Portland Timbers v Real Salt Lake

Alvaro Saborio’s injury dents Real Salt Lake, Costa Rica

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News out of Utah today is bad news if you’re a Real Salt Lake fan, but potentially terrible news for Costa Rica’s ongoing bid to reach the 2014 World Cup.

The Deseret News reports today that Alvaro Saborio’s quad injury will keep the Costa Rican international sidelined for perhaps several weeks. He suffered the injury in practice late last week and missed Saturday’s loss to the LA Galaxy.

(So, for that set who believes Saborio is over-valued because “all he does is score goals,” well, here you go. We talked about this previously.)

The subplot here (or the main plot line, perhaps, if Saborio’s time in the treatment room goes beyond three or four weeks) is what impact this has on June qualifiers. June is huge, with all six nations involved in final round qualifying set to play three times.

Costa Rica hosts Honduras on June 7, visits Mexico four nights later and then hosts Panama on June 18. (The complete CONCACAF final round schedule is here.)

The quad injury isn’t likely to extend into June. But will the fourth-year MLS man be fit and sharp?

Along with Panama’s Blas Perez, Mexico’s Javier “Chicharito” Hernadez and perhaps Clint Dempsey, Saborio is among the region’s top marksman still involved in the World Cup chase. Saborio has seven goals in 2014 qualifying, second only to Perez (9 goals) among active strikers.

The Ticos are currently tied for second along with the United States and Honduras in the six-team “Hexagonal.”

“Super computer” predicts final Premier League standings

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With eight games gone and 30 to go in the Premier League, now is the time that those preseason predictions start to get revised and new knee-jerk picks are made.

[ MORE: Klopp’s 10 best quotes ]

Stats.com have run the numbers through their “super computer” — how big is this thing? To me, it’s the size of several rooms… — and the intriguing table will surprise many.

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Manchester City will win the title, pipping Arsenal to the crown, while Manchester United will finish in third and Chelsea will recover to finish fourth. At the bottom, only Bournemouth will be relegated out of the newly promoted teams, while it is looking bleak for Sunderland and Aston Villa.

[ MORE: Chung to sue Blatter for $100 million

Do you agree with the findings of Stats.com?

Click on this link via talkSPORT to see the points tally for each team, as it promises to be a tight race for the title and against relegation.

Predicted final Premier League table

1- Manchester City
2- Arsenal
3 – Manchester United
4- Chelsea
5- Liverpool
6- Tottenham Hotspur
7- Everton
8- Southampton
9- Crystal Palace
10- West Ham United
11- Swansea City
12- Stoke City
13- Leicester City
14 – West Bromwich Albion
15- Newcastle United
16- Norwich City
17- Watford
18- Bournemouth
19- Aston Villa
20- Sunderland

After defying quit calls, Blatter mediates between FAs

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ZURICH (AP) After defying pleas from FIFA sponsors to quit immediately, President Sepp Blatter is continuing regular business at soccer’s governing body, presiding over a dispute between football federations on Tuesday.

[ MORE: Chung to sue Blatter for $100 million ]

Palestinian Football Union president Jibril Rajoub told The Associated Press: “Blatter is functioning well and in a good mood with common sense, a sense of humor.”

According to Rajoub, Blatter ruled at Tuesday’s meeting with Saudi Arabia’s federation that a decision to force the Palestinians to play a World Cup qualifier at a neutral venue was “invalid.”

[ MORE: Bradley to coach Sunderland?

FIFA’s World Cup committee initially ordered the Oct. 13 game to be relocated from the West Bank to neighboring Jordan after the first leg was played in Riyadh.

[ MORE: Klopp’s 10 best quotes ]

Rajoub says FIFA has now agreed to postpone the fixture until a resolution is found.