ProSoccerTalk’s daily soccer re-set

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Soccer birthdays:

If Pele isn’t the consensus as the best soccer player to ever live, he’s got to be in everyone’s top three or four. The Brazilian goal-scoring great turns 72 today.

Serbian international and current Zenit Saint Petersburg man Aleksandar Luković turns 30.

Welsh international Simon Davies, a former longtime Tottenham man, who turned into a longtime Fulham man, turns 33. And before we “leave” Craven Cottage, Jimmy Bullard turns 34. He passed and trapped around the West London ground for a couple of seasons.

Big Important Stories of the Day:

Champions League will dominate the talk, and our UCL expert around here warns that reigning champion Chelsea find themselves in a tricky spot when they meed Shakhtar Donetsk for Ukraine and the Donbass Arena.

RASNoD (Random American Soccer Name of the Day:  Tiffeny Milbrett

*Ahead on the blog today:

Lots of Champions League talk. Actually there is already a lot of UCL talk to explore, with previews from all four groups in action today.

We’ll also have a word about MLS scheduling to go along with the weekly league rankings, which are back after a week off during  the World Cup qualifying break.

Twitter dap:

source:

What you should watch on TV today:

Spartak Moscow vs. Benfica begins the day of Champions League greatness on Fox Soccer Channel. That one is up at noon (ET).

Manchester United hosts Braga from Portugal at 2:45 p.m. in the day’s other live viewing on FSC.

Barcelona-Celtic is on delay at 5 p.m. on FSC.

If the MLS playoffs started today (following 31 rounds):

Eastern Conference

(Wildcard round)

  • Houston at New York

(Second round)

  • Sporting Kansas City vs. Wildcard winner
  • Chicago vs. D.C. United

Western Conference:

(Wildcard round)

  • Vancouver Whitecaps at L.A. Galaxy

(Second Round)

  • San Jose vs. Wildcard winner
  • Real Salt Lake vs. Seattle

PST background noise while blogging today: Anything that keeps me from listening to more analysis of Presidential debates and polls. Let’s elect one of these guys already. (But that “anything” will probably be soccer podcasts.)

*Always subject to change; you know how it is

Stampede at stadium in Honduras kills multiple people

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TEGUCIGALPA, Honduras (AP) Officials in Honduras say thousands of soccer fans trying to force their way into a stadium for a championship match stampeded in panic when police fired tear gas, and at least four people and an unborn fetus were killed in the crush and 25 others were injured.

A spokesman for University Teaching Hospital says the victims died from suffocation and multiple broken bones from being trampled Sunday. Spokesman Miguel Osorio says a fetus died when its mother suffered severe injuries.

The stampede happened at the National Stadium as fans tried to push their way into the jammed venue to see the game between Motagua and Honduras Progreso.

About 600 police officers were guarding the stadium and used water cannon and tear gas trying to push back the crowds.

LIVE, at the half: Huddersfield miss glorious chances v. Reading

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It is tough to explain how Huddersfield Town aren’t ahead at half time of the Championship playoff final at Wembley Stadium on Monday.

[ LIVE: Follow the action from Wembley

The Terriers had two glorious chances early on but Michael Hefele headed wide and then Izzy Brown — on loan from Chelsea — somehow put his effort wide from a yard out.

Reading only had a few forays forward but Jaap Stam’s men held firm with the score locked at 0-0 at the break.

Will David Wagner’s Huddersfield live to rue those missed chances?

Follow the second half live from Wembley by clicking on the link above.


 

LIVE: Playoff final – Huddersfield v. Reading for PL spot

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The richest game in world soccer is here.

[ LIVE: Follow the action from Wembley ]

Huddersfield Town and Reading clash at Wembley Stadium in the Championship playoff final, one win away from the Premier League with the final promotion spot up for grabs after Newcastle United and Brighton & Hove Albion clinched automatic promotion.

Whoever wins this match will alter the path of their club for the foreseeable future.

The winner will not only receive a place in the PL but also a huge sum of $218 million for next season and if they stay up for just one season in the Premier League it is estimated to be worth $372 million.

Below is the team news…

Click on the link above to follow live updates from Wembley, while we will have analysis, reaction and more during and after the game.

VIDEO: Watch Francesco Totti’s emotional Roma farewell

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After a 25-year career at AS Roma, Francesco Totti was handed a fitting farewell on Sunday.

The hometown hero, now 40 years of age, called time on his incredible Roma career and looked overwhelmed.

[ MORE: Totti’s incredible career

Coming on for the 786th and final appearance of his stunning career, the all-time leading scorer for Roma (307 goals in all competitions) helped his team secured a dramatic last-gasp 3-2 win over Genoa to seal second place in the Serie A table and an automatic spot in the UEFA Champions League next season.

Totti spurned big money moves to Real Madrid and Barcelona where he could have won the biggest trophies and individual titles in the game to stay at Roma. He won just one Scudetto with Roma but famously said that was worth 10 league titles had he played for another team.

[ MORE: Serie A final day roundup ]

Following the game it was all about Totti as his teammates and manager broke down in tears, and so too did Totti as he went on a lap of honor with his wife and children at a sold-out Stadio Olimpico.

Rome’s favorite son said goodbye and there wasn’t a dry eye in the house.

Watch the emotional farewell in the videos below.

I know. I have something in my eye too…