BC Soccer News, Weekend, August 21-23, 2015






Whitecaps FC regain top spot in Major League Soccer after 1-0 win over FC DallasWhitecaps FC
Don’t look now, but Vancouver Whitecaps FC (14W-9L-3D) are top of the table in Major League Soccer.   Cristian Techera’s fifth goal of the season propelled the ‘Caps to a 1-0 win over FC Dallas (11W-8L-5D) on Saturday night in front of a sold-out crowd at BC Place.

Vancouver Whitecaps excited to renew rivalry with FC Dallas in first of three games during stretch run MLS
The quirks of the MLS schedule mean that Vancouver meet Dallas three times over the course of their remaining nine regular-season matches. Those games are likely to play an important role in determining both teams’ playoff positioning come the end of the season, and with the Western Conference so tight right now, the Whitecaps know that every point counts massively from here on in.

So we meet again: Whitecaps FC host rival FC Dallas on Saturday night at BC PlaceWhitecaps FC
“We like to go at each other,” Whitecaps FC head coach Carl Robinson said of the rivalry with FC Dallas. “There’s lots of action, there are lots of goals, there are lots of close calls, good decisions, bad decisions, strange decisions. You just get on with it. We still play them three times so it’s important we come out on the right end of that.”

Whitecaps’ Smith serves sizable notice he’s set to go Vancouver Sun
When new right fullback Jordan Smith struck a cracker of a long-range goal in a Vancouver Whitecaps mini scrimmage this week, the “wow” murmurs weren’t restricted to just sideline observers. Several players approved as well.

Young MLS speedsters similar, but different as well The Province
They have speed in common. Flash and flair. But for Whitecaps winger Kekuta Manneh, that’s where the comparison ends with Dallas’s danger man, Fabian Castillo. “Not at all,” Manneh said Thursday when asked if he saw the similarities between the two attackers, who’ll meet Saturday in the latest big game at B.C. Place

The TWO ONE: ‘Your messages have helped me through this process’Whitecaps FC
Carl Valentine: “I didn’t think my latest update would take so long after my first, but after some unforeseen circumstances, I’m now ready to share some of the challenges I’ve been going through. Before I do that, though, I’d like to sincerely thank everybody for their support and kind words. I can honestly say that your messages have helped me through this process.”

End of Porterball? Portland Timbers head coach taking “tight” approach in recent hot streakMLS
Something has looked different about the Portland Timbers lately. And that couldn’t have been more apparent in their away match Saturday against Real Salt Lake. The Timbers “bunkered” and looked to counterattack perhaps more than they ever have under head coach Caleb Porter. The eventual 1-0 Timbers win – on a corner-kick goal from Nat Borchers deep in stoppage time – punctuated a stretch of three straight games, all clean sheets, that have seen Portland take a rather emphasized defensive stance.

Galaxy and NYC bring the MLS glamour, and Didier Drogba is ready to goThe Guardian
LA Galaxy host New York City in star-studded affair; Impact prepare to welcome veteran; San Jose’s Wondo-dependence wanes; and KC look tired.

Chris Wondolowski hopes historic away win boosts playoff pushSBI
Despite his rise in the record book, Wondolowski remains focused intently on helping his team make the playoffs. The win moved the Earthquakes up to seventh in the Western Conference, three points behind the sixth-place Seattle Sounders, who are in a playoff spot but with one game in hand. The win for San Jose was their second in a row after a 1-0 win over the Colorado Rapids, but before last weekend, the team hadn’t won since June 27.

Report: Toronto FC in talks with U.S. Soccer to keep Altidore, Bradley out of Peru friendlySBI
With the MLS season winding down and Toronto FC needing as many points as it can to reach the playoffs for the first time in franchise history, head coach Greg Vanney wants to see his U.S. internationals choose club over country, at least for one game.

Toronto FC needs its other stars to start bearing the load Goal
Will the real Michael Bradley and Jozy Altidore please stand up? Over the course of several weeks in June and July, observers of Toronto FC lamented the absence of the team’s American stars, as both players missed a significant amount of time for their club while representing their country. Altidore was actually out earlier, as a hamstring injury felled the big striker in mid May and kept him out of action until just before the CONCACAF Gold Cup.

Mapp could make history SaturdayMontreal Impact
He could become the youngest player in MLS history to reach 300 games Saturday.

