If you missed Clint Dempsey’s double for Tottenham yesterday, despair not. There are plenty of chances to see U.S. men’s national team types on TV this weekend, from points here and abroad.
The list is here from U.S. Soccer; I’ll supply the highlights:
- Herculez Gomez has been a busy, busy man lately. He was front and center over two legs as Santos Laguna eliminated Seattle from CONCACAF Champions League semifinal play. As the U.S. striker went a full 90 in Tuesday’s second leg, it’s hard to say how much of a role Gomez will play Friday night as Santos hosts mid-table Toluca at Estadio Corona. Santos is currently fourth in the 18-team Liga MX table. The match kicks off Friday at 8:30 p.m. ET on Univision Deportes.
- If Tim Howard (pictured) and Everton has any hope of moving into Champions League spot, winning Saturday against Queens Park Rangers is an absolute must. QPR is already essentially relegated; not officially, but if Harry Redknapp’s team escapes the dreaded drop, the church is likely to classify it as an actual, documented “miracle.” Saturday’s match will be shown on Fox Soccer Channel at noon ET.
- Brad Guzan and Aston Villa can take a big leap toward relegation safety Saturday by grabbing all three points when Fulham (safe in the middle of the pack in England’s top tier table, unlikely to make a move into high ground or low ground on the table) visits Villa Park. It’s an morning EPL match (well, you know, “morning” here) but will be shown on delay at 2 p.m. ET on Fox Soccer Channel.
- Landon Donovan is no longer by himself when it comes to big-timers from the U.S. national team who make their living with the LA Galaxy. Omar Gonzalez now belongs in that category. FC Dallas hosts the LA Galaxy at 7:30 p.m. ET Saturday on the NBC Sports Network. (Watch for a CONCACAF Champions League hangover from the Galaxy – although Bruce Arena has done this before, and the Galaxy manager knows his way around these potential trip wires.)
- While Geoff Cameron got right into the Stoke City lineup upon arrival at the Britannia, former FC Dallas man Brek Shea has been able to gain a regular place. Either way, Stoke City hosts a big one, facing mighty Manchester United at 9 a.m. ET Sunday on Fox Soccer Channel.
Middlesbrough has impressed at times during its return to the Premier League this season, and now the club looks to bolster its backline as the transfer window closes.
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The club announced the loan signing of Arsenal defender Calum Chambers on Tuesday, providing the Boro with a promising young player to contribute in the back.
Chambers, 21, has made 58 appearances in the PL with both the Gunners and Southampton, while also earning three caps for England.
Middlesbrough manager Aitor Karanka revaled his excitement over the signing, while also stating that the player addresses a big need on the backline.
“I’m really pleased,” said Karanka. “It’s a position where we’ve been working towards bringing the right player in. We haven’t been in a hurry because Calum was the player we were waiting for, and he’s going to help us a lot.”
The Gunners have been heavily criticized for not spending enough during the transfer season, however, Arsene Wenger has gotten the man he wanted to help out defensively.
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Arsenal announced the signing of Valencia defender Shkodran Mustafi on Tuesday, after the German centerback had been previously been linked to the club for some time as their top transfer target.
Mustafi will likely figure immediately into the Arsenal defense, which has also added Rob Holding this summer. The 24-year-old made over 64 appearances for Valencia while in La Liga after beginning his academy career in England with Everton.
Hope Solo hasn’t had the best couple of weeks since the U.S. Women’s National Team bailed out of the 2016 Olympics.
On Tuesday, the U.S. keeper announced her decision to take a step back from her club team as well after receiving a six-month ban from U.S. Soccer.
The veteran American shot stopper took to Twitter to make her decision known, leaving her status unknown with the Seattle Reign in the future. Solo remains under contract until the end of the current campaign, however, it is not known as to how her decision to sit out will affect her financially.
Solo wil be eligible to return to the USWNT in February, but it will be up to head coach Jill Ellis to reintroduce the 35-year-old into the fold.
U.S. Men’s National Team and LA Galaxy forward Gyasi Zardes will miss the rest of the MLS regular season with a broken bone in his right foot.
It was initially believed on Monday that the U.S. attacker could be out until the end of 2016 after suffering the injury in Saturday’s 0-0 draw against the Vancouver Whitecaps.
Zardes was taken down by Whitecaps defender Kendall Waston during the latter stages of the match, with the Costa Rican apparently catching the inside of the 24-year-old’s foot, ultimately causing the injury.
Because of his extended absence, Zardes was ruled out of consideration for the USMNT squad ahead of their upcoming CONCACAF World Cup qualifying matches vs. St. Vincent and the Grenadines and Trinidad & Tobago.