Howard had a wonderful season for Everton.

Watch Live: Newcastle United vs. Everton (Lineups and Discussion)

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Coming off a dramatic weekend victory over Crystal Palace, Newcastle United will look to embolden their Europa League hopes today against visiting Everton, with Roberto Martínez’s Toffees one of the teams the Magpies could catch in their quest for European soccer. The game kicks off at 3:45 p.m. ET, with live coverage available to stream via NBC Sports Live Extra.

Though manager Alan Pardew is still suspended, Newcastle enters today’s match having won three of their last our in league, a run that’s affirmed their grip on eighth place. But the Toon will need to move up one spot if they’re to reach Europe League, and with Manchester United only five points away ahead of its derby today against City, the Toffees’ visit gives Newcastle an opportunity to close the gap on the seventh place Red Devils.

To do so, they will have to continue to get by without forward Loic Remy, who has been crucial to Newcastle’s attack throughout the season. This weekend, however, the Magpies scored their first goal of the season without the Frenchman on the field, getting a stoppage time winner from Papiss Cissé to down Palace, 1-0.


Everton needed no such heroics to deal with visiting Swansea City. Though Swans eventually made it a one-goal game come full-time, Martínez’s side was up 3-1 by the hour mark, with goals from Leighton Baines, Romelu Lukaku, and Ross Barkley delivering the club’s third straight victory.

Everton enters today’s match only two points behind fifth place Tottenham, though the gap between themselves and fourth (eight) is too big to hope for more than Europa League. Today at St. James’ Park, the Toffees will be looking to strengthen their claim on one of the league’s European spots, potentially dealing a debilitating blow to their competition in the process.


Newcastle United: Krul; Yanga-Mbiwa, Williamson, Coloccini, Dummet; Sissoko, Anita, Tioté, Gouffran; de Jong, Cissé

Subs: Elliot, Haidara, S. Taylor, Gosling, Marveaux, Ben Arfa, Shola Ameobi

Everton: Howard; Baines, Distin, Stones, Coleman; Barry, McCarthy; Deulofeu, Barkley, Osman; Lukaku

Subs: Robles, McGeady, Mirallas, Naismith, Garbutt, Alcaraz, Browning

Hilarious “Friends” spoof video ‘starring’ Messi, Ronaldo (video)

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Given the rivalry surrounding the two megawatt superstars plying their trade in Spain, you may be surprised to learn that Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo are the best of friends.

[ MORE: Top USMNT-Mexico rivalry moments ]

At least that’s what this spoof video conveys, as the Real Madrid and Barcelona stars help each other navigate tax season and toilet troubles.

Brilliant stuff, from FootbOle:

Top USMNT-Mexico moments: Looking back ahead of Saturday

PASADENA, CA - JUNE 25:  Landon Donovan #10 of United States celebrates his goal with teammates Carlos Bocanegra #3 and Alejandro Bedoya #22  against Mexico during the 2011 CONCACAF Gold Cup Championship at the Rose Bowl on June 25, 2011 in Pasadena, California.  (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images
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You could argue its the biggest match between the U.S. and Mexico outside of the 2002 World Cup’s Round of 16, and there would be few arguments against you.

The United States and Mexico will tangle on Saturday at the Rose Bowl, with the winner advancing to the 2017 Confederations Cup finals in Russia.

It’s only so often that these rivals match up in a “do or die” match. Sure World Cup qualifiers carry critical import, but they don’t always become the decisive moment in the qualifying cycle.

[ MORE: Spurs’ teen shining at center back for U.S. U-23s ]

Aside from the aforementioned World Cup match and the first match in the rivalry — see 1934 below — no other match has carried as much international weight as Saturday.

So with anticipation high, let’s dance backward in time to the Yanks’ best moments in the rivalry. And let’s also imagine what would have to happen to put Saturday in the mix.

(Of course, our apologies to Mexican fans. We aren’t including the times you slapped American soccer in the face).

2001, 2005, 2009, 2013 — “Dos a Cero” to the fourth power

There is no more celebrated score line in USMNT history than the 2-0 hurting it put on Mexico in four successive home World Cup qualifiers.

2002 — World Cup Round of 16

Goals from Brian McBride and Landon Donovan prodded an upset of the world’s then-No. 7 ranked nation, as the USMNT carried a feel of destiny through its best World Cup.

1934 — World Cup qualifier

Aldo Donnelli scored all four goals as the States won the first recorded match against Mexico, and it was a big one. The winner would go on to the 1934 tournament in Italy, while the loser would go on a tour of European friendlies. The States won, and wouldn’t win again until the qualifiers for the 1982 tournament.

2012 — First win at Azteca

It may’ve been a friendly, but Michael Orozco’s finish will go down as the Yanks’ first ever winner in the fortress of Mexico City.

1980 — World Cup qualifier

Though it meant little to the Yanks’ fate in the 1982 tournament — the U.S. finished last in a group with Mexico and Canada — it was the first win over El Tri in 46 years.