Houston Dynamo forward Erick Torres “anxious” for first start, but ready to goMLS
It’s been slow going for Erick ‘Cubo’ Torres since moving to the Houston Dynamo. As he works to increase his fitness, game time has been limited to spot duty late in matches: 15 minutes here, 35 there. A month into his Dynamo tenure, the Designated Player has been unable to make any immediate impact on the pitch.

The 2015 MLS Supporters’ Shield will go to… Soccer Gods
Part of my job description is boosting your domestic soccer street cred. So let’s get informed about the good teams in MLS that don’t have the best name brands. One of them just may win the Supporters’ Shield.

Monson: Is RSL being run into the ground?Salt Lake Tribune
People inside the organization say Hansen is tearing his franchise to shreds because, as a real estate mogul and a relative novice to the sports-ownership world, he wants to do it his way. And his way is the only way.

Bruce Arena shoots down rumors of European interest in Gyasi Zardes LA Galaxy
“I think that if you believe anything you read today in papers or websites, you’re a dope. Well, most things, you’d have to be pretty stupid to believe,” said Arena. “My guess is that Gyasi is going to be playing with us.”

Shaun Maloney leaving Chicago Fire for Hull City ESPN FC
Fire midfielder Shaun Maloney is leaving Chicago just eight months after signing with the MLS franchise. The 32-year-old former Celtic man has agreed to join English club Hull City on a transfer.

St. Paul mayor, Minnesota United owner meet to discuss stadiumTwinCities.com
St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman on Thursday met with Minnesota United FC owner Bill McGuire about a possible Major League Soccer stadium in the city’s Midway district.

D.C. United stadium project hints at future changes at the clubBlack & Red United
The stadium development agreement and ground lease makes it very difficult for the current owners to sell D.C. United until after the stadium is “substantially complete.” And, to maximize their profit, they wouldn’t want to anyways; any possibility of risks from the construction process would drive down a potential buyer’s asking price.

Build it like Beckham: The mission to bring MLS to MiamiInvest Miami 2015
After initially insisting on a downtown site, Beckham’s group settled on a location in close proximity to Marlins Park, home stadium for Miami’s eponymously named baseball team. The proposed MLS stadium will seat approximately 25,000 and will be privately financed .

Montreal Impact forward Didier Drogba already making case as city’s biggest star athleteMLS
Wondering if the ‘Drogba effect’ is a thing? Look no further than last week’s Rogers Cup. New Montreal Impact signing Didier Drogba took in a Friday session of the tennis tournament at Stade Uniprix, and the camera crew noticed. Drogba, of course, appeared on the big screen. And Rick Moffat, the Impact’s play-by-play announcer on TSN Radio 690 and a longtime observer of the local sports scene, couldn’t have missed it from the press box. “The crowd went ballistic – or, as I like to say now, Drogballistic. The crowd’s going crazy,”.

A unique partnership between the Montreal Impact and Alco Prevention CanadaMontreal Impact
Starting with this weekend’s game on Saturday, August 22 against the Philadelphia Union, Stade Saputo will be equipped with seven alcohol level terminals, while single-use breathalyzers will be available in each of the suites. In addition, a team of 10 people will be present to offer a driving service (two drivers) for those that exceed the legal alcohol limit.

The Rise of Ultras in Major League SoccerVice Sports
In the MLS these divisions have never existed. Fan groups might be passionate, but they’ve generally been diverse and accepting too. This is probably due to the way the clubs handled their fans from the outset. In the early days of the league, the clubs kept a tight rein on fan groups, helping to avoid the reputation of hooliganism that’s plagued European football in the past. However, it also meant they were effectively neutered.

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Arizona United SC Shuts Out Vancouver Whitecaps FC 2, 2-0, In Critical Win Arizona United
Arizona United SC snapped a two-match losing skid at home with a 2-0 shutout win over Vancouver Whitecaps FC 2 at Scottsdale Stadium. The 3,223 fans in attendance were also treated to a special moment: forward Aaron Dennis’ first professional goal.

Whitecaps FC 2 visit Arizona United SC in crucial Western Conference fixtureWhitecaps FC
Whitecaps FC 2 (8W-11L-5D) are in the hunt for crucial points in the Western Conference playoff race when they visit Arizona United SC (8W-13L-1D) at Scottsdale Stadium on Saturday. Kickoff is at 7:30 p.m. PT live on whitecapsfc2.com. This fixture in the desert rounds out a month-long road trip for WFC2, as well as the overall away schedule for the club’s inaugural season.

