Report: Arsenal interested in Brad Guzan

3 Comments

According to MLSSoccer.com, Arsenal’s eyes have been opened by the play of American goalkeeper Brad Guzan thus far in the season.

The report doesn’t expand on the level of interest, even going as far as saying they aren’t sure if the Gunners have spoken to Aston Villa about his availability.

However, it does say that Guzan should be added to the likes of Tim Krul, Asmir Begovic, and Julio Cesar whom Arsenal have been linked with since the summer.

Wojciech Sczcesny was a man with few supporters at the Emirates this summer, but has made a strong case to retain his spot so far this season, doing his part to put Arsenal top of the table in the Barclays Premier League.

Guzan has performed admirably as well at Aston Villa, where he is currently on an 3-match unbeaten run including a win over Manchester City. Guzan and company have allowed just two goals and kept two clean sheets during that span.

At 29 years old, Guzan isn’t old for a goalkeeper, and has plenty of life left in his Premier League career.

The question remains, would Guzan – or any of the others on that list, for that matter – really be an upgrade over the 23-year-old Szczesny, who at such a young age would still have plenty of growing left to do?

The Pole has been overshadowed by the key components of the Arsenal attack, Mesut Ozil and Olivier Giroud, this season.  He has, however, made a number of top-drawer saves to keep the Gunners on top of matches this year, despite claiming just one clean sheet.

Given the shaky state of the Arsenal defense, especially in the beginning of the season where Bacary Sagna was forced to play in the middle thanks to so many injuries to the back line, Szczesny’s performance thus far is especially impressive.

Will Arsenal take a liking to the American in the winter? Or will they stick with their current netminder, who continues to impress but can’t seemingly gain the full, everlasting trust of Gunner faithful?

STREAM LIVE: West Brom-Palace, Liverpool-Leicester in PL Asia Trophy

Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images
Leave a comment

It’s a incredibly early kickoff for the third place game of the Premier League Asia Trophy tournament, at least here in the States, where West Bromwich Albion and Crystal Palace duke it out at 6 a.m. ET. in Hong Kong.

West Brom lost to Leicester City in its semifinal when youngster Sam Field missed the side’s seventh attempt in penalty kicks. Jay Rodriguez scored the Baggies goal in regulation of a 1-1 draw.

[ LIVE: Stream PL Asia Trophy here ]  

Palace fell 2-0 to Liverpool in its semifinal.

The final will be staged at 8:30 a.m. ET, when Liverpool will hope to build on a win paced by Divock Origi and Dominic Solanke goals.

2-year doping ban upheld for Finland, CSKA Moscow player

Epsilon/Getty Images
Leave a comment

LAUSANNE, Switzerland (AP) The Court of Arbitration for Sport has upheld a two-year ban for CSKA Moscow midfielder Roman Eremenko for a positive test for cocaine.

[ MORE: Morata signs five-year contract at Chelsea ]

CAS says the ban imposed by UEFA was “appropriate” and dismissed the Finland international’s appeal.

[ MORE: Vertonghen says Spurs need to “level up” like rest of PL contenders ]

The ban will expire on Oct. 5, 2018, when Eremenko will be 31.

Eremenko tested positive after playing in a Champions League game for CSKA Moscow against Bayer Leverkusen last September. The 2-2 result was not affected despite Eremenko scoring CSKA’s second goal.

Born in Moscow, Eremenko grew up in Finland and has represented its national team 73 times.

Webb says De Jong would have been sent off with video review

Christopher Lee/Getty Images
1 Comment

NEW YORK (AP) Howard Webb says he would have given Dutch midfielder Nigel De Jong a red card in the 2010 World Cup final if a video assistant referee had been in place.

The retired English referee showed De Jong a yellow card in the 28th minute for his karate kick into the chest of Spain’s Xabi Alonso. Hired in March to oversee video technology for professional soccer in the U.S. and Canada, Webb held a media seminar Friday ahead of its Aug. 5 launch in Major League Soccer.

Webb says: “Yes, it was a clear red card. It was a clear and obvious error on my part not to send the player off, and VAR would have been able to recommend a review to me, and I would have been able to make the right call.”

Now 46, Webb was a Premier League referee from 2003-14. He worked the Champions League and World Cup finals in 2010, became director of referees at the Saudi Arabian Football Federation, and started in March as manager of video assistant referee operations for the Professional Referee Organization.

MLS Snapshot: Orlando City 0-1 Atlanta United (video)

Twitter/@MLS
Leave a comment

The game in 100 words (or less): Friday night’s effort at Orlando City Stadium wasn’t the prettiest for either side but Atlanta United will gladly take three points from the fixture as the Central Florida venue proved to be a fortress once more. The Lions were far superior in their attacking threats throughout the match, testing USMNT and Atlanta goalkeeper Brad Guzan on multiple occasions. However, it was Hector Villalba that proved to be the difference when he blasted a long-distance effort to beat Joe Bendik in the 86th minute. Atlanta extends its unbeaten streak to four matches with Friday’s decision, keeping Tata Martino’s side in fourth place in the Eastern Conference, while Orlando City moves into fifth.

Three moments that mattered

36′ — Guzan stands tall, denies Rivas — Carlos Rivas thought he scorched this one (and he did…), but Brad Guzan acted like it was nothing as he held his ground to make the stop.

39′ — Spector gets ripped off by Guzan — The U.S. goalkeeper is at it again… What a save!

86′ — Villalba unleashes stunner to propel Atlanta — Sometimes it just takes one good hit as a striker.

[ FOLLOW: All of PST’s MLS coverageStandings | Stats | Schedule ]

Man of the match: Brad Guzan

Goalscorers: Hector Villalba (86′)