Former Norte Dame Fighting Irish star Ryan Miller turns 28. The Illinois boy tried his luck with the Columbus Crew and D.C. United before jumping across the pond. He’s currently playing for Halmstad in Sweden. That sounds nice.
The defender earned a 2010 call from Bob Bradley for the United States national team’s friendly against Chile, but he did not feature. Less nice.
Big Important Stories of the Day:
Transfers and trades. It has to be transfers and trades, right? Silly season, yo. Get into it. MLS clubs are making moves like crazy. Wherefore art thou, Mix Diskerud? (Too weird? Too weird. Sorry. But look at that plaid jacket!) What clubs will make more moves today? Who knows. It could be anyone. I hear Steve D. put himself up for transfer. Kidding. He’s here forever. And we wouldn’t want it any other way.
RASNoD (Random American Soccer Name of the Day:
Who knows? No one ever tells me anything around these parts. Do you, good reader, have any ideas?
Hopefully, the next in a series of conversations based on a long conversation with U.S. national team coach Jurgen Klinsmann. It might drop at about noon ET, and we hope it does because these have been awesome.
Other than that… um… some thoughts about the matches this weekend? There are games this weekend, right? An examination of Merritt Paulson’s naughty and nice list? I know one thing: SD and RF have you covered.
What you should watch on TV today:
It has to be Bayern München vs Borussia M’gladbach at 2:30 ET on GolTV. If only Michael Bradley was still playing for the underdogs.
We’ll leave you with this:
Is this the best MLS offseason yet? Seriously: So. Many. Moves. And we’re only like a week and a half into the whole ordeal. We are legit excited about the Portland Timbers now, something we wouldn’t have said 72 hours ago. And Sporting Kansas City! Who needs Kaka when you’ve got Feilhaber?!?
*Always subject to change; you know how it is
LONDON (AP) West Ham signed attacking midfielder Marko Arnautovic from Stoke for a club-record fee on Saturday.
The fee wasn’t disclosed, but British media said West Ham paid an initial 20 million pounds ($26 million) that could rise to 25 million pounds ($32.5 million) for the 28-year-old Austria international.
“We have brought in three players with vast Premier League experience this summer,” West Ham co-chairman David Sullivan said, “and that was one of our key targets.”
Arnautovic, who has 62 caps for his country, joined Stoke from Werder Bremen in 2013. He scored 26 goals in 145 appearances for Stoke.
The game in 100 words (or less): New York City FC spent 78 minutes at a man disadvantage, fewer than 72 hours after drawing MLS-leading Toronto FC midweek, against the second-place Chicago Fire on Saturday. It the end, this week shall go down as the back-to-back which put to bed any lingering questions regarding NYCFC’s MLS Cup-contending credentials. Four points from two games against the league’s top-two teams — Patrick Vieira’s side (37 points) now sits a single point back of Chicago, two back of Toronto. As is typically the case, David Villa’s fingerprints were all over Saturday’s win at Yankee Stadium, as the reigning MVP scored the opening goal (in typically stunning fashion) before so nearly setting up one or two more as the back-and-forth, frantic second half wore on. Frederic Brilliant scored what turned out to be the winner just three minutes later, as David Accam canceled out Villa’s opener to make it three goals scored in seven minutes.
Three Four Five moments that mattered
4′ — Kappelhof slides through Herrera, no penalty given — Maybe VAR will be good?
12′ — Herrera sees yellow again, and he’s gone — Herrera’s first yellow was questionable, but there’s no doubt about the second, just four minutes later.
47′ — Villa smashes on the full volley for 1-0 — This is approximately the 197th time I’ve written the phrase, “David Villa, take a bow,” since Spain’s all-time leading scorer came to MLS.
50′ — Brilliant heads home in traffic for 2-0 — It takes guts to put your head into a sea of flying feet the Brilliant does here. Fortunately, his face is intact and the Frenchman was duly rewarded.
54′ — Accam hits and prays, makes it 2-1 — Don’t think; just hit it. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t.
