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Chicago Fire’s Wells Thompson suspended one match

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I once launched a fairly uncomfortable conversation with Wells Thompson – but one that turned out quite informative, and really quite well.

Thompson was a Colorado Rapids man then, prepping along with the rest of Gary Smith’s team for the 2010 MLS Cup final in Toronto. I had him off to the side during one interview session and told him – honestly now – that he was once on my least favorite player list. I told him, as delicately as possible, that I formerly would have labeled him a “punk” on the field.

I could say all this and not risk a punch in the nose because I also said that he had seemed to turn quite a corner, that I now saw a lot more “soccer” in his game, a lot less “menace and meanness.”

And you know what? He agreed, and was very pleasant about it. Thompson smiled a told me I was absolutely correct, that his hands were once quite dirty, so to speak, and that he had changed his life. Thompson had become much more religious, and he understood that certain ways on the soccer field were 100 percent hypocritical to the way he wanted to live his life. So he cleaned up his game, playing hard, but subtracting the high levels of griping, fouling and frustrating.

It was an interesting and informative conversation.

In a tackle last week against Columbus, the Chicago Fire midfielder got in late. Way late. Major League Soccer decided today that Thompson needed more than the yellow card issued that night, suspending the Fire midfielder-defender an extra match.

What he said about the incident from a piece at (You can also watch the incident in that link.)

I’d been praying about it all week hoping I wouldn’t get a suspension and thought I was actually in the clear. I guess the coaches heard late Tuesday but you know I’m just disappointed, you get a string of games in and for me, for someone that hasn’t been playing that much is such a plus.

“You finally get comfortable with the position and I feel like I’ve been playing well. I just want to keep playing and I feel like it comes at a bad time but everything happens for a reason. I’m just going to take it and get back out there next week.”

How can Man United qualify for last 16 of Champions League?

Wayne Rooney, Manchester United FC

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.

VIDEO: Can Leicester stun the world? Man United title favorites?

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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 Nistelrooy’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.

Men in Blazers podcast: The Leicester fairytale goes on

Men In Blazers - Sept. 22
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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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Pellegrini updates status of Joe Hart’s hamstring injury

Joe Hart, Manchester City FC
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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).