U.S. U-20s defeat Cuba, set to face Mexico in Sunday’s final

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With a 2-0 victory Friday over Cuba, the United States’ men advanced to the final of the CONCACAF U-20 Championship. They will face Mexico on Sunday for the a chance at their first full regional title.

Kaiserslautern attacker Mario Rodríguez got the States on the scoresheet early, beating Cuban goalkeeper Sandy Sanchez near post on an eighth minute roller from just inside the area.

Three minutes later, a deflected shot from Santos Laguna forward Daniel Cuevas went into the upper-right part of the net, providing an early finish to the night’s scoring.

Cuba would finish with only one shot on goal to the U.S.’s six, their defeat relegating them to Sunday’s third place match against El Salvador. Both teams, along with the U.S. and Mexico, have already qualified for this summer’s U-20 World Cup in Turkey.

Mexico advanced to the final with a 2-0 victory over the Salvadorians, with Atlas’s Antonio Briseño scoring both Tri goals.

Mexico have outscored their opponents 12-0 while posting a perfect record over their tournament’s five games. The United States also reaches the final perfect, having scored nine while conceding three times en route to Sunday’s final.

It will be the first time the U.S. and Mexico have met in a CONCACAF U-20 final since 1980 when the Mexicans won 2-0 at Giants Stadium.

From 1986 through 2007, CONCACAF did not hold singular tournament finals. The region used a final group stage from 1986 through 1996 before switching to a split-tournament World Cup qualifying format in 2007.

The U.S. had reached one previous final since CONCACAF went back to a full tournament in 2009, losing that year’s final to Costa Rica.

Should the U.S. win in Puebla on Sunday, it will be their first full CONCACAF U-20 title.

Ferguson still being asked about Moyes: “We chose a good football man”

David Moyes Alex Ferguson
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In some ways absence makes the heart grow fonder, but it seems Sir Alex Ferguson‘s life after Manchester United has been filled with second guessing.

Whether the sales of Paul Pogba and Gerard Pique or the appointment of David Moyes, “Fergie” apparently can’t rest on his title-winning laurels.

[ MORE: Tax evasion charges dropped against Messi, but not his father ]

One thing that seems to bug him more than anything, though, is the idea that he hand-picked David Moyes to be his successor, and should be responsible for his failings.

In a new documentary, Ferguson both defends the appointment of Moyes and explains the process behind his choice.

From the BBC:

“I don’t think we made a mistake at all. I think we chose a good football man,” Ferguson says. “Unfortunately it didn’t work for David.

“Jose Mourinho was going back to Chelsea, Carlo Ancelotti was going to Real Madrid, Jurgen Klopp had signed a contract with Dortmund, Louis Van Gaal was staying with Holland for the World Cup.”

The article also makes another key point, according to Ferguson: the manager claims he only gave United a few months notice that he’d be stepping down. That certainly didn’t provide a lot of lead time to secure a big boss.

What do you make it of it? If your answer is, “When can we stop talking about Moyes and United?” I tend to be with you, but it’s a talking point.

Tax evasion charges against Messi dropped; Case vs father continues

FILE - In this Sept. 27, 2013 file photo, Barcelona F.C. star Lionel Messi, left, arrives at a court to answer questions in a tax fraud case in Gava, near Barcelona, Spain. Barcelona prosecutors are calling for the arrest of Messi's father in a tax fraud case. Prosecutors have cleared Messi of wrongdoing but are seeking an 18-month prison sentence for his father, Jorge Horacio Messi, for allegedly defrauding Spain's tax office of 4 million euros ($4.5 million) in unpaid taxes from 2007-09. (AP Photo/Emilio Morenatti, File)
AP Photo/Emilio Morenatti
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Lionel Messi will not face charges that he and his father defrauded the government in millions of unpaid taxes, though his father is not so lucky.

Messi’s father, Jorge, could face 18 months in jail and an approximate $2.25 million fine despite a voluntary payment of $5.5 million in 2013 to “correct” the missed taxes.

[ WATCH: Hilarious spoof pegs Messi, Ronaldo as “Friends” ]

The Barcleona star had plead ignorance to the charges, something that failed to impress prosecutors. But, it apparently worked out in his favor on Tuesday.

From the BBC:

Prosecutors allege that Jorge avoiding paying tax on his son’s earnings by using offshore companies in Belize and Uruguay between 2007 and 2009.

Messi’s lawyers argued that the player had “never devoted a minute of his life to reading, studying or analysing” the contracts, El Pais newspaper reported.