Manchester City v Sporting Kansas City

Premier League on tour, Weds roundup: Five play, only Liverpool loses

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Liverpool’s opposition was the stiffest challenge for any of the five Premier League teams playing in North America on Wednesday night, and the Reds were the only team to fall.

[ RELATED: Schedule for PL teams on North American tours]

AS Roma 1, Liverpool 0

I Lupi’s Marco Borriello used a shot through traffic in the 90th minute to claim “Football at Fenway” over Brendan Rodgers’ bunch. The bigger story coming out of Boston was the shoulder injury to Fabio Borini, who was playing despite Liverpool having agreed to a fee with Sunderland for his transfer.

“It’s probably not as bad as first thought.  He’s had problems in the past with his shoulder, but he’s only bruised it.

“He’ll miss a few days of training. He won’t train now for the remainder of the trip here, but it’s only going to be a matter of days before he’s back training and playing again.”

Liverpool’s next match is 6pm ET Sunday against Olympiakos in Chicago.

[ RELATED — WATCH: Daniel Sturridge breaks down Liverpool expectations with NBCSN crew ]

Manchester City 4, Sporting KC 1

Four different Citizens tallied in a battle KC deemed the “Clash of the Champions”. Bruno Zuculini, 21, netted in the match, as did trialist Kelechi Iheanacho — the Golden Ball winner at the 2013 U-17 World Cup —  and more familiar names Dedryck Boyata and Aleksandar Kolarov.

City controlled the match, as new goalkeeper Wily Caballero was hardly troubled. CJ Sapong did manage to make things tight for a bit in the first half when he scored with help from Benny Feilhaber. Man City put nine shots on frame,while KC managed just two.

Manchester United 7, Los Angeles Galaxy 0

The Galaxy fielded a weakened lineup, and the Red Devils took great advantage in Louis van Gaal’s first match in charge. Los Angeles players used the term “embarrassing” after the game, and that’s no exaggeration.

The first goal came on a horrific giveaway, the second was a PK following a handball in the box and the third was an absolute mess, as Wayne Rooney tapped a ball over Jaime Pineda after a low, mediocre cross went through a defender’s legs.

It was a brutal match for the Galaxy, and not a good indication of where Major League Soccer stands.

[ RELATED: ‘Embarrassed in L.A.’, thrilled in Manchester; Reactions from a 7-0 blowout ]

[ RELATED: Louis van Gaal gives Antonio Valencia a shooting lesson (video) ]

United next plays Sunday in Denver against AS Roma.

Tottenham Hotspur 3, Toronto FC 2

BMO Field gave a warm welcome to Spurs, who opened up a two-goal lead on ex-teammate Jermain Defoe and the host Reds. Twenty-two-year-old Erik Lamela netted twice for Tottenham in the first frame.

But Toronto FC came back, poking holes in Tottenham’s much-changed second-half backline. First Andrew Wiedeman picked up a slick through ball from Daniel Lovitz to make to 2-1 before the scorer turned passer on a strong finish by 18-year-old Homegrown player Jordan Hamilton.

Alas, Andros Townsend pounced on an opportunity caused by a TFC giveaway to bend home a winner in the 85th minute.

Spurs finish their tour with a match in Chicago on Saturday.

Aston Villa 2, FC Dallas 0

Villa played two different formations and a boatload of players. Both were fit enough to easily handle the challenge for Dallas. Andreas Weimann and Charles N’Zogbia were your goal scorers in the match.

Dallas played the friendly game with a juggled lineup as well, with some youth getting experience and some injured players working back to fitness. Not much to be judged from either side here, so perhaps Aston Villa’s Saturday tilt in Houston can be a better indicator for Villa fans.

VIDEO: Man United’s Marcus Rashford scores 3 minutes into his England debut

NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE, ENGLAND - MAY 26:  Marcus Rashford of England arrives at the team hotel on the eve of their international friendly against Australia at the Hilton Gateshead on May 26, 2016 in Newcastle upon Tyne, England.  (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)
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12 months ago Nine months ago Six months ago Three months ago, if anyone asked you, “who is Marcus Rashford?” you, just like me, probably would have responded as such: “I haven’t a clue. Should I know who he is?”

[ MORE: Man United confirm Mourinho as new manager ]

Stars are, of course, born overnight in the sports world, and the 18-year-old Manchester United striker, who spent 12 years with the club’s youth academy, is just the latest example. On Feb. 25, he made his first-team debut and scored twice in the Europa League. Three days later, he made his Premier League debut, again scoring twice.

[ MORE: Mourinho — “I prefer to forget the last three years at United” ]

Fast forward to Friday, and Rashford is a fully-fledged England international. In keeping up with the theme of his other debuts this season, he marked his international debut with a goal against Australia after just three minutes of play at the Stadium of Light.

It remains to be seen whether Rashford completes his hat trick of debut braces this year. We’ll update this post if he does so.

Croatia gets 2-match World Cup stadium ban for fascist chant

POZNAN, POLAND - JUNE 10:  Croatian fans light up flares during the UEFA EURO 2012 group C between Ireland and Croatia at The Municipal Stadium on June 10, 2012 in Poznan, Poland.  (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)
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ZURICH (AP) Croatia has been ordered to play two World Cup qualifying matches in empty stadiums for repeated cases of fans chanting fascist slogans.

FIFA fined the Croatian soccer federation 150,000 Swiss francs ($151,000), and ordered the stadium bans to take effect when Croatia hosts Turkey on Sept. 5 and Finland on Oct. 9.