Former Arizona United SC Forward Schillo Tshuma Returns To Club on Loan MLS AZ United
Today, Arizona United SC announced it had acquired forward Schillo Tshuma on loan from Major League Soccer. Tshuma had been loaned out to United last season, a 17-match stint.

TFC II Look For Back-to-Back WinsWaking The Red
TFC II looks to do something they haven’t done all season, earn back-to-back wins. The team that they will look to to earn a second straight win, the seventh placed Harrisburg City Islanders. The two have yet to face each other this season, which may prove to be a little difficult for both sides.

Konopka and Hagglund loaned to Toronto FC IIWaking The Red
Chris Konopka and Nick Hagglund are set to feature for TFC II on Wednesday night as the duo were sent on loan to the USL side. The short term loan should help both be ready for Saturday should Vanney select them.

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Jones Brothers Lead Clan over EaglesSFU
The Simon Fraser University Clan defeated Kwantlen Polytechnic University Eagles 2-1 in an exhibition men’s soccer match Thursday evening on Terry Fox Field. Adam and Kyle Jones each scored for the Clan, who began preseason training on Monday with twice daily practices. The Clan played to a 1-1 draw against the University of Fraser Valley on Tuesday.

Trinity Western first-year Nicole Bolder (Calgary) scored the Spartans lone goal as the women’s soccer team played to a 1-1 tie with Western Washington in exhibition action Thursday at Rogers Field.

WolfPack Blank Timberwolves in Canada West MSOC FriendlyTRU
The Thompson Rivers University WolfPack men’s soccer team opened up their own pre-season tournament with a victory. The WolfPack took down the visiting Univeristy of Northern British Columbia Timberwolves 2-0 Thursday (Aug 20) at Hillside Stadium. The victory ups the ‘Pack’s exhibition record to 3 and 1. This was UNBC’s first match under new interim head coach Steve Simonson.

Whitecaps player: ‘Their dreams are attainable’Nelson Star
Vancouver Whitecaps’ midfielder Ben McKendry spent some time with fledgling local soccer players Wednesday morning, and as he regaled them with stories about his career and inspired them with personal anecdotes, he recognized something. “Most of these players have the same look in their eyes that I had,” said the 22-year-old, who signed with the Whitecaps in January.

Elite soccer program continues its growthPenticton Western News
Growth continues in developing players within the Pinnacles Football Club Excelsior program. The ultimate goal for the elite program is to help players reach their dream of playing post-secondary soccer.  The most recent players to accomplish that are Marisa Mendonca, with Thompson Rivers University in Kamloops, and James Fraser, who is set to attend Simon Fraser University.


Former Canadian national coach to replace Husker assistant killed in car crashomaha.com
Former pro player and Canadian national team coach Ian Bridge has been added to the staff of the Nebraska soccer team. He replaces Peter Underwood, who was killed in a car crash on May 16.

Canadian Soccer Hall of Fame Induction Banquet tickets now on saleOSA
This special night, taking place at the Le Jardin Conference and Event Centre (Vaughan, Ont.) on Nov. 8, 2015, will honour this year’s inductees and offer a cocktail reception, dinner and a look back on some of Canadian soccer’s best moments.

How WVU’s Kadeisha Buchanan Commands Attention On The Pitch ESPN W
A teammate both at the University of West Virginia and with the Canadian national teams that competed in the Women’s World Cup and Pan-American Games this past summer, Ashley Lawrence is the beneficiary of Buchanan’s work as a defender during games. That means she is also on the receiving end of it often enough in training to sympathize.

Jalana Ellis: From Canada to Mississippi Jackson Free Press
The 5-feet-4-inch junior central midfielder from Brampton, Ontario, is set to pace the Jackson State University Tigers as they attempt to reclaim the Southwest Athletic Conference Title the team won in 2013. Since driving more than 1,100 miles south to the JSU campus from her hometown just northwest of Toronto, the 20-year-old has started every game and led the team in points during each of her two seasons.

League1 Ontario Women’s Mid-Season All StarsLeague 1 Ontario
Featuring a starting eleven, and twelve honourable mentions, the 23-player squad was handpicked by a panel comprised of all seven head coaches, as well as independent league representation.

