For U.S. soccer supporters awaiting a reckoning on U.S. under-23 manager Caleb Porter, standing by for a dismissal from the position or for some official thumbs-up, here’s some useful news:
Nothing like that was ever going to happen.
Porter’s position as U.S. under-23 coach was never a “permanent” post, per se. There isn’t a permanent under-23 program, so his was always a cyclical position for a team created once every four years, attached to the quadrennial summer Olympic games.
Porter’s contract expires on April 30, according to U.S. Soccer. That expiration date was always in the contract in the event the United States failed to qualify for London 2012.
Had the United States earned a berth for this summer, regardless of whether things went “famine” or “feast” in London, his contract would have expired shortly thereafter, most likely at the end of August.That’s standard in these contracts. (Peter Nowak’s deal was structured slightly differently four years ago because he was a full-time assistant on Bob Bradley’s national team staff at the time, “moonlighting” as Olympic coach.)
U.S. Soccer spokesman Neil Buethe said Porter will meet soon with U.S. Soccer president Sunil Gulati, U.S. Soccer secretary general Dan Flynn and national team manager Jurgen Klinsmann in a standard performance review. Porter, who remains coach of the University of Akron’s highly successful program, could still fill any number of roles within U.S. Soccer’s integrated national team system (under-17s, under-20s, full men’s team assistant, etc.). Or all parties could simply move on.
“I would think that meeting will happen sooner rather than later,” Buethe told me a few minutes ago from his U.S. Soccer office in Chicago. “They obviously want to review things face to face, so it’s just a matter of figuring out everybody’s schedule.”
SANDY, Utah (AP) Real Salt Lake has re-signed forward Joao Plata to a multi-year contract and he will continue to hold a designated-player spot.
The 24-year-old was acquired from Toronto FC before the 2013 season and he has 30 goals and 30 assists in regular-season play with RSL.
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Plata ranks No. 3 on the team’s all-time assists list and No. 5 in goals. He has 33 goals and 35 assists during his MLS career.
Real Salt Lake begins the season Saturday when it hosts Toronto FC.
Mario Gotze’s last few seasons have not fulfilled the expectations thrust about the World Cup-winning attacker.
Gotze, 24, scored the 113rd minute goal that lifted Germany past Argentina in the 2014 World Cup, but has endured successive disappointing seasons between Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund.
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With just two goals this season, Gotze has played just 24 minutes since BVB came back from winter break. On Monday, the club revealed why: a metabolism disorder that will keep him out for an indefinite period of time. From Sky Sports:
“We are glad to know the reasons for Mario’s complaints and we are convinced that after recovering he will give us extra quality with his exceptional abilities,” said Dortmund’s director of sport Michael Zorc.
“Mario gets the full backing and maximum support from all of us at Borussia Dortmund on his way back.”
It’s been a while since we’ve seen Gotze at his best, and here’s hoping this problem is both curable and the reason for his struggles.
Liverpool has named Peter Moore as the successor to chief executive office Ian Ayre.
Ayre, 53, is off to 1860 Munich this summer, and has stepped down early to allow Moore to take over.
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A Liverpool-born executive, Moore was the chief operating officer at EA Sports and has also worked with Microsoft and SEGA.
The move “completes a transitional phase” which saw several new names join the fray. From The Liverpool Echo:
The appointment completes a transition plan by FSG which included appointing Michael Edwards as sporting director while Billy Hogan was promoted to the role of managing director and chief commercial officer.
The United States U-20 men are on the precipice of the U-20 World Cup after beating Mexico 1-0 on Monday, scooping their first win against El Tri in 31 years.
Brooks Lennon continues to look the part for the U.S. ahead of his loan season from Liverpool to Real Salt Lake.
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The youngster sent in this free kick that Erik Palmer-Brown, himself a loan man at Porto from Sporting KC this year, headed into the Mexico goal courtesy of a back post defender who opted for his right leg over a decent clearing attempt.
The U.S. took that lead into halftime.
Things got chippy as the second half unfolded, with referee Melvin Matamoros turning a blind eye to a few clattering tackles.
Tab Ramos subbed NYCFC prospect Jonathan Lewis into the match, and he sprung a counterattack that should have put the match to bed. But Lewis’ through ball missed FC Dallas’ Coy Craft and the latter took too much time, frittering away the chance.