Man of the match: David Villa
Goalscorers: Villa (47′), Brilliant (50′), Accam (54′)
SAO PAULO (AP) A son of Brazilian soccer legend Pele has returned to jail to serve a sentence of more than 12 years on drug trafficking and money laundering charges.
A Brazilian court Friday ordered Edson Cholbi do Nascimento returned to jail after turning down his appeal.
He is a former goalkeeper with Pele’s old club Santos and was first arrested in 2005, though he remained free pending the outcome of his appeals.
In 2014 a court convicted him to 33 years in prison. That sentence was later reduced to 12 years, 10 months.
In late February he turned himself in to complete his sentence and in early March a court ordered his release and allowed him to remain free while fighting the sentence.
He has denied any wrongdoing.
ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) Clint Dempsey is back in his home state of Texas, one goal away from a national scoring record for the United States team that is one win from playing in another CONCACAF Gold Cup final.
The Americans play a semifinal game Saturday night against Costa Rica in a stadium synonymous with American football – the home of the NFL’s Dallas Cowboys, the Cotton Bowl and where the first College Football Playoff championship game was played three seasons ago.
That is only about 180 miles from Dempsey’s hometown of Nacogdoches.
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“It’s always great to be home and play in front of family and friends, especially for a big game,” Dempsey said Friday. “I have a lot of great memories of playing in Dallas as a kid, and I’m proud to represent Nacogdoches. Being from there made me who I am today.”
Dempsey, one goal from matching Landon Donovan’s American record of 57 national team goals, wasn’t part of soccer’s only Gold Cup games at the $1.2 billion AT&T Stadium.
In a 2013 semifinal game there when the Americans were on the way to their fifth Gold Cup championship, they beat Honduras 3-1. Donovan scored twice in that game – his 55th and 56th goals for the national team – and assisted on the other goal. About two months later, Donovan scored his final goal in a World Cup qualifier win over Mexico.
Within a week after Costa Rica beat the U.S. team 4-0 in World Cup qualifying last November, Jurgen Klinsmann was out as the U.S. coach and Bruce Arena was rehired to the position he had been fired from a decade earlier.
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Costa Rica coach Oscar Ramirez said Friday that Arena has seemingly had a positive impact on the U.S. team.
“They look more relaxed in terms of what they’re doing on the field,” Ramirez said through an interpreter.
This U.S. roster for the Gold Cup knockout rounds also is much different than the one that played in Costa Rica eight months ago – not just the change at coach. Only five players from that game that are set for this semifinal game – Michael Bradley, Jozy Altidore, Matt Besler, Omar Gonzalez and Graham Zusi.
“That’s in the past,” Gonzalez said. “I don’t think about that game. … This is just another game. It’s another opportunity for us to see what we’re made out of.”
Altidore, Dempsey, Bradley, Darlington Nagbe, and goalkeeper Tim Howard were all added to the lineup before a 2-0 win over El Salvador in the quarterfinal on Wednesday night in Philadelphia.
Dempsey set up Eric Lichaj‘s goal in extra time before halftime to make it 2-0 against El Salvador. Dempsey also fed Gyasi Zardes for a breakaway, though that apparent goal didn’t count after he was ruled offside.
That game was Dempsey’s 135th appearance for the national team, trailing only Cobi Jones (164) and Landon Donovan (157) on the U.S. list.
Dempsey isn’t the only player with Texas ties with the U.S. team. Three players from FC Dallas, the MLS team that plays its home games about 40 miles away from the big stadium in Frisco, are on the roster: Kellyn Acosta, Matt Hedges and Jesse Gonzalez.
Acosta, the homegrown midfielder who turns 22 next week, was recently named to the MLS All-Star team. He was born in nearby Plano, Texas, and signed by FC Dallas five years ago.
“It’s definitely a proud moment, to get to represent my community, play before my friends and family,” Acosta said. “To be back in my hometown, I’m definitely excited about it.”
Notes: Costa Rica is trying to get to its first Gold Cup final since 2002, when it lost 2-0 to the Americans. “Obviously, we want to look for that reward, that happiness, and go after that,” Ramirez said. “We have a difficult team in front of us.” … The United States’ nine goals are the most in this Gold Cup, while Costa Rica has allowed only one in its four games.