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NWSL Roundup: Morgan returns for Thorns’ playoff drive Soccer America
With just three weeks left in the regular season, it’s crunch time for teams chasing the three available playoff berths behind league leader Seattle. The 2013 champion Portland Thorns FC, sitting in fifth place, face a key test at Sky Blue FC on Saturday and should have Alex Morgan available for the first time since the season opener.

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Signs Memoir by US Women’s National Soccer Team Captain, Carli LloydBusinessWire
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMH) announced today that it will publish the memoir of US women’s national soccer team captain, Carli Lloyd, who helped pave the way for a US victory in the World Cup final by scoring an unprecedented hat trick in the first sixteen minutes of the game in July 2015.

The childhood dream that became reality for USA’s BrianFIFA
USA’s FIFA Women’s World Cup™ winning team boasted numerous headline-grabbing stars, but there was one important ingredient in the side who was invariably left out of the limelight – midfielder Morgan Brian. The 22-year-old Brian was the youngest player on the pitch for the Stars and Stripes in their now storied win over Japan in the Canada 2015 decider, yet a polished display on the biggest stage of all belied her relative inexperience.

Lori Chalupny to Retire From International Soccer at End of 2015USSF
The 10-game fall tour to celebrate the USA’s championship run at the 2015 Women’s World Cup will be the final matches in a U.S. uniform for veteran defender Lori Chalupny.

A Case of the Blues for BirminghamFootball Rants
The unpredictability of the Women’s Super League (WSL) is perhaps best illustrated by the dramatic fall of Birmingham Ladies. With just one game remaining last season, three clubs were still in the hunt for the WSL title. What followed was a day of twists and turns that provided entertainment for the neutrals and agony for the fans involved.

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Rowdies Part Ways With Farrukh Quraishi and Thomas Rongen Tampa Bay Rowdies
The Rowdies announced today they have parted ways with President and General Manager Farrukh Quraishi and Head Coach Thomas Rongen.  The changes come after a terribly disappointing start to the Fall Season, with a record of two wins, one draw and five losses, the most recent loss to the then last-place ranked Indy Eleven.

FC Edmonton’s Kareem Moses is building a special connection with supportersFC Edmonton
When the final whistle blows at Clarke Field, there is only one place FC Edmonton defender Kareem Moses can be found. After each and every home match – whether it’s a win or loss for the Eddies – the defender from Trinidad and Tobago who is in his second year with the club, heads toward the Edmonton Supporters Group.

Match Preview vs. Fort Lauderdale Strikers FC Edmonton
FC Edmonton (4W-3D-2L) will host Fort Lauderdale Strikers (2W-4D-2L) on Sunday, Aug. 23 at 2:00 p.m. MT in a match at Clarke Field. This will be the third meeting between the two clubs in the 2015 North American Soccer League (NASL) season.

Miami FC owner Silva excited by idea of starting from scratch with new NASL club SBI
Miami FC owner Riccardo Silva knows that opportunities like this don’t present themselves very often. Silva has spent plenty of time around the game of soccer, but knows the opportunity to own a team and, not just run it, but mold it from the beginning became one that was too exciting to pass up. Now, three months after announcing his venture with Italian legend Paolo Maldini, Silva remains as excited about Miami FC as ever, as the club begins to take shape less than a year out from its debut.

NASL Roundup: Cosmos sign Argentine Cellerino Soccer America
Spring champion and overall standings leader New York Cosmos have signed 29-year-old Argentine forward Gaston Cellerino, a product of Boca Juniors academy who most recently played for Chile’s Santiago Wanderers.

La Liga chief backs Rayo Vallecano’s proposed NASL investmentESPN FC
La Liga president Javier Tebas has welcomed a move by Rayo Vallecano to purchase proposed North American Soccer League expansion franchise Oklahoma City FC.

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It’s Juve’s title to lose in Serie A this seasonSportsnet
Sure, the Bianconeri lost three key starters in the off-season: Carlos Tevez returned to Argentina, Andrea Pirlo moved to MLS, and Arturo Vidal was sold to Bayern Munich. But the Turin giants effectively re-tooled, bringing in players the calibre of Paulo Dybala, Sami Khedira, Mario Mandzukic and Alex Sandro. Impressively, they also kept French midfielder Paul Pogba, the hottest prospect in world soccer, despite keen interest from Barcelona.

Serie A minnows ready for the big timeFIFA
Hailing from towns with an average population of just 50,000, Empoli, Sassuolo, Carpi and Frosinone are the new wave of Italy’s Serie A. With their small budgets, unheralded squads and modest stadiums, they have battled their way into the Italian elite by nurturing youngsters with a desire to impress and giving a second chance to players who have failed to make it elsewhere.

