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Tracking Landon Donovan: the Galaxy man just keeps ticking off those achievements


Landon Donovan joined the most elite of MLS fraternities last night – not that there was ever doubt he would arrive safely there.

The longtime Galaxy and U.S. international star had a goal and an assist as the Galaxy clobbered Portland’s poor, mostly defenseless defense. It was a 5-3 Stumptown beat-down.

That was Donovan’s 100th MLS assist, and that milepost is significant for a number of reasons.

Let’s dig a little deeper for a good look-see at what this means:

  • First, he joins Jaime Moreno as the only player in the MLS 100-100 club.  Donovan already has 122 goals.
  • Donovan now sits at 122 goals and 100 assists. Moreno had 133 goals and 102 assists. If it looks like Donovan still has some catching-up to do, consider this: Moreno’s numbers were built over 340 career matches. Donovan now sits at 272, about two whole seasons fewer.
  • Donovan is 30. He’s got good years left (assuming the man doesn’t grow tired of it and hop overseas or retire early or whatever). I’ve written several times that Donovan will finish as Major League Soccer’s all-time leading scorer. I’d bet a Whopper and fries on it. But now we have to start discussing the possibility that the first American of Southern California soccer will finish with the career king double, leadership in all-time goals and assists.
  • He’ll almost surely finish second, at least. (Again, assuming an ongoing attachment to MLS). But Steve Ralston and his all-time best 135 assists is no slam dunk to reach. By averaging six or seven assists over the next four or five years, Donovan get there.  That target is well within reach, but injuries, life, etc., do throw up roadblocks along the way.
  • It all begs this question: If Donovan does climb to the top of both charts, can we call him the best to ever make the bulk of his career from MLS? Moreno and Dwayne De Rosario will have something to say about that – but the numbers on Donovan’s side may just be too hard to ignore.
The MLS all-time goals and assists leaders, updated through last night’s matches:


How will USMNT line up vs. Mexico in CONCACAF Cup?

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You probably don’t need reminding, but just in case you do, the U.S. national team face Mexico in a huge one-off CONCACAF Cup game on Saturday at the Pasadena Rose Bowl.

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The winner will represent CONCACAF at the 2017 Confederations Cup in Russia as Jurgen Klinsmann’s USMNT side are the underdogs against El Tri.

With plenty of struggles and a hangover from the 2015 Gold Cup failure, Klinsmann is under pressure and getting his team selection spot on will be crucial if the USA are going to get past Mexico in front of over 90,000 fans at the Rose Bowl.

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Below I suggest three possible starting lineups, then give my conclusion on how I think the U.S. will lineup.

Let us know if you agree by posting your own lineups in the comments section below.

JPW’s choice

—– Guzan —–

— Johnson — Cameron — Besler — Ream —

Jones —– Bradley

— Bedoya — Dempsey — Zardes —

—– Altidore —–

Mix-and-match XI

—– Howard —–

— Cameron — Besler — Ream — Beasley —

—– Williams —–

— Yedlin — Bradley — Zusi —

— Altidore — Zardes —

Stopping Mexico

—– Howard —–

— Johnson — Besler — Ream — Beasley —

—– Cameron —–

— Dempsey — Williams — Bradley — Jones —

— Altidore —


I think Klinsmann’s choice is the way to go, although Tim Howard‘s presence in goal over Brad Guzan would certainly help strengthen the USA’s defense. A center back pairing of Cameron and Besler must happen, while having Johnson in at right back will be a boost and Ream’s size may see him get the nod over Beasely but the veteran is likely to start if fit. In midfield I’d go with Jones and Bradley sitting in front of othe back four and then that would allow, Zardes, Bedoya and Dempsey to support Altidore up top.

The final selection is ultra-defensive, but given the form of his team and Mexico’s attacking talents, Klinsmann may start more defensive and then change tact as the game goes on. Having all of your most-experienced players on the pitch will prove vital to succeeding at the Rose Bowl, therefore, even though the Mix-and-Match XI looks speedy and is dangerous, I’d expect to see “JPW’s choice” or “Stopping Mexico” to be more like the starting lineup on Saturday.

“Legends World Cup” hope to bring Beckham, Zidane to Mexico

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David Beckham and Zinedine Zidane coaxed out of retirement to play in a “Legends World Cup” you say?

Well, that got my attention.

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According to an interview with the BBC’s world service, the organizers of the 2017 Legends World Cup are hoping to entice both Becks and Zizou to roll back the years and represent their nations in Mexico.

Beckham, 40, and Zidane, 43, are already putting their boots back on to captain a Great Britain and Ireland XI vs. a World XI for a friendly at Old Trafford on November 14 to raise money for UNICEF, and former Mexico goalkeeper Jorge Campos, 48, has urged the duo to take part in the tournament in 2017 where he will coach Mexico’s team.

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From the BBC:

“I want to see Zinedine Zidane, David Beckham, Brazilian Ronaldo,” said Campos, 48, the flamboyant ex-Mexico goalkeeper who will coach his country.

“Everybody wants to see Argentina’s Diego Maradona, but he can’t play. He’s too old.”

The tournament is scheduled to take place at the beginning of 2017, with 12 teams in total — four from the Americas, six from Europe and one each from Africa and Asia — taking part.

Given the age (players must be aged between 35-45) and caliber of the players Campos and Co. are trying to recruit, let’s have a think about who would play for the U.S.

Landon Donovan and Brian McBride up front? Brad Friedel in goal? Let us know who would make the squad.