U.S. Open Cup Fourth Round draw: What it means for your MLS team

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U.S. Soccer announced potential fourth round U.S. Open Cup pairings on Wednesday, but given the way home venues are decided for each round, the future can often be a little muddled. You can check out the official announcement here, but here’s another way to look at it: MLS’s 16 teams; who they play; what happens when they win.

Chicago Fire – The 2011 finalists face USL PRO’s Charlotte Eagles on Wednesday in Rock Hill, S.C. If they win, they host the winner of USL PRO’s Dayton Dutch Lions’ visit to the Columbus Crew.

Chivas USA – The Goats will be at USL PRO’s L.A. Blues next Tuesday in Fullerton. If they advance, Chivas will play at the winner of the LA Galaxy’s visit to the NASL’s Carolina Railhawks.

Colorado Rapids – Colorado makes an expansion scouting trip on Tuesday, visiting USL PRO’s Orlando City SC. With a win, the Rapids will play at defending champions Sporting Kansas City or host the PDL’s Des Moines Menace.

Columbus Crew – If they best the USL’s Dayton Dutch Lions next Wednesday, the Crew will either play at Chicago or host USL PRO’s Charlotte Eagles.

D.C. United – Play at USL Pro’s Richmond Kickers on Tuesday. Win and United host the victor of the PDL’s Ocean City Noe’easters’ visit to the Philadelphia Union.

FC Dallas – They’re on the road at the NASL’s Fort Lauderdale Strikers on Tuesday. If they win, Dallas gets to host the winner of the PDL’s FC Tucson’s trip to play the Houston Dynamo.

Houston Dynamo – If they eliminate FC Tucson on Wednesday, they’ll either visit FC Dallas or host the Fort Lauderdale Strikers.

New England Revolution – They visit USL PRO’s Rochester Rhinos on Tuesday. Should they win, New England welcomes the winner of the PDL’s Reading FC’s visit to the New York Red Bulls.

New York Red Bulls – NY1 play Reading on Wednesday. If they advance, they’ll be in the road, either at New England or Rochester.

Philadelphia Union – Philly will host the PDL’s Ocean City Nor’easters on Tuesday. If they advance, the Union visit either D.C. United or USL PRO’s Richmond Kickers.

Portland Timbers – USL PRO’s Wilmington Hammerheads come to town on Wednesday. If the Timbers win, they’ll either visit the Sounders or host the NASL’s Tampa Bay Rowdies.

Real Salt Lake – Rio Tinto welcomes the NASL’s Atlanta Silverbacks next Tuesday. If RSL wins, they’ll host the winner of the San Jose Earthquakes’ visit to USL PRO’s Charleston Battery.

San Jose Earthquakes – Should they win in Charleston, San Jose will play at the winner of Atlanta’s visit to Real Salt Lake.

Seattle Sounders – Last year’s finalists visit the Tampa Bay Rowdies on Wednesday. If they win, the Sounders will welcome the winner of the Wilmington Hammerheads’ visit to the Portland Timbers.

Sporting Kansas City – The defending champions host the PDL’s Des Moines Menace on Tuesday. Should they win, Sporting will host the winner of Colorado’s visit to Orlando City.

Everton loses Coleman to leg break on Ireland duty

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A horror tackle from Wales’ Neil Taylor snapped Seamus Coleman‘s leg in gruesome fashion on Friday.

Taylor was given a red card, and Coleman was stretched off the pitch in the 0-0 draw.

[ MORE: UEFA World Cup qualifying wrap ]

Ireland manager Martin O’Neill confirmed what was apparent from the match replay: the Everton man has a broken ankle.

“It’s a bad break. He’s a fantastic player and character. It’s a major blow for the lad, his club and us.

“Apparently it wasn’t the best challenge in the world – I haven’t seen it. He’s gone to hospital. I saw his reaction immediately and it didn’t look good. He was holding is leg up and it didn’t look good.

This is not only awful for the player, but causes stress as Everton mounts its assault on the Top Six. The right back has also manned right mid for Ronald Koeman this season, and has four goals and four assists in 26 Premier League matches.

Mason Holgate, Muhamed Besic, and Phil Jagielka have played some right back for Everton, while Ramiro Funes Mori has deputized at left back.

