USA rampage past Jamaica to qualify for 2019 Women’s World Cup

  • Alex Morgan scores twice as USWNT beat Jamaica 6-0
  • Canada also book place in France with win over Panama
It was only eight years ago that the US almost missed out on the 2011 Women’s World Cup due to a shock loss in qualifying. Coming into Sunday’s Concacaf Women’s Tournament semi-final against Jamaica, the players and coach Jill Ellis were keenly aware of what happened in 2010, admitting they talked about it before the tournament started. But this time around, there was no such suspense for the No1-ranked team in the world. On Sunday, the Americans steamrolled their way past Jamaica, 6-0, and clinched their spot at the 2019 Women’s World Cup, giving them the chance to defend their title. Continue reading...

How the US prepared for the Women’s World Cup by ripping everything up

The Americans suffered a shock exit to Sweden at the Rio Olympics, and coach Jill Ellis reacted by reinventing how her team play the game For observers who last watched the US women’s national team win the Women’s World Cup in 2015, the ongoing Concacaf qualification tournament for next year’s event in France probably feels similar. The Americans finished the group stage on Wednesday having outscored their opponents 18-0 and, although they haven’t clinched a spot in the 2019 Women’s World Cup yet, they sit very close. The reigning World Cup champions are just picking up where they left off, right? Not quite. Since winning the World Cup, it’s hardly been a smooth road for the Americans and, in many ways, they’ve come out the other side looking like a much different and more potent team than before. Continue reading...

Colombia too good for USA as James Rodríguez scores stunner

  • USA 2-4 Colombia
Carlos Bacca, Radamel Falcao and Miguel Borja scored second-half goals to lead Colombia past the United States 4-2 on Thursday night in an match that marked the return of USA captain Michael Bradley to the national team following a one-year absence.





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Link-up with US and live data for fans: how Mexico’s league is thinking big

Mexico’s Liga MX is determined to grow and compete with Europe – and it is ready to integrate with MLS to achieve its goal How do you solve a problem like the Liga? That’s Liga MX, by the way, Mexican football’s top flight. As football’s cultural (and financial) explosion continues, it’s a competition keen to get a piece of the action, but how? Mexico is, of course, football mad. Hirving Lozano’s goal against Germany triggered earthquake alerts in Mexico City, such was the fervour with which it was celebrated. Footage of supporters bouncing a South Korean embassy official around after Son Heung-min’s goal against Germany sent Mexico through to the second, was one of the highlights of the tournament. Continue reading...

A year since Bruce Arena quit, the US still have an interim coach. Why?

As the US men enter year two of the rebuilding process following World Cup qualifying failure, the team resemble a construction site without an architect With a degree of spin not seen since Roberto Carlos in 1997, US Soccer addressed the first anniversary of the grimmest night in its history with a cliche-strewn mission statement that began “Today we look forward” and made liberal use of the word “future”. But let’s glance back. Continue reading...

Why did Tim Howard and a Yankees owner buy non-league Dagenham & Redbridge?

Not all American investors dipping their toes into the English soccer waters have set their sights as high as the Premier League Stateside eagerness to earn a share of the juicy Premier League pie continues after murmurings of potential American investment in Chelsea and Newcastle. If Portland Trail Blazers and Seattle Seahawks owner Paul Allen does indeed complete a mooted billion dollar-plus takeover of Chelsea, he would be following a well-trodden path. John W Henry, Malcolm Glazer, Stan Kroenke, Randy Lerner, Ellis Short and more have all been understandably attracted by the wealth, fanaticism and global interest in the Premier League product. Continue reading...

Cristiano Ronaldo rape allegation: police reopen investigation into 2009 claim

  • Kathryn Mayorga claims she was assaulted by footballer
  • Juventus star’s lawyers say allegations are untrue
Las Vegas police have confirmed they have reopened an investigation stemming from a 2009 complaint involving a woman who claims she was raped by Cristiano Ronaldo. Kathryn Mayorga says the former Real Madrid and Manchester United star forced her to have sex with him at a Las Vegas hotel in 2009. The 34-year-old says she later reached an out-of-court settlement with the footballer, in which she agreed to keep her allegations private. Her lawyers say that Ronaldo did not fulfill one of the terms of the settlement, and the agreement was therefore void. In an interview with Der Spiegel magazine, Mayorga said she had gone public with her allegations in the wake of the #MeToo movement. Continue reading...

MLS Ultras: plastic wannabes or sign of a thriving league?

Football in North America has been on a quest for authenticity for decades. It’s debatable whether hardcore fans are helping or hindering that goal When Major League Soccer kicked off for the first time back in 1996, European football’s Ultras culture was just about winding down. Of course, Ultras still exist to this day, but the height of football’s sometimes violent, always notorious, counterculture came in the 1980s when English and Italian fans earned a toxic reputation. As in many things, though, MLS has spent the past few years catching up. Related: Barcelona, Argentina … Atlanta: How Tata Martino came to thrive in MLS Continue reading...

Sports quiz of the week: Golovkin v Álvarez, Osaka and footballers in tutus

Who had a magic touch? Who is getting on? Who travels badly? • Tennis quiz: tantrums and meltdowns

RB Leipzig coach Ralf Ragnick has installed a “wheel of misfortune” to help determine how misbehaving players should be punished? Which of these forfeits is not on the wheel?

