Soccer birthdays: You forget how young Spain and Barcelona man Sergio Busquets (pictured, far right) is. I mean, a World Cup crown, a European Championship crown, all that sparkle and bling he’s earned at Camp Nou. So, let’s all not try to think too hard about our own lives and accomplishments as we consider that Busquets turns 24 today. Yep. Just 24.
Fulham and Belgian striker Moussa Dembélé turns 25.
Ahead on the blog today*: Well, a whole lot of stuff. Like thoughts on the final All-Star selections. (Who got the snub … and was it really a snub?) And some thoughts on Michael Bradley’s move to Roma, which became final on Sunday. Plus the Monday “Meh” lits and the usual MLS Player of the Week and Team of the Week. See, we didn’t lie. Lots of stuff.
RASNoD (Random American Soccer Name of the Day): Matt Jordan
Big Important Story of the Day: Michael Bradley’s move to Roma, more yesterday than today, qualifies as significant enough to bridge over from Sunday to Monday.
Big Important Story that you might have missed yesterday: While we were all talking about David Beckham’s pair of stunners, Landon Donovan’s rather quietly joined the most exclusive of MLS fraternities, the 100-100 club. (It has just one other member!) Take a look at Donovan’s latest achievement and where it leaves him on the all-time charts.
PST background noise while blogging today: I’ll probably re-watch the Galaxy-Portland match; there was so much going on in a wide-open contest, I’m sure I’ll see something important that I missed the first time around.
*Always subject to change; you know how it is
Heading into the their final UEFA Champions League Group B game, Manchester United hold their destiny in their own hands, but any slip-up could mean it’s Europa League on Thursday nights for Louis Van Gaal‘s men.
[ MORE: Champions League standings ]
The Red Devils would have advanced to the knockout stage with a victory over third-place PSV Eindhoven on Wednesday, but slumped to an ugly 0-0 draw instead.
[ MORE: Three things we learned from Man United 0-0 PSV ]
So, here’s all of the scenarios for the final matchday of the group stage, away to Wolfsburg, in which United would advance to the round of 16 advance:
- A Man United win will see Man United finish top of Group B
- A Man United draw, coupled with a PSV draw or loss (vs. CSKA Moscow), will see Man United finish second in Group B
- A Man United draw, coupled with a PSV victory, will see Man United finish third in Group B
- A Man United loss, coupled with a PSV loss, will see Man United finish second in Group B
- A Man United loss by more than one goal, coupled with a PSV draw, would see Man United finish third in Group B
- A Man United loss, coupled with a PSV win, would see Man United finish third in Group B
[ MORE: Champions League schedule ]
There are your scenarios for Man United as it’s pretty simple to break it down: Win, and they go through. Fail to win, and their fate is completely in the hands of PSV.
The Foxes are top of the Premier League and are led by a surging Jamie Vardy but how long can they keep shocking the world?
With six tough games coming up between now and the start of 2016, Claudio Ranieri‘s men will be pushed to their limit but so far this season they’ve been sensational and Vardy has equaled Manchester United legend Ruud van Nistlerooy’s record of scoring in 10-straight PL games.
[ MORE: Full PST Extra archive ]
Can he make it 11 in a row on Saturday (Watch live, 12:30 p.m. ET on NBC and online via Live Extra) when United visit the King Power Stadium? As for the Red Devils, they sit in second place and are just one point behind the flying Foxes’. Louis Van Gaal‘s men have certainly flown under the radar so far and our churning out wins at an impressive rate.
Jenna Corrado and I discuss that and more in the latest edition of PST Extra. Click play on the video above to see our chat in full.
Rog and Davo revel in another chapter of the Leicester City fairytale, break down Liverpool’s shock dismantling of Manchester City and discuss Arsenal’s slip against West Brom.
Listen to the latest pod by clicking play below.
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Joe Hart was forced to leave Manchester City’s 1-0 defeat to Juventus in UEFA Champions League play on Wednesday due to a hamstring injury, which he seemed to incur while making a spectacular one-on-one kick-save late in the second half.
[ FOLLOW: All of PST’s PL coverage ]
Man City manager Manuel Pellegrini confirmed after the game that Hart’s injury is indeed a hamstring issue, and went on to say that he would need further tests once the team arrives back in Manchester to determine the severity and how long, if at all, City and England’s no. 1 would be out of action.
Man City, currently third in the Premier League on 26 points, will host eighth-place Southampton at the Etihad Stadium on Saturday (Watch live at 10 a.m. ET on NBCSN and online via Live Extra).