Emotional McClean speaks after honoring deceased teammate (video)

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After wearing the No. 5 to honor of his recently deceased teammate, James McClean met with the media following Ireland’s 0-0 draw with Wales in World Cup qualifying on Friday.

McClean played with Ryan McBride at Derry City, and left Ireland camp to attend funeral services after McBride died following a match last weekend. McClean was also mourning the death of friend and Sinn Féin politician Martin McGuinness.

Throw in a gruesome injury to teammate Seamus Coleman and, in McClean’s words, “I’ve had better weeks”.

[ MORE: UEFA World Cup qualifying wrap ]

McClean, 27, spoke with evident emotion following a Man of the Match turn in Ireland’s draw (video below).

“It was a really tough week. The lads here have been great. They rallied around me. The manager was first class as well. He let me go up to Derry there on Tuesday and say my goodbyes. It’s been a tough week with Seamus injury as well. It’d been nice if we had have got a win and ended on a positive note, but it wasn’t to be.

“(McBride and McGuinness) were going through my thoughts today. I wanted to put in a performance that would make them proud. In the national anthem and the moment’s applause, holding my wee girl, it was emotional but I tried to put that in the right way into my performance. Hopefully tonight I’ve done the lads proud.”

World Cup qualifiers: Wales in trouble; Buffon hits 1000

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Friday’s matches mark the midway point of the main round of qualifying in UEFA, and the tables remain tight near the top of Groups D and G.

[ MORE: Smalling hurt, Gibson called up ]

Group I, however, is seeing some distance between first and second thanks to Croatia’s result versus Ukraine.

Republic of Ireland 0-0 Wales

Neil Taylor was sent off in the 69th minute for Wales, whose World Cup hopes are in trouble.

Seamus Coleman was stretchered off after the tackle, with a scary-looking injury that will leave Everton fans sick in more ways than one. Coleman’s leg was broken, and left dangling by the challenge.

Ireland couldn’t take advantage of the sending off, and failed in a bid to overtake Serbia for first in Group D. The Irish trail on goal differential, and will host Serbia on Sept. 5.

But Wales will rue the result more, remaining four points back of second-place Ireland. Chris Coleman’s side drops a point behind Austria as well, and will not have Taylor or Gareth Bale (card accumulation) in its next match. That comes against leaders Serbia.

Italy 2-0 Albania

Daniele De Rossi scored a 12th minute penalty kick won by Andrea Belotti, and Ciro Immobile scored late to provided the goals in Gianluigi Buffon’s 1000th appearance for club and country. Fittingly, it ended in a clean sheet. The match was briefly delayed after flares were thrown onto the field.

Spain 4-1 Israel

David Silva, Vitolo, and Diego Costa stakes the Spaniards to a three-goal lead, with Lior Refaelov ruining David De Gea‘s clean sheet with 11 minutes to play. Isco scored the match’s final goal.

Spain remains atop Group G on goal differential, eight better than second place Italy. Israel is four points behind both.

Croatia 1-0 Ukraine

Fiorentina’s Nikola Kalinic’s 38th minute goal was enough for the hosts, and Croatia is now five points clear of Ukraine and three above Iceland midway through qualifying.

Elsewhere
Austria 2-0 Moldova — RB Leipzig’s Sabitzer nabs winner
Liechtenstein 0-3 Macedonia — Ilija Nestorovski bags brace
Kosovo 1-2 Iceland — Sigurdsson PK the match winner
Georgia 1-3 Serbia — Mitrovic, Tadic lead the way
Turkey 2-0 Finland — Brace for Cenk Tosun

Boro’s Gibson called to England after injury to Man Utd’s Smalling

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Scoring goals has been the biggest problem for Middlesbrough in its return to the Premier League, and that overshadows how well the Northeast club has defended its own goal.

Ben Gibson has been a huge part of that, and now he’ll earn the chance to represent his nation thanks to an injury to Chris Smalling. Gibson will join England ahead of Sunday’s home World Cup qualifier against Lithuania.

[ MORE: Podolski leads Germany past England ]

Gibson has far and away been Boro’s best player, leading the side in blocked shots and clearances. The blocked shots total is tied for ninth in the Premier League, 11 behind current leader and new England teammate Michael Keane.

Smalling’s undisclosed injury is a bigger problem for Manchester United, which had already lost center back depth on England duty when Phil Jones was hurt.