Round 5 in Major League Soccer was, as they say, one for the books.
Cliché alert? Yes and no. It really was one for the history books. This good piece from MLSSoccer.com fills in the “who, what, when and where” as denizens of Don Garber Valley turned up historical deeds big and small.
But that piece doesn’t even cover all of the record-rewriting level of achievement taking place over the weekend.
For instance, ProSoccerTalk’s extensive research team discovered yesterday that the Red Bull’s third big win set a new precedent. No MLS team, over 16-plus seasons, has won three in a row by three goals or more.
And this one, turned up by The Kansas City Star, is a real jaw-whopper. We all talk about Peter Vermes’ Sporting Kansas City and the big offense. But what about that smothering defense? More was on display in Saturday’s 1-0 win over the David Beckham-less Galaxy.
The Star’s Tod Palmer points out that Sporting KC hasn’t allowed a shot on goal in back-to-back 1-0 wins (over Chivas USA and Saturday’s over the Galaxy). That’s a new MLS record, 245 consecutive minutes without permitting an opposition shot on goal.
So how is that happening? The SKC midfield is pressing, pressuring beast right now. Roger Espinoza is having a good season, concentrating less on intimidating tackles and more on thoughtfully screening his defense. Center backs Matt Besler and Aurélien Collin are cops on the beat at Livestrong Sporting Park. And goalkeeper Jimmy Nielsen is doing his part; even if he’s not being called up much for shot stopping, there’s a lot of leadership and communication involved in goalkeeping, as well.
Rapids add longtime Bundesliga winger Aigner from 1860 Munich (highlights)
Aigner has the resume to succeed and perhaps star in MLS, especially if he wasn’t slowed too much by a knee injury last season (He returned and produced at the 2.Bundesliga level).
Here’s what Rapids interim general manager Padraig Smith said:
“We’re excited to add a player of Stefan’s caliber to our roster for the next three-and-a-half years,” said Smith. “As an organization we are committed to fielding a forward-thinking side and bringing in Stefan – a technical and versatile player who can excel in multiple attacking roles – will help us achieve that vision.”
American backstop Ethan Horvath was under siege at home, but his Club Brugge side overcame throwing away a 2-0 deficit to claim a 3-3 draw with İstanbul Başakşehir. The three road goals will give the Turkish visitors every reason to feel good about the Aug. 2 second leg.
Celtic 0-0 Rosenborg
Brendan Rodgers‘ Scottish champions outshot the visitors 12-8, but couldn’t find a way into the goal. Now the Bhoys will have to score in Norway to advance to the next round.
Nice 1-1 Ajax
Mario Balotelli‘s 32nd minute staked Nice to a halftime lead, but the UEFA Europa League finalists snared an away goal through Donny van de Beek to send Ajax back to Holland with a slim advantage.
The Turkish Football Federation statement said Terim, 63, and the federation agreed that “it would be healthier for both sides to part ways,” saying non-football related issues were harming both Terim and the federation.
It also thanked Terim, who has headed the national team since 2013, for his services.
Terim previously managed Galatasaray, Milan and Fiorentina. There was no word on who would replace him.
BVB mid Merino reportedly undergoing Newcastle medical