ProSoccerTalk Team of the Week for Major League Soccer’s Round 5.
- Seattle’s Michael Gspurning
Rationale, motive and intent: In a week without a lot of acrobatics, Seattle’s first-year backstopper made the right choices and came up big a time or two shutting out D.C. United to claim a road point.
Back line: (Right to left)
- Real Salt Lake’s Tony Beltran (pictured)
- Montreal’s Matteo Ferrari
- Dallas’ Ugo Ihemelu
- San Jose’s Ramiro Corrales
Rationale, motive and intent: Beltran, 24 years old, is a having a great year; you wonder if he’s starting to pop up on Jurgen Klinsmann’s radar. He had a pair of assists in RSL win over rival Colorado. Both Montreal center backs, Ferrari and Shavar Thomas, had a good afternoon as their Impact recorded its first MLS win. Ferrari’s leadership near the end proved critical. Ihemelu has been the steady presence along Dallas’ back line, and last Thursday he provided the dramatic stoppage-time game-winner. Corrales had two assists in a 3-1 win; as with Beltran, two assists for a fullback is always a big night.
- Seattle’s Brad Evans
- Kansas City’s Roger Espinoza
- Chivas USA’s Ryan Smith
Rationale, motive and intent: While Osvaldo Alonso has failed to get solid footing on his 2012 season so far, Evans is helping with meritorious all-around play like we saw in the scoreless draw with D.C. United. Espinoza, more trustworthy and less foul-prone this year, is helping Kansas City rewrite record books. Smith was a second-half substitute who changed the game for the Goats in their second road win this year.
- Real Salt Lake’s Fabian Espindola
- New York’s Thierry Henry
- New York’s Kenny Cooper
Rationale, motive and intent: Espindola is becoming more of a playmaker at Rio Tinto, working smartly off of Alvaro Saborio, who also had a good night in the win over Colorado. If you’re getting tired of seeing Thierry Henry and/or Kenny Cooper on this list … well, what can I say. They deserve it. Both had two goals in the latest Red Bulls triumph.
MADRID (AP) Jose Mourinho’s agent says the Manchester United manager paid more than 26 million euros ($27 million) in taxes when he lived in Spain from 2010-13.
The information was made public on Tuesday by Gestifute, a company run by Mourinho’s agent, Jorge Mendes.
[ MORE: Pulisic wanted by Arsenal, Spurs ]
The Portuguese company has been releasing details about its clients’ tax declarations after European media outlets published what they claimed were details of apparent tax arrangements made by top soccer players and coaches, including Mourinho, Cristiano Ronaldo and Mesut Ozil.
Gestifute, which also has Ronaldo as a client, has already published documents allegedly showing that Spanish fiscal authorities have certified that Mourinho and Real Madrid star Ronaldo are “up to date on … obligations.”
Mourinho coached Real Madrid from 2010-13 and took charge of United this season.
This is going to turn out to be one of the most exciting years of Matt Hedges’ life.
The FC Dallas man lead one of the best back lines in Major League Soccer to the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup and the Supporters’ Shield.
[ MORE: PST talks with Hedges, Zimmerman ]
He’s also likely set for a chance to return to the USMNT fold under new coach Bruce Arena, as Hedges is one of the best players to be largely ignored by Jurgen Klinsmann.
Hedges, 26, was named the MLS Defender of the Year and made the Best XI, and now he’s inked a new long-term deal with FC Dallas.
The four-year deal will keep Hedges in Dallas through his 30th birthday. Capped once, Hedges has 159 appearances with 11 goals for FCD.
Christian Pulisic is one of the most exciting young prospects in the world.
It’s a statement that isn’t often said without hyperbole when it comes to American standouts, but the 18-year-old Borussia Dortmund man has seen his names in the gossip pages a few times this year.
While Liverpool has often been the destination, Italian site Calcio Mercato says Premier League interest is wider than Merseyside. The clubs? Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur.
[ VOTE: Who should win USMNT player of year? ]
Dortmund doesn’t want to sell the youngster, who is locked up through 2019. The whispered price has been $31 million at a minimum, but perhaps BVB would be tempted given their wealth of young attacking options.
Pulisic has made 27 appearances for Borussia Dortmund, nabbing four goals and six assists. He has 11 caps and three goals for the USMNT as well.
Cristiano Ronaldo had been linked with massive tax evasion, but Real Madrid would ask you to kindly go back to treating him like a king now that he’s proven his innocence.
In a move usually reserved for politicians aiming for high office, Ronaldo’s agent released some of his tax documents to prove everything’s above board.
It all looks good, unlike what befell Neymar and Lionel Messi, so back off, huh?
[ MORE: Wednesday’s Champions League preview ]
From Real Madrid:
In view of the stories published over recent days and in consideration of the certificate issued by the Spanish Tax Agency which confirms that our player Cristiano Ronaldo is up to date with all of his tax obligations, Real Madrid C. F. call for the utmost respect to be shown towards Cristiano Ronaldo, whose conduct has been absolutely exemplary throughout all of his time at our club.
Only the utmost for CR7.
Real Madrid hosts Borussia Dortmund on Wednesday in a match which will decide Group F of the UEFA Champions League.