Tim Howard, DaMarcus Beasley set to return for USMNT friendlies vs. Peru, BrazilMLS
US national team manager Jurgen Klinsmann will be able to count on two longtime USMNT stalwarts for the team’s upcoming friendlies against Peru (Sept. 4) and Brazil (Sept. 8), as U.S. Soccer announced Thursday that Everton goalkeeper Tim Howard and Houston Dynamo defender DaMarcus Beasley will be called up for the games, which will serve as preparation for the 2017 Confederations Cup playoff against Mexico on Oct. 10.

Ricardo Ferretti will be interim Mexico coach for up to four gamesESPN FC
Ferretti, who currently coaches Liga MX club U.A.N.L. Tigres, could end up managing El Tri for two September friendlies in the United States against Trinidad and Tobago and Argentina, as well as on Oct. 10 during the team’s crucial one-match playoff for CONCACAF’s lone berth at the 2017 Confederations Cup.

Can anyone stop Barca in La Liga this season?Sportsnet
When Atletico Madrid won the La Liga title in 2013-14, there was hope that the Spanish first division was finally turning into a three-team league. Then Atletico beat Real six times in a row, all but confirming La Liga’s duopoly was over for the time being. And yet to this day, Atletico are still a sideshow in the Spanish press. Barcelona and Real Madrid dominate the front pages every morning.

Premier League says Christian Benteke goal for Liverpool should not have stoodThe Guardian
The Premier League has acknowledged Christian Benteke’s controversial winner for Liverpool against Bournemouth last Monday should have been ruled out and written to all 20 clubs in the division seeking to clarify newly adopted offside regulations.

Chelsea doesn’t have the depth to win the Premier League Soccer Gods
Despite the fact that Chelsea neglected to strengthen its squad in any meaningful way this summer, part of the reason that so many were willing to install the Blues as title favorites is because of José Mourinho.

Manchester City’s Pablo Zabaleta out for month with knee injuryBBC Sport
Manchester City right-back Pablo Zabaleta faces up to a month out with a knee injury suffered in training.

Premier League has hit the United States and it tastes goodThe Guardian
A deal with NBC brings the Premier League into the homes of Americans every Saturday and it is still a brilliant, unvarnished product.

Greg Dyke’s job cuts at the Football Association leave a bitter taste The Guardian
More than 100 people have been made redundant as the governing body looks to ‘reprioritise’ but the chairman should have been fighting his battle with the Premier League instead.

Europa League First legs: Dortmund delirium, Athletic gloom UEFA
Borussia Dortmund pulled off an extraordinary comeback in Norway, Athletic Bilbao were surprised in Slovakia while Robin van Persie scored his first Fenerbahçe goal to earn a first-leg lead; UEFA.com selects the highlights from a night of comebacks.

Last throw of the dice for African champsFIFA
If the current champions, ES Setif, want to become the fourth club – Al Ahly and TP Mazembe have managed the feat twice – to win back-to-back titles, the Algerians have a long road ahead, with the cards heavily stacked against them. With two matches remaining in the CAF Champions League group stage, Setif are third in Group B with four points – eight points behind the already qualified USM Alger and three behind Sudanese club Al Merreikh, who have also won the head-to-head tie with Setif.

Nigeria: Oliseh – Why I Dropped MikelAll Africa
Super Eagles Head Coach, Sunday Oliseh, Thursday made a confession that he would not give John Mikel Obi any special treatment after the Chelsea midfielder failed to return his phone call and SMS.

FIFA’s reform meetings stack up as sponsors get off the fenceInside World Football
FIFA’s much-trumpeted reform body headed by former Olympics guru Francois Carrard will meet for the first time on September 2-3, three weeks before it is due to provide an update to the organisation’s top brass over proposals for cleaning up the corruption-tarnished body.

Russia looks to veterans to save Euro 2016 bidSportsnet
New Russia coach Leonid Slutsky is putting his trust in veteran players as he tries to save his team’s hopes of reaching next year’s European championship.

Man Utd top Twitter growth table in a week that shows slowdown after boom startInside World Football
Manchester United have continued their seemingly unstoppable march to the top of the overall premier league club Twitter table, again clawing back more than 15,000 followers on the lead of table toppers Arsenal and Chelsea.

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