ProSoccerTalk’s daily soccer re-set

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What we’re thinking, what we’re watching, what’s coming on the blog today and the RASNoD (Random American Soccer Name of the Day). Setting up your day in soccer …

Big Important Story of the Day: The United States didn’t exactly follow up on Saturday’s walloping of Scotland in grand style. Wednesday’s 4-1 setback against Brazil is a bummer, for sure. But how much it means in the big picture … that’s up for debate today.

Ahead on the blog today*: More on the United States’ loss Wednesday, plus more from the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup, where two more matches were completed Wednesday night. (One more MLS side went crashing out; that means 8 of the league’s 16 teams bit it during the third round). We’ve also got Group D on deck as we keep rolling out the Euro 2012 previews ahead of next week’s opener.

This date in soccer: Before John O’Brien struck in the wee smalls across devoted TV screens through the United States, before Landon Donovan’s deflected cross got behind a stunned Portuguese goalkeeper, before all that, World Cup 2002 started with a major upset. On May 31, 2002, World Cup newbies Senegal shocked reigning World Cup champion France to open the tournament, 1-0. France was a shell of its previous version, forced to deal with the loss of inspirational leader Zinedine Zidane.

What we should all be watching on TV: Mexico faces Bosnia-Herzegovina on Univision at 8:50 p.m. ET.

RASNoD (Random American Soccer Name of the Day): Juergen Sommer

Twitter daps:

Portland Timbers owner Merritt Paulson (@MerrittPaulson), after his team was eliminated from U.S. Open Cup play by amateur side Cal FC: “Congrats to CalFC…amazing story. Don’t know what to say to our supporters other than I am sorry and utterly embarrassed. Off twitter 4 bit”

Houston Dynamo communications man and content producer Jonathan Kaplan (@happykappy7), on the surprising volume of Open Cup upsets: “Why has no one coined the phrase May Madness yet? Make it happen @usopencup @MLS!”

PST background noise while blogging today:  Random soccer podcast day; looking for some “strange.” Feel free to suggest.

*Always subject to change; you know how it is

WATCH: Spain’s Saul smashes a shot past Italy’s Donnarumma

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Since returning from a loan at Rayo Vallecano, Saul Niguez has been a somewhat under the radar star at Atletico Madrid.

Coming off his best season with Atleti, the 22-year-old Saul is making an even bigger name for himself at the U-21 EURO this summer.

Spain’s Saul scored a hat trick past Gianluigi Donnarumma and Italy on Tuesday, and the second goal was laced with venom.

Getting onto the ball from 30-plus yards out, Saul smashed his shot with enough power that the ball barely had occasion to rotate.

Saul is under contract at the Vicente Calderon through 2022, and has three caps for Spain’s senior team, too. He was rated Atleti’s third-best performer by WhoScored this season.

Men in Blazers podcast: Transfer window, USMNT at Gold Cup, RBNY-NYCFC

Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images
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Men In Blazers are back with their latest podcast, and the boys are hitting club soccer here and abroad as well as Bruce Arena’s men in the red, white, and blue.

Rog and Davo break down transfer window activity, rumored and real; get a heat check on the USMNT heading into the Gold Cup; and recap the (Ray) Hudson River Derby.

All of the MiB content — pods, videos and stories can be seen here, but to really stay in touch, follow, subscribe, click here:

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Agent Jorge Mendes appears before judge in Falcao tax probe

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MADRID (AP) Football agent Jorge Mendes has told a Spanish judge that he had no involvement in the financial planning of client Radamel Falcao, who has been accused by a state prosecutor of tax fraud.

Mendes, who is not accused of any wrongdoing, appeared before a judge in a Madrid court for 45 minutes on Tuesday as part of the probe into whether there are grounds for the case against Falcao to go to trial.

[ MORE: Lampard linked with manager opening ]

Mendes’ agency, Gestifute, released a statement saying that “neither he nor his employees have ever intervened in the creation of corporate structures for his clients and much less provided any tax advice to them.”

Last month, a state prosecutor accused Falcao of defrauding Spain’s Tax Office of around $6 million from 2012-13. The alleged unpaid taxes were from money the Colombian player made from endorsement deals through image rights, not from the salary he was then being paid from club Atletico Madrid. Falcao now plays for Monaco.

Arfield, Adekugbe on Canada’s Gold Cup roster

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Burnley midfielder Scott Arfield and on-loan Brighton defender Samuel Adekugbe are among the players who will represent Canada in this summer’s Gold Cup.

Arfield, 28, was born in Scotland and earned the first of seven Canada caps in 2016, and Adekugbe returns to Vancouver from a year-long loan to Brighton and Hove Albion on June 30.

The pair join nine MLS players, two NASL player, and a USL player, with the rest of the group based outside North America.

[ MORE: Lampard linked with manager opening ]

Notably, Orlando City players Will Johnson and Cyle Larin were not called up by coach Octavio Zambrano.

Goalkeepers: Maxime Crepeau (Montreal), Milan Borjan (MKS Korona Kielce), Jayson Leutwiler (Shrewsbury Town)

Defenders: Samuel Adekugbe (Brighton and Hove Albion), Fraser Aird, Manjrekar James (Vasas Budapest), Dejan Jakovic (New York Cosmos), Adam Straith (FC Edmonton), Steven Vitoria (Lechia Gdansk), Marcel de Jong (Vancouver Whitecaps)

Midfielders: Scott Arfield (Burnley), Patrice Bernier (Montreal), Alphonso Davies (Vancouver), Raheem Edwards (Toronto FC), Junior Hoilett (Cardiff City), Mark-Anthony Kaye (Louisville City FC), Anthony Jackson-Hamel (Montreal), Jonathan Osorio (Toronto), Michael Petrasso (QPR), Samuel Piette (CD Izarra), Russell Teibert (Vancouver)

Forwards: Lucas Cavallini (CA Penarol), Tosaint Ricketts (Toronto)