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Vancouver Whitecaps look to avoid letdown against tricky Chivas USA side after big win

MLS Soccer - Sat, 08/16/2014 - 7:27am

VANCOUVER, B.C. – The Vancouver Whitecaps are hoping that it will be a case of the third time being the charm as they head down to California to take on Chivas USA on Saturday evening (10.30pm ET; TSN in Canada, MLS Live in US).

Despite currently propping up the Western Conference, Chivas have been something of a bogey team for Vancouver in recent games, securing a home win and a road victory in the sides’ two meetings so far this season.

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Seattle Sounders hope midweek US Open Cup success springboards them to MLS win vs. Real Salt Lake

MLS Soccer - Sat, 08/16/2014 - 7:12am

Fresh off their 6-0 demolition of the Chicago Fire in the US Open Cup semifinals Wednesday night, the Seattle Sounders return to MLS play in a Western Conference road clash with Real Salt Lake (Saturday, 2:30 pm ET, NBCSN/Stream on NBCSports.com).

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Sports Briefing | Soccer: UEFA Punishes Clubs for Fan Racism

NYT Goal blog - Fri, 08/15/2014 - 10:44pm
UEFA punished three Eastern European clubs for racist behavior by fans.






Philadelphia Union get promising MLS debuts from Andre Blake, Pedro Ribeiro in loss vs. Houston

MLS Soccer - Fri, 08/15/2014 - 8:10pm

After more than five months of waiting, highly touted 2014 first-round draft picks Andre Blake and Pedro Ribeiro were excited to finally make their MLS debuts for the Philadelphia Union on Friday.

They were less excited about the final score.

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Houston Dynamo stick with their plan vs. Philadelphia in grabbing key win at home

MLS Soccer - Fri, 08/15/2014 - 7:51pm

HOUSTON – After a first half of seeing 60 percent of the possession but no goals, the Houston Dynamo were frustrated. Seeing good play on the field, head coach Dominic Kinnear preached patience. And after the final whistle blew, the plan paid off and the result was theirs.

Houston controlled the ball from first kick against a Philadelphia Union team on Friday night that showed heavy legs, and the Dynamo took advantage pinging the ball around the field, putting together good passing sequences.

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NWSL INJURY REPORT: AUGUST 15, 2014

NWSL soccer - Fri, 08/15/2014 - 6:51pm

(Aug. 15, 2014) - With four games on the schedule for this weekend, here are the latest injury updates for all eight teams in action.

 

Boston Breakers

OUT: Nkem Ezurike (right hip strain)

DOUBTFUL: None

QUESTIONABLE:  None

PROBABLE: None

 

Chicago Red Stars

OUT: Hayley Brock (TMJ surgery), Samantha Johnson (facial lacerations and deviated septum)

DOUBTFUL: None

QUESTIONABLE: Taylor Vancil (neck sprain)

PROBABLE: Melissa Tancredi (left lateral ankle sprain), Shannon Boxx (left hamstring strain), Zakiya Bywaters (osteitis pubis and abductor strain), Vanessa DiBernardo (lower back pain and right hamstring tightness), Lori Chalupny (lower back pain), Abby Erceg (left knee pain)

 

Houston Dash

OUT: Brittany Bock (left ACL surgery), Lauren Sesselmann (left ACL surgery), Teresa Noyola (left hamstring tightness), Ella Masar (abdominal rehab)

DOUBTFUL: None

QUESTIONABLE: None

PROBABLE:  Kealia Ohai (left calf strain), Kaylyn Kyle (left sprained lcl)

 

Portland Thorns FC

OUT: Courtney Niemiec (right medial tibial stress syndrome), Kat Tarr (left knee meniscus surgery), Sinead Farrelly (internal medical matter)

DOUBTFUL: Stephanie Catley (left midfoot sprain)

QUESTIONABLE: Tobin Heath (right knee lcl sprain)

PROBABLE: None

 

Seattle Reign FC

OUT: Amanda Frisbie (osteitis pubis), Carmelina Moscato (left foot injury)

DOUBTFUL:  None

QUESTIONABLE: None

PROBABLE: None

 

Sky Blue FC

OUT: Haley Haagsma (left knee acl tear), Taylor Lytle (left tibia fracture and lateral meniscus tear), Lindsi Cutshall (concussion)

DOUBTFUL: None

QUESTIONABLE: None

PROBABLE: None

 

Washington Spirit

OUT: Caroline Miller (right ankle surgery), Tiffany Weimer (left knee surgery), Ashlyn Harris (concussion)

DOUBTFUL: None

QUESTIONABLE: None

PROBABLE: None

 

 

Western New York Flash

OUT: Adrianna Franch (right knee surgery), Lydia Williams (left knee surgery), Katherine Reynolds (right high ankle sprain)

DOUBTFUL: Kelsey Wys (right knee contusion)

QUESTIONABLE: None

PROBABLE: None

Houston Dynamo 2, Philadelphia Union 0 | MLS Match Recap

MLS Soccer - Fri, 08/15/2014 - 6:39pm

HOUSTON – Will Bruin’s picking up his game and the Houston Dynamo benefitted from it Friday night.

