Sunderland v Tottenham Hotspur - Premier League

Remember when Brad Friedel used to get playing time for Tottenham?


At this time last year, there were still a few smoldering embers of a goalkeeper competition around White Hart Lane, with Hugo Lloris having only recently gotten his feet firmly established in the starting goalkeeper’s position.

That’s the position he took from Brad Friedel, remember?

I was thinking about that Saturday as Lloris lined up once again for Spurs, this time in the FA Cup as Tottenham faced off with its bitter North London rival, Arsenal. Wasn’t there just a little voice inside every U.S. soccer supporter wondering if perhaps, just maybe, new manager Tim Sherwood would give the former U.S. international a start? Spurs (and Lloris, naturally) had been quite busy late, after all?

But there was Lloris once again, standing sentinel in what turned out to be Tottenham’s FA Cup ouster.

To be clear, Lloris is the right choice. Even Friedel said so as the 2013-14 campaign kicked off. It was also inevitable once Lloris, 26, arrived last year from Lyon for $19 million in the summer of 2012. Besides, Lloris is far better suited to play the style Spurs desire, with defenders positioned in such a high line.

Friedel has played this year, but sparingly, with just seven starts so far. With Spurs now out of the League Cup and the FA Cup (although still in Europa League), the opportunities will dwindle further unless Lloris turns up injured.

All of this is why it would be so great to see Friedel make a return to MLS for 2014. He wants to coach, and history has taught us that the best chance of coaching success in MLS comes attached to those who “get the league,” those who understand the league’s quirky ways.

There are maybe 6-8 MLS clubs that wouldn’t see an improvement in their goalkeeping situations with Friedel on the roster. Even in places where a solid, well-regarded  youngster is in place (Chicago, D.C. United, Colorado to name three), couldn’t the long-term be well-served by having Friedel around for a year to show the “kid” how it’s done?

Of course, there’s a salary consideration here. A club would have to convince Friedel to take a pay cut – and maybe that’s something the former international doesn’t want. Still, it’s all worth talking about, eh?

Zlatan becomes PSG’s all-time leading goalscorer

HARRISON, NJ - JULY 21:  Zlatan Ibrahimovic #10 of Paris Saint-Germain celebrates his goal in the second half against AFC Fiorentina during the International Champions Cup at Red Bull Arena on July 21, 2015 in Harrison, New Jersey.Paris Saint-Germain defeated ACF Fiorentina 4-2.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
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Zlatan Ibrahimovic joined Paris Saint-Germain in 2012, and he is already the club’s all-time leading scorer.

After scoring both of PSG’s goals in a 2-1 win over Marseille today, Zlatan’s tally is up to 110 goals for the club, eclipsing Pauleta’s mark of 109. However, Pauleta needed 79 more matches to reach that number.

Zlatan has scored at a blistering pace since moving to Paris, having seasons of 35, 41, and 30 goals in his first three years at the club. Early into his fourth season with PSG, he has four goals through seven matches.

Not only has Zlatan achieved great success individually during his time at Parc des Princes, the club has dominated French football during his tenure.

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Since Zlatan moved to Paris in 2012, the club has won three consecutive Ligue 1 titles, two League Cups, and one French Cup. During that time, Zlatan was twice named Ligue 1 Player of the Year and won two Golden Boots as the league’s top scorer.

Zlatan’s contract with PSG is up at the end of this season, and it has been long suspected that he will move on and join a new club next summer. Despite turning 34 earlier this month, Zlatan has proven his is still one of the world’s elite goalscorers, and will have his choice of clubs should he leave PSG.

Atletico and Real draw 1-1 in Madrid derby

MADRID, SPAIN - OCTOBER 04: Karim Benzema of Real Madrid CF wins the header after Gabi Fernandez of Atletico de Madrid during the La Liga match between Club Atletico de Madrid and Real Madrid CF at Vicente Calderon Stadium on October 4, 2015 in Madrid, Spain.  (Photo by Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images)
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Luciano Vietto scored with less than ten minutes to play to earn a draw for Atletico Madrid against their crosstown rivals Real.

Karim Benzema had given Real Madrid an early lead, heading home a cross from Dani Carvajal in the ninth minute. While Cristiano Ronaldo may get all the headlines, Benzema has been superb for Real, scoring six goals in seven La Liga matches this season.

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Atletico had a golden opportunity to draw level in the 22nd minute when the hosts were awarded a penalty, but Keylor Navas made a brilliant save to deny Antoine Griezmann, keeping Real ahead.

Still trailing 1-0, Diego Simeone made a substitution for Atletico in the 58th minute, bringing in Luciano Vietto for some added strength on the attack. It was the 21-year-old’s first taste of a Madrid derby, and he proved to be ready for the pressure.

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With the clock winding down, Jackson Martinez played a cross in from the left wing, and after a slight scramble in the box, the young Vietto cleaned up the scraps to level the score in the 83rd minute.

The result leaves Real Madrid second in La Liga, one point behind leaders Villarreal, while Atletico sits fifth, three points off the leaders.