Schellas Hyndman to step down as FC Dallas head coach

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The end of the 2013 MLS campaign will mark the end of an era for FC Dallas.

Head coach Schellas Hyndman announced on Friday that he will resign from his position at the end of the current season, leaving the MLS franchise after over five years in charge.

“I truly appreciate the opportunity to be a part of the FC Dallas family for the last five years,” Hyndman said. “After a lot of thought and consideration, I feel the time is right for me to step down as head coach of FC Dallas. I want to thank the Hunt family for their support and friendship, our players, coaches and front office for their dedication and effort during my time here, and especially the great FC Dallas fans.”

Hyndman’s crowning season came in 2010 when he was named MLS Coach of the Year, the first manager in FCD history to grab that accolade as his side made it to MLS Cup 2010 but narrowly lost to Colorado in overtime.

Since then, Dallas have struggled with injuries, poor transfers and many other issues hampering the Texas club. Despite that, FC Dallas Chairman Clark Hunt thanked Hyndman for his dedication to the club.

“My family and I have a tremendous amount of respect and admiration for Schellas both as a coach and as a person, and we sincerely appreciate his contributions to the club over the last five-and-a-half seasons,” Hunt said. “Having had the pleasure of knowing him for the last 30 years, I have seen first-hand his commitment to his craft and the passion he has for the game. We wish him well in the next chapter of his life, and he will be missed.”

Hyndman, 61, holds a 62-57-58 record as FC Dallas head coach and goes into his final two games in charge of FCD with the 2013 playoffs out of reach.

His final home game in charge will be against Seattle on Saturday, and he will end his time in charge of Dallas with a road game against the San Jose Earthquakes on October 26.

A long-time coach of Southern Methodist University and a guru at the collegiate level for over 31 years, Hyndman made a seamless switch to professional soccer in 2008 and made FC Dallas into a Western Conference force.

But after a bright start to 2013 faltered and the Texas outfit spiraled out of playoff contention throughout the second half of the campaign, the time for someone else to move the club forward arrived. This is not the way Hyndman would’ve wanted to bow out, however he’s etched his name into MLS history with his hard work and dedication at the helm of FC Dallas.

CCL: Toronto wins; Wild Herediano comeback

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On a single-digit Tuesday that severely limited the attendance at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park, where the Colorado Rapids and Toronto FC dueled in the first leg of the CONCACAF Champions League quarterfinals.

Jonathan Osorio’s second half goal put the Reds in front and Sebastian Giovinco had a goal and an assist and the visitors take a 2-0 decision back to Ontario.

The best chance of a preseason quality first half saw Dominique Badji flub the best chance of the stage into the feet of Alex Bono.

Toronto took the lead, nabbing the away goal through Osorio’s header of a Sebastian Giovinco cross. And the Atomic Ant got on the board with a goal of his own off an Auro assist with 17 minutes to play.

[ MORE: Georgia teen heading to Schalke ]

Tuesday’s other first leg saw Herediano and Tigres play to a 2-2 draw in Costa Rica, with the Liga MX visitors taking a pair of away goals but shocked by a pair of stoppage time concessions.

Francisco Meza scored in the 15th minute and Lucas Zelarayan seemingly put it to bed with 15 minutes to play.

But Yendrick Ruiz converted a 90th minute penalty kick before ex-DC United forward Jairo Arrieta did this ahead of the Feb. 22 second leg in Mexico.

Another American heads to Schalke: Zyen Jones

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Schalkamerica?

Bundesliga mainstays Schalke have added yet another American, this one 17-year-old Zyen Jones of Atlanta United. Jones is a forward with the U.S. U-17 national team.

Like Josh Sargent, who signed his deal with Werder Bremen on Tuesday, he’ll head overseas and sign a pro contract on Aug. 25, his 18th birthday.

[ MORE: Chelsea-Barca recap | JPW’s 3 things ]

Jones will join several potential USMNT teammates in Gelsenkirchen, including injured senior team midfielder Weston McKennie and youngster Nick Taitague (19). Forward Haji Wright is on loan at Sandhausen.

Report: Simon Dawkins making move to Minnesota

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The Loons are taking a flier on Simon Dawkins.

The London-born Jamaican international hasn’t done a ton since returning to MLS from Derby County, and turned 30 over the offseason, and Paul Tenorio says the player is on his way to Minnesota United.

[ MORE: Chelsea-Barca recap | JPW’s 3 things ]

Dawkins scored 14 goals between 2011-12 with San Jose, but scored just five times in his return to California and was blanked in 14 appearances last season. He registered just 10 shots in those matches.

The left winger would join an attack with Christian Ramirez, Kevin Molino, Ethan Finlay, and a pair of Generations Adidas forwards: Abu Danladi (2017 SuperDraft) and Mason Toye (2018).

Champions League Weds. preview: Sevilla-Man Utd, Shakhtar-Roma

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Jose Mourinho says Manchester United is one round away from having legitimate hopes of winning the UEFA Champions League.

[ MORE: Chelsea-Barca recap | JPW’s 3 things ]

That makes the Round of 16 tie against Sevilla — beginning Wednesday in Spain — a bit of a dream qualifier for the Red Devils.

“I normally say that Champions League dreams start around the quarter-finals and not yet in the last 16,” Mourinho said on ManUtd.com. “Last 16 still looks a long way to go. When a team reaches the quarter-finals, I think it’s the moment where even the teams that are not favourites – which is our case – they start realising that anything is possible.

The injury-hit side got a bit of a boost on Tuesday in Sevilla, where Paul Pogba, Antonio Valencia, Marcus Rashford and Ander Herrera all trained ahead of the first leg.

As for the hosts, manager Vincenzo Montella admitted that he hopes Pogba won’t play, and joked that he’d prefer to tie up and “padlock” Alexis Sanchez in a bid to defend against the Chilean star.

The final Round of 16 tie to start will be Roma’s pairing with Shakhtar Donetsk, with the first leg taking place in Ukraine.

Shakhtar hasn’t played in some time, but the great equalizer is the bitter cold at Donbass Arena, where the temperature is set to be between 21 and 28 degrees Fahrenheit come kickoff.

Don’t worry, Roma fans, Daniele De Rossi is busy breathing fire into any teammates angling for excuses:

“The cold weather could affect things a little because we’re not used to it but at the end of the day it comes down to how well you perform out there. We must be mentally ready from the get-go because the cold might hit us in the opening minutes.

“If it was that much of a factor, these teams would win the Champions League every year. You don’t go through because of the weather.”