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JESS FISHLOCK LOANED TO 1. FFC FRANKFURT

NWSL soccer - Fri, 08/15/2014 - 4:20pm

(August 15, 2014) – Seattle Reign FC has agreed to loan midfielder Jess Fishlock to 1. FFC Frankfurt of the German Frauen-Bundesliga.  Fishlock will join Frankfurt immediately following the conclusion of Reign FC’s 2014 NWSL season.

“I appreciate Laura and Reign FC allowing me to play at Frankfurt during the NWSL off-season,” said Fishlock. “I am totally committed to helping Seattle win the championship this season and am excited to return to the team before the start of next season.”

Fishlock is under contract with Reign FC through the end of the 2015 season. Seattle also holds an option for the 2016 season. Under the terms of the loan agreement with 1. FFC Frankfurt, Fishlock will return to Reign FC prior to the start of the 2015 NWSL season.

NADIA NADIM CALLED UP TO DENMARK WNT

NWSL soccer - Fri, 08/15/2014 - 4:17pm

(Aug. 15, 2014) - Sky Blue FC forward Nadia Nadim has been named to the Denmark Women's National Team for their 2015 FIFA Women's World Cup qualifying match against Iceland on August 21 in Reykjavík, Iceland.

As a result of her national team duty, Nadim will miss the final two regular season games for SBFC.

"We are extremely pleased that Nadia has earned this call up by Denmark to join them for their upcoming World Cup qualifying match," Sky Blue FC head coach and technical director Jim Gabarra said. "We could not have asked for a better outcome from her time so far with Sky Blue FC. I am sure she has benefited from the experience as much as our league, club, players and staff have."

Nadim made her National Women's Soccer League debut with the New Jersey club on July 6 against FC Kansas City as a second-half substitute. She then joined the starting lineup on July 20 against the Washington Spirit and took the league by storm. In five starts, she scored seven goals and added three assists to help keep Sky Blue FC's playoff hopes alive.

"On behalf of Sky Blue FC, I would like to thank Nadia for all of her contributions to the organization both on and off the field," SBFC president and general manager Tony Novo said. "We would like to wish her the best of luck as Denmark tries to qualify for the World Cup and we hope to have the opportunity to have Nadia join SBFC again next season."

In her last two games with SBFC, Nadim tallied five goals and is the fifth player in NWSL history to ever score a hat trick. The Kabul, Afghanistan native said she was very grateful to have had the opportunity to be a part of the club's 2014 campaign.

"It has been one of the best summers ever and I've made lots of friends that I know I'm going to keep in touch with," Nadim said. "Everyone from Sky Blue FC has been so amazing towards me and I'm going to miss everyone. I want to thank Sky Blue FC for having me."

Sky Blue FC will face the Washington Spirit on Saturday, August 16 at the Maryland SoccerPlex with kickoff at 6:30 p.m. ET.

The New Jersey club will then return to Yurcak Field on Wednesday, August 20 to host the Houston Dash in the final regular season match of the year. Fans can purchase tickets for the rescheduled match by visiting tickets.skybluefc.com or calling 888-SBFC-TIX (888-723-2849).

Previous success vs. Vancouver Whitecaps giving Chivas USA confidence despite slump

MLS Soccer - Fri, 08/15/2014 - 3:10pm

Mired in a season-worst slump and season-long scoring drought, it would be understandable if Chivas USA walked into StubHub Center this weekend lacking confidence.

That’s far from the case, though.

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DASH RE-SIGN MIDFIELDER BECKY EDWARDS

NWSL soccer - Fri, 08/15/2014 - 3:08pm

(Aug. 15, 2014) - The Houston Dash have re-signed midfielder Becky Edwards, the club announced today. Per team and league policy, terms of the deal were not released.

Edwards, 26, was acquired by the Dash from Portland Thorns FC in the 2014 NWSL Expansion Draft. The central midfielder has played every minute of every game for the Dash in 2014, and has contributed two assists.

“Becky’s leadership, the professionalism, the way she carries herself around the other players—especially with such a young team—she’s been invaluable not only on the field but off,” said Dash head coach Randy Waldrum. “She brings a calmness and composure to our midfield, and she’s great in the air defensively. If we continue to work on her game and being a little more dynamic, I think this is a player that’s already one of the best in the league and I think we can still take her game to a higher level. Really, really excited that we got her re-signed and committed to us.”

Edwards will also go on loan to Kristianstads DFF of the Swedish Damallsvenskan from Aug. 21 until the end of the season on Oct. 20. The Downington, Pennsylvania, native spent the 2012 season with the Swedish club, making 18 appearances (17 starts) and scoring two goals. Kristianstads currently sits in sixth place in the league table after 11 matches, with nine more to play.

The Dash travel to Boston to take on the Breakers on Sunday in the penultimate match of their inaugural NWSL season before heading to New Jersey for the season finale against Sky Blue FC on Aug. 20. Both games can be watched live at HoustonDashSoccer.com.

