Rationale, motive and intent: Sporting Kansas City wasn’t very accurate with 27 shots aimed toward Chicago goal last Friday, but five needed saving – and the pressure overall pushed the young goalkeeper.
- Columbus’ Josh Williams
- Colorado’s Drew Moor
- Toronto FC’s Ashtone Morgan
Rationale, motive and intent: Toronto FC really has something in Morgan, a 21-year-old graduate of the TFC academy program who already has two Canadian caps. Moor led the way as Colorado limited visiting Portland to just seven shots (and only two on target).
- San Jose’s Marvin Chavez
- Columbus’ Eddie Gaven (pictured)
- Toronto FC’s Torsten Frings
- Houston’s Brad Davis
- DC United’s Chris Pontius
Rationale, motive and intent: Guys like Chavez and Gaven aren’t showing up on the score sheet as much as others, but they are reliably involved, always on the buzz and making things happen. Pontius is a constant threat, too, one who does show up frequently on the stat sheet.
- Seattle’s Eddie Johnson
- Toronto FC’s Danny Koevermans
Rationale, motive and intent: Don’t you wonder what Koevermans, making this team for the second consecutive week, might have already accomplished in 2012 without all that early season injury? Heck, for that matter, is there a chance that Aron Winter may have even kept his job a little longer?
Marseille did well to bring in one star this season but could the French side have another trick up its sleeve this summer?
Sky Sports is reporting that the Ligue 1 club is preparing to sign Arsenal striker Olivier Giroud over the summer and the sixth-place side is “willing to pay up to £20m (roughly $25 million).
Marseille made a splash this season when the club re-signed Dimitri Payet, who was playing with Premier League side West Ham at the time.
The team does boast several quality attacking options such as Payet and Bafetimbi Gomis, but Giroud could serve as an ideal target man in the Marseille attack.
Prior to joining the Gunners in 2012, Giroud starred for Montpellier and with a potential link-up in the attack with a creator like Payet, it could present a dangerous attacking threat to the rest of Ligue 1.
Giroud, 30, has scored 95 goals in all competitions since arriving in London with Arsenal.
We’ve seen MLS teams make major splashes in the past, and one of next year’s newcomers could be a really big draw if they can manage to seal the deal on a Mexican international.
[ MORE: Schweinsteiger shares thoughts on MLS and more in interview ]
According to Metro New York, Los Angeles FC is continuing its talks with Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez about a potential deal that would prove massive in terms of MLS spending.
While LAFC won’t debut in MLS until 2018, the club could potentially make the Mexico striker the highest-paid player in league history with an average salary of roughly $10 million.
The 28-year-old Hernandez currently plays in Germany with Bundesliga side Bayer Leverkusen, where he’s plied his trade since joining the club during the 2015/16 season.
Additionally, the former Manchester United man has dominated the international scene for El Tri, scoring 46 goals in 90 appearances for the CONCACAF nation.
German publication Kicker says Bayern Munich technical director Michael Reschke attended both of this weekend’s FA Cup semifinals and had his eye on two players in particular.
Reschke apparently wants to bring players from both North London Derby rivals Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur to the Allianz Arena.
[ MORE: Liverpool’s Top Four plight ]
In the case of Spurs, that man is right back Kyle Walker. The 26-year-old has also played right mid in 8 of his 35 matches for Tottenham this season, and was named in the PFA Team of the Year. It’s hard to believe Spurs would have interest in selling Walker, who would help fill the role of retiring Philipp Lahm.
On the other side is Alexis Sanchez, the embattled but electric Arsenal attacker who Arsene Wenger described as an “animal” and “always ready to kill the opponent” this weekend. Wenger says Sanchez isn’t going anywhere, but Bayern does boast Chilean teammate Arturo Vidal and former Barca mate Thiago Alcantara.
Walker is signed at Spurs through 2021, while Sanchez’s contract ends after next season.
AS Roma has found its new sporting director, and it’s a man with a keen eye for talent.
Ramon “Monchi” Rodriguez Verdejo, 48, has spent the last 18 years as the sporting director at Sevilla, which won five UEFA Europa League titles under his watch.
Monchi was discussed in the media as a target for the same job at Arsenal and was a target for other Premier League clubs, but Roma sealed the deal with the former goalkeeper.
[ JPW: Oriol Romeu — The Perfectly Poised Destroyer ]
He is considered to have a big role in discovering and developing Sergio Ramos, Jesus Navas, and Dani Alves.
Read more from ASRoma.com.