Chile was also ordered to play one World Cup qualifier away from its national stadium over fans chanting anti-gay insults, FIFA said in disciplinary rulings announced Friday. FIFA also fined five Latin American soccer federations for “discriminatory and unsporting conduct by fans,” including anti-gay insults, at World Cup qualifiers.

[ MORE: USMNT-Bolivia preview | Castillo replaces Chandler ]

Croatia fans were guilty of discriminatory chants at friendlies against Israel and Hungary in March, FIFA said.

Croatia “had already been sanctioned for similar incidents by FIFA and UEFA” in previous seasons, the world soccer body said.

Before the 2014 World Cup, FIFA banned Croatia defender Josip Simunic for 10 matches for leading fans in a World War II-era chant used by the country’s then-puppet regime.

After incidents of anti-gay chants at the last World Cup in Brazil, FIFA has cracked down on insults aimed by Latin American fans at players on rival teams.

[ MORE: Three battles that could determine UCL final ]

Chile cannot use its national stadium when it hosts Bolivia on Sept. 6 and must pay a fine of 30,000 Swiss francs ($30,250). A second stadium-ban sanction was deferred for a two-year probationary period.

In other sanctions for soccer federations, FIFA fined Honduras 40,000 Swiss francs ($40,300), Mexico and El Salvador 35,000 Swiss francs ($35,275) each, Paraguay 20,000 Swiss francs ($20,150), and Peru 15,000 Swiss francs ($15,115).

UEFA Champions League final preview — Madrid’s finest Real or Atleti?

MILAN, ITALY - MAY 27:  Diego Simeone head coach of Atletico Madrid looks on during an Atletico de Madrid training session on the eve of the UEFA Champions League Final against Real Madrid at Stadio Giuseppe Meazza on May 27, 2016 in Milan, Italy.  (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)
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Saturday’s UEFA Champions League final isn’t quite the unstoppable force against the immovable object — Real’s defense is good and Atleti has plenty of attacking intent — but it’s fair if you’re expecting the Madrid Derby final to be Diego Simeone’s diligent defenders attempting to counter Cristiano Ronaldo and Real Madrid’s potent attack.

[ MORE: Mourinho confirmed ]

Simeone’s built his name on tight teamwork, and La Liga teams broke Atleti down a mere 18 times in 38 matches this season. Before you crow about the weakness of Spain’s top flight from top to bottom, Real only managed a single goal against Atleti in a 1-1 draw that came at the Vicente Calderon. Atleti triumphed 1-0 at the Bernabeu to take four of six points from their derby mates.

But this is the big one, and a rematch of the late thriller we saw in the 2014 final. That’s when Diego Godin’s 36th minute goal came within seconds of being the difference, only for Sergio Ramos to net in stoppage time and Real to score three goals in extra time for a 4-1 win.

[ MORE: Torres ready for “game of my life” ]

Ronaldo will be fine to go, which is obviously bad news for Atleti. While his goal at the end of the 2014 final was just chiseled-ab window dressing, he has scored in both of his UCL finals (He scored for Manchester United in the 26th minute of their 2008 defeat of Chelsea).

(Photo by Denis Doyle/Getty Images)

The beauty of Atleti’s defense is how well it springs into the attack, with Godin and Filipe Luis both capable of providing offense.

But really, with respect to Gabi and Antoine Griezmann… that defense! Atleti allowed three goals in the group stage, and just seven across its 12 UCL matches.

How will Simeone aim to stop Real this time around? Will it be banks of four or five, with Torres and Griezmann waiting to strike on a fleet-footed counter? That could serve their disciplined unit well, but something tells me Simeone has something special cooked up for this much-anticipated rematch, and manager is a distinct edge for Atleti against a still-learning Zinedine Zidane.

As an aside, Griezmann has been fantastic, scoring 32 times this year with seven coming in the UCL. Torres is second in scoring, with 12.

Championship playoff preview: Sheffield Wednesday vs. Hull City

DERBY, UNITED KINGDOM - MAY 14:  Eldin Jakupovic of Hull City celebrates as Andrew Robertson of Hull City scores their third goal during the Sky Bet Championship Play Off semi final first leg match between Derby County and Hull City at the iPro Stadium on May 14, 2016 in Derby, England.  (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)
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One is hoping to rejoin the Premier League at the first time of asking, while the other to see its first top flight action since 2000 with a win in Saturday’s promotion playoff final at Wembley Stadium.

Hull City did not make the top flight from its inception in 1904 until winning the playoffs in 2008. Since, the Tigers have spent a pair of 2-season stints in the Premier League.

Sheffield Wednesday, for its part, spent nine seasons in the top tier from 1991-2000, but fell as low as League One in the 21st century before a run to the playoffs this season.

[ MORE: Three battles that could determine UCL final ]

Hull’s stingy defense allowed 35 goals this season, tied for the second-best mark in the league, while scoring the fourth-most goals (69). The Tigers finished in fourth place to Wednesday’s sixth, and the sides drew 0-0 at Hull and 1-1 in the reverse fixture.

Uruguayan striker Abel Hernandez was far and away Hull’s most deadly scorer, notching 21 goals in the Championship this season, while Sam Clucas paced the club with 8 assists.

Wednesday’s scoring was paced by former Watford attacker Fernando Forestieri’s 15 goals. Veteran Gary Hooper added 13 for the Owls, who got a team-best eight assists from Ross Wallace.

It’s the “richest game in sports”, and kicks off at Noon ET Saturday.