PREVIEW: CHICAGO RED STARS VS. WESTERN NEW YORK FLASH

NWSL soccer - Fri, 08/15/2014 - 2:59pm

(Aug. 15, 2014) – The Chicago Red Stars control their playoff destiny when they take the field Saturday against the Western New York Flash.

Game Info | Watch Live | Tickets

The Red Stars closed in on their first trip to the NWSL postseason on Wednesday as Alyssa Mautz and Melissa Tancredi both scored to power Chicago to a 2-0 victory over the Boston Breakers.

Goalkeeper Karina LeBlanc was also instrumental for the Red Stars, making three saves to post her sixth shutout of the season.

The Chicago defense, led by Michelle Wenino, Julie Johnston, Abby Erceg and Taryn Hemmings has been a revelation for coach Rory Dames – having allowed fewer than two goals in 18 of their 23 games this season while posting the second-best defensive record in the league.

The Red Stars can clinch their place in the 2014 postseason with a win Saturday against the Flash.

Chicago will also punch their playoff ticket if they draw AND Portland Thorns FC lose or draw to Seattle Reign FC on Sunday; OR Portland lose and Sky Blue FC fail to win versus the Washington Spirit.

The Flash come into the contest having been mathematically eliminated from postseason contention in a 3-2 home loss Wednesday to Sky Blue FC.

Forwards Adriana Martin and Sonia Bermudez each scored for Western New York in the loss, but the Flash were unable to overcome two goals from SBFC forward Nadia Nadim – including the game-winning tally in the 89th minute.

Forward Abby Wambach had an assist for Western New York, who will not compete in this season’s playoffs after reaching the NWSL Championship Game in 2013.

The Flash will now turn their attention to playing spoiler on Saturday night when they take the field against the Red Stars.

All but one of Western New York’s 12 losses this season have come by one goal and the only other defeat was by two goals.

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Photo courtesy of Chicago Red Stars and Western New York Flash

Fresh off winning Save of the Week, Sporting KC's Jon Kempin relishing chance to start first game

MLS Soccer - Fri, 08/15/2014 - 2:43pm

It's not often that a goalkeeper gets his first MLS Save of the Week before his first league start, but that's how things have shaped up for Sporting Kansas City's Jon Kempin.

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Shaun Francis emerges as unlikely starter at open right-back position for San Jose Earthquakes

MLS Soccer - Fri, 08/15/2014 - 2:13pm

SAN JOSE, Calif. – With Steven Beitashour traded to Vancouver, San Jose Earthquakes fans knew they would have to get used to another right back this season.

Few of those die-hards probably expected that replacement to wind up being Shaun Francis.

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With eight games in 30 days, LA Galaxy are ready for stretch they say will "define our season"

MLS Soccer - Fri, 08/15/2014 - 1:33pm

CARSON, Calif. – It’s make or break time for the LA Galaxy, who head into the toughest stretch of their season – eight games in 30 days – knowing that how they fare likely will determine their fate this year.

The Galaxy sit fourth in the Western Conference, seven points behind Seattle (the only club in the league with a better points-per-game average), and will make up their games in hand on the teams they trail – one against Seattle, three against Real Salt Lake and FC Dallas – as they fight for points nearly every four days.

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Real Salt Lake vs. Seattle Sounders | MLS Match Preview

MLS Soccer - Fri, 08/15/2014 - 12:51pm

REAL SALT LAKE vs SEATTLE SOUNDERS FC
RIO TINTO STADIUM, Sandy, Utah
Aug. 16, 2014 (WEEK 23, MLS Game #213)
12:30 p.m. MT (NBCSN, free stream at NBCSports.com)

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Real Salt Lake may be without Javier Morales in "true six-point game" vs. Seattle Sounders

MLS Soccer - Fri, 08/15/2014 - 12:46pm

SANDY, Utah – As Real Salt Lake head into one of their most important games of the season, they might be doing it without Javier Morales.

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Portland Timbers' Caleb Porter says unpredictable New England Revolution have him "nervous"

MLS Soccer - Fri, 08/15/2014 - 11:41am

In the days leading up to recent games against the Montreal Impact and Chivas USA, Portland Timbers head coach Caleb Porter talked a lot about the “wounded animal” effect of playing a struggling side.

Overlook those games at your own peril, he said, especially considering the fact that he felt their records didn’t necessarily represent their talent level. And with wins in both games, Porter’s group appeared to take that message seriously.

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Chicago Fire announce signing of former Toronto FC striker Robert Earnshaw

MLS Soccer - Fri, 08/15/2014 - 11:00am

The Chicago Fire have signed forward Robert Earnshaw, formerly of Toronto FC, the club announced Friday.

Earnshaw, a 33-year-old former Wales international, featured for the Reds in 2013 after 15-year career in the English first and second divisions, scoring eight goals across 26 appearances. He was most recently with Blackpool in the English Championship, making one appearance, after his option was declined by TFC at the end of the 2013 season.

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