Train in a tutu

Work in the club shop

Serve food in the canteen

Buy gifts for the club’s employees

Pay a fine

Which of these statements about new US Open champion Naomi Osaka is false?

She was only one year old when Serena Williams first won the US Open

She has a 100% record against Serena Williams

She was born in New York

She is the first Japanese player to win a Grand Slam singles tournament

Premier League leaders Liverpool face their toughest challenge of the season so far on Saturday, when they visit Tottenham. Liverpool struggled in recent away matches against Continue reading "Sports quiz of the week: Golovkin v Álvarez, Osaka and footballers in tutus"

Lessons from USA’s matches against Mexico and Brazil: permanent coach needed

The US tried out plenty of young talent in the recent round of friendlies but they need a concrete philosophy as they look towards the 2022 World Cup A new cycle for the US began with a 2-0 loss to an obviously superior Brazil, a 1-0 victory over Mexico side just as youthful as the opposition, and a new set of questions regarding the midfield. Against Brazil, interim coach Dave Sarachan set up defensively, giving Wil Trapp, Weston McKennie, and Tyler Adams the start. The results were mixed and likely the product of playing a side boasting impressive depth and quality, as the US frequently conceded possession and did little with it once they got it back. Matters were not much better when Sarachan added Kellyn Acosta, another central midfielder, to the group against Mexico, as they hardly found a rhythm despite playing a more evenly-match opponent. Yet, one bright Continue reading "Lessons from USA’s matches against Mexico and Brazil: permanent coach needed"

Tyler Adams’ maiden goal lifts USA to first win over Mexico in three years

Tyler Adams showed he might be able to help when the rebuilding US soccer team resumes competitive matches next June. So did Antonee Robinson and goalkeeper Zack Steffen. Adams scored his first international goal, four minutes after Angel Zaldivar was ejected for a studs-up tackle, and the United States rebounded from a poor first half for a 1-0 victory over Mexico on Tuesday night and their first win over El Tri in three years. Continue reading...

Neymar and Firmino fire Brazil past punchless USA in friendly

Neymar and Roberto Firmino scored first-half goals, and Brazil overwhelmed the United States 2-0 on Friday night in an exhibition before a sparse crowd at MetLife Stadium. Firmino scored in the 11th minute off a cross from Douglas Costa, who burst down a flank past 21-year-old left back Antonee Robinson. Neymar converted a penalty kick in the 44th for his 58th goal in 91 international appearances, third in Brazilian history behind Pele (77) and Ronaldo (62). Continue reading...

College football brilliance, an Alastair Cook tribute and handball mayhem | Classic YouTube

This week’s roundup also features Muzzy Izzet, ‘The Ocho’ and Roger Federer still being an absolute boss 1) The college football season is under way Stateside – here are 10 of the opening weekend’s finest plays, topped by a ridiculous one-handed catch from Texas Tech’s TJ Vasher. There was more monodextrous magic from Washington’s Quinten Pounds against Auburn, and Miami’s Jeff Thomas – although there wasn’t much else to shout about for fans of ‘The U’ in the defeat to LSU. Elsewhere, Alabama QB Tua Tagovailoa was on fire against Louisville, and Toledo scored a punt-return touchdown with a difference against Virginia Military Institute. 2) Alastair Cook announced his retirement from Test cricket this week and bows out as one of England’s greatest ever batsman. Here he is in 2016, talking to Wisden about his favourite innings, whilst his only Test wicket came against India back in 2014. Continue reading "College football brilliance, an Alastair Cook tribute and handball mayhem | Classic YouTube"

David Beckham’s new MLS team will be called Inter Miami

  • Franchise’s name is a nod to Spanish-speaking community
  • Club have name but are still finalising plans for stadium
From the league that brought you exotic names such as LA Galaxy, Miami Fusion, Tampa Bay Mutiny and, um, DC United a new power has arisen. David Beckham’s new MLS franchise will be called Inter Miami CF. Although the name sounds like it is a reference to Serie A’s famous Inter, it is actually a nod to Miami’s Spanish-speaking community. The club’s full name is Club Internacional de Fútbol Miami. Continue reading...

Something is broken when the USA women are dominated by white girls next door

Race was something most people on teams I played with didn’t want to talk about. But silence changes nothing - we need bold action We called ourselves the Ponytail Posse because that’s what the US women’s national team was about. The white girls next door. You want statistics to back that up? Barely more than a dozen female players of color have represented the United States at the highest level since 1991. Something is broken. Some teammates believed there was a race issue within US Soccer. I recall a conversation with one player who told me she thought a coach had an issue with the color of her skin. She said she could feel it in her bones. She was the first person to tell me something like that but it opened my eyes. Others have since told me similar things. Continue reading...

Clint Dempsey was gritty as hell – but he could also conjure moments of inspiration

The striker proved American outfield players could cut it in Europe and helped blaze a trail for the likes of Christian Pulisic After Clint Dempsey’s somewhat surprising retirement announcement on Wednesday morning, his place in the overall hierarchy of US Soccer history will be much debated.
Who was better, Dempsey or Landon Donovan, the man with whom he will be forever tied on the all-time US men’s goalscoring chart? How do you compare an outfield player with goalkeepers such as Kasey Keller, Brad Friedel and Tim Howard, each of whom also had successful club careers abroad? Continue reading...