El Salvador v United States - 2013 CONCACAF Gold Cup

Want Rodolfo Zelaya for your MLS team? Anyone … Anyone?


I’ll play a dangerous game here and make a couple of assumptions:

If you saw El Salvador livewire striker Rodolfo Zelaya against the United States on Sunday, and if you have a dog in the MLS fight, you want that guy for your team.

That’s the first assumption. The second one: You want him, like, yesterday.

It’s always dangerous to get too excited about a small scouting sample; I’m the first to say so.  Then again, he’s not exactly new, now with 17 goals for his country.

Besides, it certainly is tempting to crave the dogged 25-year-old’s services after watching his one-man-army act Sunday against the U.S. back line, isn’t it?

Zelaya helped made Nick Rimando work in Sunday’s first half  and made the U.S. rear guard look a bit silly as he blew by one defender after another, ultimately felled by DaMarcus Beasley (in a moment that should remind everyone, Beasley is not a natural defender.) Zelaya then coolly finished his penalty kick against goalkeeper with a good history of stopping them.

He sometimes made U.S. center backs Clarence Goodson and Matt Besler look too stationary with his speedy movement.

(MORE: United States cruises past El Salvador in Gold Cup quarterfinal)

Oh, and this: consider that Zelaya scored all four of El Salvador’s goals in the tournament, and you can see why his time appears to have arrived. Skillful, tenacious and with a nose for goal, he looks a little like Carlos Ruiz from back in the day – although presumably without all the baggage.

After two years at Mexico’s Leon and an injury-interrupted loan spell in with Russia’s Alania Vladikavkaz, the Salvadoran is back in his home country with Alianza. Translation, it probably wouldn’t take a king’s ransom to buy the guy, especially since he has just six months left on his contract. If the Salvadoran Primera Division club wants to cash in, it has to be now. Otherwise Zelaya can move without compensation in January.

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).