FA Cup Roundup: Few cup-sets on the way to the final sixteen

Leave a comment

Those looking for dramatic David-beats-Goliath stories from this weekend’s FA Cup action were solely disappointed. Only one Premier League side fell to lower-level competition, but as that side was Crystal Palace, who lost to Championship Wigan, it’s a bit difficult to even classify that game as a “cup-set”.

Watford, to their credit, did their best to provide us with a genuine thriller. The Championship side, currently 15th, went to Manchester City and nearly came away winners. The Hornets were up 2-0 by the 30-minute mark, and carried that lead until 30 minutes to the end. Then Sergio Agüero happened. The Argentine scored a hat-trick, with Aleksandar Kolarov adding a fourth, to make sure City advanced and kept their dreams of a quadruple alive.

(READ MORE: MANCHESTER CITY COME BACK TO BEAT WATFORD)

Liverpool started off Saturday’s action with a routine 2-0 win over Bournemouth, and Everton closed it in similar style by beating Stevenage 4-0. All in all nine Premier League sides advanced to the final sixteen: Arsenal, Liverpool, Swansea, Cardiff City, Manchester City, Southampton, Hull City, Sunderland and Everton.

The remaining slots are filled by Championship sides Brighton and Hove Albion, Charlton, Sheffield Wednesday and Wigan. Two League One sides remain hopeful of making it to the final sixteen: Sheffield United play Fulham on Sunday, while Preston North End face a replay against Nottingham Forest.

Finally, one of Chelsea or Stoke will be the final addition to Round 5. The two sides meet tomorrow in the final match (excluding replays) of Round 4.

Friday’s Results

Arsenal 4-0 Coventry
Nottingham Forest 0-0 Preston

Saturday’s Results

Bournemouth 0-2 Liverpool
Birmingham 1-2 Swansea
Bolton 0-1 Cardiff
Huddersfield 0-1 Charlton
Manchester City 4-2 Watford
Port Vale 1-3 Brighton
Rochdale 1-2 Sheffield Wednesday
Southampton 2-0 Yeovil
Southend 0-2 Hull City
Sunderland 1-0 Kidderminster
Wigan 2-1 Crystal Palace
Stevenage 0-4 Everton

Sunday’s Fixtures

Sheffield United vs. Fulham
Chelsea vs. Stoke City

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′)

Report: Man City adding Mendy to continue backline restoration

Richard Heathcote/Getty Images
Leave a comment

Fresh off of completing a record deal to help bolster the club’s back line this summer, Manchester City is back at it with the Premier League season looming.

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

The Citizens are reportedly on the brink of signing Monaco left back Benjamin Mendy to yet another world-record fee — which will total over $67 million.

Confirmation of the deal has yet to be announced by either team, but L’Equipe is reporting that the Citizens are hot on the 23-year-old’s trail in adding to their pricy back four.

Manager Pep Guardiola and Man City have not been shy readjusting their defensive unit over the past year, adding expensive first-team choices John Stones and Kyle Walker.