any Westfield W-League highlights reel for a long time to come.
BOSTON BREAKERS SIGN DEFENDER BROOKE ELBY – NWSL
The Boston Breakers announced today the signing of defender Brooke Elby. Per team and league policy, terms of the deal were not disclosed.
A STATEMENT FROM WPSL COMMISSIONER JERRY ZANELLI ON THE END OF THE W-LEAGUE – WPSL
Women’s soccer has long been fighting to have a place in a male-dominated sports market, but even through tough times the Women’s Premier Soccer League and several other organizations have persevered and given women the chance to play competitive soccer. We have given women encouragement to pursue their goals and created role models for the community. One of these organizations who has helped grow women’s soccer is the W-League, but after 21 years the W-League has announced that they will cease to operate prior to the start of the 2016 season.
Julie Foudy: Dear FIFA: Want Real Reform? Choose Inclusion And Progress – ESPN W.
I know you have a lot on your plate. I know you are in the midst of a crisis. But I also know crisis can bring transformation, and god knows, FIFA needs a whole lot of transformation. So while you are transforming, I implore you to put this thought front and center to help the process: That other half of the population that FIFA has not given much thought about — yes, the girls and women — how about giving them a chance?
Why Gender Diversity Could Be FIFA’s Saving Grace – Huffington Post
As world soccer’s governing body tries to clean itself up, nearly 100 Olympic and professional athletes are demanding one reform in particular: more women.
Fara Williams, Toni Duggan return to England squad – The FA
Mark Sampson has named his 23-player squad for England Women’s first home game since winning bronze at this summer’s FIFA Women’s World Cup.
WORLD SOCCER NEWS
Italy’s next No. 1? Donnarumma, 16, faces Buffon in clash of generations – ESPN FC
One of the stories of the Italian season so far has been the rise of 16-year-old Milan goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma. Last month, at 16 years and eight months, he made his debut after Milan had failed to keep a clean sheet in its first eight matches of the Serie A season (only Paolo Maldini was younger during his Milan debut). He has had two shutouts in his first four games, and coach Sinisa Mihajlovic, a former defender who builds his teams on solidity at the back, has keep his faith with the teenager.
Spanish officials say unprecedented security measures will be in place for Madrid vs Barcelona – canada.com
Spanish officials are promising unprecedented security measures for Saturday’s soccer match between Real Madrid and Barcelona following the attacks in Paris.
T&T-USA: NBC Universo outdraws BeIN Sports – Soccer America
Tuesday’s Trinidad & Tobago-USA match on Spanish-language cable network NBC Universo drew more viewers (289,000) than on BeIN Sports (182,000).
Osorio deserves credit for Mexico’s strong start to World Cup qualifying – ESPN FC
Now that Mexico has claimed a 2-0 victory over Honduras in World Cup qualifying, winning in San Pedro Sula for the first time in 50 years, it’s time to give credit where it is due: to the players and coaching staff who together accomplished this feat.
How did Joe Cole, once England’s great hope, end up on loan in League One? – The Guardian
Most of us had heard about Joe Cole long before he made his debut for West Ham. He was the child prodigy who was meant to light up the Premier League and break records for England. How did he end up on loan at Coventry City?
Transparency International report shows just why football is a corruption breeding ground – Inside World Football
Transparency International has released a report it is calling its Football Governance League Table. While this is strictly not a league table as there is no ranking, the report highlights an uncomfortable lack of public transparency in national federation accounting with 81% of federations having no financial records available.
Scala says football corruption is ‘systemic’ and reform must be ‘transparent’ – Inside World Football
Domenico Scala, the FIFA-appointed troubleshooter who has been at the forefront of efforts to clean up the organisation, painted a grim picture today of just how deep corruption runs in football, implying those preaching the opposite message were simply in denial.
AFC Champions League: Huang: Guangzhou have reached a new level under Scolari– FIFA
Having played out a goalless draw at Al Ahli in the first leg of the 2015 AFC Champions League final, China’s Guangzhou Evergrande are hopeful of winning their second Asian title with a home victory in the return at home on Saturday. This match is, indeed, reminiscent of the 2013 final when the Chinese champions drew 2-2 away at FC Seoul, before going on to tasting their maiden continental success with a 1-1 stalemate at home – a result which sealed Guangzhou’s aggregate victory on away goals.
Gay players would be treated with respect, says Premier League’s Richard Scudamore – The Guardian
Gay footballers would be treated with respect if they were to go public about their sexuality, the Premier League’s chief executive, Richard Scudamore, has said. The Daily Mirror reported last month that two top-flight players are planning to come out with the support of their clubs, and Scudamore is confident the reaction would be positive.
President of Chile’s soccer association reportedly turns FBI informant – Goal
The president of Chile’s national soccer association, Sergio Jadue, will be in the United States until May 2016 to serve as an FBI informant in the U.S. Justice Department’s investigation into corruption at FIFA, according to multiple media reports.
Football Manager 2016: A Search for Perfection – Paste Soccer
A search for perfection. Understand what this means, because it gets to the heart of what Football Manager’s become. For the uninitiated, Football Manager is a soccer simulator. It’s the soccer simulator. Hell, it’s the greatest sports simulation ever made. It has hundreds of thousands of real life players and thousands of teams, right down to the local leagues. The tactical depth is staggering; you can micromanage your players and how they’re trained to a microscopic degree.